KLEW Community Hero: A Party for a Special Group of People
LEWISTON, ID —
Our latest KLEW Community Hero has played a key role in our local Special Olympics program, and that key role, is making the holiday season extra memorable.
For well over the past twenty years, Blanche Weber has been coordinating the Special Olympics Halloween and Christmas parties. Special Olympics are very important to her, and for her, the word special, is even more heartfelt.
"I have retired a lot, but I still do Special Olympics," says Weber.
Even though Blanche Weber is 92 years old, she's still very active.
"I work with Special Olympics, the Christmas party, and then we have a Halloween party down there for them."
"I want them to have a good time."
While it's safe to say almost every person looks forward to the holiday parties, Blanche’s does as well.
"I want them to look in their sacks and see what's in there, because we put different things in each of them."
Especially one person Blanche remembers in particular who gave her a priceless gift.
"She came up to me and gave me a big hug, and said, 'We'll see you next year.'"
But preparing for this one party is a year-long process with a lot of thought.
"We've been trying to think of something special we could do special for each one of them."
From basketball to any other sport, Special Olympics enables people with disabilities of any kind come together and be somewhere they are all welcomed.
Blanche says that's the best part.
"Just when you see them so happy, with so little that they have, and they come in with a big smile, and I get a lot of hugs from some of them, they just appreciate it. Tears can come down my eyes sometimes because I see them, see two people in a wheelchair that are married to each other do great."
Blanche loves to see the folks in Special Olympics because they go about life with a positive attitude.
"There's still a person, they still have a heart, they can show concern, if they know someone's not feeling good, they're right up there to give them a hug. Just special is what it means."
A main goal of Special Olympics is to provide help to members in our community.
"Otherwise, what would those people do, and they need the help that they can get. They really do need it."
Blanche's form of help is through the parties she plans.
"We have to dance with them once and a while, and they love that."