Mater Dei held its 30th annual Special Games on April 25, with athletic races, games, fun, and more for people with disabilities.
Every year, the event offers games such as soccer dribble, goal kick, basketball, track races. There are also other fun activities including face painting, dancing, a therapy dog station and even a photo booth. It all took place on the athletic field, with several track races throughout the day. Ribbons given out to the winners and they also had the opportunity to make speeches. The participants look forward to the Special Games every year, and it is apparent that the day means so much to everyone.
The event began at 8 a.m. on an overcast morning as all volunteers lined up with pompoms to cheer on the participants as they entered the field. Everyone then circled the track course to get the energy going and sat down to listen to football Coach Bruce Rollinson lead prayer and introduce “someone who has been here for all 30 Special Games,” Rollinson said. He introduced Jay, a special games athlete, who jokingly performed an uncanny impression of Coach Rollinson. “Alright team, we’ve got a big day today… We’ve gotta beat Servite!” Jay said. Participants and volunteers laughed and Jay proceeded to sing the national anthem.
Participants enjoyed kicking soccer balls into goals, shooting basketballs into hoops, throwing felt balls onto a target, dancing, petting dogs, playing miniature golf, running, and having fun! We finished the day off with lunch, and everyone went hope full and happy.
To commemorate the day, people used the hashtag printed on the T-Shirts, #FreeToBeMeAtMD to post photos and words of encouragement on Twitter and Instagram.