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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Staying fit and getting competitive at the College Station Senior Games

Senior games

With sports ranging from pickleball to chess, the Senior Games are great for those with a competitive nature.

The Senior Games is a tournament hosted by the College Station Parks and Recreation Department for senior citizens above the age of 50. This local event is held from Feb. 22-24, and the location of every sporting event can be found on the City of College Station’s website. The registration for participating has closed but the event itself is open to all, free of cost and upheld by volunteers. Applications for volunteers can also be found on the city’s website but spots are filling very fast.

Gabriela Salazar, the tourism events supervisor for the City of College Station, said the Senior Games is an great way for seniors to find a hobby and live a healthier lifestyle.

“Last year I believe our oldest male athlete was 89 years and our oldest female athlete was 83 years,” Salazar said. “Our goal for every year is to promote healthy living and have a space provided where all these senior athletes can come and compete against other seniors who have the same passion for the specific event that they do.”
According to Salazar, the local Senior Games are a good way for senior athletes to gauge interest for the more competitive state Senior Games. The extra practice also increases the hope of qualifying for the national games.
You don’t have to qualify to compete in our local events,” Salazar said. “Some seniors come to participate in events that they have experience in but they also want to try something different. The local event is also a good practice round for the athletes because they get to measure where they would fall for the state games.”
Gene Ballew, the athletic and tourism manager for the Parks and Recreation department and coordinator for the bowling tournament, said members of the community have some extra incentives to attend the games.
“Depending on the event, we will have snacks and water,” Ballew said. “For bowling, held at Grand Station, we will provide a lunch.”
One of the events for seniors to compete in is pickleball — a scaled down version of tennis. According to tournament coordinator Isaiah Smith, pickleball is the most popular tournament of the games — and for a good reason.

“Watching them play is just exciting because you can tell how much passion there is for it,” Smith said. “A lot of people get the idea that seniors aren’t passionate about anything so people are always surprised seeing them play. Seniors are just people that are older. … Honestly they would beat any of us at pickleball.”

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