2013 State Winter Games

  • February 5 - 8, 2013
  • Grand Traverse Resort, Schuss Village & Howe Arena

Presenting Sponsor & Statewide Civic Partner:

Click here for 2013 State Winter Games Competition Results!


Join the excitement as 900 Special Olympics Michigan (SOMI) athletes from more than 60 counties across Michigan along with 350 coaches/chaperones and 500 volunteers gather for the 2013 State Winter Games on February 5-8 at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa (GTRS), Schuss Mountain at Shanty Creek Resort and Howe Ice Arena at the Grand Traverse Civic Center. During competition athletes showcase the skills they've learned from months of intense training. Competition includes alpine skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, figure skating and speed skating. Wertz Warriors are the presenting sponsor for State Winter Games.

Wertz Warriors are a group of approximately 90 dedicated individuals who travel on snowmobiles for a 900-mile endurance ride from Mount Clemens up to Petoskey, raising money for Special Olympics Michigan. Wertz Warriors was created by Vic Wertz, who had a dream to, "completely underwrite the Special Olympics Michigan State Winter Games." Since his dream, Wertz Warriors has raised awareness and more than $8.8 million for SOMI athletes.

There is never a charge for admission to any Special Olympics Michigan athlete competition. ‘Fans in the stands' are needed during our figure and speed skating time trails and competition at Howe Ice Arena inside the Grand Traverse Civic Center on Wednesday, Feb. 6 and Thursday, Feb. 7 from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. All 2013 State Winter Games time trials will take place on Wednesday. Competition begins bright and early on Thursday morning and runs through Friday afternoon.


Need a Place to Stay During State Winter Games? Click Here!



Here are some of the exciting events for the 2013 Winter Games:

  • Wertz Warriors

The Wertz Warriors 32nd annual fundraising 900-mile, seven-day snowmobile endurance ride begins in Clinton Township on Sunday, Feb. 3 and ends in Petoskey on Saturday, Feb. 9. Click here for the Wertz Warriors Ride Itinerary.

Wednesday, Feb. 6

  • 3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Athlete snowmobile rides at the south side of the Clubhouse at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa.
  • 6:00 p.m. -7:00 p.m. - Wertz Warriors autograph session in the pre-function area of Governor's Hall at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa. 
  • 7:30 p.m. - Opening Ceremonies and Wertz Warriors check presentation in Governor's Hall at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa.
  • United States Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

The United States Coast Guard (USCG) Air Station Traverse City, dependent on weather conditions and operations, will provide a helicopter flyover to escort the Wertz Warriors for several miles as they make their way to Grand Traverse Resort & Spa. Depending on ground conditions, they will land their helicopter to display it and meet athletes and volunteers.

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is Presenting Sponsor of Healthy Athletes®
  • People with intellectual and developmental disabilities have a 40 percent greater risk of preventable secondary health conditions, such as obesity, poor fitness, nutritional deficits, untreated or poorly treated vision, dental, hearing and pediatric problems. Special Olympics Healthy Athletes® was developed in 1996 to address these health disparities. The goal of Healthy Athletes® is to provide clinics at Special Olympics competitions and sponsored events that improve athletes' sports experience and overall well-being in a welcoming, fun environment.

At the 2013 State Winter Games athletes will have the opportunity to participate in:

  • MedFest - The MedFest program recruits volunteer physicians to provide the required physical examinations for people who wish to register in Special Olympics.
  • Health Promotions - Health Promotions offers free screenings, health information and advice in the areas of nutrition, sun safety, bone density, tobacco cessation, and physical fitness.
  • TRAIN Program - The Testing Recreational Activities & Improving Nutrition (TRAIN) program combines sports aptitude testing with nutrition education to promote healthy lifestyles for athletes and their families. All delegation members are invited to participate on Wednesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. in Tower C.
  • Young Athletes® Program

The Young AthletesTM Program will be hosting a clinic on Tuesday, Feb. 5 from 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. in the Tower Ballrooms A/B/C. This program offers children ages 2-7 fun activities that are important to mental and physical development.

  • Traverse City Beauty College
Cosmetology students from Traverse City Beauty College will be donating their time and skills to do hair and make-up for the athletes on Thursday, Feb. 9 competing in figure skating.
  • The Timothy Krause Award

The Timothy Krause Award will be given to an alpine skiing athlete who achieves excellence and approaches the sports with enthusiasm. The award is given in honor of John Bunbury's son, Timothy, who passed away at a young age. The award recipient will be presented with a green Wertz Warriors jacket at Opening Ceremonies.

  • The annual Rick VanderSloot Winter Sport Award

The annual Rick VanderSloot Winter Sport Award will be given to an athlete who demonstrates good sportsmanship and competes with the attitude that, "Nothing is impossible if I try." The award recipient will be presented with a green Wertz Warriors jacket at Opening Ceremonies.

Events Include:
  • Alpine Skiing (slalom, giant slalom and downhill) at Schuss Village
  • Snowboarding (slalom, giant slalom and super giant slalom) at Schuss Village
  • Cross-Country Skiing (50M, 100M, 250M, 500M, 1K, 3K and 5K) at Schuss Village
  • Snowshoeing (30M, 50M, 75M, 100M, 200M and 400M) at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa
  • Figure Skating (compulsory and freestyle) at Howe Arena
  • Speed Skating (25M, 30M, 50M, 100M, 300M, 500M and 800M) at Howe Arena


Statewide Premier Gold Medal Sponsor:

Statewide Gold Medal Sponsor:

Statewide Silver Medal Sponsor:

Statewide Bronze Medal Sponsor:


Statewide Civic Partners:
Healthy Athletes® Presenting Sponsor:

Young Athletes™ Program Sponsor:

Event Sponsors:


Media Sponsors:


  • Drew Stanton High 5ive Foundation
  • Delta Dental Foundation
  • Art & Mary Schmuckal Family Foundation



Support Special Olympic Michigan when filing your 2012 income tax and ask for the Voluntary Contributions Schedule to donate.
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