Local Olympic Games enthrall neighborhood kids

For Olympic competitors and their fans, there’s probably nothing more thrilling than hearing the iconic words “Let the games begin!” For nearly two dozen Avondale children, those same words – and the lighting of the Challen Avenue Olympic torch – kicked off an evening of fun Aug. 14.

The brainchild of Judge Emmet Ferguson, the neighborhood Olympics drew in children from the age of two to 11 to participate in five events: basketball, shot put (using water balloons), hurdles, archery and gymnastics (balance beam).

“I think the kids liked archery the most, but it was probably the most difficult,” said Ferguson’s wife, Julie. The couple hosted the event with neighbors Roelf and Stella Slopsama.

Judges included Dr. Ken Tannenbaum, John Sapora and his son, Riley, and Teddy Powell. After each event, a gold, silver and bronze medal winner was announced and the National Anthem was played.

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