MOHAWK VALLEY YOUTH TO COMPETE IN LOCAL HERSHEY’S TRACK & FIELD GAMES TO QUALIFY FOR NYS WEST FINALS
LION – Local youth athletes will compete at the 21st Annual Hershey’s Track & Field Games, Saturday, June 1st 10:00 a.m. at the Ilion High School Track (http://www.ilionhershey.com/).
They will be competing for the ultimate prize – a trip to the Hershey’s Track & Field Games North American Final Meet in Hershey, Pa.
The Hershey’s Track & Field Games is the longest-running youth fitness program of its kind in North America and is designed to encourage physical fitness among youth and emphasize sportsmanship through basic track and field events such as running, jumping and throwing.
This year marks the 36th Anniversary of the Games. Open to boys and girls ages 9 through 14 (as of 12-31-2013) born 1999-2004, the Hershey’s Track & Field Games hopes to attract over 400,000 participants to compete in local and state, provincial and territorial meets held across North America, including Puerto Rico this spring.
Children 8 and under are also being invited to participate in the 50 Meter Dash, Standing Long Jump and Softball Throw as an introduction to the Hershey Games, registration is not required for children 8 and under and this age group will not advance to the State Finals.
At least five finalists from each of the 50 U.S. states, including Puerto Rico, 10 Canadian provinces and three Canadian territories will ultimately qualify for the North American Final Meet, which will be held August 1-4 at Henry Hershey Field in Hershey, Pa.
In total, close to 500 young athletes will participate in the final event and have the chance to meet some of the greatest athletes in track and field history, such as Olympians Carl Lewis and Rafer Johnson.
Advanced mail in registration is preferred for children 9-14 years of age; no entries will be accepted after 5/23/13. Entry forms are available at the YMCA of the Mohawk Valley and the Ilion Free Public Library.
A copy of each child’s legal birth document MUST accompany all entry forms, for first time participants. Registrations will also be accepted on Tuesday, May 21st from 6-7:45 p.m. at the Ilion Free Public Library.
Children who can not make the Ilion meet, but would like to try to qualify for the State meet may go online at http://www.hersheystrackandfield.com to find all other Local NYW meets scheduled.
Children may only enter one local meet in an attempt to qualify for the State Meet June 29th, also at the Herkimer Elementary Ilion School.
The top finisher’s at each local event advance to the NYS West Finals. State meet winners do not automatically advance to the North American Finals (NAF), but are entered into the regional pool and become eligible for selection to the Region Seven Team which will travel to Hershey, PA August 1-4 to compete in the NAF.
Events include the 50, 100, 200, and 400 meter dashes, 800 and 1600 meter runs, 400 meter relay, standing long jump and softball throw. Informal optional practices will be held at the Ilion High School track from 6-7pm Thursday, May 23 and 30.
Stay tuned to Time Warner Public Access Channel 99 Monday-Friday 4-6pm and again 6-8pm every Saturday for information about the Milton Hershey School , Highlights of the North American Finals and Hershey’s Fast Track to Sports.
The Hershey program is supported by the National Recreation and Park Association, the National Association for Sport and Physical Education, Athletics Canada and Key Club International and is solely funded by Hershey Company.
This year’s local event in Ilion will again be sponsored by the YMCA of the Mohawk Valley. HERSHEY’S TRACK & FIELD GAMES are designed to encourage physical fitness among youth and emphasizes participation and sportsmanship.
For additional information or anyone interested in volunteering, contact Dave Williams, Meet at 894-5636 or by email DaveWilliams.email@example.com.