Schuylkill Valley School District hosted a Special Track and Field Invitational at the district’s stadium for Berks County special needs athletes on May 10.
“It is a great day for our special needs athletes to be recognized in as many ways as they can,” said Dana Carter, a Schuylkill Valley Middle School special education teacher and one of the organizers of the event.
Schuylkill Valley has hosted the annual event five times but was unable to amid the pandemic.
“It has been unfortunate due to COVID-19 we have been unable to have this great event, so we are excited to bring it back this year,” said Carter.
The invitational — which had a theme of “If you believe in us we will achieve” — was open to Berks County special needs students ages five through 21.
About 145 student-athletes from Antietam, Brandywine Heights, Conrad Weiser, Oley Valley, Reading and Schuylkill Valley school districts and Berks County Intermediate Unit’s Preparation for Life Program (PAL) participated in track and field events. They were joined by more than 100 volunteers and buddies, 500 parents and community members and 2,000 teachers and students.
“Under the sunny skies, it was an amazing day filled with smiles, laughs and high fives,” said Carter. “It was awesome to see so many families, educators and community members from all over Berks County supporting our special needs athletes. All and all it was an awesome day.”
The invitational opened with a ceremonial opening torch lap. Events included standing long jump, running long jump, shot put, softball throw and races including wheelchair, 25-meter walk, 25-meter run, 50-meter run, 100-meter run and relays.
Each athlete was given a lunch with a turkey sandwich, plenty of snacks and drinks all from local business and Schuylkill Valley school community donations. Each athlete was given a purple Schuylkill Valley Special Track and field Invitational T-shirt donated by Chicco-ARTSANA group.
Source: Berkshire mont