LAKEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) — The smiles were contagious at All Star Park in Jefferson County on Thursday morning. Hundreds of students celebrated Adapted Athletics’ first cross country meet of the season at the Gold Crown Field House Complex in Lakewood. The program gives special needs and disabled students a chance to show off their athletic skills.

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It also encourages them to become more active members of the community and promotes overall health.

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Not only do fellow Jefferson County classmates come to cheer on their peers to the finish line, local schools also show their support.

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“It’s awesome. We have the gen ed population come help support, and they provide that inclusionary component, so it’s kind of reverse inclusion. We have them be part of our day,” explained Adapted Athletics Coordinator Bryan Wickoren.

“I’m very interested in what I can do… and how fast I can go! Am I up to the task? Yes. Every single time. Because why not?!” said participant Timothy Mallory.

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This was the first sporting event of the season for these kids, which happen monthly. Next time, they’ll be showing off their soccer skills!