BRISTOL, Tenn. — Tennessee High School hosted the eighth annual Adaptive Bowling Tournament on Tuesday.
More than 100 students from three area school systems participated in the event at the soon-to-open Pins and Friends duckpin bowling alley on State Street in downtown Bristol.
According to Tennessee High School special education teacher Brad Stubbs, the tournament is an opportunity for students of varying abilities to get the chance to bowl while also interacting with kids from other schools, volunteers and peer tutors from Tennessee High.
“It’s just a great, feel good day for everybody involved, not only the kids,” Stubbs said.
Tennessee High organizes three adaptive sporting events throughout the year, including swimming and track and field, according to Stubbs. The adaptive events allow students to experience the camaraderie and sportsmanship that go along with competition, said Stubbs, who feels like the events are primarily about having fun and building relationships.
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“Hopefully we are sparking relationships that are lifelong relationships,” Stubbs said. “A lot of these students don’t have the opportunity to compete in traditional sports, and this is giving them that experience.”
Ginny Swaggerty, also a special education teacher at Tennessee High, said when the students do return to the classroom from participating in adaptive sports they are noticeably reinvigorated.
“Just a break from the classroom and doing something that they don’t get to do a whole lot, it definitely brings back an energy, even into the classroom, because they’ve gotten a break,” Swaggerty said. “It definitely helps them kind of reset and refocus.”
Students from Sullivan County Schools and Bristol Virginia Public Schools joined students from Bristol Tennessee City Schools for the event.