GLASA holds Great Lakes Games in Lake Forest
Hundreds of athletes with disabilities experienced the power of sport and realized their true potential by competing at the 2023 GLASA Great Lakes Games, in partnership with The Hartford, taking place in multiple locations around Lake Forest May 10-13 and in Milwaukee on May 14.
With the organization in its 24th year serving the Chicagoland community, the 2023 Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association event included sanctioned competitions in archery, air rifle, boccia, powerlifting, swim, and track and field, in addition to opportunities for those new to adaptive sports to learn to play through free clinics offered in swim, powerlifting, wheelchair tennis, wheelchair football and more.
The GLASA wheelchair tennis program hosted a learn to play and competitive clinic with athletes of all ages and all skill levels as part of the games. The clinic was planned to engage beginner GLASA athletes as young as 6 years, old as well as elite athletes that have competed at the highest level of the sport in international competition, including GLASA player-coach and five-time Paralympian Paul Moran alongside Team Hartford athlete Dana Mathewson.
Dana is a two-time Paralympian for Team USA, Para Pan American Medalist and 2022 Wimbledon Doubles Champion.
The Hartford, along with Dana Mathewson, planned to surprise local athletes with custom-fit adaptive sports equipment on May 13 at Lake Forest High School during a luncheon and meet/greet. The cost of adaptive sports equipment is approximately 15 times more expensive than traditional sports equipment.
"Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association is proud to serve 1,000 athletes through our 20 adaptive and Paralympic sports, which would not be possible without the support of our partners like The Hartford," GLASA founder & Executive Director Cindy Housner said.
"Equipment can be $5,000 or more for each athlete participating in our adaptive sports like track, wheelchair tennis and more. GLASA provides every piece of equipment, plus training and resources for our athletes to be successful thanks to organizations like The Hartford that have been longtime champions of athletes with disabilities."
The 2023 GLASA Great Lakes Games, in partnership with The Hartford, are part of The Hartford's Adaptive Sports Competition Series. The series features five premier competitive events across the country and includes surprise custom equipment donations, the Human Achievement Award and meet and greets with champion para-athletes.
The GLASA Games and other events in the series are sanctioned by Move United and applicable national governing bodies, and often serve as a pipeline to elite competition at the national and international level.
The 2023 GLASA Great Lakes Games, in partnership with The Hartford, serves as a qualifier for The Hartford Nationals scheduled for July 8-14 in Birmingham, Alabama.
"We are on a mission to increase participation in adaptive sports by making competitions, local events and equipment more accessible to youth and adult athletes," The Hartford's Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Claire Burns said.
"We are incredibly proud to partner with Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association and Move United to help remove barriers that may prevent athlete participation and create more opportunities for thousands of adaptive athletes to experience the life-changing power of sports."
The Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association is an Illinois-based 501c3 nonprofit organization and serves as a chapter of Move United. GLASA provides a continuum of over 20 adaptive sports to athletes of all ages from the beginner to elite level, including a dedicated injured military program.
More information about GLASA can be found at GLASA.org.
The Hartford is a leader in property and casualty insurance, group benefits and mutual funds. For more information, visit thehartford.com.
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