CMS Hosts Special Olympics Regional Games on Sunday, Oct. 9

Claremont McKenna College student-athletes, along with their Harvey Mudd
and Scripps colleges teammates, will serve as volunteers for the 2005 San Gabriel Valley Regional Fall Games happening Sunday, Oct. 9 on the CMC campus, and sponsored by the Special Olympics of Southern California.

Opening ceremonies commence at 9 a.m., followed by competition play in soccer and volleyball from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Soccer will be hosted on Parents’ and Pritzlaff fields. Volleyball matches will be played in Ducey Gymnasium and at the Linde Activities Center at neighboring Harvey Mudd College. Awards and closing ceremonies will conclude the Games thereafter.

“Claremont McKenna College has been an enormous supporter of this event,” says Megan Rowe, regional sports manager for the Special Olympics of Southern California. “The athletics department staff has donated many hours and resources to our benefit, and the CMC students will be the primary volunteer base for the Games themselves.”

The Special Olympics was established in 1968 when Eunice Kennedy Shriver organized the First International Summer Games at Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. Shriver had observed, through a day camp she ran for individuals with intellectual disability, that participants were more capable in sports and physical activities than experts thought. In 1968, the Special Olympics became a nonprofit charitable organization under the laws of the District of Columbia.

Special Olympics Games today attract about 1.2 million athletes in more than 150 countries, in 26 different Olympics-type sports. The operation relies on about 750,000 volunteers worldwide, and more than 140,000 coaches.

“The Special Olympics mission is to provide year-round sport training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disability,” Rowe says, “by giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.”