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Special Olympics – Update on Basketball

Special Olympics – Update on Basketball

CONGRATULATIONS to ALL of our Amazing Olympians!

In past years, Noah’s Ark volunteers have coached and submitted their own Special Olympics teams.  Unfortunately, the number of coaches we had limited the number of sports that our athletes were able to participate in during the year.  Enter new Special Olympics Polk County Director Mike Long!!  He connected Noah’s Ark with MrBrad Budyach at Highland Park Baptist Church. They have a great facility and many willing young coaches. During the latter part of 2018 we started playing flag football and cheerleading, thus allowing more of our residents to be able to participate in Special Olympics. As word spread we now have 40+ individuals taking part in various Special Olympics events.

Noah’s Landing residents who participated in Special Olympics Basketball State Games in Tavares with Coaches Natasha and Jerome.  One gold, one bronze and one 4th place!!!


Basketball season is now over and we achieved fantastic results – Noah’s Ark had seven athletes go to State Games for Basketball. Five were a member of the HP Soars Lady Vols 3 on 3 Basketball Team which earned a hard-fought fourth place in a very competitive division. Those athletes were Andrea Zappa, Tricia Spaulding, Lori Thomas, Kristin Heintzelman and Amanda Kallman along with Hailey Spurgeon. Kevin Hodgins competed for the HP Soars in individual basketball skills and won first place in his division. Also competing at State Games was Alyssa Spillane playing for the Polk Mocs which won third place in their division of 3 on 3 Basketball.






Vianca, we are just as proud as you are of that medal!!






Next sports for Special Olympics are Boccee, Cheerleading, Soccer and Volleyball.

Coach Jerome Thomas urges you to come out and support our Noah’s Ark athletes wherever they may be participating.

A HUGE “thank you” to Special Olympics Polk County Director – Mike Long – for connecting Noah’s Ark and Highland Park  Baptist Church…


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