Summer Games

Summer Games
June 10, 2016 – June 12, 2016 all-day
Various Locations in Bloomington/Normal, IL
David Shindley

What is Summer Games?

Summer Games is Special Olympics Illinois premiere sports competition with more than  4,000 athletes and Unified Partners competing in 6 different sports, along with 1,600 coaches, 2,000 volunteers and 3,300 family members. That totals almost 11,000 people who attend Summer Games annually! The Summer Games are held at Illinois State University in Normal and the Illinois Wesleyan University campus in Bloomington. A variety of activities are provided for the participants in addition to the sports competitions.



  • 2014 Summer Games GymnasticsAquatics – Shirk Center Natatorium, Illinois Wesleyan University
  • Athletics (track & field) – ISU Track
  • Bocce – ISU’s Soccer Stadium
  • Gymnastics – Horton Field House and Horton South Gym – ISU
  • Powerlifting – Kingsley Junior High School
  • Soccer – Hancock Stadium – ISU
  • Healthy Athletes – Redbird Arena – ISU


Competition will be offered in athletics, aquatics, bocce, Unified bocce, gymnastics, football (soccer) and powerlifting. Athletes can not participate in more than one sport.  Athletes registered in bocce may only compete in traditional bocce or Unified bocce; not both and athletes registered for gymnastics may only compete in artistic or rhythmic; not both.

The public is invited and encouraged to attend any and all parts of Special Olympics Illinois Summer Games.


We have many volunteer opportunities available during Summer Games and need the help of over 2,000 volunteers to help make this event a success. We are using online registration to help streamline this process for everyone involved. The weekend is split into morning and afternoon shifts for both Friday and Saturday and morning shifts for Sunday. We also have volunteer opportunities available at the SOILL office Monday-Wednesday the week of Summer Games.  Volunteers are an essential piece of our event’s success and we are in need of volunteers “behind-the-scenes” prior to the event dates to help with prep work in our office.

When volunteer registration is open just click on one of the buttons below for the day/time you are interested in.  If you have used our online system before, you just need to sign in and select the job and shift you are interested in. If you have not used our system before, it will ask you to answer a few questions to create your profile before you can select your job and shift.

If you are interested in volunteering for multiple days/times you do not have to come back to this page or log out. Once you sign up for your first shift you should see a list of all our current volunteer opportunities on the SOILL Event Registration Page. You simply need to find the next day/time, select register and select your job and shift. If you have any questions, please contact Aubrey Deerwester or Carolyn Klocek or call 309-888-2551.

Tentative Competition Times

All times listed below are tentative and subject to change once event specific schedules are determined. Times only reflect actual competition times and do not include time frames for coach meetings, weigh-in times, etc. For a final schedule please check the Supporting Documents section close to competition day.

Photo by Rich HoweAthletics

  • Friday, 11:45am – 5:30pm
  • Saturday, 7:30am – 5pm
  • Sunday, 7:30am – noon


  • Friday, 1-5pm
  • Saturday, 8am – 5pm


  • Friday, 12:30-5pm
  • Saturday, 8am – 5pm
  • Sunday if necessary


  • Friday, 1-5pm
  • Saturday, 8:30am – 3pm


  • Friday, 1– 5:30pm
  • Saturday, 8am – 5pm
  • Sunday, 8am – noon


  • Friday, noon-5pm
  • Saturday, 8am – 5pm
  • Sunday if necessary

Healthy Athletes

The Healthy Athletes program offers health services and information to athletes, coaches and families in need. Athletes, coaches and family members are encouraged to attend this FREE event! This year the program will be located in Redbird Arena on the lower level concourse. All screenings are free and open to all athletes whether competing or not. Coaches and family members can also take part in the Healthy Hearing and FunFitness screenings free of charge.

This year we are offering the following screenings:

  • Opening Eyes vision screenings – Friday: Noon – 4pm; Saturday: 8am – 4pm
  • Healthy Hearing screenings – Friday: Noon – 4pm; Saturday: 9am – 4pm
  • Special Smiles dental screenings – Friday: Noon – 4pm
  • FunFitness physical therapy screenings – Saturday: 9am – 3pm

Young AthletesYoung Athletes

Young Athletes from around the state enjoyed running, jumping, kicking, socializing and so much during the 2016 Summer Games; we want you to be able to be a part of this year’s exciting events!

We have over 100 spots reserved for Young Athletes of all ages for the Statewide Culminating Event on Friday. Spots are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis! If you are interested in attending, please complete a registration form and return it to the Special Olympics office.

Young Athletes 6 & 7 years of age, with a valid medical application, also have the opportunity to choose between two transitional exhibitions. The 50-meter race (10 a.m. Saturday), tennis ball throw (12:20 p.m. Saturday) and individual soccer skills  (1 p.m. Saturday) will be held on Saturday (times are tentative). To take part in the transitional exhibitions Young Athletes must have a valid Medical Application and can register for only one – athletics or soccer skills. As always, there will be a pizza party, Opening Ceremony, Olympic town, dance and so much other fun to join in!


2014 Summer Games FamilyFamily Activities

Families are an integral part of Special Olympics Illinois and of the Summer Games. The Family Hospitality area, located in the lower northeast corner of Horton Fieldhouse, is open on Friday from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. and on Saturday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. We encourage families to stop by to pick up a family welcome packet and giveaway item. You can also pick up tickets for the Family Tailgate Picnic, but be quick as the tickets are on a first-come, first-serve basis and they tend to go quickly! The Family Tailgate will take place on the south side of Horton Fieldhouse from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Saturday.

Opening Ceremony

2014 Summer Games Opening CeremoniesOpening Ceremony is scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday, at Hancock Stadium. In true pomp and ceremony during the Parade of Athletes representatives from the agencies (selected athletes and coaches) parade into the stadium in the best of Olympic tradition. Then please remove your caps and place your hands over your hearts for the National Anthem.  Finally, to top off this spectacular event, is the Final Leg of the Law Enforcement Torch Run where the officers will hand off the torch to athletes who will carry it along it’s final route and light the cauldron holding the Flame of Hope to kick off the Games!

Victory Dance

The Victory Dance will be held in Uptown Normal from 7:30-9 p.m. Saturday. The dance gives the athletes of Special Olympics Illinois a chance to celebrate their accomplishments and to socialize with others from around the state in addition to members of the community. Old friends will catch up and new friends will be made. The smiles and joy of the athletes are a testament to how Special Olympics Illinois helps transform lives.


The Cubby Hole will be onsite selling souvenirs; they accept cash, checks, and all major credit cards. You can purchase all your Special Olympics Illinois swag at one of two locations:

North Gym at ISU

  • Friday, Hours TBD
  • Saturday, Hours TBD

Shirk Center at IWU

  • Friday, Hours TBD
  • Saturday, Hours TBD

Other Activities

  • Hospitality Tent – Located at the south end of the track, fresh fruits and vegetables along with fruit juice are provided by the American Legion & Auxiliary. It is open from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Friday & 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday.
  • Law Enforcement Torch Run – Torch Run Central will serve as a resource center during this year’s events and will coordinate all Law Enforcement activities including awarding medals. The tent is located directly across from volunteer registration and is open from 8am-4pm Sat.
  • Olympic Town – Located on the blacktop west of the west of the track it provides numerous carnival games, displays, entertainment and various fun activities. It is open from 8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.  on Saturday.
  • Special Activities – Several other opportunities are underway possibly including the Fairview Park Pool & Waterslide and Miller Park Zoo. Check back closer to Summer Games and look for fliers in your registration packet.


In case of inclement weather, schedule changes or cancellations check the website here for updates. You can also call 309-888-2000 Ext. 245

Visit the Bloomington-Normal Area Convention & Visitors Bureau website for information on lodging and activities in Bloomington-Normal.

Supporting Documents