Special Olympics games canceled because of air quality concerns in State College
Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) has canceled its 2023 Summer Games, which were supposed to run Thursday through Saturday in the State College area, due to air quality concerns caused by Canadian wildfires.
"The individuals we serve, people with [intellectual disabilities], have higher rates of adverse health conditions and are therefore at greater risk," organizers wrote in a press release. "Based on the best information available to us from a variety of reputable sources, we do not believe conditions would permit us to safely conduct these Games. This decision was not made lightly as we know how much time and effort was invested by so many staff and volunteers in preparing for this event."
More than 2,000 athletes, 800 coaches and 1,000 volunteers were expected to take part in the events.
"Our love of sport doesn’t compare to the importance of protecting the health and safety of all involved," organizers said.