The Arc of Butler Blazers Special Olympics softball and T-ball teams wrapped up their 2012 seasons by placing second at their respective state tournaments. The tournaments were held concurrently July 28-29 at Two Rivers Youth Club, 13th North and Ridge Road, in Wichita.
Opening ceremonies were held Saturday morning at the fields, followed by a shortened day of games. Athletes, coaches and families were invited to a dance and pizza party that night at the Best Western Airport Inn. Teams finished up the weekend with final games Sunday morning, with both the Blazers slow pitch and T-ball teams bringing home a silver medal.
The Blazers are made up of Special Olympic athletes from throughout Butler County. Athletes must be at least 8 years old and have either an intellectual or a developmental disability.
Practices for the season began in June. The teams met in one evening a week in both Andover and El Dorado, and then came together for a practice on Saturdays, alternating between the two cities.
Prior to their state tournaments, each team participated in a league tournament July 7 and a regional tournament July 21, both held at Oaklawn Fields in south Wichita.
Coaches this year for the Blazers were: Chris Pruitt, El Dorado; Leslie Demo, El Dorado; Shane and Candice Thurman, El Dorado; Christine York, Derby; Cliff Walch, Wichita; Alecia Lewis, El Dorado; Cat Browning, El Dorado; and Ty Watters, El Dorado.
Volunteer coaches, as well as donations from area businesses, make these programs possible.
For information about The Arc of Butler, how you may get involved, donate or volunteer, please visit their website at www.arcofbutler.com, call them at 316-680-4240 or send an email to Jennifer.email@example.com.