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Column: Special Olympics always a fun time

 

By J.R. Tidwell/Editor

Chilton County Schools hosted its 37th annual Special Olympics track and field day on May 2. I had the honor and privilege of covering the event.

Thanks to my history as a sports writer, I was responsible for covering the Special Olympics events in Lawrence County during my three years working there as well. So, I am very familiar with such things.

And let me tell you, it is always a treat. I tell everyone that if they are sad on the day of the Special Olympics, just come watch those students have fun.

It is absolutely their day. It is a day where everyone in attendance is truly on an even playing field. Students who might not normally get to participate in athletics at their schools get a chance to not only be a part of the festivities, but to shine.

It’s a beautiful thing. You can’t help but be happy watching the smiles spread across the athletes’ faces as they get to cut loose and have fun.

I grew up playing sports from the time I was 5 years old. I played youth baseball until I reached high school, and then I played football for three years for my alma mater, Curry High School.

I cannot imagine what it would have been like to be unable to participate in the sports that I loved.

That is why events like the Special Olympics are so awesome. Everyone who wants to participate, regardless of his or her circumstances, gets a chance to play.

You can tell how happy these students are just getting the opportunity. And all of that merriment is highly infectious.

Kudos to Chilton County Schools for putting on the event. Keep it up.