Indiana Live! Casino employees assist at Special Olympics event
February 22, 2011
Indiana Live! Casino employees scored a slam dunk by volunteering at the Arnie
Petrie Tradition, a basketball tournament for Special Olympians who will benefit
from almost $2,000 that the event raised.
Twenty-six teams from all over the State of Indiana traveled to Shelbyville High
School to participate in the competition, which has been held annually since
2004. An additional 35 athletes who weren’t part of a team took part in by
performing a variety of skills that included tossing a basketball inside a
marked square and shooting baskets.
Indiana Live! Casino employees helped at the event by running the scorer’s
table, providing encouragement to athletes, and performing a variety of other
tasks as needed.
“Getting the volunteers lined up for this event is by far and away the most
difficult thing about doing this every year,” said Elaine Haehl, Special
Olympics Shelbyville County Coordinator. “We do get a wonderful response from
people. But it is all people who are either parents of the athletes or
volunteers who work with disabled people.”
“The volunteers from the casino are exactly what we want. We want other people
involved and interested in supporting Special Olympics and we wouldn’t have that
unless we had the casino help us like they did. We really appreciate them
helping us out. It makes a difference.”
Money raised at the Arnie Petrie Tradition will help cover future transportation
and participation costs that the Special Olympians may incur. All teams
participating paid a $20 entry fee. Money was also raised through the sale of
concessions and brightly-colored event T-shirts that were quite popular among
All teams played two games at the event, which included teams comprised of both
male and female players of various ages. A special award that emphasized spirit
and sportsmanship was presented to one player on both teams following each game.
That award is also named in honor of Petrie, the former Coordinator of Special
Olympics in Shelby County.
Special Olympics programs are organized by each Indiana County. Basketball and
bowling are the two most popular sports offered to these athletes.
“There is a very high standard of behavior,” Haehl said. “The objective of
Special Olympics is to have the athlete improve every year. It’s not just about
going out to do it. They’re trying to get better every year.”
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