Organizers of the Special Olympics U.S.A. National Games says they are overwhelmed by the response to their call for volunteers. Thousands volunteers are needed for next month’s event which is expected to draw more than 17 thousand competitors, coaches and families to the Iowa State University campus.

Eliane Hieber is chair of the organizing committee and says the anticipated the need for about eight thousand volunteers. Hieber says they will surpass their goal and she says the best news is that over 600 people have offered to work all five days. Hieber says that helps with the continuity of the program.

It is the first ever national games and Hieber says it has been a huge undertaking. She says many people have been involved in the planning for over two years. Hieber says as the host of the first national games, they have an opportunity to set the bar high for the next national games. The national games are July second through the seventh.