More than 900 athletes and nearly 314 coaches struck up some fun at the 2013 Special Olympics Wisconsin (SOWI) State Fall Sports Tournament in Wausau, Waukesha and Wawautosa on Saturday, December 7, 2013 from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Athletes kicked off the games with a short Opening Ceremony around 8:30 a.m., where athletes pledged the Special Olympics oath, “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt,” before hitting the lanes.
Several Team Wisconsin athletes who will be attending the Special Olympics USA Games on June 14-21, 2014 in New Jersey competed in the event, including John Avery and Nate Schmitt.
“I got to throw the first ball of the game. It was a special day,” said Schmitt, a Team Wisconsin athlete who attended the Northern event. “I saw my friends from the USA Games.”
“It’s time for us to practice for the [USA] Games. It’ll be here before we know it,” said Avery, who attended the Southern event.
IIn between knocking down pins and high-fiving their teammates in Wausau, current and prospective athletes visited Special Olympics MedFest®, which offers the physical exam that all athletes need prior to participating in Special Olympics sports programming. Approximately 25 local volunteer healthcare professionals were on-site to screen for medical history, height and weight, blood pressure and more.
The State Fall Sports Tournament has taken place for 34 years in Milwaukee. Since bowling is SOWI’s most popular sport, four years ago SOWI divided the tournament into a northern tournament in Wausau and southern tournament in Milwaukee to reduce travel time for teams.
For photos and results, visit www.SpecialOlympicsWisconsin.org. Thanks to Special Olympics Wisconsin Mission Partners, Kwik Trip and the Law Enforcement Torch Run as well as State Games Partners Fox Sports Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC).
Stay tuned for more information about the State Winter Games scheduled to take place on January 25,26 in Wausau!
Fans in the Stands were highly visible at the volleyball venue in Wauwatosa. This year, the Milwaukee Sting Volleyball Club girls volunteered to cheer and make numerous posters for our great athletes. While their efforts may have been Ultimate Fan worthy, the title for this tournament went to Maddy Rondeau & Company! Congrats and thank you to everyone for participating! Check out the pictures here.