Friday, April 26, 2013

Special Olympics Pennsylvania Athletes Compete in 2013 Penn Relays

On Friday, April 26, 2013, Special Olympics athletes competed in their own division in two races — the 4×100-meter relay and the 100-meter dash— during the 2013 Penn Relays, the oldest and largest track and field competition in the US hosted annually by the University of Pennsylvania.  In total, approximately 20 athletes from all over the East Coast participated.
Participating Special Olympics Pennsylvania athletes included: Adam Mucklow (Bucks County), Houston McDaniel (Montgomery County), Bernie Thompson (Bucks County), and Alex Brauman (Montgomery County).         
Congratulations to Bucks County athlete Adam Mucklow who came in first in the 100M event at the Penn Relays.  See the race time below:
Penn Relay Results - 100M Run
Adam Mucklow                 Bucks Co.                          00:14.41
Zach Goodrich                   Wake Co., NC                   00:14.81
Joshua Thomas                 Franklin Co., NC                00:14.96
Houston McDaniel           Montgomery Co.              00:15.03  
Mychael Parker                Franklin Co., NC                00:15.10
Daniel Jenkins                   Baltimore Co., MD           00:15.15
Bernie Thompson             Bucks Co.                           00:15.18
Alex Brauman                    Montgomery Co.             00:15.41

Click here to read The Daily Pennsylvanian article about our Special Olympics athletes.


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Greg Focht, an athlete from Centre County, Finishes at the Fifty!

Greg Focht runs with his team during the Beaver Stadium Run

Greg Focht, a 47 year old Special Olympics PA – Centre County athlete, took part in his first 5K this weekend during the 2013 Beaver Stadium Run.  He has never run before in his life, but was proud to take part in the event when his first pair of running shoes were sponsored by Rapid Transit Shoes.
Motivated to begin running after he saw his fellow athletes participate in the 2012 Special Olympics PA Summer Games Torch Run at Penn State University, Greg trained vigorously for the Beaver Stadium Run with Kathie Mayo, a Centre County program volunteer.  Within months of training, Greg reduced his 3-mile time by 17 minutes.
In addition to recently completing his journey to “finish at the fifty” on Sunday, Greg will be inducted into the Special Olympics Pennsylvania Hall of Fame in May where many of his other Special Olympics accomplishments will be recognized.
Greg continues to train today and is becoming an icon around the community.  Perhaps we will see him participate in the 2013 Summer Games Torch Run?  Only time will tell.
An estimated 3,700 runners and walkers of all ages and abilities took part in the Fourth Annual Beaver Stadium 5K /1 Mile Family Fun Walk at Penn State University on Sunday, April 21, 2013 raising more than $360,000!  Thanks are extended to Greg for his involvement!
View the below video of Greg Participating in the Run! 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Lebanon Valley College Community Dutchmen Win Award for Special Olympics Support

Pictured: Bradley Krisantis, Lebanon County Program Manager Joan Sechrist, Kelly Fahenstock, and Ines Antensteiner

Lebanon Valley College (LVC) showcased its students during Inquiry 2013, a celebration of the scholarly, scientific, and creative achievements of the student body, from April 14 – 18. This year the symposium included a reception hosted by President Lewis Evitts Thayne, Ph.D., for College trustees and various guests on campus for Thayne's inauguration as the 18th president of Lebanon Valley College. During the symposium, Thayne presented the President's Award for Community Service to LVC’s Community Dutchmen.

The LVC Community Dutchmen is a student service group that was started by two young men in 2007, Chris Bauer and Nick Zuloph.  The group began as an exclusive volunteer organization for the Special Olympics PA - Lebanon County program that provided volunteers for its sports trainings.
Now, the Community Dutchmen provide additional diverse services that involve more than just trainings.  The group also helps with athlete dances, the polar plunge, sports clinics, annual Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day park clean-up, and will be serving as hosts for Lebanon County’s Athlete Leadership Program meetings and activities in the fall.
The Presidential Service Award has been designed to acknowledge a student organization "which has contributed to life in Central Pennsylvania through community service.”  We congratulate the Community Dutchmen for receiving this honor!


Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I am visiting Egypt as part of a US Sports United delegation to hold a clinic on swimming skills for Special Olympics Egypt coaches. I am travelling with a coach from Pennsylvania and a coach and athlete from Virginia. This coach’s clinic is 5 days long with one group of 50 coaches coming for two days, another group of 50 coaches for two days, and both groups coming together on the last day.

I have been in the pool helping to demonstrate the strokes and drills. The pool is outdoors, but very sunny and hot. We have very beginner swimmers, but I am showing them not to be afraid. It's not all work -- I had a chance to visit the pyramids, and even go inside one of them (it was very hot inside). I also rode a camel and visited a very big mall. We had dinner at the home of Mr. Ayman Wahab, who is in charge of Special Olympics in the Middle East/North Africa region. He had a beautiful house and it had its own pool.

Egypt is different with a lot of old buildings and crazy traffic with no lanes. It looks like people make up their own traffic rules, but there are not many accidents. The people are very friendly but the language is different so we have a translator. This trip has been a great experience.

Pictured: Farag El Sayad - our tour guide, Alice Moat, Gail Morning, Kester Edwards - Special Olympics athlete and staff member, Dennis Crean - Special Olympics coach, Bill Donohue - Gail's step-dad.

Gail helping swimmers in Egypt.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Second Training Update on Special Olympics Pennsylvania Athlete Greg Focht

He has never run in his life but is currently dedicated to running the Beaver Stadium Run/Walk on Sunday April 21 of Blue & White Weekend at Penn State.

Please support Greg & other athletes by participating in the Beaver Stadium 5k Run/Walk, donating, or volunteering for the event in State College, PA.

To sign up please visit:

To sponsor Greg:

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

An Athlete’s Journey to “Finish at the Fifty”

A Penn State Blue-White Weekend tradition continues on Sunday, April 21, 2013 when runners and walkers of all ages and abilities take part in the 4th Annual Special Olympics PA Beaver Stadium 5K Run/Family Fun Walk at Penn State University. Presented by Sheetz, Inc., the Run will begin on Porter Road (at the corner of Curtin Road), move through Penn State’s scenic campus, and conclude with runners racing through the Beaver Stadium Tunnel onto the Nittany Lions’ home turf to “finish at the fifty.”  Visit for more information.

Special Olympics PA – Centre County athlete Greg Focht, who has never run before in his life, is dedicated to participating in the 5k on April 21st.  View two videos below that follow Greg’s journey toward the big day. The first video is of Greg getting his first pair of running shoes by Rapid Transit and highlights information about the Run. The second video is a training update after three weeks.

The third upcoming video will be another training update after 6 weeks; and the last one will be filmed during the run.
Recent Training Update
First Training Video