Earlier this week I interviewed Hillsborough County Director of Special Olympics Sarah Taylor and learned it costs approximately $350 for one athlete to compete in one sport with Special Olympics for one year. With many of the athletes participating in multiple sports, fundraisers like Jack Over Ice coming this December 4th to Tampa, are extremely important to local children and adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Athletes in the program do not pay to play in Special Olympics events.
With .83 cents of every dollar raised going directly to athlete programs, Special Olympics does everything in it's power to lower overhead costs to further support local athletes so they can compete!
So how can you help?
December 4th will be Tampa's first Jack Over Ice event. Scheduled at Amalie Arena's Chase Club from 7 - 11 pm, this event mirrors Jack in the Park, one of Orlando's premier social events. Jack Over Ice is your first chance to dine, dance, win raffles, bid in the silent auction and play cards for first prize in a funny money Blackjack Tournament for Special Olympics. Oh, and First Prize, it is a good one! Two VIP tickets to Dancing With The Stars in Los Angeles. Imagine yourself, sitting in a room full of Hollywood stars!
Your ticket purchase to Jack Over Ice makes it possible for athletes to compete in Special Olympics Florida and gets you smack in the middle of some great fun!
Come walk the red carpet, get your picture taken, enjoy Josh Walther and the Phase 5 Band, an open bar and great food from donors like Kona Grill , Carmel Kitchen and Wine Bar and more, as emcees Jen Epstein and Walter Allen from Fox 13 WTVT guide you through the night's festivities. 'Gentleman Jack' will be the signature libation from Jack Daniels so grab your friends and come on out to play so kids like Thomas Shervington can continue to enjoy everything Special Olympics offers.
This is Thomas last week at ESPN's Wide World Of Sport's Complex after winning a gold medal. Director Sarah Taylor and Thomas talk to groups sharing the needs and importance of Special Olympics to folks in our community. Sarah shared with me her feelings about Thomas. She described him as, "engaging, outgoing, funny, endearing and a leader." She also shared her surprise upon learning Thomas was not always the confident guy she knows and loves. In fact he was once shy, withdrawn and non-communicative.
How Special Olympics impacted the Shervington Family!
Thomas recently spoke before thousands of people at the Special Olympics Fall State Classic event; a young man who 5 years ago could not carry on a conversation. Thomas' mother shared this with me, "Finding other people who accepted Thomas was hard. Kids were mean, and adults didn't understand this big kid who spoke like a 4 year old. My husband an I were Thomas' best friends. It had to be that way, we had to shelter him to protect him. We were his best friends." Then someone shared Special Olympics with the family. Mom Buffie says Special Olympics changed the entire family, not just Thomas. Her husband coached, she cheered and Thomas, began emulating what he saw. He began reaching out to other athletes, encouraging them, cheering them on. Winning his first medal gave him self-confidence and a true champion was born! Today Thomas has many best friends, friends he will have for a lifetime as he spreads word about this important charity.
This is TAMPA'S first chance to show Orlando how we roll as we support important charities like Special Olympics. Let's show Orlando what we can do at our first Jack Over Ice Tampa!
Here is how you can help:
Buy a ticket and attend! You do not want to miss this fun!
- Individual Tickets are $75 with a price break for 4 Tickets @ $250
- Sponsor levels range from $1000 to $5000
- Current Sponsors include E-Trade, Tampa Harbour Marina and Digitech
Follow this link to buy a ticket, sponsor the event or to donate to:
- If you can't attend and can donate please help, no amount is too small.
- If you can donate raffle or auction items, or know someone who can please share this article with them and contact Sarah Taylor @ 813.508.6905
- You can also help by Sharing This Post on your social media! Sharing is Caring!
Let's get the word out about Jack Over Ice and help our athletes!