LAURINBURG — The rain didn’t dampen the spirits of the 50 or so participants that attended the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Scotland County Senior Games.
Kisha Williams, coordinator for this year’s senior games, said the gloomy weather wasn’t going to slow down all the activities planned for this year.
“Even though it’s a cloudy day with rain it’s still a day to celebrate,” she said.
The rain did however force Williams to make some slight adjustments to the schedule.
Croquet which was slated to take place Monday has been moved to Monday, May 14 at 1 p.m. at Prestwick Village. Men’s bocce and the softball and football throws that we scheduled for today have been cancelled and moved to May 15. All of the events will be held at the same time and place.
The swimming events set for Thursday, April 26 has been moved from Scotia Village to O’Herron Pool on the campus of St. Andrews.
According to Williams, 125 people, age 50 and above, signed up for this year’s Senior Games. An event that began in the early 1980s.
“It’s something they look forward to,” she said. “Sometimes I only see some of these participants one time a year, but if I do see them at other times of the year, they always ask about Senior Games.”
Williams hopes to increase the number of local seniors that take part in the games and in turn elevate the number of people that qualify to represent the county at the North Carolina Senior Games.
“At the state level they are over 3,000 seniors,” Williams said. “We want to increase the number of Scotland County seniors and we do that by giving people a chance to find their comfort level, if they are comfortable their first game, then they will try a second time and then consider going to state.”
Dorothy Tyson, president of the Scotland County Senior Games Committee and coordinator of the SilverArts program, turned her welcome speech into an acronym for those participating.
“W — we are friends, E — exuberant and excited, L — loving leaders, C — comradery, O — organized and orderly, M — motivated to be better and do better and E — eternally young,” Tyson said.
The senior cheerleaders, known as SASS, got the crowd on their feet as they marched to the front of the room, pom poms in hand.
Laurinburg Mayor Matthew Block was slated to be the guest speaker but never showed up so Williams took the opportunity to have several of the committee members to share their experiences about the games and how long they’ve been participating.
Jerry Weinreis has been working and active in the senior games for nearly 20 years.
“It’s been a pleasure and it’s good for your health,” Weinreis said.
Henry Thompson and his wife Brenda, who is the committee treasurer, want young people in the county to know that the seniors are very active.
“I’m one of them fired up old folks,” he said. “It’s a big experience and young people think we just stand around, they don’t know how we can act.”
The participants that attended the opening ceremonies powered through the drizzle and completed the Silver Striders one mile fun run, as Brenda Thompson carried the torch to signal the beginning of the games.
Amber Hatten-Staley can be reached at 910-506-3170 or [email protected]