The third annual Special Olympics Iowa (SOIA) Unified Sports Day at Grinnell College in Grinnell is March 8. Event organizers are expecting 70 Special Olympics Iowa athletes from Ames, Des Moines and Grinnell. They will partner with 50 Grinnell College students for a day of unified activities. Principal Financial Group is the sponsor for this event.
Special Olympics Iowa Unified Sports is an initiative that brings together Special Olympics Iowa athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (called partners) on sports teams for training and competition. “This is not a day of competition, but instead a day of awareness,” said Special Olympics Iowa Unified Sports Director, Michelle Haney. “Grinnell College students can spend time with Special Olympics Iowa athletes and learn about persons with intellectual disabilities,” said Haney. “The Special Olympics Iowa athletes in turn get to spend time with college students and learn about them.”
Registration is at 8:45 a.m., and the event lasts until around 1:00 p.m. Grinnell College students will partner with Special Olympics Iowa athletes to play basketball, bocce, bowling, volleyball, soccer kicks, and enjoy arts and crafts Special Olympics Iowa (SOIA), a statewide nonprofit organization, provides high-quality training and competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities in all 99 counties of Iowa. SOIA offers 23 Olympic-style sports to approximately 12,000 athletes and Unified Sports partners year-round. Since 1968, Special Olympics has provided an inclusive culture that stresses athletic excellence, rewards determination, emphasizes health, and celebrates personal achievement. For more information, call 515-986-5520 or visit www.soiowa.org.