Articles in Sponsors

Lincoln Savings Bank Presents 2nd Annual West Des Moines Polar Plunge

Ever been curious about this famous Special Olympics fundraiser? The Polar Plunge® is a signature fundraiser for Special Olympics that offers a unique opportunity for individuals and organizations to raise money and support Special Olympics Iowa athletes by jumping into frigid waters. Polar Plunges are held across the state of Iowa in the fall and spring. The West Des Moines Polar Plunge will be held Saturday, November 5 at the Jordan Creek Town Center.2016-lsb-recolored-unsecure

Premier Statewide Partner Lincoln Savings Bank is presenting the event for the second year in a row. Volunteers from LSB will be on hand all day to help the Plunge run smoothly and to provide guests with giveaways and fun activities.

Immediately following the Plunge, participants and guests can stay warm and enjoy fun, food, drink, music, a silent auction and drawings at the post-party. Lunch can be purchased for spectators at registration for $10 (ages 5 and under free).

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SOIA Receives $15,000 Grant from Variety- the Children’s Charity to Fund Play Days and Unified Sports®

Special Olympics Iowa (SOIA) has received a $15,000 grant from Variety- the Children’s Charity to fund Young Athletes Play Days and Unified Sports®.logo-variety

Young Athletes Play Days are designed to provide play activities and socialization opportunities for children with intellectual disabilities between the ages of two and seven. Play Days were created to serve children too young to participate in formal Special Olympics events (athletes can begin competing at age eight).

“Variety- the Children’s Charity and Special Olympics Iowa have been great partners for many years. Our desire to serve is identical; our rewards are the smiles that we receive and the passion that is shown on the faces of those who we are privileged to walk beside,” says SOIA President and CEO Gary Harms. “Our Young Athlete Play Days are the first introduction of that which Special Olympics Iowa has to share with our wonderful participants and young people, as well as their families and fans.”

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Casey’s Cup Contest

Casey's Cup 2016 001 (800x533)

Special Olympics Iowa (SOIA) athletes and law enforcement officials are being showcased on the 44-ounce cups at Casey’s General Stores throughout the state. The cups are available in stores now through Labor Day with a portion of the proceeds from each Casey’s Cup sold going to SOIA.

This is the third year Casey’s has supported SOIA with the Casey’s Cup campaign!

Now, SOIA is challenging customers to take photos of themselves with the cups, and each month this summer (June, July, August), a winner will be chosen to receive a SOIA swag item. A grand-prize winner will be chosen at the end of the contest and will receive a free one-night stay at Embassy Suites in downtown Des Moines and other prizes.


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Corporate Vision Blooms into Partnership for Winter Games

logo-spahn-roseThe Spahn and Rose Lumber Company, based out of Dubuque, has been a sponsor of the Special Olympics Iowa Winter Games for more than 10 years. Like many of SOIA’s sponsors, the company has gone beyond monetary donations, with employees volunteering their time to make the Winter Games a success.

Dan Wachtel, head of the IT department at Spahn and Rose, began volunteering at Alpine skiing events because a former volunteer asked for his help with setting up the race courses.

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UnitedHealthcare: Helping People Live Healthier Lives

In 2015, UnitedHealthcare has supported Challenge Days and the Healthy Athletes program as a Gold Level Sponsor, positively impacting thousands of Iowans with intellectual disabilities.

By Katie Bonner, director of marketing and community outreach at UnitedHealthcare


UnitedHealthcare’s mission is “to help people live healthier lives.” We have operated health plans in Iowa since the 1980s, serving a wide range of Iowans, including those who get their coverage through employers, the armed forces and Medicare plans. We have served children in the Iowa hawk-i program since 2000. We are dedicated to promoting health for all Iowans in every stage of their lives.

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Casey’s General Store Continues Statewide Partnership

caseys-check-presentationThanks to YOU, Casey’s General Store donated more than $34,000 to SOIA from this year’s Casey’s Cup campaign! Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, SOIA athletes and law enforcement officers were featured on the 44-oz. cups, with a portion of the sales going to SOIA.

Casey’s and SOIA also challenged customers to a photo contest, taking photos of themselves with the cups and posting them on social media with one winner each week receiving a free Casey’s pizza. Jessica Clements, an SOIA athlete from Fairfield, was the grand prize winner and received a year’s supply of free Casey’s pizza and a one-night stay with four waterpark passes to the Ramada Tropics Resort in Des Moines.

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First Annual Tailgate for Teammates Reaches $50,000 Fundraising Goal

tailgate-athletesNothing brings fans together like a good old-fashioned tailgate! The first annual Tailgate for Teammates presented by Voya was held Oct. 17 at the State Historical Building in downtown Des Moines. Sponosrs and guests helped SOIA reach its $50,000 fundraising goal.

Athletes mingled with guests as they autographed trading cards with their photo. We Are Iowa Local 5 News Anchor Elias Johnson emcee’d the event along with SOIA athlete Tyler Leech, entertaining the crowd.

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SOIA Athletes Learn Banking 101 Through Partnership with Lincoln Savings Bank

LSB Branch Manager Derek Baker with SOIA athletes at the Banking 101 lesson.

LSB Branch Manager Derek Baker with SOIA athletes at the Banking 101 lesson.

Lincoln Savings Bank (LSB) hosted a class for Special Olympics Iowa athletes at its bank in Clive as part of the students’ Senior Plus Program at Valley High School. The class is for special needs students who have earned all their credits to graduate, but choose to stay in school longer to have access to lessons on living and vocational skills.

Derek Baker, LSB branch manager, spoke with the students about the importance of paying yourself first, the difference between checking and savings accounts, and establishing good credit.

Baker explained that when paying yourself first, you should put some of your paycheck or birthday money into a savings account before buying the things you may want. Putting away 10% of your paycheck is a good number to start. Doing this can help you learn to manage your money better, save toward a goal or have money for emergencies.

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Lincoln Savings Bank Becomes Special Olympics Iowa Statewide Partner

sponsor-lincoln-savings-bank-checkSpecial Olympics Iowa (SOIA) is proud to announce Lincoln Savings Bank as its newest Statewide Partner. With a gift of $25,000, Lincoln Savings Bank will be a Premier Statewide Partner for SOIA, after agreeing to become the Presenting Sponsor of the West Des Moines and Cedar Falls/Waterloo Polar Plunges.

“We are very excited to announce our new partnership with Lincoln Savings Bank,” said SOIA CEO Gary Harms. “Their team has expressed a great deal of enthusiasm and excitement in supporting our mission – not only for the Jordan Creek Town Center Polar Plunge to be held on November 7, but also in becoming a part of the volunteer force within our Special Olympics Iowa family. Their support will be a key driver in our efforts to create inclusion-based, joyful experiences for our friends with intellectual disabilities in each of our communities throughout the state of Iowa.”

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