Tri-Cities Challenger League offers bowling to kids with special needs


The Tri-Cities Challenger league gives kids with special needs a chance to take part in activities like baseball.

You might remember our story on the Challenger Little League. That has been so successful, the effort has been expanded to other sports.

These kids tonight weren't there to compete against each other.

Everywhere you looked, they were high-fiving and supporting their friends as they get a chance to be themselves and have fun.

The Challenger League gives all kids, not matter their physical or mental challenges, a chance to strike out on their own in the bowling alley.

"This gives him an opportunity to participate in all the sports he may not be able to do in the school leagues and he loves it," Shelly Wiseman, whose son participate in the league, said.

After the kids fuel up with some pizza, for two hours every week Bass Pro Shops Uncle Buck's Bowling donates the lanes to the Challenger League.

General Manager Won Kim says getting involved is a no brainer.

"It's been the most rewarding thing I've done professionally," he said.

These kids have some skills, and the one we talked to all have a favorite part, getting strikes or spares.

"Socially this is getting them out. They're meeting peers that are doing the same sport they're doing, they're talking the same language so it's been great socially," League Vice President Katie Cordle said.

League president Eric Jenkins hopes to see this not only continue, but grow.

"We have more kids all the time and we're not having less kids, we're having more and that's what keeps moving his program forward in the right direction," he said.

There's one more week left of the bowling. Jenkins hopes to do a swimming league next, before the baseball program starts back up.

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