Teams are already forming for the 2023 Special Olympics Kentucky Spring Sports Season, which really gets going after our State Basketball Tournament. Now is the time to make plans to take part either as an athlete or volunteer. The Spring Sports Season includes swimming, soccer, bocce, rhythmic gymnastics and of course track and field. Most of our spring sports will hold their championships at the State Summer Games in June.
This will be one of the most unique swimming seasons in our program’s history. Because of construction on the building that houses the pool at Eastern Kentucky University, we will hold a State Swim Meet as a stand-alone event for the first time in many, many years. The season officially opens on March 18 with the Northern Kentucky swim meet at Silverlake in Erlanger. There are currently four qualifying meets on the schedule this year.
2022 Swimming Schedule
March 18 – Northern Kentucky Swim Meet – Silverlake Family Center, Erlanger
March 25 – Asbury Swim Meet – Luce Center, Wilmore
April 1 – Versailles Swim Meet – Falling Springs, Versailles
April 29 – Owensboro Swim Meet – Owensboro Health Park
May 19-20 – State Swim Meet – UofL Ralph Wright Natatorium, Louisville
Track and Field
One of the largest of Special Olympics Kentucky’s 15 sport offerings, track and field offers an easy point of entry to Special Olympics competition for many new athletes. More than 1,000 athletes are expected to compete in track and field statewide this year.
Special Olympics Kentucky offers eight Area Track and Field Meets across the state as qualifiers for the State Summer Games. Athletes must compete in one area meet in order to participate in the State Games.
2023 Track and Field Schedule
April 15 – Area 3 & 9 Track and Field Meet – Johnson Central High School, Paintsville
April 15 – Area 5 Track and Field Meet – Bowling Green High School
April 22 – Area 1 Track and Field Meet – Calloway County High School, Murray
April 22 – Area 2 Track and Field Meet – Owensboro Middle School
April 22 – Area 8 Track and Field Meet – Great Crossing High School, Georgetown
April 29 – Area 6 Track and Field Meet – Southwestern High School, Somerset
April 29 – Area 7 Track and Field Meet – Ryle High School, Union
May 13 – Area 4 Track and Field Meet – Mercy High School, Louisville
Soccer is the one team sport offering for Special Olympics Kentucky in the spring. More than 300 athletes compete in the sport each year.
The Special Olympics Kentucky soccer season consists of two regional tournaments that lead to the State Tournament, which is held as part of the State Summer Games. Teams must compete in at least one regional to qualify for the State Games.
2023 Soccer Schedule
April 23 – Versailles Regional Soccer Tournament; WYSA Complex, Versailles
April 30 – Grant County Regional Tournament; Grant County Memorial Soccer Fields, Williamstown
Bocce has been one of the fastest-growing sports in the Special Olympics Kentucky program since its introduction a little over a decade ago. Prior to last year, the sport was only held at the State Summer Games. Last year a bocce invitational was added at Kentucky Country Day in Louisville . That event will return this year, but its date is yet to be determined.
Mirroring the Special Olympics Kentucky bowling program, bocce has become the perfect spring sport for athletes with mobility issues and older athletes who still want to participate in the State Summer Games.
Kentucky has long been a national leader in the area of Special Olympics gymnastics, with Kentucky athletes winning dozens of gold medals at the USA and World Games levels.
The rhythmic gymnastics competition has been held at the State Summer Games for several years after replacing artistic gymnastics at the Games. The change allowed gymnasts to remain on the Eastern Kentucky University campus during the Games instead of having to transport off campus — as far as Lexington in many years — to find a suitable competition site.
For information about any Special Olympics Kentucky sports programs contact Holly Vincent at 502-695-8222 or email@example.com.