An estimated 865 athletes and volunteer coaches will come together in Santa Clara County for the Special Olympics Northern California 2023 Summer Games June 23-25.

The Special Olympics were founded in 1968 to advocate for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Special Olympics Northern California has served more than 25,000 athletes in its mission of fostering inclusive communities through sports.

Participating athletes from across Northern California have been training and competing in regional competitions.

The games commence Friday with the opening ceremonies at 7 p.m. in Stevens Stadium on the Santa Clara University campus. San Francisco 49ers great and Pro Football Hall of Famer Bryant Young will give a keynote address.

The ceremonies will also include the parade of athletes and the culmination of the torch run. The Law Enforcement Torch Run involves law enforcement agencies across the region carrying the torch to the games while raising funds and awareness for the Special Olympics.

Competition will take place on Saturday and Sunday across the Santa Clara University campus and at Cupertino High School. Four sports will be featured in this year’s edition of the games — track and field, bocce, swimming and tennis.

The games are free to attend.

Benjamin Coleman is a recent graduate from UC Berkeley where he triple-majored in English, Political Science and Legal Studies with a Journalism minor. Benjamin spent four years as a sports reporter, podcast producer and sports editor for the Daily Californian. Benjamin joins Bay City News as a Dow Jones News Fund digital media intern. In his free time Benjamin is passionate about reading, watching movies and spending time outside.