Spring has arrived, and for many of us, our thoughts turn to running, jumping, throwing…and volunteering. In Naperville, spring means Special Olympics athletes from around the region convene on North Central College for not one, but two, track and field events.
On Sunday, April 13 about 150 Special Olympics athletes will compete in Western DuPage Special Recreation Association’s (WDSRA’s) Invitational Track and Field Meet taking place at Benedetti-Wehrli Stadium. Two weeks later, on April 27, Special Olympics Illinois hosts the Spring Games Competition in the same location. Over 600 athletes participate in the second event which is a qualifier for the state competition taking place downstate in June.
Why the first meet? In many ways it serves as practical preparation for our athletes. For some this might be the first time they run on an actual track. To that end, the WDSRA meet is an opportunity for them to learn such concepts as “staying inside one’s lane” – not to mention the psychological benefits of experiencing the “big” field shortly before the “big” competition two weeks later.
Both of these special events could not happen without the dedication of the hundreds of volunteers from Naperville and the surrounding communities. On behalf of WDSRA, our athletes, and their families, we extend our gratitude to the community for your continued involvement.
For more information on WDSRA’s Track and Field Meet, visit www.wdsra.com or call Becky Prince, WDSRA Athletics Manager at 630-681-0962 x541. For more information on Special Olympics Illinois, visit www.soill.org.