The Lower Merion High School Unified Track & Field team recently enjoyed a very special opportunity as the Aces were invited to participate in the Fall Festival Torch Run, a non-competitive run that serves as an exciting precursor to Special Olympics PA’s (SOPA) Fall Festival, hosted at Villanova University. The Fall Festival, which is the largest annual student-run Special Olympics event in the world, can officially begin only after the torch - otherwise known as the Flame of Hope - lights the cauldron during Opening Ceremonies.
This year’s Torch Run followed a circuitous 26-mile course that began at XFINITY Live!, before winding through the streets of Philadelphia, ultimately making its way to Bala Cynwyd and through the heart of the Main Line. The Lower Merion contingent was patiently waiting outside of the Main Line Reform Temple when the torch and its large police escort with flashing lights became visible around the bend of Montgomery Avenue.
The Aces then joined the cavalcade of runners, police cars and motorcycles as they carried the torch down Montgomery Avenue and past Lower Merion High School, before the Flame of Hope continued on its course to Villanova University.
The Torch Run was led by members of the Philadelphia Police Department and other local law enforcement partners, along with SOPA athletes, unified student-partners and civic leaders. The Fall Festival Torch Run also serves to honor the memory of fallen officers from across the state.
Interscholastic Unified Sports provides opportunities for students with and without disabilities to participate in sports in a meaningful way and also helps to promote inclusion, acceptance and respect by engaging other students from the school community. #LMSDBuildingBelonging