Special Olympics Arizona to kick off fall games next weekend

Oct 16, 2021, 5:45 AM

(Facebook Photo/Special Olympics Arizona)...

(Facebook Photo/Special Olympics Arizona)

(Facebook Photo/Special Olympics Arizona)

PHOENIX — More than 1,000 Special Olympics athletes across the state will head to the Valley next weekend to compete in the 2021 Fall Games presented by Casino Arizona.

It marks one of the biggest competitions of the year for the organization as athletes will showcase their skills in swimming, softball and bocce on Oct. 22 and Oct. 23.

“We are so excited to kick off the 2021 Fall Games and welcome our wonderful athletes from all across the state of Arizona,” Jamie Heckerman, president and CEO of Special Olympics Arizona, said in a press release.

“It has been a challenging 18 months with so many cancelations and disruptions for our athletes, we know they can’t wait to get back to competition, as well as just getting the opportunity to reconnect in person with their friends and coaches. It is truly a great event, we encourage everyone to come out and cheer on and support these athletes.”

Southwest Valley YMCA in Goodyear will host the swimming competition, while the bocce and softball events will take place at Pioneer Community Park in Peoria.

The organization’s Healthy Athletes program throughout the weekend will provide complimentary medical exams to athletes, according to the release, including the Fit Feet, Fun Fitness and Special Smiles programs.

The Healthy Athletes program will take place each day at Pioneer Community Park from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., with Special Smiles occurring on both days while Fit Feet and Fun Fitness will only be available on Oct. 23.

People can purchase Special Olympics Arizona merchandise at the park as well, according to the release.

More information about the event can be found online.

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Special Olympics Arizona to kick off fall games next weekend