To the Editor:
More than three years ago Special Olympics New Jersey was very proud to write, submit, and win the bid to host the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games and sincerely appreciates everyone from throughout the state who supported and assisted in our selection.
Special Olympics New Jersey has served hundreds of thousands of athletes and family members in the last 45 years, with just as many volunteers and contributors supporting the growth and delivery of year-round sports training and competition in 24 Olympic-type sports. It is all of you, the athletes, families, coaches, volunteers, and contributors who have won this bid to host the USA Games. It is not one single person, but rather a Movement made up of individuals who champion social change through the successes and achievements of our athletes on the playing field, defining their purpose for inclusive sports play in schools and communities throughout the state.
While the USA Games are a national-level event, they truly are New Jersey’s Games, and will showcase the very best the Garden State has to offer: the passion and commitment of its volunteers, the generous support of the State of New Jersey and its corporations, and the true athletic talent of those who represent Special Olympics New Jersey. With the USA Games, we have an opportunity to impact the lives of hundreds of thousands of individuals and change the attitudes of millions more.
On behalf of all of us at Special Olympics New Jersey, I challenge the citizens of New Jersey to be champions for change. Let’s use the USA Games to show our Genuine Jersey Pride and to dedicate ourselves to building a bigger, better community that includes our athletes as teammates in play, as neighbors and as friends.
Thank you, New Jersey, for embracing our Special Olympics athletes and our 2014 Special Olympics USA Games.
Marc S. Edenzon
President and CEO, Special Olympics New Jersey
Editor’s Note: For more information on the Special Olympics, see this week’s In Brief.