Sportsmanship highlights adult Kiwanis Track & Field Day

| March 31, 2017

COSHOCTON – Winning ribbons is fun and exciting, but the highlights of the adult day for the Kiwanis Track & Field events all centered on cheering for friends and celebrating the victories of each athlete.

The event was held on Tuesday, March 28 at Kids America and featured the athletic skills of 75- 80 athletes. Toby Collins, director of recreation and Special Olympics for the Coshocton County Board of Developmental Disabilities, said the day is all about the athletes. Collins said, “The day is all about the athletes and giving them a sense of accomplishment. They love showing off the ribbons they win and take a big sense of pride in those awards.”

Collins said the day wouldn’t be the success it is without the tremendous volunteers who come each year to make sure the athletes have fun. For the adult day, the CHS Key Club, the CSI class from the Coshocton County Career Center and students from the Coshocton Christian School all came to help, cheer on the participants and have fun.

Lillie Corder and her son, Brandon, were both on hand as volunteers. Lillie said she enjoys doing anything with Special Olympics and the athletes. Brandon is involved with the Hopewell Indians teams and she said the teams are like a big family. Brandon said he has fun helping with the different activities, but his favorite part is seeing the athletes get their ribbons.

Sandy Hess is the teacher of the CSI class and one of the things she teaches her class is about the importance of community service and giving back to others.  Bringing students to this event as volunteers is a great way to show them how helping others also makes them feel good about themselves. Her students are each assigned to an activity and they encourage the participants and help where needed.  Nichole Farver is a student in the class and she said she likes coming to help because she enjoys helping others who need it and she likes passing out the ribbons and seeing how happy people are to get them.

The day began with the National Anthem, followed by a parade of athletes around the walking track. Each group then went to their assigned activity, including racing, cornhole, basketball shoot and football toss. The athletes were split into smaller groups so everyone got a ribbon from each event. Kids America was full of loud cheers and claps as the participants yelled for their friends and gave high-fives at every activity. Ribbons were pinned to shirts so everyone could see what they had won and the smiles were huge as even non-verbal athletes made sure everyone they saw looked at their awards.

Casey Jones won a second place ribbon for her race and said that running was her favorite thing to do. Doug Gross proudly showed off his red ribbon for basketball and said basketball was the most fun. Another athlete, Lindsey Ashcraft, agreed that basketball was the best, while Rosanna Stutzman said running was her favorite.

All of the participants agreed they couldn’t wait until next March when they hoped to compete again.


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