By ERIC X. VICCARO
After a two-year hiatus, the Spring For Down’s Syndrome event returns to the calendar here in Ste. Genevieve.
“We can’t wait to see all the people,” said event organizer Chip Marzuco, whose son, Andrew, has Down’s Syndrome.
“We are nervous, excited and overwhelmed,” Marzuco added. “We’ve been working non-stop putting baskets together and lining up appearances.”
For Marzuco, this is a return to a familiar routine – putting on a benefit to help those with special needs after not having this event in 2020 due to COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic concerns.
COVID-19 is still impacting this year’s event – with a more limited number of clowns appearing.
In past years, local Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops have helped in various ways, mainly kitchen duties; however, they will not be able to perform those tasks due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns.
Proceeds will benefit the Challenger Sports program, plus other items for people with special needs.
In recent years, equipment designed to provide handicap accessibility at River Rapids Waterpark and the indoor pool at the Ste. Genevieve County Community Center have been purchased with money raised from this longtime event.
Down’s Syndrome, which also is known as trisomy 21, is a genetic disorder caused by the presence of all – or part of a third copy – of chromosome 21.
Condition attributes are physical growth delays, mild to moderate intellectual disability, and characteristic facial features as explained on wikipedia.org.
The highlighted event of the Spring for Down’s Syndrome will be a utility terrain vehicle (UTV) poker run covering roughly 42 miles around Ste. Genevieve County. The run also will stop in St. Mary and Kaskaskia, Ill.
Sign-ups will begin at 9:30 a.m. through noon at the Knights of Columbus Hall on Market Street in Ste. Genevieve.