Congratulations to our 2023 Unified Bocce State Championship qualifiers!

Is anyone else craving chocolate?! 🍫🎉

Eight INCREDIBLE Unified Bocce teams from throughout Pennsylvania have qualified for the PIAA-Interscholastic Unified Bocce State Championship in Hershey on March 23rd!

This week, Special Olympics Pennsylvania held four regional events — at Geneva College, Glenn Mills Schools, Penn State DuBois and Penn State Schuylkill — to see which teams would advance to the big dance!

After the balls rolled and the PVC settled, these are the eight teams who will be competing for the title in two weeks:

🔴 Chartiers Valley School District

🟢 Ellwood City Area School District

🔴 Garnet Valley School District

🟢 Greencastle-Antrim High School

🔴 Harbor Creek School District

🟢 Pennridge School District

🔴 St. Marys Area School District

🟢 Susquenita School District

Congratulations to ALL of our Unified Bocce teams throughout the state! The sport is truly BOOMING in Pennsylvania schools and your commitment to upholding a high standard of competition while also ensuring whole-school engagement and inclusion for all is truly inspiring!

Best of luck to our State Championship qualifiers and stay tuned for much more to come!

Thank you to: The PIAA, DICK’S Sporting Goods, Aramark, Pennsylvania Department of Education

Maryellen Brown: 2022 Annette K. Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award Winner!

Every year, Special Olympics North America recognizes a coach for their contributions to their athletes, program and the moment over the course of their entire career.

We are beyond excited, overjoyed and flat-out PROUD to announce that Maryellen Brown is this year’s recipient of the Annette K. Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award!!!!

Maryellen, who is from Area M in the Capital Area Region, has been coaching Special Olympics for FIFTY-TWO YEARS!! Throughout the course of her illustrious career, Maryellen has coached athletics, basketball, floor hockey and volleyball. What began as volunteering as a college student at Lock Haven University has blossomed into trips throughout Pennsylvania and to numerous USA Games and World Games. Additionally, Maryellen has held a variety of committee positions, management team roles and served as a Sports Director and on our Board of Directors.

Maryellen,  also a member of Special Olympics Pennsylvania’s Hall of Fame, has helped train other coaches to achieve their true potential for more than 20 years and she’s the biggest fan and supporter of our athletes both on and off the playing field. She focuses on teaching our athletes the importance of health and fitness throughout training. When installing a new element in practice, Maryellen always explains why a drill is important and how it’s going to help the team achieve its ultimate goal. Her athletes respect and listen to her and also have a ton of fun as a tight-knit community.

Maryellen emphasizes the importance of how people respond when facing adverse situations, both in sport and in life, and the respect and admiration her athletes, peers and friends & family have for her perpetually shines.

Congratulations to Maryellen Brown — winner of the 2022 Special Olympics North America Annette K. Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award!