The Fourth International Special Olympics Summer
Games are held in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, with 3,200
participants from 10 countries. Athletes participate in
basketball; bowling; fl oor hockey; gymnastics; ice skating;
the pentathlon; swimming and diving; softball throw; track
and fi eld events including the high jump, long jump, 440-
yard relay and the mile, and volleyball.
The First International Special Olympics
Winter Games are held in Steamboat Springs,
Colorado, with more than 500 athletes from 38
states and Canada participating in four sports.
1975 1977 1983 1985
1972 1979 1981 1984
California hosts the Third International Special
Olympics Summer Games at UCLA for 2,500
athletes and coaches from all 50 states and
three international Programs. Actor Michael
Landon is among celebrity attendees.
The Fifth International Special Olympics
Summer Games take place on the Brockport
campus of the State University of New York.
More than 3,500 competitors participate from
all fi fty states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico,
and more than 20 other countries.
The International Special Olympics Summer Games—the
sixth such games— are held at Louisiana State University
in Baton Rouge. More than 4,000 athletes from all
50 states, four U.S. territories, and 48 other countries
participate, almost double the number of foreign
countries represented at the 1979 International Games.
Events include: basketball, bowling, diving, fl oor hockey,
frisbee-disc, gymnastics, poly hockey, soccer, softball,
swimming, track and fi eld, volleyball, and wheelchair
events. The Games’ Opening Ceremonies are attended
by more than 65,000 spectators. ABC broadcasts a
90-minute television special on the Games that airs
in 15 countries.
The Second International Special
Olympics Winter Games take
place at the Village at Smugglers’
Notch and Stowe, Vermont. More
than 600 athletes from seven
countries participate in skiing
and skating events. Former U.S.
Ski Team Coach Dave Durrence
heads Special Olympics Winter
Wichita, Kansas Police Chief
Richard LaMunyon launches
a Special Olympics awareness
campaign that becomes the Law
Enforcement Torch Run® for
Special Olympics. The Torch Run
grows into the Movement’s largest
The Third Special Olympics World
Winter Games take place in Park
City and Salt Lake City, Utah.
The Games attract 825 athletes
who compete in skiing and
At a ceremony held at the
White House, President Ronald
Reagan awards Special Olympics
Founder Eunice Kennedy
Shriver a Presidential Medal
of Freedom to honor her work
with Special Olympics and her
eff orts on behalf of persons with