Hundreds of athletes with intellectual disabilities will be in northeast Iowa next week for the 28th annual Special Olympics Iowa Winter Games. Hal Pittman, president and CEO of Special Olympics Iowa, says the events will be held at several venues in Dubuque, starting on Monday. “We’ll have athletes of all ages,” Pittman says. “The sports are alpine and Nordic skiing, figure skating, snowshoeing and speed skating and they just have a fantastic time.”
Opening ceremonies will be held Monday at 6 P.M. at Grand Harbor Hall in Dubuque with a parade of athletes and the lighting of the Special Olympic torch. Pittman says there will be a healthy economic boost to the Dubuque area during the event’s three-day run. “In addition to the 400 athletes, there’s going to be several hundred coaches and chaperones, 300 volunteers, including more than 50 from the University of Northern Iowa,” Pittman says.
All of the events are free and open to the public. The games wrap up on Wednesday. Learn more at: www.soiowa.org
(Reporting by Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)