Posted: Jul 21, 2012 8:38 AM by David Jay - MTN News
BILLINGS- The Big Sky State games kicked off a weekend of competition Friday night with the 5K and and the Montana Mile.
Athletes, family, and friends witnessed the excitement and magic of the Big Sky State Games opening ceremonies Daylis Stadium as the games draw athletes from all over the state, ranging from children to the experienced 101-year old athlete.
They all shared in the celebration of athletic competition, including an Olympic athlete. Gymnast Olga Korbut lit the torch to symbolically start the games. Korbut won four gold and two Sliver at the 1972 and 1976 Olympic games, while competing as a member of the then Soviet Union team.
Some of the athletes ran the 5K before the ceremony while others paraded into the stadium. One of the athletes competing this weekend is 101-year old Barney Myers.
"I quit actually running over 70 years ago, took up walking instead," Myers said.
"Well, we just like to run and do all kinds of sport," said 8-year old Lance Schaaf.
"I like running because you run in all the other sports," said 8-year old Austin Schaaf, Lance's identical twin brother.
"I think it's kind of the feeling in the air," said Dana Anderson, who was giving free massages to the athletes. "When you come here, you can feel that."
"There's lots of excitement here," said Violet Sanchez, who ran the 5K. "Everybody's happy, coming here, seeing their family and just a good vibe out here."
'The spirit of competition and everybody getting together and seeing old friends," said Mike Koski, who ran the 5K. "It's just a fun time all the way through the weekend."
Austin and Lance Schaaf took the top two spots in their age group in the 5K while Barney is running on Sunday in the 4x100.