Money raised benefits Special Olympics Michigan
STATEWIDE – On Sunday, January 31, the Wertz Warriors begin their 7-day, 900 mile snowmobile endurance ride from Clinton Township to Petoskey, raising money for Special Olympics Michigan (SOMI) athletes along the way. This year marks the 35th annual Wertz Warriors ride.
Former Detroit Tiger and Michigan Hall of Fame member Vic Wertz formed Wertz Warriors back in 1981 with a dream of completely underwriting the Special Olympics Michigan State Winter Games. The idea was to create an endurance snowmobile ride throughout northern Michigan that would help raise funds and awareness for those with intellectual disabilities. Since the first ride in 1982, Wertz Warriors has raised over $9.4 million for Special Olympics Michigan athletes.
The Wertz Warriors will arrive at the 2016 Special Olympics Michigan State Winter Games at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa in Acme on Wednesday, February 3. Wertz Warriors members will give SOMI athletes snowmobile rides from 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., hold an autograph session from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., and present a check to SOMI during Opening Ceremony at 7:30 p.m.
“35 years ago Vic Wertz had a dream, a vision, and a goal to fund the Michigan Special Olympics Winter Games. I am happy to say that 35 years later this organization has continued to make his dream come true for thousands of athletes from all over the state of Michigan. Today our organization continues to grow as we have new and younger riders joining and raising money for the cause. We are also excited and welcome our first female rider, Kelly Rodriguez. We are also drawing riders from the western part of the state which has been a untapped market for our organization, and allows areas and athletes from that part of the state to take part in the Winter Games. Wertz Warriors will continue for many more years to come, and will be a part of an ever growing Special Olympics Michigan.” – Ken Mattei, Wertz Warriors Chairman of the Board
For more information about Wertz Warriors and how to join the ride: