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Albuquerque, NM – The New Mexico Senior Olympics is celebrating 40 years and is gearing up for the 2018 State Summer Games, which will take place in Albuquerque from July 18–22. The Olympics are dedicated to providing adults ages 50 and over with opportunities for a healthy, active lifestyle. There will be more than 90 events in 24 sports. The games are an opportunity for people to stay active and for community members to get involved by volunteering. The Olympics will utilize hundreds of volunteers for all events.

"The New Mexico Senior Olympic State Games provide an incredible opportunity for people to be active, compete and win medals," said Cecilia Acosta, Executive Director of the New Mexico Senior Olympics. "Athletes that place in this year's games will qualify to compete in the National Senior Games presented by Humana, which will be held in Albuquerque in June 2019. The games are a great opportunity for people who don't want to compete to participate by volunteering."

Registration for athletes is open through May 31st, with late registration extending to June 15th. Registration for volunteers is open through June 1st. Volunteers are needed in the categories of: sport coordinator, registrar/clerk, assistants/co-coordinators, finish line personnel, and judges or referees. Sporting events for the State Games include archery, badminton, bowling, cycling, dance, disc golf, 8-ball pool, field events, golf, horse shoes, pickleball, power walk, race walk, racquetball, basketball, Frisbee, soccer ball kick accuracy, huachas, softball distance throw, shuffleboard, swimming, table tennis, talent, tennis, track, and triathlon, as well as a variety of fun events.

"This year's games serve as a qualifying event for the national games, and will serve as an opportunity for volunteers to gain experience prior to next year's national competition. For those interested in competing at the next level or being a part of a national sporting event, we strongly encourage you to take part in the State Games this summer, whether as an athlete or a volunteer," Acosta added.

For more information, or to sign up as a volunteer, visit newmexicoseniorolympics.org/volunteers. For athletes interested in participating, visit newmexicoseniorolymics.org.

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The Grant County Beat continues to bring you new columnists. New this past week are the Christian Corner, for those who are already Christians or are exploring the beliefs.

The second is a business-centered column—Your Business Connection by the New Mexico Business Coalition. The group works to make policy in the state of New Mexico better for all businesses, large and small.

The Beat has a new column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.

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