Vernon cross-country skier Justin Sigal shares the story of his first medal won the Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games in Kamloops in 2015. Sigal was on hand to hear that the 2019 Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games have been awarded to Greater Vernon. (Roger Knox/Morning Star)

Vernon Special Olympics BC Games logo revealed

Greater Vernon to host largest every Special Olympics BC Winter Games in 2019

  • Aug. 28, 2018 12:00 a.m.

The 2019 Special Olympics BC Winter Games in Greater Vernon has released its official logo.

The logo was designed by Vernon graphic artist Stephanie Tambellini, who said the inspiration for the logo was based on the sense of place that is Greater Vernon.

“The ‘V’ shapes represent the diversity in Vernon’s people and landscape,” said Tambellini. “The shapes also convey a celebratory feeling as Greater Vernon proudly plays host to the Special Olympics BC Winter Games based on being an engaged community that values an active lifestyle.

“The colours chosen represent the sun, water and land that is synonymous with the Okanagan and make it a desirable place to both visit and reside.”

Tambellini said her team of graphic designers are honoured and thrilled to design the logo for Games.

“It’s important to our business that we support the community whenever possible and what a better way than to design the logo that plays host to Special Olympics BC in winter 2019,” she said. “It’ll be an exciting event for our community and we are looking forward to cheering on the athletes.”

RELATED: Vernon to host largest Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games in 2019

More than 800 athletes with intellectual disabilities from all over the province and the Yukon will be competing in eight sports. The 2019 Provincial Games, the largest SOBC Winter Games to date, will run from Feb. 21 to 24 in Greater Vernon.

Dan Howe, president and CEO of Special Olympics BC, said it’s exciting to see the progress being made by the local Games Organizing Committee, led by chairperson Glenn Benischek.

“We’re thrilled with the enthusiasm Greater Vernon has shown since announcing they would be hosting the Games,” Howe said. “The release of the logo makes it that much more real, not only for the community, but for the athletes with intellectual disabilities who will proudly compete under the 2019 Special Olympics BC Winter Games banner. Greater Vernon opened its hearts and minds when it said yes to host the Games, and the logo helps put the community’s stamp of approval on it.”

Howe said the Provincial Games are an empowering experience for Special Olympics athletes who will be shooting for personal-best performances as well as the chance to advance to national and international levels of competition.

Top performers in Greater Vernon will qualify for spots on Team BC for the 2020 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games in Thunder Bay, Ont., which serve as the qualifier for the 2021 Special Olympics World Winter Games.

RELATED: Vernon Special Olympians golden (and silver) at Canada Games

Benischek said he’s confident the community will embrace the Games and is looking forward to seeing the logo start to pop up around Greater Vernon.

“SOBC – Vernon runs 16 year-round sport, youth, and fitness programs and is already home to outstanding Special Olympics athletes, volunteers, and programs,” said Benischek. “Hosting the Games will help bring a new level of excitement SOBC – Vernon and this logo helps to build that bond between the community and the athletes.

In 2019, the SOBC Games Opening Ceremony will be held on Feb. 21, followed by competition throughout Feb. 22 and 23. A closing ceremony, open only to Games competitors, will be held on Feb. 23, followed by a volunteer recognition breakfast on Feb. 24.

Benischek said more than 1,000 volunteers will be needed to help stage this inspiring event. He said volunteer registration details and Games venues will be announced in the weeks to come.

For more information visit www.specialolympics.bc.ca and find SOBC on Facebook and Instagram @specialolympicsbc and Twitter @sobcsociety; the Games hashtags will be #SOBCGames #GreaterVernon2019.


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