Special Olympics greeted by sunny skies

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GREENVILLE – The 54th local Special Olympics was pushed back several days due to the tornado but went off without a hitch Monday at Greenville City Schools’ Jennings Center Track and Field Complex under the direction of Cindy Rose, the Director of Darke County Special Olympics.

Special Olympics competitors receive ribbons. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

The event brings together Darke County Superintendents, Principals, and teachers for a family reunion-type atmosphere each year.

“We have former superintendents come out,” said Arcanum-Butler Superintendent John Stephens. “It’s always good to see Mr. Gray. He always enjoyed this as County Superintendent and is back out here today as our starter. It’s a great day, a good day to be out of the office especially when it’s beautiful and sunshine like it is today.”

Arcanum-Butler Superintendent John Stephens gets runners ready for Special Olympics race. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

“They gave me the list of students and I try to get the races organized, one of those other duties assigned for Superintendents,” Stephens added. “It’s a great day; I love doing it, beautiful weather, and I appreciate all the workers, the City of Greenville, and Mr. Fries at Greenville City Schools here to get everything prepared so our kids could come in and enjoy the day.”

Taking time away from recent tornado duties, GHS Superintendent Doug Fries was busy helping on the field including the ball-throwing competition.

Greenville Superintendent Doug Fries helps with softball throw at Special Olympics. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

“We appreciate all the volunteers that are out here helping and the biggest priority for us was to get the buildings in between high school and the K-8 to get school going again,” said Fries. “Thanks to all the work of the city and all the volunteers, helpers, and contractors that made that happen.”

“We had limited concerns here at the Jennings Complex, most of the damage with the high jump pit, but we were able to get debris picked up and get things mowed and things ready for the Special Olympics, which we knew was important not only for Greenville City Schools but the whole county. We have more substantial damage at the tennis courts and the stadium.”

Special Olympics athlete competes in long jump. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

Cindy Rose, Director of Darke County Special Olympics, was busy organizing the day’s events and, as always, was doing an excellent job.

“This is a big day, this is the biggest day for our school-age students of all the programs we have,” said Rose. “The area here was not ready last Friday for anything to be happening that day.”

“We all know what happened this year on May 7th in Greenville,” she added. “It was supposed to be on Friday but for us to be able to come together a couple days later and be blessed with this weather today is amazing.”

The Greenville Senior High School Supply Chain Management Class made a $14,000 donation to Special Olympics and has reached the $90,000 donation mark over 10 years.

Greenville Senior High School Supply Chain Management class presents $14,000 check to Special Olympics. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

“Students came up with an idea for their conference of a Night in Hollywood to highlight the artistic capabilities of people with disabilities,” Rose noted. “They have a live auction, singers, dancers, all people with intellectual disabilities. They seek donations from businesses for that night and then have a live auction and silent auction that also goes into it.”

“This doesn’t happen without these volunteers and the teachers that get them here,” Rose concluded.