Aspiring athletes to get a kick out of the Youth Games on Sept. 22, 2012

NIKE, Inc., and Special Olympics Oregon are excited to announce the return of Youth Games to the Nike World Headquarters campus on Saturday, Sept 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This year’s event will bring nearly 500 participants and their families to the Nike Campus to get an up-close and personal walk-through of Special Olympics sporting events, local support services for people with intellectual disabilities, and the chance to interact with local and professional athletes in four Olympic sports. All participants will receive a free T-shirt and lunch will be provided.

Youth Games is the product of a partnership between Special Olympics Oregon and Nike to grow youth participation in Special Olympics and bring eligible families in contact with the resources they need to help their children thrive. The event is free to all registrants. Sports instruction and competition is limited to youth ages 7 to 18 years of age with intellectual disabilities.

An amazing partnership

Special Olympics inspires greatness. Nike gets kids moving. Put the two together, and you’ve got an amazing partnership for empowering youth.

If you have a young person in your family who has an intellectual disability, we know you welcome any opportunity that leads to an active lifestyle for that child. We also know that you want that opportunity to be an enriching experience. Special Olympics Oregon Youth Games presented by Nike accomplishes that and much more. This one-day event is designed to teach your child the basics of a popular sport. At the same time, you and your child have the opportunity to sample Special Olympics’ life-changing programs--and to participate in the unique and enriching Special Olympics experience.

”As the CEO of Special Olympics Oregon, I have been directly involved in many wonderful initiatives created for those with intellectual disabilities. But I can honestly say that the two days we spent last year with the families who took part in Youth Games on Nike’s campus were among the most inspirational moments in my life. Youth Games has tapped into something both powerful and wonderful, something that will absolutely change the lives of everyone who was there: families, youth and volunteers.”
—Margie Hunt, CEO, Special Olympics Oregon

“Thank you for the hard work to make the Youth Games event at Nike such a special day for my son and myself. One part that made the day so special were all the smiling faces that said, ‘You are welcome, we want you here!’ My son chose to play golf, which is something he really only knows about through his experience with a Mario video game. He loved playing for real and I loved the physical activity. As soon as I parked my car I recognized the event was way bigger than I had prepared myself for. Tim was going to have a day focused on him.”
—Paula Peterson, Youth Games participant parent.

“What I learned today is how pure the entire concept of Special Olympics is….I know this day was about giving these wonderful children new experiences, but this day turned out to be an incredible experience for me, too.”
—Karen Reuther, Youth Games volunteer.

Hundreds of Nike employees have turned out for every one of these events, because this is such a perfect fit with our mission,” he said. “Nike believes that, if you have a body, you are an athlete. And Special Olympics prove that every person, regardless of the obstacles they may face, can benefit from involvement in sports.”
—Elliott Hill, Nike’s Vice President and General Manager of North America

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© 2008-2010, Special Olympics Oregon, all rights reserved. Question about Youth Games? Contact Jean Hansen at
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