SPECIAL OLYMPICS CONNECTICUT E-NEWSLETTER
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JUNE NEWSLETTER
Celebrate Beau at the Ballpark, July 31st
SOCT President Beau Doherty and Tim Tebow
Celebrate Special Olympics Connecticut President Beau Doherty, who will retire this summer, at a party at the Hartford Yard Goats game at Dunkin Donuts Park, Hartford, on Sunday, July 31st. Game time is 1:05 p.m. Beau's official last day with Special Olympics, after an illustrious 40-year career, will be August 29, 2022. Tickets for the party/game are $10 for Field Box seats and $30 for ConnectiCare Picnic Pavilion tickets (includes food). To purchase tickets, contact Kelli Bigelow at kellib@soct.org or call 203-230-1201, ext. 276. Space is limited. To make a donation in honor of Beau to The Beau Fund, click here
SOCT Summer Games Presented by Pratt & Whitney 2022
By Special Olympics Athlete and Reporter Scott Masson
Cycling Swimming
Soccer Tennis
The 2022 Summer Games kicked off in front of spectators at Fairfield University for the first time since the pandemic changed everyone’s life. The sports that were featured were soccer, swimming and tennis. One soccer match was Farmington Valley Strikers versus Harc and the Strikers won 4-3. Leading them in goals was Stephen Gurski. He had three goals in the match. His teammate, DJ, scored the other goal. The other matchup was Farmington Valley Thunder versus Harc and they lost 5-4 to Harc. Groton played Chapel Haven and Groton won their matchup. In the next game, Farmington Valley Thunder beat Harc 4-3.
Special Olympics had many teams competing in tennis such as Ability Beyond, Central Shoreline, Chapel Haven, Darien Lions, Greater Middletown, Groton, Mystic and Wethersfield. The tennis competition featured both singles and doubles. For doubles, Darien’s Will Norton and his partner won both their matches and it felt great for them to be out there again on the court. Norton said, "It felt great being out there playing in front of everyone again since the pandemic. I have been playing tennis since 2018. I am excited and thrilled to be playing in the Summer Games again."
Swimming featured athletes from Simsbury, Glastonbury and Ridgefield. Simsbury swimming got the silver medal in the 4x50 meter relay. It was a close race, they just missed out on getting the gold. Simsbury athlete Nick Sinacori brought home one gold and two silver medals. One silver medal was in the 4x50 meter relay as mentioned. The other silver was in the 50-meter freestyle and gold was in 25-meter freestyle.
Sinacori said, “It was so exciting and really fun being able to swim and compete again in front of everyone watching”. He also said, "It felt so great after a rough couple years not competing because of the pandemic”. Sinacori says, “If you keep practicing hard and don’t give up, then you’ll have confidence to go get that medal”.
Nick’s teammate, Nate Bargmann, said “I was nervous after not competing in a couple years." He also said, "It was very exciting and fun." Nate got a gold medal and two silver medals as well.
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Summer Games continues this weekend, June 11th and 12th with track & field competition happening at Southern Connecticut State University. If you missed the Opening Ceremony, you can view it here.
We are thankful for all our Summer Games volunteers and sponsors who support and celebrate our athletes.
Connecticut Athletes Compete at the Special Olympics USA Games in Orlando
USA Games group photo USA Games athletes
Team Connecticut in front of plane
Team Connecticut arrived in Orlando for the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games on June 4th, but not before a memorable send-off from employees of Avelo Airlines and Tweed New Haven Regional Airport. U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, East Haven Mayor Joseph Carfora, Tweed New Haven Airport Director Sean Scanlon and Avelo Airlines Chairman and CEO Andrew Levy also attended the send-off. Avelo generously provided the flights for members of Team Connecticut at no cost.
Additional members of Team Connecticut - track & field athletes and coaches - flew from Groton Airport to Orlando on a Textron Airlift Jet courtesy of Whelen Engineering. Dennis Piscitello, Lead Captain - Whelen Engineering, piloted the plane and shared that "these (Special Olympics) trips are his absolute favorite and the very best flying he has the privilege of doing." 
Our Team Connecticut delegation includes a Unified basketball team from Simsbury High School, track & field team from Shelton High School, and athletes who will compete in swimming, (traditional) track & field and gymnastics, as well as coaches, delegates and staff who are supporting the Team. For more information about Team Connecticut members, click here. Be sure to tune in to watch The Best of the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games program on ABC / ESPN3, Sunday, June 12th, 1 to 3 p.m.

Officers, Athletes Participate in Law Enforcement Torch Run to Spread Hope, Inclusion
Torch Run Runners in the Torch Run
Torch Run
Law enforcement officers and athletes across the state hit the pavement to spread Special Olympics' message of hope and to inspire inclusion in our communities during the 36th Annual Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Connecticut, June 1st through 3rd. Covering more than 530 miles with a flaming torch in hand(s), the processions of officers on foot, bicycles, motorcycles and in patrol cars caught the eye of drivers, bystanders, those at local shops and schools and the media - with NBC Connecticut's Heidi Voight and WTNH's Gil Simmons joining in the Run in Canton and Branford, respectively. Torch Run rallies were held at Foxwoods Resort Casino and Blue Back Square and the Final Leg of the Run arrived at Fairfield University for the Summer Games Opening Ceremony, where the cauldron was lit and the official start of the Games was proclaimed by Special Olympics Connecticut Beau Doherty.
Spring Fitness Festival
Our 2022 Spring Fitness Festival took place on May 14th. Fifty-six athletes, parents, caregivers, Local Coordinators, coaches and volunteers participated and took part in fitness and nutrition activities. Susan Joy Gabrielson sponsored the Fitness Festival and SOCT Board Member Charlie McLauglin and The Hartford hosted. Everyone enjoyed being together to focus on their health and wellness and soak up the sunshine on a beautiful spring day!
Additional Happenings
Mike DeFeo
The Southington Chapter of UNICO National honored Mike DeFeo, General Manager for Coca-Cola Beverages Northeast, with their 2021 Gold Medal of Honor at the Aqua Turf on May 18th. SOCT's Mike Mason and Global Messengers Justin Prince and Jake Segla attended to join in celebrating him. Coca-Cola Beverages Northeast is a year-round supplier and sponsor of our events.
The Special Olympics USA Games Law Enforcement Torch Run Final Leg passed through Connecticut on May 23rd. Torch Run Rallies were held at Lake Compounce in Bristol and WWE headquarters in Stamford. ESPN SportsCenter Anchor Max McGee hosted the Bristol Rally and special guests included Bristol Mayor Jeff Caggiano, Police Chief Brian Gould and friends from ESPN. WWE's Megan Morant hosted the Stamford Rally and special guests included Stamford Police Chief Timothy Shaw and WWE's Mark Shamley and Titus O'Neill. Connecticut's own Nicole Theriault, an officer with Connecticut's State Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS), represented our state as a participant in the USA Games Torch Run Final Leg, from Chicago to Orlando, Florida - site of the USA Games.
President's Award
Chris Sferruzzo, CFO of Bozzuto's Inc., was presented with a President's Award by Special Olympics Connecticut President Beau Doherty while attending a Newtown High School Unified Track Meet. He received the Award for the support he provides to our organization through Dream Ride and the Hometown Foundation. 
Zach Hoffman and Mike LaPointe represented Hoffman Auto Group at a Bloomfield High School Unified track & field meet. Hoffman Auto Group is a longtime sponsor of our Unified Sports in schools program.
Virtual Wine Tasting Event Will Support Special Olympics, July 21st
Sip and support Special Olympics Connecticut through our In Good Taste Wine virtual event. The fundraiser will take place over Zoom on Thursday, July 21st at 8:30 p.m. The tasting will be led virtually by a designated wine expert. There will be interactive trivia, wine education and Q&A. Registration includes six mini bottles of wine (187 ml each) from California, Italy and France's diverse wine regions for participants to enjoy during the virtual live event. The cost is $100 per person, with $50 going to Special Olympics Connecticut. For more information, contact Kristen Nicolia at kristenn@soct.org. To register for the event, click here.
NEW! Donate Your Car, Support Special Olympics
Donate your car, boat, RV or other unused motor vehicle to Special Olympics and help athletes play in three simple steps! Your donation will help athletes have the chance to develop skills, compete in sports with their peers and create memories that will last a lifetime. All you need to do is go online or call (888) 828-002. Then, fill out the donation form that provides information about the car. A local towing company will reach out within two to three business days and schedule a pickup time that's convenient. Once you donate your vehicle, you'll receive an email that includes a car donation tax receipt.
Edgers Wanted!
Become an "Edger" by signing up to go Over the Edge for Special Olympics Connecticut! The event will take place at Mohegan on Friday, September 3rd.
During Over the Edge, participants rappel more than 30 floors down Mohegan Sun's Sky Tower for the thrill of it and to see breathtaking sights from atop one of the state's most popular attractions. Those who prefer to keep two feet on the ground can donate to support the event. For details and to register and donate, click here.
No experience is necessary and there's still plenty of time to reach your fundraising goal, so sign up today!
Become a Member of Our Champion's Society
It's Easy to Plan for the Future with These Free Resources
If you're like many people, creating or updating your will or trust and other important documents often falls to the bottom of your 'to do' list. We have made it easy for you to get started today with free publications to help you get organized and complete your plans while gaining peace of mind: https://solegacygiving.org/resources


We welcome your feedback and contributions. Contact us at 203-230-1201 or specialolympicsct@soct.org.

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Year-Round Suppliers

Adams Hometown Markets/IGA Hometown Supermarkets
Coca Cola Beverages Northeast
Marcus Communications
N&D Sports
State of Connecticut Judicial Branch Community Service
WORX