SPECIAL OLYMPICS TENNESSEE ATHLETES SKI AND SNOWBOARD IN TWENTY-FIFTH ANNUAL STATE WINTER GAMES (Ober Gatlinburg)
Special Olympics athletes from around the state are waxing their skis and polishing their snowboards In preparation for the sliver anniversary of the Special Olympics Tennessee Winter Games. These Games will be held February 1st and 2nd at Ober Gatlinburg.
Over 100 athletes with intellectual disabilities will compete in Alpine skiing and snowboarding in divisions based on age and ability. According to Meg Takahashi, Director of Competitions, ''Thanks to individuals, organizations and businesses in and around Gatlinburg, the Winter Games will be a great event. Our athletes train, compete, win, lose and always give ft thefr best shot.
On Sunday night, January 31st, the public is welcome to witness the traditional Opening Ceremonies from 6:30 to 7:00 at Mills Auditorium, where they will witness the March of Athletes, the Special Olympics Oath, a welcoming speech, and the presentation of the colors. The traditional lighting of the Special Olympics flame take place on Monday morning at 9:00 on top of Ober Gatlinburg.
The Winter Games competition is being conducted by Tim Doyle, Smoky Mountain Snow Sport School – Alpine Skiing. Orson Bell- Snowboarding; and Kathy Doyle, Ober Gatlinburg Facilities Coordinator.
Many businesses and civic organizations such as The American Legion Post 202 and Auxiliary Unit 2021 Gatlinburg Department Of Tourism, Garden Plaza of Gatlinburg, Smoky Mountain Ski Club, Smoky Mountain Snow Sport School, Ober Gatlinburg, American Eagle Outfitters, the Seymour Herald and other Sevier County businesses greatly support Special Olympics Tennessee.
Over 14,000 athletes participate in Special Olympics Tennessee which provides year-round training and competition opportunities in 19 sports. More than 300 athletes participate in Area Winter Sports throughout the state.