Special Olympians reach for the stars - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Special Olympians reach for the stars

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July 20, 2005

Albany-- Albany is hosting the state Special Olympics Fall Games this October, and is in dire need of sponsors and volunteers. Putting on the major event costs about $50,000 and the games committee has raised a little less than half of that.

"We're going to go into Harvest Moon and see what we can do." Jennifer Daniel and Sidney White are on a search for sponsors, not lunch. "Special Olympics is having their State Fall Games here October 7th through the 9th. We would love for you, as a local business, to be a sponsor."

The Special Olympics staff spent the afternoon going door to door, asking downtown businesses to sponsor the Fall Games which will be held in Albany for the next three years.

Georgia Milton-Sheats of Ga. Special Olympics said, "We'll have almost 1,500 people in town for the weekend."

Wednesday, state Special Olympics leaders came to Albany to thank Merck and Harvey's Supermarkets for becoming the first major sponsors. But they still need to raise more than $25,000 to put on the Fall Games and bring more than 800 athletes to the competition.

Global Messenger Mary Cox said, "I do volleyball, and I won the bronze medal."

Cox practices twice a week in hopes of adding a gold medal to her growing collection come October. "You get to work together as a team and help other people."

To help Mary and other athletes reach their goal, businesses and volunteers must join the Special Olympics Team. Sheats said, "The family members feel great pride, the athletes feel great pride. The volunteers are touched, and it will change your life."

It's an experience that will make volunteers feel like champions too. The Fall Games are October 7th through the 9th.

To help, call 1-800-866-4400, or log on to www.specialolympicsga.org .

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