Special Olympics set for May 5 at Fairland schools campus

Published 11:03 pm Saturday, April 25, 2009

ROME TOWNSHIP — The annual Special Olympics is expected to take place without a hitch Tuesday, May 5, on the Fairland schools campus.

Open to youth with disabilities, the Special Olympics will offer a variety of games both on the outdoor track at Fairland High School with developmental games at the Fairland Middle School.

“These children look forward to it all year long,” according to Sharon Blankenship, veteran Special Olympics coordinator who has worked with the event since 1972. “It gives them the opportunity to excel at activities they might not get to participate in.”

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The Olympics is open to students with disabilities from all the school districts in the county from ages of 5 and older.

The individual games include the 50, 100, 400-meter dash, the long jump, the softball throw and the relays, all happening on the track.

The indoor activities will include the wheelchair race, slalom, distance ball toss and scooter board.

Volunteers from the community and schools will be working the event and assisting the students.

Medals will be given out to those participating.

There will be approximately 250 children participating. The rain date is Friday, May 8.

“I think it is a very important part of what we do to help the children to grow to their fullest potential,” Blankenship said.