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Special Olympics Kick-Off in Dubuque

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DUBUQUE, Iowa - More than 400 athletes kicked off the Special Olympics Winter Games in Dubuque on Monday.

Special Olympians from all over Iowa will spend the next few days competing in sports like skiing, speed-skating and snow-shoeing.

Special Olympian Blaine Fuller said, "It doesn't matter as long as I have fun and do my best. That's what it's all about. And cheering my teammates on. "

Supporters cheered on the athletes during the opening ceremony.
Olympian Halea Brandon, performed the ceremonial torch lighting

"I was kind of nervous and excited, " said Brandon.

She was nervous for a reason. The ceremony marks the beginning of the three day competition.

Special Olympian Breanna McFarland said, "I like being around friends and participating and hopefully winning gold. "

But the many athletes say they look most forward to being with friends during the opening night dance.

"Oh yeah, I know how to cut a rug, " said McFarland.

Fuller said, "It's fun, I get to dance with college girls. "

No matter the motivation they're all happy to be in Dubuque. Enjoying their moment in the spotlight.