Special Olympics ARPD

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The purpose of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop courage, experience joy, and participate in the sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.  The Albany Recreation and Parks Department offers Special Olympics for adults 21 years and older in Albany-Dougherty County, GA.   There is no charge to participate in Special Olympics. 

Note:  Athletes who are clients of the Albany Advocacy Resource Center (AARC) or enrolled in the Dougherty County Schools (DCSS) compete with Special Olympics Dougherty.  For information on Special Olympics Dougherty, contact Karen Beasley at kbeasley@docoschools.org


Special Olympics is the world's largest program of sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Nearly 2 million athletes around the world benefit from participation in Special Olympics. In Georgia, nearly 27,000 athletes are already competing. 

Athletes are required to engage in an eight-week training program prior to any Special Olympics competition to develop fitness and skills and learn rules and strategies from their coaches.  All athletes must fill out the application below.  

 Application for athletes

Current Training Programs:

Basketball practice will begin soon with our athletes training for the upcoming Special Olympics Georgia Winter Games in Marietta, GA.  


Everyone at Special Olympics is a winner!  While our athletes take home medals and awards, our volunteers leave with a wealth of satisfaction, having seen the expressions of joy from our athletes during competition. Some of the volunteers positions with Special Olympics - ARPD:

  • Serve as coachesIMG_4706
  • Assist our coaches with sports practices and competitions

  • Act as chaperones for sports practices and competitions

  • Serve as unified sports partners.  Special Olympics Unified Sports® is an initiative that combines approximately equal numbers of Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (called Partners) on sports teams for training and competition. Age and ability matching of athletes and Partners is defined on a sport-by-sport basis.

  • Serve in various positions on our management team  

For further information on Special Olympics ARPD, please contact Marie Stamps, local coordinator, at 229-430-5222.  

Strikers Classic registration form 


Our motto at Albany Recreation & Parks is "Inspiring Champions."  Some of the awards our program & participants have received from Special Olympics Georgia include: 

  • Albany Recreation & Parks - Distinguished Service Award, Outstanding Local Special Olympics Program, 2017
  • The Willock Family: Chuck, Jerri, and Joey - Distinguished Service Award, Outstanding Family of the Year, 2016 
  • Morris Hicks - Distinguished Service Award, Outstanding Coach of the Year, 2015 
  • Tyechia Luster- Distinguished Service Award, Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year, 2015
  • Marie Stamps - Distinguished Service Award, "Spirit of Special Olympics," 2014 
  • "Training for Life Award" - Albany Recreation & Parks, 2010 & 2014