News


Northwest Region Athletes in the News

Special Olympics Florida athletes Shane Patty and Stacy Barnes are crushing it and being recognized for their achievements!

Honoring Black Community Leaders

Flagler County athlete Josh Rosa is inspired by his pastor, John Galloway.


Keeping Athletes Healthy

As part of our Healthy Athletes initiative, we will be adding our free health screenings at Unified Champion Schools. With more than 470 Unified Champion Schools throughout Florida, this is a great opportunity to expand our reach and help our athletes lead healthier lives! 

GO COACH!

Coaches are superstars who help our athletes learn, grow and improve. Help us build our next generation of volunteer coaches.

Recognizing Black Leaders

Columbia County athlete Travis Ford is inspired by Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States.

Riding to Support Special Olympics Florida Athletes

Special Olympics Florida was one of 30 nonprofits competing in the 2024 Great Charity Challenge sponsored by Fidelity Investments. Thanks to the talents of Team Sponge Bob Square Pants, Special Olympics Florida received $17,500!

Special Olympics Florida Athlete Reports Again from the Super Bowl

Special Olympics athlete Malcom Harris-Gowdie is now a bona fide Super Bowl veteran. The Port St. Lucie County athlete was back at the Big Game this year, thanks to a partnership with sports and entertainment network FanSided.

National Girls & Women in Sports Day

On this nationally recognized day, we celebrate the achievements of two athletes who have been smashing misconceptions and breaking barriers.

Honoring Black Community Leaders

Monroe County athlete Charleslyn Rose Martin is inspired by her uncle and Key West District VI City Commissioner Clayton Lopez.

Athlete Performs National Anthem in South Florida

Special Olympics Florida athlete Aristide Reinoso performed the National Anthem at Miami-Dade County’s State of the County Address...and he blew the crowd away.

Making Inclusion Fashionable

Hillsborough County athlete Aarushi Pratap designed a new “Inclusion is Fashionable” T-shirt.  The shirt can be purchased on the Special Olympics' online store.

Way to Go Wawa

Special Olympics Florida athletes and representatives were on hand to help our corporate partner Wawa break ground on what will become Wawa’s first store in the Tallahassee area.

Celebrating Black History Month

Broward County Athlete Leader Layla Crehan is inspired by Major League Baseball Hall of Famer and eight-time All-Star Andre Dawson.

TD Charitable Foundation Grant Supports Healthy Hearing in Duval County

This $25,000 grant will help Special Olympics Florida provide Healthy Hearing screenings to Duval County’s Special Olympics athletes and help recruit audiologists to serve as clinical directors.

Brothers Share Love for Sports and Customer Service

Luis and Diego Martinez-Brown have a lot in common. They’re brothers, they’re Special Olympics Florida athletes, and they’re Publix associates excited by the 2024 Torch Icon Campaign now through January 21. 

Athlete Marks 25 Years at Publix

Special Olympics Florida athlete Jonathan Doring began working at Publix when he was in high school. His current role as a cashier extends beyond work and into meaningful customer relationships.

Lighting the Torch for our Athletes

Our Torch Icon Campaign at Publix is happening from January 12-21, bringing together Publix associates, customers and local communities to support nearly 70,000 Special Olympics athletes in Florida and beyond.

Athlete Chosen as Lightning Community Hero

Congratulations to Marlynne Stutzman, who was honored by the Tampa Bay Lightning. As part of the award, Special Olympics Florida received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, presented by Jabil.

2023 Was An Extraordinary Year

A year-end message from Special Olympics Florida President and CEO Sherry Wheelock.

A Movement of Community Resilience

Special Olympics Florida has been selected to participate in this year’s Great Charity Challenge.

Athlete Honored by the Big 12 Conference

Adrienne Bunn has been named the Special Olympics Female Athlete of the Year by the Big 12 Conference!   She was recognized in front of almost 85,000 people at the Big 12 Championship at AT&T Stadium in Dallas. She also attended the Big 12 Commissioner’s Reception, along with Special Olympics Florida Chief Operating Officer Meghan McLean.

This Flop Was a Huge Success!

Thank you to everyone who voted for Special Olympics Florida in the recent Jacksonville Jaguars-Tropical Smoothie Café Bellyflop challenge!

Racing for Champions in South Florida

Over 450 participants gathered on the campus of Nova Southeastern University for the 18th annual Sallarulo’s Race for Champions. The event, one of South Florida’s most anticipated fundraisers, celebrates community, compassion, and respect in an inclusive run/walk alongside Special Olympics Florida athletes. 

Race for Inclusion – Miami

Our final 2023 race event took place with more than 300 runners and walkers coming out Bayfront Park in Miami to raise over $165,000 to support our mission.

Every Family is Special

A huge thanks to our partners at Holiday Inn Club Vacations for once again treating a Special Olympics Florida family to a complimentary stay at Orange Lake Resort in Orlando. 

“Yeah, I am Special”

Special Olympics Florida athlete Joshua Olds is one of the faces of a new Special Olympics national campaign designed to reclaim and redefine what it means to be special. 

Hall of Fame Class 2023

We are proud to announce the newest members of the Special Olympics Florida Hall of Fame. The 2023 inductees truly embody the best of the Special Olympics movement.

State Fall Classic

More than 1,500 athletes and Unified partners from across Florida turned out for two days of competition at the ESPN Wide World of Complex. They participated in six different sports, including cornhole, flag football, gymnastics, pickleball, powerlifting, softball.



Celebrating Inclusion at the Champions Gala

Special Olympics Florida honored the athletes, volunteers, and partners who make its work possible at a spectacular gala featuring music, dancing, fellowship, and fireworks. The Champions Gala, presented by Publix, was held at the Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate.

Annual Leadership Award Winners

Special Olympics Florida is thrilled to announce the winners of its annual Leadership Awards which honor service to the Special Olympics movement.

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