By Portia Williams
The 2016 Southern Ohio Games, qualifying games for the Ohio Senior Games 2017, is coming to Portsmouth. The games are open to all and includes two divisions: athletes 30-49 and 50 and older promoting healthy lifestyles and is supported by the Scioto County Health Coalition and COAD/RSVP.
Lyvette Mosley, member of the Scioto County Health Coalition, and is the event coordinator, met with Larry Werstler, Gary Roberts and others on June 29 to organize and develop strategy to bring the games to Scioto County. According to Mosley, the games will include, but are not limited to Track and Field, Swimming, 3 on 3 Basketball, Cycling, Pickleball, Golf, Bowling, Horseshoe Pitching, Corn Hole and several others.
Werstler founded the Canton, Ohio Senior Games in 2009, and said the games have increased greatly, and with participation from 20 different states.
“With a lot of hard work and commitment our games have grown to over 1000 athletes participating from at least 20 states,” Werstler said.“I see commitment here in Portsmouth and I believe you can have games up and running in 2016.” He also serves as the director of the Canton Senior Olympic Hall of Fame.
Gary Roberts is currently Director of Pike County Community Action and holds state, national and world titles in Horseshoe Pitching. Roberts is a member of the U.S. Jukskei team and traveled to South Africa to participate in a Jukskei competition to promote horseshoe pitching.
Jukskei is a game in which a peg is thrown over a fixed distance at a stake driven into the ground. It is a 270 year old folk sport that originated in South Africa. He has traveled to several other countries to promote the sport of Horseshoe Pitching. Roberts is currently president of the Ohio Horseshoe Pitchers Association.
There will be a community meeting on July 14 at 1 p.m. at Hill View Retirement Center. Anyone interested in being involved in the 2016 Southern Ohio Games is invited to attend.
For more information, please email Lyvette Mosley at [email protected].
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.