Local Community Roots for Special Olympics Athletes

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A kick-off celebration for the Special Olympics was held in Egg Harbor Township Friday, June 9th, to wish the athletes luck at this year's competition.

The Arc of Atlantic County and members of the community came together to cheer on and send off this year's athletes competing in the Special Olympics of New Jersey this weekend at The College of New Jersey.

While the sporting events are the main focus for everyone else, the event means so much more to the athletes.

"It gives the athletes a time to [shine], and to show that they can play sports just like anybody else," says Kathi Lentz, operations director at Arc of Special Olympics. "[They also get to enjoy the bonds of] companionship and comradery with other athletes.

"And going away for the weekend without mom and dad is a special event."

Fifty athletes and 17 coaches left Egg Harbor Township for the competition, this morning, to compete in track and field, softball, and bocce events.

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