The games start with an opening ceremony on Friday evening and last through Monday. All events are free and open to the public.
More than 1,400 athletes and 200 partners are participating in the 41st annual summer games, the largest event for the Maryland organization. One week after the games, 16 athletes and seven coaches will go to Athens to compete in the world Special Olympics.
Athletes will compete in five different areas during the games: aquatics, athletics, bocce ball, cheerleading and softball. Four of the sports offer "Unified" competition, where intellectually disabled athletes play alongside those with no handicaps. The summer games are the Maryland organization's biggest event.
The games will open Friday evening with the arrival of the "Flame of Hope" (a part of which traveled down Joppa Road on Wednesday) and an opening ceremony hosted by Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco and figure skater Kimmie Meissner.
Here's a schedule for this weekend's events, provided by Special Olympics Maryland:
SCHEDULE: The schedule is as follows (all times are approximate and subject to change):
- Pep Rally – Friday, June 10: 5:00 – 7:00 PM – Auburn House Pavilion/Lot 21
- Opening Ceremony – Friday, June 10: 7:30-8:45 PM inside the Towson Center – Towson University
- Competition -- Saturday, June 11: 8 AM – 5 PM / Sunday, June 13: 8 AM – 12 PM:Aquatics – Burdick Hall Pool; Athletics – Unitas Stadium: Saturday, 8 AM-5 PM, Sunday, 8 AM -2 PM: Bocce – Varsity Soccer Field; Saturday, 8 AM-5 PM, Sunday 8 AM-2 PM: Softball – Towson Varsity Softball Field, Burdick Field and Cockeysville Senior Center; Saturday, 8 AM - 5 PM, Sunday, 8 AM-3 PM
- Olympic Park – Saturday, June 11: 6-10 PM – University Union Patio
- Victory Dance– Saturday, June 11: Occurs during Olympic Park celebrations
- Closing Ceremony – Sunday, June 12– held at each sports venue; times vary depending upon when the competition closes at each venue