2019 Special Olympics Fall Games review

Published by: Gary Merritt On: 10/04/2019 Under: Community

Severe weather could not stop these amazing athletes. The 2019 Special Olympics Fall Games took place September 20-22, 2019. The Games began on Friday, September 20, with a Young Athletes festival and the Opening Ceremony, held in Ann Arbor, MI. Prior to the Opening Ceremony, several Knights and their families greeted the athletes and handed out Tootsie Rolls; as the athletes entered the ceremonies.

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During the Ceremony, Special Olympics Michigan athlete James Tippins from Saginaw in Area 22 was named the 2019 Perkins/Cottee Sportsmanship Award winner. William Rotunno from Area 9, the 2018 recipient of the Perkins/Cottee award and Willie Winkle, K of C Special Olympics Assistant, lit the Flame of Hope to signify the official start of the Games.  After the lighting ceremony the Michigan State Council gave a check to President of Special Olympics Michigan, Tim Hileman. This donation represents the hard work of all the councils in the State of Michigan.

On Saturday, a severe storm that was rolling through southeast Michigan led to the shortening of softball and golf competitions in Canton and Ypsilanti, but the 1,600 athletes in attendance still finished the weekend strong!  Throughtout the day the athletes competed in Cycling and Flag Football in Chelsea, Golf in Ypsilanti and Softball in Canton.  Congratulations to all who competed in these events.  For more photos of these competitions you can go to: https://www.flickr.com/photos/specialolympicsmichigan/albums

The Sunday weather cooperated much better. Under clearing skies, athletes competed in Kayaking in Ypsilanti and Soccer in Canton. At the Soccer competition in Canton, over 50 Knights and their families prepared lunch for these hungry athletes (and their coaches).  Special thanks goes out to Councils 8284,8244, 3959, 14213 and 16169 for their help with the setup, cooking, serving and cleanup. I know there were Knights from Temperence, Milford, Rochester Hills and St. Clair in attendance. Their commitment to Special Olympics is greatly appreciated.

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And then there were the winners. Awards were handed out and worn by some very proud athletes.                                


John Hundiak Mich. State Special Olympics Director