SARANAC LAKE – It’s safe to say that Alan Hurto of Lake Tuper is a pretty good bowler.
“My highest score this year is 210” Said Herto. “It’s just the highest for this year.”
He even proved how good he was during an interview last Thursday at Romano’s Saranac Lanes when he took a turkey – three consecutive strokes.
“I’ve been doing this since I was 2 years old” Said Herto. “I’ve been doing it for a long time.”
On Monday, Hurto will show the world how good he is in doubles and team competitions in the combined bowling at the 2022 US Special Olympics in Orlando, Florida. The entire event will take place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex from June 4 to 12.
Hurteau will be part of a single team – a team dedicated to bringing together athletes with and without disabilities – from eight bowlers representing New York State at the Special Olympics. He will be joined by his single bowling partner Michel Lamora and two other male athletes as a team.
Lamora of Saranac Lake has been a single player for several years and attends the National Joint Bowling Competition. Donna Walsh will be the head coach of the unified team in Florida. Walsh of Lake Saranac trains athletes from the Special Olympics year-round in a variety of sports.
She said it would be a huge deal for Hurteau because he hadn’t traveled much and hadn’t traveled that far from the state in 10 years.
“This will be the first time he’s been to Florida.” said Walsh. “We will be at the Disney property at ESPN Stadium there, so this is a great adventure for him.
The games are expected to feature more than 5,500 athletes and coaches from all 50 states and the Caribbean. The event may also have about 125,000 spectators and will be broadcast on ESPN.
“When we get to Florida, it’s going to be overwhelming because it’s huge.” said Walsh. “Every night there are events planned. Sarah Bareil will be present at the opening ceremonies and I am sure there will be some big names at the closing ceremonies.
Hurto said he was excited to go to the Special Olympics, adding that he just wanted to have fun.
“I’ll give everything from me. That’s all I can do. “ Said Herto. “All I have to do is get some spare parts. That’s what I have to do, it’s important. “
Almost every Thursday, Hurteau travels from Tupper Lake to train at Romano’s Saranac Lanes with his local team, Adirondack Rednecks. The team, which has more than 15 bowling players, is part of one of the local Special Olympics training clubs in New York.
“They all had bowling at some point,” said Walsh. “It’s an individual sport, but it’s also a team sport. When Alan leaves, he will be part of the team. “
Hurteau and Adirondack Rednecks don’t just play the cup. The team plays bocce, softball and snowshoeing between several sports.
“There’s a lot of camaraderie at Special Olympics, especially when we trained outside at Dewey.” said Walsh. “In that second year of COVID, it was a salvation for us to be together, because nothing else was happening. We will gather in Dewey and be outdoors in the fresh air and it was a positive experience for everyone. ”
While Hurt will be the only Adirondack Rednecks athlete to go to Florida for the Special Olympics, the rest of the team will have a chance soon.
“Every one of these athletes would like to go to Florida for this experience.” said Walsh. “Eight of them will go to the New York Special Olympics at the end of June.