Community

Adapted sports day celebrates Maple Ridge students and their talents

Kristofer Dupis-Ludvikisson, 17, a Westview Secondary student,  throws a foam noodle at hoops during an adapted sports day at Maple Ridge secondary  on Monday.   - Colleen Flanagan/The News
Kristofer Dupis-Ludvikisson, 17, a Westview Secondary student, throws a foam noodle at hoops during an adapted sports day at Maple Ridge secondary on Monday.
— image credit: Colleen Flanagan/The News

Maple Ridge secondary hosted the first district-wide adapted sports day on Monday.

The event was the idea of MRSS support teacher Carly Herman, and she got about 50 special needs students from Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows high schools together for fun competition.

“They love PE class, and we don’t often get together as a big high school group,” she explained.

The sports day was intended to celebrate students and their talents.

The students, who had both cognitive and physical challenges, moved between eight different stations on the track at MRSS, with each one offering a new contest.

There was kicking an oversize soccer ball into a set of bowling pins, throwing a football through a target, and tossing a water noodle in a javelin style. The athletic leadership students from MRSS were on hand to help put them through their paces.

There was also entertainment provided by local mascots, including MRSS’ Rambo, the Bruins Rugby Club “Blue” bear, and the local Rotary club’s ducks.

“The day is going really well – lots of smiles,” said Herman at noon.

It was a fun, accepting environment, and if an athlete picked up the soccer ball and threw it into the pins, there were big smiles and high fives.

“It’s all about success,” said Herman.

Local businesses kicked in with sponsorships for the events, so that the kids could have a free hot dog lunch, and for medals at the end of the day.

District principal of student support services Katherine Shearer was impressed with the track meet.

“It was an amazing amount of coordination, and a cool community event,” she said.

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