By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
Rim of the World Special Athletes Foundation (RSA) recently spent their last lake day in and on the waters of Lake Arrowhead. The morning was spent kayaking, water cycling, swimming and stand-up paddleboarding from the lake dock of their sponsor.
After lunch, Lake Arrowhead Station 91 of the San Bernardino County Fire Department came to their dock and allowed the kids and adults of RSA to ride on their fire boat and shoot off the water cannon.
The water cannon must be tested regularly, and this was an excellent opportunity to get it tested and give the local residents and special athletes an opportunity to see how it works, said Assistant Fire Chief Ron Walls. The special athletes were then declared junior firefighters and given a red fire chief helmet after each had maneuvered the water up and down and side-to-side over the water.
All who got to ride on the six outings the fire boat provided were enthusiastic and excited about the opportunity.
RSA provides seasonally appropriate individual activities for those with disabilities, whether physical or cognitive. Most of the summer and year-round activities are free of charge to the athlete. They have specialized equipment and instructors for some of the various sporting activities they offer. Year-round activities include golf and yoga, some inside activities during the winter, and they offer winter skiing with certified, specially trained instructors, using mono and bi-skis and other specialized equipment stored in the RSA building at Snow Valley.
The Rim Special Athletes will be holding their second annual fundraiser for this five-year-old organization on Sept. 28 at Snow Valley. Much of their winter program focuses on providing skiing opportunities for those physically disabled by accidents and war injuries and giving them new confidence as they learn to ski. The RSA ski building with the specialty skiing equipment will be on display at its “Evening on the Mountaintop” fundraiser.
The evening begins at 4 p.m. with appetizers on the top of the ski lift offering a fantastic view from the top of the mountain with dinner in the chalet below, followed by a silent auction. Tickets are $45 and $25 for students up to age 12. Call (909) 867-2751 ext. 100 weekdays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., or log onto www.snow-valley.com/tickets.
See their website, www.rimspecialathletes.org, for more RSA information and photos. RSA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.