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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, May 29, 2010

Hawaii's Special Olympics Summer Games under way

By Suzanne Roig
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Luke Gray, left, is congratulated by volunteer Kayla Bagay after he competed in the men’s 400-meter dash at the 43rd Annual Special Olympics held at the University of Hawaii at Manoa's lower campus today. An estimated 800 athletes are taking part.

KENT NISHIMURA | The Honolulu Advertiser

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Tomorrow’s schedule

The Special Olympics continues tomorrow at the University of Hawaiçi at Mänoa. Events are:

• Track and field: 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., T.C. Ching Field;

• Swimming: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Duke Kahanamoku Aquatics Complex;

• Powerlifting: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., lecture hall at the athletic complex;

The games will end with a brief closing ceremony for athletes before they go home on the fields where the events are held.

For more information go to www.specialolympicshawaii.org.

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The energy was palpable at the 43rd annual Special Olympics State Summer Games at the University of Hawai'i-Manoa today.

Runners, swimmers, long jumpers, softball throwers, shot put throwers and power lifters bounced on their toes, stretched their muscles or sat and relaxed until their event was called.

Some were new to the Special Olympics; others were repeat competitors.

Twelve-year-old Rebeka Miller stood on the winner's platform yesterday to receive her gold medal in the 15- meter (cq) run.

Though a shy girl, Miller wore her medal proudly.

"I ran fast," said the Webling Elementary School sixth-grader. "I work hard at running."

Her parents beamed as they examined her medal. Miller will definitely compete in next year's summer games, said her dad, Daren Miller of 'Aiea.

In all about 800 athletes and 200 coaches from around the state are taking part in the weekend event at UH. The athletes range in age from 8 to 81.

Events continue tomorrow with track and field, swimming, powerlifting.

For more on this story, see tomorrow's Honolulu Advertiser.