Swimmers advance at Special Olympics regional competition

SEBASTIAN — Drawing over 200 competitors from 5 local counties, Saturday’s Special Olympics swim meet was fun for everyone involved.

“The kids all root for one another,” said Darla Danis of the Special Olympics Indian River Management Team. “There is such a friendship amongst the competitors.”

There were a few local competitors who had outstanding performances, and each competitor had the opportunity to swim in three different events. The Special Olympics, founded in 1962, encompasses all of the best qualities that sports have to offer.


Angel Kennedy won a ribbon in each of the three events she competed in. In another great effort, Christopher Weems, Aaron Markel, Zach Riley, and Amber Fallo won the 4×50 meter relay.

It’s important to point out the success of these competitors, but really, everyone involved in the swim meet at North County Regional Park was a winner.

“The swimmers evolved so much from where they started,” said Danis, in her fourth year with Special Olympics. “Some of these kids couldn’t do the back stroke or breast stroke. Now, they are making it all the way down to the end of the pool (25 meters). Seeing them have that sense of accomplishment is really special.”

North County Regional Park will be the proud host to the Special Olympics State Aquatic Championship on Oct. 3 and 4.

There are expected to be over 300 contestants and the event is looking for volunteers to handle staging and other duties. Those interested can get more details by calling (352) 243-9536.

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