Harrison High School holds it's annual Special Olympics Night during the men's basketball game. The high school dedicates a home game to the group of athletes who don't always get the chance to showcase their skills on the court. Tonight, several special needs kids and adults get that chance, and crowds went wild.
Crowds go wild. They cheer and clap. It's not the face off between the Warriors and Huskies that has everyone on their feet, it's these athletes. "I get to do all kinds of stuff," says Shelby Vandibber. Shelby, along with other special needs kids and adults, got the chance to showcase their skills. "We were doing elevators and pyramids," says Vandibber.
For the second year in a row, Harrison High School holds it's Special Olympics night. Senior, Haley Betz, says it all started as a community service project about a year ago when the Harrison High School IHSAA Student Advisory Committee, partnered with Special Olympics Indiana. The partnership created the program, Champions Together.
"That's what this partnership is really trying to do is say, yes, you can wear your school's uniform, and play for them, and make points for them," says Betz. A cheerleading performance is held during the men's JV half time game, then athletes hit the court for a Special Olympics basketball game all ending with a homecoming court finale. Betz says she's proud of her school and community as the event growing since last year. "My school joined in, getting it planned, and advertised it. It was really cool to see other kids get invested in it."
"Every girl that I saw out there just loves it. I know Kenzie does. It' a good motivator for her." Parent, Kevin Hartz, says he is proud of the school and it's students, but most of all his daughter Kenzie. "When the girls would complete a stunt, the crowd would just go nuts. As a parent of a child with special needs, it just really gets to you."
North High School cheerleaders could be seen helping out with the event.
Organizers say they are already looking forward to next year's event.