BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The fans asked and local celebrity American Ninja Warrior Finalist Anthony DeFranco delivered and held a meet and greet Friday at Columbia Middle School upper field.

Berkeley Heights' own American Ninja Warrior, DeFranco, first qualified earlier in the summer in Philadelphia with the "run of the night" before then competing and finishing 11th at the regional finals in that same city which aired last Monday. The top 15 performers advanced to the Las Vegas season finals of the popular NBC show.  

Fans of all ages lined up for autographs and photos with the local celebrity "hero" while asking him questions about his experience.

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DeFranco was able to tell the fans about his favorite part of competing and how he qualified. "Hanging out with the other Ninjas was my favorite part," said DeFranco. "It is friendly and you meet new people." 

The American Ninja Warrior finals from Las Vegas will air  Monday, August 29 and Monday, September 5 on NBC .

DeFranco has been an athlete his whole life and was a member of the track and wrestling teams when he was at Gov. Livingston High School. He was the 2011 outdoor pole vault state champ before he graduated and continued his pole vaulting career at Rider University. This past year, he was a substitute teacher and the GL pole vaulting coach while training for Ninja. He will continue to train while balancing his new full time carreer as an accountant for KPMG. 

He will also be competing in an upcoming competition with Greg Michael and Kelly Lynn and is selling Team DeFranco  t-shirts with all proceeds benefitting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and  Ninja For a Cure. The deadline for buying the shirt is September 5th.  

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