4/16/2012 8:14:00 AM Prescott Valley to host Special Olympics area meet
Haley Stanfer of the Bradshaw Mountain team competes during the Yavapai Area Invitational Spring Games at Bradshaw Mountain High School in 2010.
Photo courtesy Les Stukenberg
Prescott Valley Tribune
The Bradshaw Mountain Special Olympics will be hosting the Northern Arizona Special Olympics Area Games on Saturday, April 21, at Bradshaw Mountain High School in Prescott Valley.
Marnie Uhl, director of the Prescott Valley Chamber of Commerce, said she is looking forward to emceeing the Opening Ceremonies that will begin at 9 a.m. at the school's track and field at Glassford Hill Road and Long Look Drive.
The events, including 25- to 1500-meter races, power-lifting, shot-put and long jump, among others, will start immediately after the opening ceremonies and continue until 3 p.m.
"Come cheer on the athletes and enjoy this rewarding experience," said Gene McFarland with the Prescott Valley Police Department, who is also a weightlifting coach for Bradshaw Mountain Special Olympics.
Last year, the area games were cancelled after snowy weather and several teams and volunteers couldn't make it on the rescheduled day.
Turnout this year should be as strong as it was in 2010, when hundreds of people filled the stands and cheered on the 161 athletes, McFarland said.
The Prescott Valley Early Bird Lions Club will take part in the medal ceremony, presenting the athletes with their awards after each event.
Volunteers from many local schools, businesses, and organizations make this event possible, McFarland said.
In 2010, middle school bands played the Olympic Theme, honor guards from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the Prescott Police Department and the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office presented the colors, the crowd erupted in cheers as the athletes paraded by the stands with local leaders, and a NARTA recruit handed the torch to a Special Olympics athlete who lit the Flame of Hope.
Anyone interested in volunteering during the games should call Kim or Mark at 928-772-0698.