Special Olympic athletes from Pictou County are going to Toronto, Ont., to participate in the Invitational Youth Games May 14 to 17.
Sheri Scott of Scotsburn is a co-coach of the bocce team, along with Jean Ivey-Fraser. Scott’s daughter Kara is on the bocce team.
“It’s the first time we’ve been invited to something like this (and) they’re extremely excited,” said Sheri Scott.
“It’s the first time, especially for the Youth, that they’ve been away from their parents for any length of time, and here we are, getting ready to fly to Toronto.”
The 2019 Special Olympics Ontario Invitational Youth Games will bring together 2,000 student-athletes aged 13-21 from around the world to Toronto.
The Games will host a unified and traditional team option in five sports (athletics, basketball, bocce, floor hockey, and soccer).
The youth (U21) provincial floor hockey squad is coached locally by Trevor Kearley. Pictou County athletes Kael Langille and Skylar Sutherland are part of the team.
“We have four athletes from Pictou County on the soccer team. The bocce team is strictly from Pictou County – four individuals – and we have two in youth floor hockey who will be joining other athletes from around the province,” said Sheri Scott.
“We also have the floor hockey intermediate team (ages 21 and over) who will also be going to Toronto.”
When they aren’t competing, all the athletes will get a chance to visit the Toronto Aquarium, while the intermediate floor hockey team – the local squad won silver at provincials this past winter – will also visit the Hockey Hall of Fame in the Ontario capital.
“That is going to be so cool,” said floor hockey player Stacey Saunders, who in the 2018 national Canadian Special Olympics games won two gold medals and a bronze in track and field.