Bowling Green hosts Special Olympics Region One Basketball Tournament

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – On Saturday morning, the Kummer Little Recreation Center and Moxley Community Center were packed with plenty of basketball action.

“Special Olympics has been a part of this city and community for a really long time,” said Cameron Levis, a Special Populations Instructor for Bowling Green Parks and Recreation. “To continue to be able to host this and have it part of what we do is really special every year.”

Thirty-five teams from across western Kentucky made the trip to Bowling Green for the annual Special Olympics Region One Basketball Tournament.

“Teams from Russellville, Muhlenberg, Bowling Green of course, Barren County, all of the western Kentucky area teams,” said Hunter Brislin, Director of Sports and Competition for Special Olympics Kentucky.

“To see them come here, it’s a really special time for us to be able to welcome them into Bowling Green, and just see all the smiles and competitiveness,” added Levis.

Around 15 teams qualified for the state tournament which will be played in Louisville in March, but if you ask any of the athletes, Saturday wasn’t just about winning or losing.

“Well we lost our first game,” said Ginna Greer, a player for the Bowling Green Deputies. “It was really tough, but we tried our best and it’s all that matters.”

“They get an opportunity to come out here, try their best, and show off their skills to the community,” Levis said. “That’s all that matters is them having fun and getting to compete every day.”

It was clear to see by the smiles across everyone’s faces that players and fans alike were all having a fun time, win or lose.

“It makes me happy being with [my teammates],” said Greer.

“Just being here and seeing the smiles on all the athletes faces,” echoed Brislin.

A great day overall for everyone involved in the tournament.

“For them to get to show off their skills and abilities is just really special for everybody to be able to witness,” said Levis.