Special Olympics New York Closes First-Ever Season at Home with Virtual Celebration
481 Athletes & 120 Coaches Celebrate Achievement in 12 Events
Albany, NY – To cap off the first-ever Special Olympics New York Sports Season at Home, athletes, coaches, volunteers, staff, and fans recently joined together for a virtual celebration. Statewide, 481 athletes and 120 coaches competed.
“None of us could’ve anticipated what we’ve been through in the last few months,” said Special Olympics New York President & CEO Stacey Hengsterman during her welcoming address. “The last time we were all together like this at Winter Games in February seems like ages ago. As much as we have all missed seeing each other in person, it feels like being apart has brought us even closer together.”
Following Hengsterman’s welcome, the celebration continued with athlete T.J. Timmons’s rousing rendition of the National Anthem, along with inspiring words from Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro. Athlete Jay Hale led everyone in the Athlete Oath, and 2020 Coach of the Year Joe Amadeo spoke about his training club’s successes with virtual competition. Finally, members of Special Olympics New York’s Athlete Input Council shared amazing facts about athletes’ accomplishments during the Season at Home. In all, nearly 250 individuals attended the celebration.
“The Season at Home was an excellent way to stay in shape and help many of us athletes through this difficult time,” said New York City Region athlete Kathleen Maggi. “From training to competition to celebration, I think I speak for everyone when I say we needed this.”
About Special Olympics New York
Special Olympics New York is the largest state chapter in the country, serving more than 67,000 athletes across New York with year-round sports training, athletic competition, and health screenings. The organization also partners with more than 170 schools statewide to offer Unified Sports. All Special Olympics New York programs are offered at no cost to athletes, their families or caregivers. For additional information about Special Olympics New York, to learn more about getting involved, or to make a donation, visit www.specialolympicsNY.org.