Hooked on Needles

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Knit or Crochet Scarves for Some Special People

The article I have included below is from the August 26th issue of "Talking Crochet with Carol Alexander" and I thought it was worth sharing with you. You can subscribe to Carol's newsletter and many others by clicking here.

If you would like some ideas for a simple stitch to use to make a scarf, I can recommend the Woven Stitch, the Basketweave Stitch or the Ripple Stitch, which are three of my very favorites. My daughter and I will be making a few to send along for the Special Olympians. I'd love to hear from others who plan to participate in this worthwhile and rewarding project too.

Keep reading and see how you can get involved.

Make a Special Scarf for Some Very Special Athletes!
Crocheters and knitters are well known as some of the most caring and giving folks around, and the Special Olympics always seem to touch a special chord when it comes to lending support to some very deserving individuals. Participating in the Special Olympics can be such a positive and life-changing experience for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. I have witnessed it firsthand and seen the joy and have sense of pride and accomplishment that being part of the Special Olympics gives these extraordinary people who work so hard to achieve their athletic goals.

Knitters and crocheters have a wonderful opportunity to extend a warm gesture (literally!) to these special athletes in the form of cozy, handmade scarves stitched in the colors of the 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games logo. What a wonderful way to give them a personal "hug" to wish them well in their upcoming games! Please read the following press release from Coats and Clark, sponsor of the scarf project, and show your support for the Special Olympics athletes with the heartfelt gift of a handmade scarf.

Coats & Clark Sponsors Scarf Project for the 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games
Athletes at the 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Idaho will be wrapped in a little handmade love, courtesy of knitters and crocheters across the country. Charlotte-based Coats & Clark is sponsoring a project to provide each athlete with a scarf created in white and delft blue Red Heart® Super Saver® yarns, which happen to perfectly match the colors of the 2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games logo.

The Special Olympics World Winter Games Scarf Project is now in its second year. The program began in 2007 when World Winter Games organizers decided to give handcrafted scarves to athletes to wear to the Opening Ceremony. They asked local crafters to participate, and the headquarters office was inundated with over 1,000 scarves!

David Gish, an athlete from Idaho who participated in the 2008 Special Olympics Invitational Winter Games, says his scarf is a symbolic memento from the event. "Getting the scarves was very special for the athletes because we knew someone spent their time to make them especially for us," says Gish. "It is something I will have forever, and I know they will be just as special to the athletes next year at the World Winter Games."

This year, the World Winter Games aims to give a scarf to each athlete, the delegates supporting them and various dignitaries who will be visiting the Games, and they need help to meet that mark. This is where Coats & Clark comes into the picture.

"We're thrilled to sponsor this project. Our goal is to see 5,000 scarves donated. It's a big number, but I'm confident we can do it," says Vicki Blizzard, media relations and special promotions director for Coats & Clark. "Knitters and crocheters are dedicated and generous and are known for rising to this type of challenge."

Coats & Clark is promoting this project through its Web site, electronic newsletters, various consumer shows and magazines, so that knitters and crocheters around the country (and around the world) can send scarves to be given to the athletes. No special patterns or skills are required to create a scarf. Crocheters of all ages and skill levels, as well as schools, scout troops and other local groups are actively encouraged to participate. "Our only rule," says Blizzard, "is that the scarves are knitted or crocheted by hand using delft blue and white Super Saver yarn, because these colors were chosen specifically by the World Winter Games organizers."

Scarves can be simple or complex -- last year's scarves ran the gamut from basic stitches to complicated colorwork and stitch patterns. Personal notes from knitters and crocheters who want to send their best wishes to the athletes are encouraged and should be firmly attached to the scarves, which will be handed out before the Opening Ceremony.

Completed scarves must arrive by January 15, 2009, and should be sent to:
2009 Special Olympics World Winter Games Scarf Project
3150 West Main Street

Boise, Idaho 83702

Reprinted with permission from Talking Crochet e-newsletter, copyright Aug. 26, 2008, published by DRG and edited by Carol Alexander.

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