Friday, May 11, 2012

Special Olympics

Maggie had Special Olympics on Friday. It was great. Perfect weather and 700 kids ready for action.This was done through the San Francisco Unified District in partnership with Special Olympics, which is the only way Maggie has even been able to participate.

If you have the chance to spend some time at a Special Olympics event, I highly recommend you do so. It will make you happy. The smiles are everywhere and I can promise you that you have never seen a more enthusiastic opening ceremonies parade. There is unabashed  pride in the Star Spangled Banner and Pledge of Allegiance and especially in reciting the Special Olympics pledge. I don't get teary eyed in Maggie's World very often, but this is so incredibly sweet it's difficult not to. Unless you are made of stone, you will be moved, awestruck, delighted and humbled all at the very same moment.

It was track and field day today and Maggie participated in two races, beating out her classmate and friend Robert by a nose in each race. Here they are laughing in the stands just before their event.

There were so many kids of all school ages ready to compete and the event seemed far more organized than in past years.  None of it would have worked  without the incredible teachers who do so much behind the scenes. There are also volunteers from various group; lots of kids from the typical school population, but also corporate sponsors. There were at least 10 people there from Torani, the syrup you mix in various drinks. I love that stuff anyway, but now I will buy it with pride. They were cheering on Maggie and all the kids in all of the events. They were also having just as much fun as the kids. Win. Win.

The whole experience was just made even better by the beautiful day we had here. The weather could not have been better. Blue sky, big sun, light breeze. Perfect. I dropped Maggie and the nurse off and had to go find a place to park, which turned out to be easy enough. When I walked into the stadium I had to stop for a minute and take in the scene.  There were a lot of people there. Student athletes, volunteers, teachers, support staff, event staff, family members and more. Some of the schools had classes of typically developing kids there to cheer on their schoolmates to victory. They had signs to root for thier particular school. It was a wonderful thing to see and to be a part of.

As I entered, I was struck by how many people were there just to make sure these kids had a positive experience. And I'll bet every one of them did. I can tell you one mom certainly did. 

Everyone really IS a winner at special Olympics.  

Maggie with her cheering sections, Dad, Miss Laura, Nurse Janice and Miss Eva.

1 comment:

  1. You know, I've never been to a Special Olympics before and I have no reason for that. This makes me want to go -- maybe next year?


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