LANGDON, N.H. – The Special Olympics 13th Annual Upper Valley Regional Fall Games took place at Maple Lanes in Claremont, N.H. on Oct. 1, 2017. The event was sponsored by Hypertherm based in Claremont. The teams that participated were the Claremont Cool Cats, Connecticut River Special Olympics, Fall Mountain Special Olympics, and the Upper Valley Hawks.
The Regional Games are broken down into divisions based on the reported scores from practices. The objective is to place athletes who have similar abilities in the same divisions, creating equitable competition. The competition was ten pin “big ball.” There is also a bumper division of which nine athletes utilized and there were several athletes that utilize ramps without bumpers.
There were 13 athletes who represented Fall Mountain. Debra Hall won first place in the bumper division, with Olivia Rounds coming in third. Dalton Hutchinson, Rachel Maxim, Mark Pebbles, Richard “Buddy” Judd, Jacob Barboza, and Sarah Johnson all placed first in their division. Eric Swain came in first place in the assisted ramp division. Bonnie Kyle took third place. Sean Anderson came in fourth with Mariah Pratt also scoring fourth place. Patrick Cannon overcame a tough division to bring home sixth place.
As always, the athletes had a great day representing all teams. Special Olympics offers friendship, competition, athleticism, and just great fun for all the athletes and the spectators. One volunteer told us that she has volunteered for this event for about three years. “I love the smiles, laughter and the competitiveness of all the athletes.” She also said that she “admires the athletes and how kind they are to one another and that they cheer each other on, even if they are on opposite teams.” She added, “That’s not something you see usually, and that’s what makes this so rewarding.”
The Regional Games will set the field for the New Hampshire State Games, which will be held on Nov. 18 at Yankee Lanes in Keene, N.H.