Young Athletes Festival

2014 Special Olympics USA Games

The 2014 Special Olympics USA Games is proud to present the first-ever Young Athletes Festival!

The Young Athletes Festival is based on Special Olympics’ successful Young Athletes™ program and will be full of activities that support the developmental goals of Young Athletes™.

Young Athletes™ is a unique sport and play program designed to help children with intellectual disabilities improve physically, cognitively and socially. It facilitates development of running, throwing, catching, jumping and striking, all skills fundamental to a child’s future success in track & field, basketball, skiing, or whatever sport a child chooses.

The Young Athletes™ program:

  • Improves gross motor skills
  • Celebrates what your child CAN do
  • Encourages social and language development
  • Provides play with a purpose
  • Develops skills for future participation in sports

To find out more about Special Olympics Young Athletes™, visit or your local state’s Special Olympics website.

 Young Athlete

A snapshot of the Young Athletes Festival

The Young Athletes Festival will take place June 16-19, 2014 at the Special Olympics New Jersey Sports Complex (1 Eunice Kennedy Shriver Way, Lawrenceville, NJ 08684).

Future Star Future Stars Race 

Experience the thrill of crossing the finish line!

Each day at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Young Athletes will have the opportunity to run at 25 meter Future Stars Race!  Nothing compares to crossing the finish line or waving to the cheering section in the stands.  Well, maybe getting your ribbon and wearing it every day and everywhere is the best part.

Young Athletes™ Program Tents

Young Athletes™ skills presented in a totally NEW format!

All of the skills in Young Athletes™ packaged in fun inspired tents that create a feeling of entering a whole new world.

The Fun House

Crazy mirrors and lots of bubbles are bound to produce lots of giggling.  The fun never ends in the Fun House!

Jewel of the Jungle

Take a journey through the rainforest complete with a swinging bridge and lake.  Let’s hope there are no alligators though! Well, maybe a gorilla or two!

Mountaintop Adventure

Young Athletes put their balancing skills to the test as they cross a mountain crevasse. No snowball fights please!

Carnival Games

Take a turn at trapping, catching, tossing, throwing, striking and kicking.  These games are classics and will make you want to come back again and again.

Young Athlete
Young Athletes Soccer

Developmental Soccer

Young Athletes™ take their skills to the next level on the soccer field.

GOOOOAAAAAAAL!  Kick, pass, trap, shoot and score.  Just remember to use your feet only . . . unless you’re the goalkeeper.

Developmental Basketball:

Young Athletes™ try out their skills on the basketball court

Practice dribbling, passing and, of course, shooting.  Slam dunk?  Maybe!

STRIDER Adventure Zone 

Young Athletes™ taking it to 2 wheels! Strider balance bikes focus on the fundamentals of balancing, leaning, and steering without the distractions and complications of pedals or training wheels. Have fun at the STRIDER Adventure Zone where Young Athletes™ can experience the challenge and thrill of riding on unique terrain and obstacles. 

Healthy Young Athletes | Ask the Doc

Therapists, Doctors, and Dentists, Oh My! All can be found at the Festival ready to answer questions and give referral advise to parents and caregivers. Educational resources by Sesame Street will be provided to participating families.


Tips for making the most out of the Young Athletes Festival experience:

Food & Beverages

Bringing your own lunch and snacks is advised.  All Young Athletes will receive a complimentary snack and water.  Vendors will be on-site.

Session Times

You can register to arrive at 9:00 a.m. or 12:00 p.m. Your family or school group will be provided with a Young Athlete’s™ Festival escort to help you manage your time.  Arriving 10 minutes prior to your start time will allow for parking and check-in time so you can make the most out of your experience.  We estimate that you will be able to participate in all of the events within a 3 hour time period.

Can I attend the Young Athletes Festival more than one day?

This is an exciting event and we want your Young Athlete and family to make the most of it.  We ask that you register for one day first and then check in with us when you are at the Festival to register for another time. 

Before you register, be sure to:
  • Choose a date to attend to the Young Athletes™ Festival: Monday, June 16, Tuesday June 17, Wednesday June 18 or Thursday June 19. Schools are invited to come Monday and Tuesday.
  • Decide on your time of arrival: 9:00 a.m. or 12:00 p.m. Schools have the additional choice of 10:00 a.m. arrival due to transportation. 
  • Choose the time you would like to participate in the Future Stars Race: 11:30 a.m. or 2:30 p.m. 
  • If you are registering as a school or group, have your roster handy. For each child being registered, you will need the following information: First and last name, date of birth, parent/guardian name, shirt size.
  • If you are registering a school or group decide if you will bring parents and allow them to take their athletes to the Ask the Doc feature.  It is best to decide this and create a procedure BEFORE coming to the Festival.

The Young Athlete Festival is Presented by Toys'R'Us

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