Twelve Athletes from NSSRA Gators Head to Special Olympics Summer Games

Highland Park – Monday, June 5, 2023 – This weekend, twelve athletes from the NSSRA Gators program are preparing to showcase their skills and determination at the Special Olympics Illinois Summer Games. The event, June 9-11 in Bloomington-Normal, is set to bring together over 3,000 athletes, 1,000 coaches, and approximately 43 Unified partners for a three-day celebration of sportsmanship and inclusivity.

The Summer Games, an esteemed competition, encompasses various sports, including athletics, bocce, unified bocce, powerlifting, soccer, swimming, artistic gymnastics, and rhythmic gymnastics. The event is one of Special Olympics Illinois’s 13 state sports competitions.

The Opening Ceremony kicks off at 8:00 PM on Friday, June 9, at Hancock Stadium. Gator athletes will participate in an awe-inspiring Parade of Athletes, the resonating National Anthem, the Athlete Oath, a dazzling fireworks display, and the symbolic lighting of the Flame of Hope.

This year, the NSSRA Gators are proud to present an exceptional lineup of athletes competing in four different sports. In the powerlifting category, Jesse Grene will showcase her impressive skills in the Deadlift event, while Miguel Lara and Mike Sener will demonstrate their strength and technique in the Bench Press, Deadlift, and Squat.

Mikey Hull will take the spotlight in the Track and Field event, showcasing his outstanding talent in the Softball Throw event. The swimming events will feature Nora Richards in both Backstroke and Breaststroke. Joining her in the pool, Gillian Segall will compete in Freestyle and Butterfly. Maria Sendik, Tim Siebert, and Jay Slotnick will also make waves in various swimming events, including Freestyle, Breaststroke, Backstroke, and Butterfly.

Bocce promises precision and strategic understanding and will feature the skills of Daniel Cervac, Daniel Eichengreen, and Andy Stern as they compete in the Bocce Singles event.

Good luck to all Gator Athletes participating in the Illinois Special Olympics Summer Games.

For more information about Special Olympics Illinois, the Summer Games, please visit