State Senior Games set to begin
Senior athletes across the state will converge in Southwest Florida for the 2008 Florida State Senior Games this weekend, an annual competition hosted by Lee County and the city of Cape Coral.
The games, designed for athletes over the age of 50, have been held locally since 2006. Events include archery, basketball, bocci, golf, softball, swimming and more. Each has a entrance fee of between $10 and $150 for single and team competitions.
Competitions will be scattered across the county, but in Cape Coral there will be events at Diamond Billiards, Rotary Park, the Northwest Softball Complex and Ida S. Baker High School.
Theresa Hart, a recreation specialist with the city of Cape Coral, said the event will draw in 2,000 athletes from across the state. These are athletes who placed well in their local competitions and are moving onto the state level in Lee County.
Senior athletes will compete for bronze, silver and gold medals and a chance to attend the national senior games at San Francisco in August. The national games are held only once every three years, said Hart, and include 14,000 athletes.
Lee County and Cape Coral will continue to host the Florida Senior Games until 2010, a decision that will favor the local economy.
“People come and stay in hotels, eat at restaurants and see the area,” said Hart. “It’s definitely good all the way around.”
A Celebration of Athletes ceremony will be held at 5 p.m. Dec. 12 at the Estero Community Park. The celebration includes the Parade of Athletes, a torch lighting ceremony, dinner and live entertainment from J. Robert and the Florida Fusion, as well as The Del Prados.
Tickets are $6 per person and need to be purchased in advance. T-shirts and gift bags will be given away during some events over the week.
For more information about the event, visit: www.flasports.com.