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Pool party provides night of fun
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The ninth annual McMinnville Special Games Pool Party made a big splash with dozens showing up to enjoy some fun in the pool Friday night.

Every year McMinnville Special Games likes to end the summer in a fun way at Gilley Pool. Cofounder and president Holly McBride said the turnout was great and everyone seemed to have a fun time.

“This is our ninth year doing the pool party and we have had a really good turnout. Everybody looked like they were having a good time. We appreciate all the volunteers coming out to help and we appreciate the help from the lifeguards and Milner Recreation Center,” said McBride.

Cason Reed was one of the participants having a blast. He jumped off the diving boards, slid down the slide, and brought his cousin with him and says that made his experience even more fun.

“My favorite part is hanging out with my cousin Corbin,” said Cason.

The organization does this party every year so participants can have a special day at the pool.

“The thing is these kids are welcome at the pool any day, but they get lots of stares, lots of looks, and lots of people who don’t understand and other children who don’t understand and they don’t feel comfortable,” said McBride. “Our motto at Special Games is we are all different so no one is different. So here if they have an episode or an issue it doesn’t matter because we are all having episodes and issues.”

This day is also for the parents and caregivers

of the participants. With the many volunteers helping out, some of them can take a break and watch their child have a good time.

“It is their own little day when they can be themselves and enjoy and not have to worry about the pressures of the public. If you don’t have that in your family you don’t know what it feels like, so this is not just a party for the participants, but for their families as well,” said McBride.

Along with having the entire pool to themselves, participants enjoyed pizza and drinks.