Expect competition at 33rd Annual Senior Games by the Sea

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The Wilmington Family YMCA is ready to kick off the 33rd annual Senior Games by the Sea, which run from April 22-May 13 across the Port City.

This year the most talented area athletes and artists ages 50 and better will compete in the annual event to qualify for the state finals to be held in Raleigh later this fall.

Wilmington YMCA Sports Director Mark Sinclair said the Wilmington Family YMCA took over the running of the local games from the city in 2014.

Wilmington Family YMCA hosts a local qualifier each year for the North Carolina Senior Games. Photo courtesy- North Carolina Senior Games.
Wilmington Family YMCA hosts a local qualifier each year for the North Carolina Senior Games. Photo courtesy- North Carolina Senior Games.

Senior Games by the Sea is one of 53 local games sanctioned by the North Carolina Senior Games. The nonprofit organization is dedicated to providing year-round health promotion and education.

Area participants will compete in nearly two dozen events, from bowling and golf, to team sports, including basketball and softball.  While most of the competition will be held at the Wilmington Family YMCA on Market Street, many events take place at various venues throughout the area.

Other open events include: basketball shoot, football throw, softball throw, cycling discus, running long jump, standing long jump, shot put, swimming, archery and corn hole.

Athletes who win first, second and third in sanctioned sports events locally are eligible to participate in the North Carolina Senior Games, which get underway in September.

“Wilmington has sent over 100 seniors to Raleigh each year since 2005,” Sinclair said.  “Not all who compete win a medal as there are a lot of people from around the state who compete – 3,005 people in 2015 – and the competition is very real and very serious.”

The SilverArts competition is also a major component of the traditional athletic competition within North Carolina Senior Games, according to Sinclair. In a philosophy that strives to keep seniors healthy, active and involved, SilverArts unites the athlete and artist in a program that recognizes the similarities of both endeavors: discipline, dedication, and pride in one’s accomplishments.

SilverArts provides a stage for the creative talents of the visual, heritage, literary and performing artists.  Encouragement and recognition of creative potential and accomplishment is the goal of the SilverArts program.

The games begin with opening ceremonies at the YMCA gym at 11 a.m. on Friday, April 22.  A Fun Walk will take place on the Y track at the conclusion of opening ceremonies.

Pickle ball is one of several events being held in Wilmington over the next few weeks. Photo courtesy- North Carolina Senior Games.
Pickle ball is one of several events being held in Wilmington over the next few weeks. Photo courtesy- North Carolina Senior Games.

Listed below are a schedule of events, with times and locations as the local qualifier for the North Carolina Senior Games.

  • Friday, April 22: Opening Ceremonies, 11 a.m., YMCA Gymnasium
  • Saturday and Sunday, April 23-24: Singles Bowling, 1 p.m., Cardinal Lanes
  • Monday, April 25: Track & Field, 9-11 a.m., Hoggard High School Track
  • Monday, April 25: Singles Bowling, 1 p.m., Cardinal Lanes
  • Tuesday, April 26: Track & Field, 9-11 a.m., Hoggard High School Track
  • Wednesday, April 27: Cycling, 9 a.m.-noon, Northwest District Park (Brunswick County)
  • Thursday, April 28: Table Tennis, 9-11 a.m., New Hanover County Senior Center
  • Friday, April 29: Tennis, noon-4 p.m., Echo Farms
  • Friday, April 29: Basketball shoot, Basketball Tournament, 11 a.m., YMCA Gym
  • Saturday, April 30, Swimming, 1-3 p.m., YMCA pool
  • Monday, May 2, Corn Hole, Football Throw, Softball Toss, Bocce Ball, Shuffleboard, Horseshoes, 10a.m.-noon, Empie Park
  • Tuesday, May 3, Archery, 9-11 a.m., Maides Park
  • Wednesday, May 4, Golf, 9 a.m., Wilmington Municipal Golf Course
  • Thursday, May 5, Billiards, 9 a.m., 10 Pin Alley
  • Friday, May 6, Pickle Ball, 2-5 p.m., Lutheran Church of Reconciliation
  • Saturday, May 7-Monday, May 9: Mixed/Doubles Bowling, 1 p.m. and 4p.m. Cardinal Lanes
  • Tuesday, May 10- Softball Tournament, 10 a.m., Olsen Park
  • Friday, May 13- Sports Awards Banquet, 5:30 p.m., New Hanover County Senior Center