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    Special Olympics Nevada

    Photos by Nikki Artale

    A fundraising rappelling event was hosted by the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas that benefited the Special Olympics Nevada. Special Olympics were looking to reach a $100,000 fundraising goal that would benefit over 4,000 Special Olympic athletes in Nevada. Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the founder of Special Olympics said “The days of separation and segregation are over. Special Olympians, you have taught us what truly matters is the courageous spirit, the generous heart”.

    Everyone gathered on the 51st floor to either participate or watch the brave souls that were about to embark on the experience of their lives. The Edgers were there to scale down 400 feet and were being supervised by “Over the Edge” company from Nova Scotia.

    I could see the nervousness of some of the participants as they slowly descended down the wall of the Rio. Some had smiles and some had the look of worry and concern.

    I could very well feel what they were feeling because in the 80’s I too had rappelled down a mountain in a 10 day course that I did with the Werner Erhard’s “EST” training. It was one of the most exciting things that I had done at that time in my life. I then went on to be a part of the “Alivening” project that was founded by Glenn and Barbara Smyly.

    Their commitment and service to everyone made a tremendous difference in my life and I am who I am today because of them and the training.

    It was a proud day for Lisa Tenner when she participated in rappelling for the Special Olympics. Lisa said she was honored to be the first person to rappel 51 stories down the Rio. Mayor Carolyn Goodman proclaimed October 14, 2011 “Lisa Tenner Day”. Celebrities were on hand to support everyone participating in the event. Steven Gantt, star of the TV Reality show “Gigolos” showed his support.

    Lisa Tenner & Steven Gantt

    One lucky fan, Nikki Giroux was actually swept off her feet by Steven Gantt.

                              Steven Gantt  & Nikki Giroux

    UNLV Mascot, Hey Reb had a team rooting for him as he went down 51 stories, just like a pro. Video054 Hey Reb
    I think someone in Las Vegas should make this activity an ongoing event for all the thrill seekers looking for something exciting. I might just consider rappelling again.

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