Pelicans to host Horry County Special Olympics Spring Games on April 18

Athletes vying for a chance to compete in state games

By Scott Kornberg / Myrtle Beach Pelicans | March 28, 2018 9:52 AM ET

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (March 28, 2018) - The Myrtle Beach Pelicans will host the Horry County Special Olympics Spring Games on Wednesday, April 18, at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark. Approximately 400 Special Olympic athletes from across Horry County will be joined with 400 "buddies" and volunteers to compete in various events. Athletes may also earn the opportunity to enter South Carolina's Summer Games, held from May 11-13 in Columbia.

"The Special Olympics Spring Games gives athletes all over Horry with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to compete, receive medals and celebrate the bravery they have to be successful at anything," said Horry County Special Olympics Area Director Erik Karney. "They show us every day that they are the true "heroes" in life, with their smiles of joy and determination to be the best they can be."

Gates open to the ballpark at 8:30 a.m., and registration for all athletes and buddies will be at Gate 1, located near right field. Volunteers will register at Gate 2, down the first base line. The Horry County community is encouraged to join the Pelicans' pep rally to welcome the athletes into the ballpark. The Games are open to the public at no charge, and all community members are welcome to cheer on the athletes and lend their support.

The day begins with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Torch Run at Myrtle Beach's Fire Training Facility at 8:45 a.m. The torch will be lit on the field at 9:45 a.m., marking the third year the Games are being held at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

Events begin at 10:00 a.m., with athletes competing in the softball and tennis throws on the outfield grass, the 100m and 50m runs and walks on the outfield warning track and the young athletes' events in foul territory down the left field line.

Members of the Special Olympics Youth Athletes (ages 2-7) will also take part in the festivities at the ballpark. Entertainment throughout the day, which concludes at 1:30 p.m., includes Olympic Town with a DJ, inflatables and local mascots.

In addition to the Horry County Spring Games, the Pelicans will also hold their annual Special Olympics Night on Saturday, April 21. The Birds will sport commemorative jerseys designed by Angelita Ponce of North Myrtle Beach Middle School. Ponce won the club's jersey design contest, with students from both North Myrtle Beach Middle School and Ocean Bay Middle School submitting drafts. The jerseys will be auctioned off to fans throughout the 6:05 p.m. game, with the proceeds benefitting the Horry County Special Olympics. Gates open at 5 p.m. on Special Olympics Night.

The 2018 season will be the 20th season for the Pelicans franchise and fourth as the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. For tickets visit MyrtleBeachPelicans.com/tickets, call (843) 918-6000, or visit the Pelicans Box Office.

ABOUT THE PELICANS: The Myrtle Beach Pelicans are the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs and play their home games at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The park has ranked in the top eight in all of Minor League Baseball by Stadium Journey in six of the last seven seasons. The same publication also placed the Pelicans in the Top 100 Stadium Experiences and the best in the Carolina League for six of the past seven seasons as well. In June 2017, TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark won the 2017 TripAdvisor.com Certificate of Excellence award. The Pelicans have won four Mills Cup Championships, including claims to back-to-back titles in 1999 and 2000, and again in 2015 and 2016. The Pelicans have made 11 postseason appearances behind 13 half-season Southern Division championships, including the first half of the 2015 season, second half of 2016 and first half of 2017. For more information on the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, please contact the Pelicans at (843) 918-6000 or emailing Info@MyrtleBeachPelicans.com.

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