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This winter presented many obstacles for the Muscatine Special Olympics team. With brutal weather canceling many of their practices and events, they had fewer opportunities than usual to demonstrate their athletic prowess and bring home the gold for their team. However, two recent competitions, the Mid-Winter Tournament and District Swim Meet gave Muscatine’s Special Olympics athletes an opportunity to show off that their persistence and dedication in spite of the weather paid off, and that they still have the skills to finish on top.
In March, thirty-four Muscatine Special Olympics athletes competed at the Mid-Winter Tournament in Iowa City and Coralville. They participated in three events, basketball skills, powerlifting, and three on three basketball. Between them, they earned thirty-seven medals (twenty-two gold, eight silver, and seven bronze) as well as eight fourth place ribbons and one fifth place ribbon.
Jason Miller, Director of Muscatine Special Olympics, felt that the powerlifters put up a particularly good showing. He said, “We had several athletes in powerlifting receive personal bests in the deadlift and bench press, which is really good to see considering this was a really tough winter to manage practices. It was a really rough winter weather wise and we made several practices ‘optional’. The results showed for those who put in the work and were dedicated to doing their best.”
The Muscatine Special Olympics swim team has also earned their share of accolades at their recent District Swim Meet. At that event, sixteen Muscatine swimmers qualified to compete at the State Summer Games in Ames, Iowa, from May 23rd through 25th.
After having such positive ends to their winter sports seasons, the Muscatine Special Olympics athletes look forward to a spring full of important events. On April 13th, more than seventy athletes will travel to North Scott Junior High School for track and field. The first-place winners at this competition will also have the opportunity to go to the State Summer Games as well. Later in the month, the Muscatine Special Olympics bocce ball and soccer skills teams will also have qualifying tournaments for the State Summer Games. With so much going on for these talented athletes, they will certainly have more achievements to celebrate throughout this spring.

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