Unified Sports Day brings Sioux City kids closer - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Unified Sports Day brings Sioux City kids closer

SIOUX CITY, IA (KTIV) -- There's no getting around it, Derek Richie is a jokester.

Derek and his pal Kelbey Heider are two students from North High school in Sioux City. They're both athletes and pretty out going, but Derrick has a learning disability.

Derrick and Kelbey are just one of about 200 student pairs shooting hoops, bowling and everything in between for Unified Sports day, a program that takes athletes without disabilities and partners them with special Olympians.

Sometimes they see each other at school and they may not know how to speak to each other and it just gives them an opportunity for them to learn," says President of Iowa's Special Olympic program Mark Reed.

The program brought partners like Abby Menefee and Kiley Carlson together, and after a day of hoops and a stop at the arts and crafts table, they learned just how easy it is to start a friendship.

"She just likes to make people's days and laugh and when you are down she will make you laugh," says Carlson.

"It feels great I just transferred to east so it's a lot more fun," says Menefee.

At the end of the day's competition there were no trophies handed out and no one received a blue ribbon for first. Everyone wins at Unified Sports day.

"It's about inclusion it's about learning from each other and really learning that we have a lot more in common then we do in differences," says Reed.

It's the second year Sioux City's hosted the event.

Plans are already in the works for next year.

Online Reporter: Forrest Saunders

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