Two students from Wooster City School District (WCSD) recently competed in the 49th annual Special Olympics Ohio’s Summer Games in Columbus at The Ohio State University (OSU).
The competition, which took place June 22-24, offers individual students across Ohio an opportunity to be a part of a team, create friendships and exhibit their athletic talents.
At the event, sophomore Eilee Fletcher competed in bowling and won a silver medal with scores of 74 and 85. Eighth-grader Andrew Vossler also competed in bowling and won a gold medal with scores of 91 and 82. While the Summer Games is open to all athletes ages eight and up, bowling is divided by gender and age.
The students were coached by Dane Johnston, a community volunteer, Cornerstone Elementary School Intervention Specialists Erin Rammel and Karen Eberly, who accompanied Eilee and Andrew to the games along with the students’ parents, grandparents and siblings.
The state-wide competition gives students the opportunity to compete against athletes from counties across Ohio, who are divided into various “areas.” Typically, Eilee and Andrew only compete with athletes from the five counties in Area 10—one of the many divisions of Ohio’s Special Olympics which includes Medina, Portage, Stark, Summit and Wayne counties.
“When we normally go to our Area 10 events, we bowl for two hours and head home,” said Rammel. “When we go to the Summer Games, we participate in Opening Ceremonies, where our team is announced as we walk around the Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium holding our team banner. The students also get the opportunity to spend the night in the dorms at Ohio State, be around hundreds of other athletes and be treated like professional, all-star athletes all weekend long.”
For anyone interested in joining Wooster’s Special Olympics team, please contact Erin Rammel via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.