New Jersey is hosting 3,500 athletes this week for the 2014 Special Olympics USA at 12 locations based primarily in Mercer County.
The athletes will participate in aquatics, athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, cycling, flag football, golf, gymnastics, powerlifting, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball. Baseball and triathlon are demonstration sports.
The goal of the Special Olympics is to showcase abilities of athletes with intellectual disabilities, promote the ideals of acceptance and inclusion through sport, and celebrate the transformative power of Special Olympics.
The organization, which was founded by Eunice Kennedy Shriver in 1968, provides year-round sports training and athletic competitions.