Carnival Hosts Special Needs Swimmers


Katy Ly, Staff Writer

Project Open Hands held their 2nd annual carnival on the lower athletic field on October 27.  The event hosts athletes from the Sea Serpent swim team, and organization that provides opportunities for special needs children.

“Project Open Hands is a volunteer club that works with Special Olympics athletes,” said club adviser Michelle Alessandria.

“We’re working with the Sea Serpents, which is an organization that has special needs kids, and they help them learn how to swim. They practice over [at the Soda Aquatic center,]” said club co-president Hannah Ruane.

Ruane added that Project Open Hands worked together with the Sea Serpents to create the carnival for the swimmers. “[The swimmers] come over here after practice ends, and we just basically have a fun carnival for them. It’s just to have fun after their practice is over,” she said.

The carnival was also open to people outside of the Sea Serpents swim team. Club co-president Amanda Alessandria said that the carnival also “[brought] people together to raise awareness for people with disabilities, have a new respect for these individuals, and have a good time.”

Swimmers participated in activities such as cookie decorating, face painting, bean bag toss, and a cake walk. Participants also enjoyed food provided by Top Dog. Volunteer students supervised each activity. “It’s wonderful,” Michelle Alessandria said. “[The students] have the opportunity to give to those who don’t have as much as they have.”

Amanda Alessandria said that the carnival was a success, adding, “We just started [the carnival] last year, and we had so much fun last year.” She said that she hopes the carnival will become a tradition.