Special Olympics Illinois holds the summer games every year at Illinois State University. (WJBC file photo)
By Stephanie Pawlowski
NORMAL - Thursday's Special Olympics Illinois annual holiday dinner and auction is a chance for the area six chapter to raise money for the olympic games.
Heartland/Area 6 Director Jill Speer said no athlete in Special olympics pays to get in. So, money from the dinner and auction goes towards training and competition.
"There's about a thousand athletes in the Heartland area, so it goes towards the 13 sports that area six provides," Speer said.
The dinner will feature keynote speaker Special Olympics Illinois Global Messenger Kelly Ewbank and her father Kevin from the area 16. Speer said the two will talk about their struggles.
"When Kelly was first born, they were so sad that they had this daughter with a disability, but what you'll see the evening of this event is this amazing girl who has really transformed herself and is a strong person and has a great personality and is great to be around," Speer said.
After dinner is the live auction, which includes football tickets and a hotel stay, gifts from Bellas Landscaping, Alexander Steakhouse and more. Tickets are available by calling Speer at 888-2012. The dinner at the Marriott runs from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Stephanie Pawlowski can be reached at Stephanie.Pawlowski@Cumulus.com.