Saturday, August 22, 2020

Phoenixville Resident Heads Special Olympics Effort

Celine Heffron-Pero
Blogger's Note:
The following was provided by Special Olympics Pennsylvania.

Celine Heffron-Pero, a Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) athlete that participates in both the Montgomery and Chester county programs, was selected to be one of nine captains for the 2020 Virtual UNcathlon, taking place through Saturday, Sept. 26. 

The UNcathlon will feature a physical As-Many-Rounds-As-Possible Challenge as well as a fundraising component that will unite individuals with and without intellectual disabilities to raise funds and awareness for nearly 20,000 Special Olympics athletes. 

Heffron-Pero, along with her cocaptain Michael Angelos from Goldman Sachs, will lead a team representing a region of the state that includes Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties.

Heffron-Pero, 26, has the ultimate goal of achieving inclusion for everyone regardless of their intellectual or developmental disability. It was this goal that inspired her to name her UNcathlon team Inclusion Lives Here.

Throughout her Special Olympics journey, Heffron-Pero has competed in SOPA’s Summer Games, Fall Festival, Winter Games, and was a part of the Unified Soccer Team that competed at the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games. In addition to soccer, she enjoys competing in basketball, track and field, skiing, unified flag football, floor hockey, gymnastics, and more. She also serves as an advocate, Global Messenger (spokesperson for the movement), and seizes every opportunity to teach acceptance and inclusion in all of her endeavors.

The Virtual UNcathlon model includes an AMRAP Challenge which encourages participants to execute 10 repetitions of 5 exercises as many times as possible in 10 minutes. These exercises include push-ups, squats, lunges, mountain climbers, and plank jacks. Participants can choose to join Heffron-Pero’s team or one of the other eight unified regional teams to partake in this event.

Special Olympics Unified Sports®, in which players with and without intellectual disabilities train and compete on the same team, allows athletes to engage in sports, create inclusion, socialize with peers and form new friendships. The UNcathlon seeks to create inclusion and acceptance through sport while raising funds and awareness for Special Olympics.

The UNcathlon is co-presented by Morgan Stanley and Aerotek, both of whom have been supporting this event for the last 4 years. Additional sponsors include: Mascaro; Clearview Federal Credit Union; Dollar Bank; ECI; and Julian Gray.

Participants can donate and join Celine Heffron-Pero’s team until September 26th. For more information or to donate, visit or call Jessica Kury at 724-375-7515, ext. 244.

Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) provides year-round training and competition in 21 Olympic-type sports to more than 20,000 children and adults with intellectual disabilities or closely related developmental disabilities. For more information about how you can join “The Inclusion Revolution,” visit

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