PITTSBORO — A history-making year for Chatham County Senior Games and SilverArts deserved a spirited sendoff.
That’s exactly what Chatham’s 50-or-better athletes provided last Friday with the 2022 Chatham County Senior Games & SilverArts Awards and Recognition Ceremony at the Chatham County Agriculture & Conference Center.
Led by the “Chatham Charmers,” consisting of Annie Alston, Elizabeth Fridley, Olivia Harrington, Marylou Mackintosh, Rosemary Szydlek and captain Debbie Lee, Senior Games and SilverArts participants were celebrated with a program and luncheon in their honor.
With North Carolina Senior Games President and Executive Director Brad Allen serving as emcee, Chatham County’s achievements were quickly highlighted. Beginning in its infancy in 2008 with roughly 30 participants, the Chatham County Senior Games and SilverArts ballooned to 266 registrants this year — the highest ever. Previously, Chatham County Senior Games boasted the highest five-year participation percentage increase in North Carolina. A total of 106 participants participated for the first time in 2022.
Attendees were welcomed by Chatham County Council on Aging Executive Director Ashlyn Martin.
In addition, award winners in the SilverArts portion were announced and revealed for the first time. Designed as “a celebration of the creative expression of seniors in North Carolina,” performers compete in literary arts, visual arts, performing arts and heritage arts.
Beginning in 1983, the North Carolina Senior Games have evolved into the largest senior Olympic program in the nation, serving eligible participants in all of the state’s 100 counties.
Athletes who claimed gold, silver or bronze medals in the Chatham County Senior Games qualified to compete in the State Finals, beginning Sept. 1 with archery and concluding Nov. 13 in basketball.
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