Posted by: sonewjersey | October 2, 2013

4th Annual EKS Day: Play Unified to Live Unified

On Saturday, September 28, we hosted the 4th Annual Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day at the Special Olympics New Jersey Sports Complex in Lawrenceville. EKS Day is an annual celebration of Mrs. Shriver’s life and a global call for people to commit actions of inclusion, acceptance and unity for and with individuals with intellectual disabilities.

Eunice Kennedy Shriver (1921-2009) was a leader in the worldwide struggle to improve the lives of individuals with intellectual disabilities for more than three decades. She believed that on the playing field, we forget about our differences and forge bonds that recognize our mutual humanity.

DSC_0257Our celebration kicked off with an unveiling by Athlete Congress of a new street sign proclaiming our address as 1 Eunice Kennedy Shriver Way. This address change makes Special Olympics New Jersey the first state office to have their street named after Mrs. Shriver.

The day’s activities then went on to include a session of Athlete Congress, where the 19 members discussed several topics to be voted on at the New Jersey State House when they visit on November 15, as well as a powerlifting seminar hosted by world champion lifter Kyle Elder. He demonstrated different types of lifts, answered questions and encouraged more athletes to participate in powerlifting.powerlift

In addition, the Young Athletes Program held a developmental training session with games and activities to build motor skills and hand-eye coordination, while demonstrations of Unified flag football, soccer and volleyball drew crowds of spectators to the bleachers. Members of the community were also invited to play Unified bocce throughout the morning.

Athlete Tara Walters left a comment on our Facebook page, saying “I had a nice time today with my friends…” We hope everyone who came out to enjoy EKS Day feels the same way!

Please visit our photo gallery from EKS Day:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sonewjersey/sets/72157635976706085/

To learn more about Eunice Kennedy Shriver:
http://media.specialolympics.org/soi/video/eksday/EKSDay2013-PSA_60.mp4

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