Since the beginning of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Special Olympics Michigan's top priority has been the health and safety of our athletes and community members. As we continue navigating this unprecedented time together, we know this chapter for our community has been difficult, leaving many of our Special Olympics community feeling isolated and alone.
Today, as we navigate this ever-evolving global pandemic, athlete safety remains our top priority. However, we also understand the importance of providing meaningful opportunities for our community to compete, connect, and be together - safely. While we are far from returning to a pre-2020 sense of "normal", Special Olympics Michigan is excited about the events ahead in 2022, as they provide meaningful opportunities for our communities while keeping our athletes, coaches, volunteers, and community safe.
By weighing a myriad of factors (i.e. current COVID-19 health metrics, large-scale competitions logistics, recommendations from Special Olympics International), Special Olympics Michigan leadership has decided to move the 2022 State Winter Games, District Basketball and State Basketball from a large scale state-wide event(s) to a more localized focused format for this Winter and Spring season.
This new format and approach will allow SOMI to provide a unique opportunity to spend more time together, growing and strengthening our local programs in a way, unlike previous events. Through this regional format this Winter season, we have the opportunity to:
reengage athletes, volunteers, and coaches;
involve athletes in winter sports that may have not otherwise been able to attend the large state event;
safely mitigate risk by adhering to SOI and MDHSS guidelines; and
expand our reach for an even bigger 2023 - and beyond.
Undoubtedly, this is a step forward for our community as we navigate this changing pandemic.
The SOMI staff are here to assist with any needs you may have in helping to support local play and local tournaments.