History of Special Olympics

From a backyard summer camp for people with intellectual disabilities to a global movement, Special Olympics has been changing lives and attitudes since 1968. We have seen remarkable growth in the visibility and power of Special Olympics to change lives worldwide. The Unified Sports program now exceeds I million participants.

A few memorable Skagit Special O highlights:

1983: The Sixth International Special Olympics Summer Games are held at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.
~Larry Russell

1987: The University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, Indiana, host Seventh International Games.
~Terry Hall, Joan Good

1995: New Haven, Connecticut, 7,000 athletes from 143 countries compete in Special Olympics World Summer Games.
~Larry Simpson

1997: 2,000 athletes from 73 countries compete in five Olympic-type winter sports in Toronto/Collingwood, Ontario, Canada, for the Sixth Special Olympics World Winter Games.
~Larry Simpson

2001: More than 1,800 athletes, 70 countries compete in seven Olympic-type winter sports Special Olympics World Winter Games in Anchorage, Alaska.
~Kevin Geoghegan

2003: Special Olympics World Summer Games in Dublin, Ireland are the first summer Games ever held outside the United States.
~Larry Simpson

2007: Special Olympics World Summer Games are held in Shanghai, People’s Republic of China. First time the World Summer Games take place in Asia.
~Joan Good

2014: The Special Olympics USA National Games are held in Newark, New Jersey.
~Jack Whitmer

2018: Seattle to host 2018 USA Games, July 1-6
~Northwest Net-Team Washington (Volleyball)

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