BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - As the sky got darker and the clouds lowered, the Special Olympics continued. The hosts at Keesler Air Force base had a backup plan ready to go.
“I believe starting Wednesday, when they noticed the weather would be changing, they made the decision on which events would be taking place inside and which events they would have to cancel all together,” said Sharita Crishon, a Special Olympics volunteer.
Some of the events, like swimming, did not need to be moved inside or canceled. Since Biloxi’s natatorium is already inside, athletes and spectators were just shuttled from the base to the pool.
All of the other events still ran the same; however, a few minor adjustments had to be made to tennis to account for the location change inside the fuel hangar.
“It’s pretty quick inside the hangar compared to what it would be outside,” Crishon added.
This is the 33rd year that the games have been held at Keesler Air Force Base. Naturally, the athletes and the airmen have formed bonds.
“It’s just awesome to come back and see the same athletes because they usually have that spunk, and they are ready to enjoy the events,” Crishon said.
The athletes seemed to have a good time being paired with an airman for the weekend, too. Many of them have been training for the games for weeks.
After one of the swimming events was finished, Abby Spangler said the hardest part about the race was “sticking (her) head out of the water and swimming to the deep end of the pool."
Gregory Mas, also swam with Spangler. Mas said that he did “good” in his event.
The top qualifiers from the weekend will go on to represent Mississippi at the national games.