Let the Games begin: Special Olympics coming to south Washington CountyThis week, the Special Olympics hit south Washington County. A portion of the Special Olympics Minnesota 2012 Fall Games will take place the weekend of Aug. 17 through 19 at East Ridge High School and Bielenberg Sports Complex.
By: Patrick Johnson, Sports Editor, South Washington County Bulletin
The 2012 London Summer Olympic Games may be over. But, for some, the Games have just begun.
This week, the Special Olympics hit south Washington County. A portion of the Special Olympics Minnesota 2012 Fall Games will take place the weekend of Aug. 17 through 19 at East Ridge High School and Bielenberg Sports Complex.
The softball portion of the 2012 Special Olympics Fall Games will take place at Bielenberg and the bocce event will be held at East Ridge. In addition, East Ridge is hosting the celebration ceremonies, dinner and dance after the Games.
The other events in the Fall games include equestrian, which will be held at the Northwest Saddle Club in North Branch, and golf, which will take place at Oak Marsh Golf Club in Oakdale.
Last year 1,297 athletes took part in the Fall Games. Athletes may enter events in multiple sports based on the schedule of events and the coaches’ judgment of the athlete’s ability.
According to a release, Special Olympics Minnesota is founded on the belief that people with intellectual disabilities can, with proper instruction and encouragement, learn, enjoy and benefit from participation in individual and team sports, adapted as necessary to meet the needs of those with intellectual and physical disabilities. Special Olympics Minnesota believes that consistent training is essential to the development of sports skills, and that competition among those of equal abilities is the most appropriate means of testing these skills, measuring progress and providing incentives for personal growth.
Special Olympics Minnesota is still looking for volunteers for the Fall Games. Volunteers can help time events, distribute awards, keep score, stage competitions, set up and tear down for events, prepare for lunch, and more. To volunteer, visit www.specialolympicsminnesota.org or contact Jay Pedersen, Volunteer Manager, at email@example.com or 612-604-1267.