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Athletes to compete in horse show, fall games in Gainesville
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Special Olympic athletes will compete in bocce this weekend at North Hall Park in Gainesville.

Special Olympics Georgia
State Fall Games and State Horse Show
When: Friday-Sunday
Where: Softball, North Hall Park and Laurel Park; bocce, North Hall Park; golf skills, Chicopee Woods Golf Course; cycling, Laurel Park; fun fitness, souvenir sales, North Hall Park; horse show, Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center.
Opening ceremonies: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Gainesville Middle School gym and the Ag Center
Admission: Free
To volunteer: Find application at www.specialolympicsga.org

For the second straight year, Gainesville and the Hall County area will host two of Special Olympics Georgia’s biggest events — the State Fall Games and the State Horse Show.

Nearly 2,500 athletes and unified partners will travel for the State Fall games Oct. 9-11 to compete in bocce, cycling, golf and softball. Events will be held at four different venues, including North Hall Park (bocce and softball), Laurel Park (softball and cycling) and Chicopee Woods Golf Course.

In addition, 240 athletes will participate in the State Horse show at Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center. Riders will compete in dressage, horsemanship, showmanship, Western riding and unified drill team.

Opening ceremonies will be 7:30 p.m. Friday at Gainesville Middle School, 1581 Community Way, and Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center, 1855 Calvary Church Road, respectively. Both events are free and open to the public.

“Special Olympics Georgia is excited to be back in Gainesville/Hall County for the State Fall Games and Horse Show,” Special Olympics Georgia CEO Georgia Milton-Sheats said in a news release. “Over 2,000 athletes from around the state will be traveling to Gainesville to compete and they will be going for the gold. The Gainesville community has been so welcoming and supportive and we hope to see many of you in the stands and cheering on the athletes. 

“Thank you, Gainesville, for being fans of the athletes.”

In addition to the competition, an Olympic Town will be set up between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday inside the North Hall Park Community Center gymnasium at 4175 Nopone Road in Gainesville. Athletes can enjoy games, crafts and snacks. They will have their balance, strength and flexibility measured by physical therapists for free.

A Young Athletes demonstration for any children, ages 2-7, with and without intellectual disabilities will be conducted at Olympic Town. Children will go through quick stations that teach sports skills, prepare young athletes for future competition and encourage cognitive and motor development.

Olympic Town at the State Horse Show will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in the activity hall of the Agricultural Center and feature arts and crafts.

To volunteer, email whitney.warren@specialolympicsga,org. For more information and a schedule, visit www.specialolympicsga.org.

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