Our Sponsors

St. Joseph Mercy Cancer Center ad
Rick Taylor realtor ad
Thrivent Financial
Heydlauff's ad
Roberts paint and body ad
Parts Peddler ad
Wellness Center ad
Burrill Strong Photography
Chelsea Bakery ad
Chelsea State Bank ad

Courtesy photo by Katy Fillian. Some of the Chelsea High School athletes who will participate in this week’s Michigan Winter Olympic Games for the Special Olympics.

By Lisa Carolin

Among the participants at the Michigan Winter Olympic Games for the Special Olympics are 16 Chelsea High School (CHS) students.

The Special Olympics began Jan. 30 and run through Friday, Feb. 2, at the Grand Traverse Resort in Traverse City, and many members of the CHS team have been looking forward to the trip.

“It’s a way to get out of your comfort zone,” said CHS student Maddie Cerveny. “It’s like a judgment-free zone where it’s all about having fun.”

Courtesy photo from Katy Fillian. Some of the Chelsea High School athletes who will compete this week at the Michigan Winter Special Olympics.

“For me it’s a great way to get out of the house and be fit,” said CHS student Roy Marchetti, who says he’s excited to stay at the Grand Traverse Resort. Teammate Zakary Cobb likes exercising and hanging out with friends.

“I always wanted to be part of a team, and snowshoeing takes a lot of practice,” said student Melody Erskine.

Katy Fillian and Mary Jo Stofflet are the CHS coaches.

“For each sport, athletes compete in local, regional and state level events,” explained Fillion, who is also a special education teacher at CHS in the Program for Independent Living. “They train for a minimum of eight weeks per sport with practices every week and games most weeks as well. For most sports, teams must qualify for state events by winning at the regional level.”

The CHS athletes will compete in SnowShoe at the Winter Olympics, which will also include skiing, skating and snowboarding. Although they practice at the high school, the Special Olympics are not run through the schools, which means athletes of all ages can participate.

“Sports help us develop healthy habits and lifestyles, keep our muscles active and strong, and provide opportunities for positive role models with coaches and volunteers,” said Fillian.

“Furthermore, athletes learn skills that can be applied to many avenues of life like discipline, goal setting, hard work, team work and sportsmanship. Unfortunately, many of our athletes, due to the nature of their disabilities, aren’t able to compete in traditional sports opportunities. Special Olympics provides an opportunity for our athletes to train and compete and obtain the same skill set and benefits as other athletes-and to have a lot of fun along the way,” she said.

The athletes maintain a positive outlook about participating. Marchetti speaks for his teammates when he explains going to the Special Olympics this way: “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be a brave in my attempt.”

For a schedule and more information click here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tags: ,

3 Responses to “16 Chelsea High School students to compete in Michigan Winter Special Olympics”

  1. Crystal Hayduk says:

    It is great to see how hard these students work toward their goals, and how much fun they have doing it. The Chelsea community is proud of them.

  2. You kids are what makes us proud. Good luck to all and Smile and most of all have fun……

  3. Kelly Stoker says:

    This is fantastic! I wish all our Chelsea athletes luck in their events. Would love to see another follow-up article too.

Leave a Comment