MADERA — Representatives from law enforcement agencies across Madera County will participate in the annual Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics on Tuesday, June 11 in Madera and Chowchilla. This year’s opening ceremonies, hosted by Madera County Probation, begin at 7 a.m. at Courthouse Park in Madera. The mission of the Law Enforcement Torch Run is to raise awareness and funds for Special Olympics.
Special Olympic athletes from around the region and representatives from various law enforcement agencies in Madera County, including the Madera County Sheriff’s Office, Madera County Probation, the Madera and Chowchilla Police Departments, Valley State Prison, California Highway Patrol and the Department of Corrections will be participating in the event.
The first leg of the run is 2.3 miles and starts at Courthouse Park at 7:30 a.m. The second leg, about half a mile long, will finish at Veteran’s Park in Chowchilla around 11 a.m.
About 50 area law enforcement representatives and Special Olympic athletes participated in last year’s event. The 2019 torch run is expected to draw at least as many participants, according to Kayla Serratto, public information officer for the Madera County Sheriff’s Office.
“It’s a very popular event and really inspiring to see the passion and dedication of these Special Olympic athletes,” Serratto says.
After the runners pass through Chowchilla, Serratto explains that the torch will be driven to Merced for a similar event there scheduled for later in the day.
The torch will eventually wind up lighting the flame at the opening ceremonies of the annual Northern California Special Olympics Summer Games later this month.
The Madera County Guardians of the Flame, a group that includes all of the county law enforcement agencies, puts on the annual torch run and invites members of the public to join the procession as the torch makes its way around Madera and Chowchilla.
For more information or to donate, go to Special Olympics Donor Drive.