FORT WAYNE, Ind. - Adaptive sports competition will once again be the focus this weekend at the Turnstone Endeavor Games.
The 3rd annual event, held Friday, Saturday and Sunday, will feature 140 athletes from across the nation striving to do their best in power soccer, sit volleyball, track & field, power soccer, goalball, swimming, boccia ball, wheelchair basketball and air rifle shooting. The Endeavor Games will be held at Turnstone’s Plassman Athletic Center, the Northwest Allen County Schools Natatorium on the campus of Carroll High School, Homestead High School’s track and The X-Count Shooting Range in Fort Wayne. All of the events are free and open to the public to watch.
“I really enjoy the Endeavor Games," runner Zebediah Pfenning says. "I hope that we don't necessarily get 1st in all our races, but be ourselves and challenge ourselves."
Zebediah, 13, of Ligonier, is the national record holder in adaptive sports 200-meter dash, the javelin and the long jump. He and his siblings, Zach and Zephira, have provided a solid foundation for a growing Turnstone track & field team competing in the Endeavor Games.
The Endeavor Games gives opportunity for athletes with various disabilities to participate in sports at a competitive level. Additionally, clinics throughout the day Friday will introduce athletes to a variety of other adaptive sports that Turnstone offers. This weekend is the beginning of the Endeavor Game Series, which runs through June and culminates with national competition at the University of Central Oklahoma.
“We use it as an opportunity locally to give our athletes exposure to other sports," Kevin Hughes, Turnstone adaptive sports coordinator, says. "The growth of Turnstone as a whole has allowed us to put on an event like this." In addition to being on the staff at Turnstone, you can find Hughes playing for the national champion Turnstone Flyers sled hockey team.
Turnstone was designated one of 19 official U.S. Olympic/Paralympic Training Sites last summer. In June, Fort Wayne will host the 2019 Goalball & Judo Paralympic Qualifying Competition. The U.S. Men’s National Goalball Team has trained at Turnstone since October of 2015, and won Silver Medals at the 2017 Paralymic Games in Rio. Turnstone launched a residency program for the women’s national team in the fall of 2017.