THUNDER BAY – The 2011 Special Olympics Ontario Winter Games kicks off today with athletes, and volunteers alike, excited to participate in what is to be a truly inspirational event. More than 400 athletes, coaches and managers from across Ontario have traveled to Thunder Bay to compete in six sport competitions. Speed skating, curling, snowshoeing, alpine skiing, figure skating and Nordic skiing are sure to draw in the crowds of family, friends and fans of the Games.
Special Olympics Ontario is very proud of all the athletes who trained extremely hard to compete at these Games. “Everyone is ready for a fantastic Winter Games and are excited to see all the athletes perform,” said Glenn MacDonell, President and CEO of Special Olympics Ontario. “We’re grateful to the Thunder Bay Police Service, and the City of Thunder Bay, who have welcomed the Special Olympics community with open arms.”
The 2011 Special Olympics Ontario Winter Games will kick off with Opening Ceremonies on January 20 @ 7 p.m. (EST) at the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium, where Law Enforcement Torch Runners from across the province will escort the Flame of Hope into the Opening Ceremonies to officially open the Games. The Unified Sports Event will take place on January 21-22, where Brian Burke, GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs, will be the key note speaker at the luncheon on January 21.
The Games run from January 20-23, 2011 with competitions, social events and activities utilizing Thunder Bay’s fully equipped venues such as Mount Baldy Ski Area, Fort William Curling Club, Thunder Bay Tournament Centre, Kamview Nordic Centre, Lakehead University and the Fort William Historical Park.
The 2011 Games provides an opportunity for Special Olympics athletes to qualify for the 2012 Special Olympics National Winter Games in St. Albert, Alberta.
For more information, please visit www.specialolympics2011games.com