Special Olympics Athletes to Compete in Florida Event

Special Olympics athletes will compete in SUP at Florida’s 2017 Monroe County event. Photo: Robert Sullivan

Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County to Host 
 6th Annual Stand Up Paddle Invitational

Event will feature special guests Dreu Murin and Sue Copper

March 17, 2017 (Key West, Florida) – Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County announced today that Stand Up Paddle (SUP) enthusiasts, Special Olympic athletes, families, and friends will gather to celebrate the 6th annual Stand Up Paddle Invitational at Higgs Beach on October 13-15, 2017.

This year's event will feature Dreu Murin, the voice of Special Olympics Nevada, as the MC/ Event Promotion Advisor and Sue Cooper, owner of Lazy Dog Adventures, who is also Special Olympics Florida State SUP Games officiate, as the race director for all paddle events.

The 2017 SUP Invitational will include a weekend of family fun in Key West, including activities for paddlers and non-paddlers of all ability levels. Proceeds from all events will benefit Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County. More than 100 Special Olympics athletes, coaches, families, and fans are expected to take part in this must-attend event.

The event is sponsored by Lazy Dog Adventures, Preferred Properties Key West, Zinstmaster andTeam Key West, Lucy's Retired Surfers Bar and Restaurant Key West/New Orleans.

Who: Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County athletes, families, and fans What: 2017 Stand Up Paddle Invitational

Where: Higgs Beach, Key West, Florida

When: October 13-15, 2017 (See schedule of events below)

Schedule of Events:

October 13th: Athletes Reception at Lucy's Retired Surfers Bar and Restaurant (320 Grinnell Street, Key West). All participants can meet, mingle, and pick up race packets and/ or register for events.

October 14th: Higgs Beach will be open for all to enjoy the beach, with volleyball games, cornhole games, yoga classes, and paddle clinics, along with time for competitors to practice the racecourse, followed by the Beach-Side Luau Dinner Dance. Participants can pick up race packets and/or register for all events starting at 4:00 p.m. A traditional Special Olympics Opening Ceremony will be held followed by dance time.

October 15th: Race day will include a paddleboard race with a beach run obstacle course designed and officiated by Sue Cooper, followed by adapted races for Special Olympics athletes.

Started in 2012, this event has helped grow SUP into a nationally recognized sport in Special Olympics. Special Olympics Florida–Monroe County's SUP program has been a pioneer in the sport and integral in its expansion throughout Special Olympics Florida and beyond. The sport of SUP will be included in the 2018 National Summer Games in Seattle, Washington, July 1-7, 2017.

There are four ways to support this event and Special Olympics athletes in the Florida Keys:

1. Register for the Paddle/Beach Run Race or any of the weekend's events at https:// paddleguru.com/races/SUPInvitational2017KeyWest

  1. Sponsor the event–There are many options available to align your company brand with Special Olympics' strong state and nationwide presence. Contact Ruth Holland at ruthholland@specialolympicsmonroe.org for more info on how to sponsor the event. Join the ranks of Lazy Dog Adventures, Preferred Properties Key West, Zinstmaster and Team Key West, Lucy's Bar and Restaurant Key West/New Orleans as sponsors!
  2. Sponsor a Special Olympics athlete to attend any of the weekend events, allowing him or her to have a free experience at a bucket list event!http://specialolympicsflorida.org/monroe/fundraise/sup-invitational/

4. Make a general donation to the event to support all activities. https:// specialolympicsflorida.org/get-involved/fundraise/monroe-county-sup-invitational/

About Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County

Special Olympics Florida – Monroe County provides year-round sports training, competition, and health services to children and adults with intellectual disabilities, in the Florida Keys, at no cost to the athletes or their caregivers, as a means to achieve physical fitness, self-esteem, socialization skills, and the life skills necessary to be productive, respected, and contributing members of their communities. To learn more visit www.specialolympicsmonroe.org

Contact – Dreu Murin

dreu@dreumurin.com

530-251-6231 Ruth Holland

ruthholland@specialolympicsmonroe.com

305-923-0288