Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN


April 26, 2010

Optimist Miracle Movers look for members

PLAINFIELD — Activities for special needs children are the main focus for Optimist Miracle Movers, but organizers need help to get the group officially going in Hendricks County.

 Jackie Parrish and Melissa Dickinson, both parents of special needs children and residents of Plainfield, said they were encouraged to start an organization.

“I got a call from John Reel of the Plainfield Optimists about a Buddy Ball game,” Parrish said.

She said Reel encouraged her to organize a group through the Plainfield Optimist Club. Soon, the Optimist Miracle Movers was born.

The name comes from parents of special needs children who want their “miracles” to get moving, play sports, and have fun together.

The group is already organizing exhibition softball games for 6:30 p.m. May 21 ant 9:30 a.m. May 22 at the Hummel Park ball diamonds.

The games are designated for special needs children ages 4 to 22 with physical or mental disabilities. Each special needs child is paired with an individual or “buddy.”

The games are free to all participants. And since it’s an exhibition, organizers are able to accommodate the first 20 players who sign up for each game.

“We encourage anyone to come out to the games,” Parrish said. “When you see the kids in action, it’s so much fun. You can just see how much they enjoy it.”

Parrish said there are several volunteer opportunities available.

“We will need volunteers to be buddies for the kids and others to help organize,” she added.

And softball is just the tip of the iceberg.

“We want to organize several different exhibition events, not just softball,” Dickinson said. “We want to do golf, basketball, soccer, yoga, just about anything.”

Deer Creek Golf Course has already agreed to host an exhibition golf tournament for the Optimist Miracle Movers.

“To start a club, we need 25 members,” Parrish said.

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