The seventh year of the Olympic Peninsula Senior Games, formerly the Port Angeles Senior Games, sees a lot of favorites back from last year’s event, plus two new events — bocce and volleyball — during the Aug. 26-28 games.
From Olympic Games-styled events basketball, swimming and track & field, to nontraditional events like pinochle, indoor rowing and horseshoes, the games open 18 sports to men and women of ages 50 years or older by Dec. 31.
Athletes can participate in as many sports as time and scheduling permit.
All of the 2011 senior games events are open for viewing to family and supporters.
“We want everybody on the Olympic Peninsula to know that it’s for everyone (here) and that all are welcome,” said D Bellamente, director of the Port Angeles Senior Center and executive director of the Olympic Peninsula Senior Games.
She said the two new sports were added because of strong interest among peninsula residents, particularly at Park View Villas — the venue of the bocce event — and the local Sons of Italy group.
“We’re very excited to offer it,” Bellamente said. She noted that bocce players can stand or sit. “I don’t have to raise too much of a sweat if I don’t want to.”
Volleyball, the games’ second team sport after softball, was added thanks to interest and leadership from event chairman John Heilman.
“That’s what excited us about volleyball (is that it’s a team sport),” Bellamente said.
She said Games organizers hope to add badminton next year.
Opening ceremonies are at 7 p.m. Friday Aug. 26, at the Port Angeles Senior Center, 328 E. Seventh St., Port Angeles. Bellamente said that Lance Von Vogt, head coach of Peninsula College’s championship men’s basketball squad, is taking the torch from the Port Angeles historical district to the senior center for the opening ceremony.
A “hoe-down” theme celebration banquet is slated for 6 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 27, at Park View Villas, 1430 Park View Lane, Port Angeles. Located between Eighth and G streets, the celebration requires an RSVP and $22 ticket. Entertainment includes Amanda Bacon and her supporting band.
Registration for the games and a $20 participation fee is required; fee includes a T-shirt.
Last year, 525 athletes competed in 20 events. Bellamente said the 2011 event aims at reaching 600 participants.
Find registration forms online at olympicpeninsulaseniorgames.com or call the Port Angeles Senior Center, the games’ headquarters, at 457-7004. Office hours are 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Registrations are due by Aug. 15.
Individual events also require additional fees, most of them $5.
Cycling■ Fee: $5