Fay and John Topping (left)

Fay and John Topping (left)

Special Olympics has lots to celebrate

John Topping is honoured for his many years of service to the Vernon branch of the organization

“It has been an amazing year in our organization,” says Doris Linemayr, the local coordinator for Special Olympics BC-Vernon, “this year we have the highest number of athletes in 15 different sport programs, new board members and some exciting new fundraising opportunities plus we are celebrating 40 years of service to our community.”

The charity recently held its annual general meeting, which for the first time included a dinner and dance.

“We had about 200 of our members at this event, which was a huge success‚“ said Linemayr. “Everyone had a good time at this year-end party.”

One of the highlights of the night was a formal presentation to John Topping. After many years of fundraising, Topping has retired from SOBC Vernon.

“John has been a crucial force in our charity. He is responsible for raising the monies that allow our programs to grow,” said board member Noelle Typusiak. “Through his efforts we are well-known in our community and have a lot of local support.”

Three athletes and two coaches were also recognized at the AGM. They will participate in the Special Olympics National Games in Vancouver this July. A huge crowed is expected to watch more than 1,700 athletes from around Canada compete in 11 different summer sports.

“We are so excited for Lexie vanOyen, Kyle Letkeman and Marcus Carberry,” said Typusiak. “They trained hard to get there and will represent Vernon well.”

Since 1974 Special Olympics BC-Vernon has provided 15 high-quality sports programs for people of all ages with intellectual disabilities, from September until July, and is always looking for more participants, and volunteers to run their programs.

A golf tournament is in the works for 2015 and the Book Warehouse in the Alpine Centre is an ongoing supporter to the charity that is always in need of funds to pay for the costs to run the programs and send their athletes to competitions.

For more information, please go to the SOBC Web site at www.sobcvernon.ca