Special Olympics NY State Summer Games University at Buffalo June 14-15

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JUNE 13, 2013

NEWS AND PHOTO/FILM ADVISORY

1,800 athletes/coaches coming to Buffalo to compete – All events free and open to the public

What:
The State Summer Games is the largest competition of the year in New York for Special Olympics athletes, some of whom are past and future participants in Special Olympics World Games. The weekend includes a dynamic Opening Ceremonies, full day of competition in eight sports. The Summer Games are the largest of two annual State Games with more than 4,000 competitive experiences held each year throughout New York. Nearly 1,800 athletes and coaches will travel to Buffalo from around the state for the competition. All events and parking are free.

When/Where:

Opening Ceremonies:
Friday, June 14
8p.m.
Alumni Arena on UB’s North Campus
Featuring the customary parade of athletes. Along with athletes participating in the official opening of the Games with the traditional lighting of the Special Olympics cauldron, attendees will also hear the world premiere of a special song “No Age in Love” written and performed by Tom Lorentz of East Amherst, a 2012 inductee into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame.

Athletic competition will take place Saturday, June 15 in eight Olympic-style sports:
Athletics (Track and Field), Aquatics, Basketball, Bowling, Powerlifting, Tennis, Gymnastics and Volleyball.

7 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Aquatics, Athletics/ Track and Field, Basketball, Powerlifting and Gymnastics
University at Buffalo

– continued –

8 a.m. -1 p.m.
Bowling
AMF Thruway Lanes
1550 Walden Ave, Cheektowaga, NY 14225

11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Gymnastics
Flips Gymnastics
6017 S. Transit Road, Lockport, NY 14094

8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Volleyball
Buffalo Niagara Court Center
425 Meyer Rd, West Seneca, NY 14224

All event and volunteer information is available at http://nyso.org/

Special Olympics New York provides year-round sports training and competition in 22 Olympic-style sports to children and adults with intellectual disabilities at no cost to the athletes, their families or caregivers. More than 61,000 athletes train and compete with Special Olympics New York, the largest Special Olympics program in North America.

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MEDIA CONTACTS:
Renee Snyder, Vice President of Development & Public Awareness, 518-203-8348 (cell), rsnyder@nyso.org
Amy Neveaux, Director of Development, Western Region, 716-861-9795, aneveaux@nyso.org
Special Olympics NY State Summer Games
University at Buffalo June 14-15

Special Olympics NY Summer Games Back in Buffalo 1,600 athletes and coaches will be on hand in Buffalo – All events free and open to the public

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
APRIL 18, 2013

Special Olympics NY Summer Games Back in Buffalo
1,800 athletes and coaches will be on hand in Buffalo – All events free and open to the public

BUFFALO, N.Y. ¬– Neal J. Johnson, president and CEO of Special Olympics New York, announced the 2013 State Summer Games will be back in WNY at the University at Buffalo and surrounding community venues, marking the second year of the two-year stay. The 2013 Summer Games is the sixth time in 26 years that the games will be hosted in Western New York. The Summer Games were also held in Buffalo in 2012.

The Summer Games are the largest of two annual state games with 5,266 competitive experiences held each year throughout New York. Nearly 1,600 athletes and coaches will travel to Buffalo from around the state for the competition. Athletes must qualify at a local level to compete in the Summer Games.

“We are excited to be back in Buffalo in 2013,” said Johnson. “The welcome and support from this community has been incredible and we look forward to a great experience in June!”

Chris Koch, President/CEO of New Era Cap and his wife Lindsey will once again serve as the honorary chairs of the Summer Games.

Athletic competition will take place Saturday, June 15 in eight Olympic-style sports: athletics (track and field), aquatics, basketball, bowling, powerlifting, tennis and volleyball. All events, including the opening and closing ceremonies, and all competitions, are free and open to the general public.

Special Olympics New York provides year-round sports training and competition in 22 Olympic-style sports to children and adults with intellectual disabilities at no cost to the athletes, their families or caregivers. There are 61,582 athletes that train and compete with Special Olympics New York year-round, the largest Special Olympics program in North America.

Numerous volunteers from surrounding communities are needed to support the Summer Games competitions and events:
• Opening ceremony staff and support (Friday, June 15 – 8:00 p.m. – University of Buffalo, Alumni Arena)
• Staff for all sporting venues
• Set up and break down at all venues
• Distribute lunches
• “Fans in the Stands” at the opening ceremonies and all events, cheering the athletes on to victory

Volunteer assignments will be given out the third week in May and walk in volunteers are welcome. For more information and to register online, please visit the website at www.specialolympicsny.org or email volunteer@nyso.org. Volunteers can be individuals or groups.

The University at Buffalo will host athletes on campus, along with the opening and closing ceremonies and several sporting competitions. Other community sporting venues include AMF Thruway Lanes, Flips
– more-
Gymnastics and the Buffalo Niagara Courts Center.

The State Games would not be possible without critical community partnerships. New Era Cap, Towne Automotive Group, Mattel, Chobani, Golisano Foundation, Knights of Columbus, CSEA , and NYSUT are the Premier and Gold level partners for the 2013 State Summer Games. It is because of the generosity of these companies and organizations that has enabled Special Olympics New York to provide quality competitive experiences for the athletes. Partnerships, including sponsorships, retail opportunities and in-kind support are still available at all levels.

For information about sponsorship opportunities, contact Amy Neveaux at 716-861-9795.

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MEDIA CONTACTS:
Renee Snyder, Vice President of Development & Public Awareness, 518-203-8348 (cell), rsnyder@nyso.org
Amy Neveaux, Director of Development, Western Region, 716-861-9795, aneveaux@nyso.org

Nick Zmuda, a Special Olympics athlete from Lackawanna, was awarded the 2012 LETR International Council Athlete Award

November 27, 2012 – Nick Zmuda, a Special Olympics athlete from Lackawanna, was awarded the 2012 LETR International Council Athlete Award at the International Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. The award was created to recognize outstanding Special Olympics athletes who have contributed to the success of the Law Enforcement Torch Run on a local, state or national level. Nominees have contributed to the Torch Run and Special Olympics in spirit, dedication and enthusiasm in an effective fashion.nick

Captain Steve Nigrelli of the New York State Police received the 2012 John Carion “Unsung Hero” award at the conference. This award recognizes outstanding individuals who have contributed to the success of their local and state Special Olympics programs. It was created to honor the memory of Sgt. John Carion of the Sterling Heights (MI) Police Department and his many contributions to the Law Enforcement Torch Run and Special Olympics before his untimely death in a plane crash in January of 1994. John was a low-key and quiet but effective leader in the Torch Run effort, especially in the areas of law enforcement volunteerism for Special Olympics and furthering the ideals of Unified Sports in Special Olympics.

Law Enforcement Officers Team Up with Red Robin Gourmet Burgers to Raise Funds for Special Olympics

October 11, 2012Officers to wait on guests at Red Robin restaurants during one-day Tip-A-Cop event

If you have ever dreamt about having your local police officers wait on you, now is your chance! Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (Red Robin), Special Olympics and law enforcement officers in cities across the country will be serving guests at Red Robin® restaurants on Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 to raise funds for Special Olympics Programs through in-restaurant Tip-A-Cop® events. At 380 Red Robin restaurants in 39 states, law enforcement officers will trade in their handcuffs and badges between 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 4-8 p.m. to earn tips from restaurant guests to benefit their local Special Olympics Program.

  • 4080 Maple Road, Amherst, NY 14226
  • 3460 Amelia Drive, Orchard Park, NY 14127
  • 125 Old Country Road, Carle Place, NY 11514

“Our annual Red Robin Tip-A-Cop events are always a good time for a great cause,” said Michael Teem, executive director, Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics. “The tremendous level of law enforcement and community support, and the unparalleled generosity from Red Robin and Coca-Cola, is what will make this event so successful this year. The money raised will be used to support Special Olympics events and mission of inclusion and acceptance for people with intellectual disabilities in communities throughout the United States through year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports.”

Tip-A-Cop is part of the annual Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) campaign in support of Special Olympics. LETR, which includes an international series of relay runs and special events like Tip-A-Cop, is supported by more than 85,000 law enforcement officers worldwide who help raise money and public awareness for Special Olympics. As the largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle for Special Olympics, LETR funds raised go directly to local programs in states or countries where the funds are generated.

“Red Robin launched the Tip-A-Cop program in our restaurants seven years ago and, with the help of participating law enforcement officials, we have donated more than $2 million to Special Olympics programs across the country,” said Eric Houseman, president and chief operating officer at Red Robin, and Special Olympics Colorado board member. “After raising nearly $750,000 last year, we are proud to again partner with local law enforcement officials and Coca-Cola to support Special Olympics in the communities we serve.”
For more information about Red Robin Gourmet Burgers and to find a restaurant location near you, please visit www.redrobin.com.

About Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (NASDAQ: RRGB)
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (www.redrobin.com), a casual dining restaurant chain founded in 1969 that operates through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Red Robin International, Inc., is the gourmet burger expert, famous for serving more than two dozen craveable, high-quality burgers with Bottomless Steak Fries® in a fun environment welcoming to guests of all ages. In addition to its many burger offerings, Red Robin serves a wide variety of salads, soups, appetizers, entrees, desserts and signature Mad Mixology® Beverages. There are more than 460 Red Robin® restaurants located across the United States and Canada, including corporate-owned locations and those operating under franchise agreements. Red Robin… YUMMM®! Connect with Red Robin on Facebook and Twitter.

About LETR
Celebrating its 31st Anniversary in 2012, the Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) for Special Olympics is the movement’s largest grass-roots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle, encompassing a variety of events including Torch Runs, Polar Plunge® events and the World’s Largest Truck Convoy® fundraiser. More than 100,000 international law enforcement officers have carried the Flame of Hope™ to the Opening Ceremonies of local and state/provincial Special Olympics competitions and Games, and Special Olympics World Summer or Winter Games. The LETR is now present in all 50 U.S. states, 12 Canadian provinces and 48 nations around the world. In 2011 the LETR raised more than US$42 million for Special Olympics Programs around the world and has raised more than US$410 million since its inception in 1981.


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