Special Olympics state basketball tournament tips off in Helena

The Montana Special Olympics State Basketball Tournament kicked off in Helena Thursday night with the opening ceremony.

Approximately 650 athletes, 330 coaches and team volunteers, plus hundreds of families and friends from across Montana will travel to Helena to watch the athletes compete in two days of intense basketball competition. Multiple venues in Helena will host 200 competitions including 3-on-3, 5-on-5, 5-on-5 Unified, and Individual Skills competitions.

A scene from the opening ceremony of the 2023 Montana Special Olympics basketball tournament in Helena on Nov. 9.

Courtesy of Brett Penner

Kathie Roos, Helena-area volunteer and coach for Special Olympics Montana said, “Our athletes and their unified partners build on their physical conditioning, teamwork, leadership, and a sense of accomplishment. But most of all, as the SOMT state basketball tournament showcases, we all just enjoy the game!”

A group of more than 20 volunteers, called the Games Management Team, has been working to plan all facets of the tournament from the competition including providing food and housing for the athletes and their coaches.

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