Thursday, May 4, 2017

North Schuylkill Set to Host the First Annual Spartan Games

North Schuylkill School District to host the first annual "Spartan Games".

On Tuesday, May 16th, the North Schuylkill School District will be hosting their first annual Spartan Games. The Spartan Games will be a day full of competition, activities, and fun for children with disabilities from throughout the area.

Currently, there are 14 School Districts from in and around Schuylkill County that have committed to participate in the event. There are approximately 475 athletes set to compete in the games. The Spartan Games are open to student-athletes in grades Kindergarten through 12th grade. The theme for this year’s event is “Game On”. 

The event will include track and field events such as Throwing (Javelin, Tennis, Frisbee); Jumping (Long Jump, Vertical Jump); Running (50 meter race, 100 meter race, 50 meter walk, wheelchair race); and a 4 x 100 relay race (each district enters a team to compete for a team trophy). Ribbons will be given out for each event, for 1st through 6th place, and each athlete will also receive a participation medal.

"North Schuylkill’s staff and students are excited to host this event. We are thrilled to provide an opportunity for exercise and competition for students with disabilities. We are overwhelmed with the positive messages and support we have received from neighboring school districts and the community. " said Knute Brayford, Director of Special Education.
Along with the events, various other activities will be taking place in and around the stadium throughout the day. When athletes are not competing in an event, they can visit the carnival area (taking place on the softball field) to take part in fun games and activities, including live music, face-painting, a bounce house, and the “Sparty Dance Party”. The North Schuylkill Marching Band and cheer squads will also be on hand to entertain the student-athletes. 

The day will conclude with a Mascot Race between all of the participating school’s costumed mascots. The Closing Ceremony is scheduled to take place at approximately 1 pm.

The event is being funded by donations from school organizations, local businesses, and area hospitals, Lehigh Valley Health Network and Geisinger Health.

Ideas for the event came about when 2 North Schuylkill students were unable to participate in the Schuylkill County Special Olympics County Meet due to the organization's guidelines.

"The entire process of organizing the Spartan Games has been humbling. There are no words to explain the pride I feel towards the staff and community for their willingness to dive into this project without hesitation. The magnitude of this event is far beyond anything I could have imagined and the idea of pulling it together in a few weeks is unthinkable. I am excited to see the reaction on the student’s faces the day of this event, it will make all the planning worth it." said Dr. Robert Ackell, Superintendent for the North Schuylkill School District.

Rain date for the event is Wednesday May 17th. 

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