Daryl V. Rowland

CLEVELAND: The fifth annual “Plane Pull” returns to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport on July 12 in the I-X Center parking lot, and early registration has begun.

The Plane Pull is a community charity event benefiting Special Olympics Ohio. As you might imagine, teams of volunteers compete to be the fastest at pulling a Boeing 737 across the parking lot to the finish line.

“If you think you are up to the challenge, and you think you have what it takes to pull a Boeing 737 the fastest, pull a team together, select your team name and register online,” said Airport Director Ricky Smith.

At the CLE Plane Pull, teams of 20 people will pull the United Airlines Boeing 737, weighing up to 150,000 pounds, 12 feet in hopes of securing the fastest time.

Each team will be allowed one practice pull and one official pull to determine their time. Trophies will be awarded to the top three teams in the following categories: Men’s, Co-Ed, Female, and Public Safety. Each co-ed team must have at least eight women.

To ensure support for Special Olympics Ohio, each team is required to raise a minimum of $750 to participate (or $37.50 per person). Teams may also raise additional funds to be eligible for additional awards, “top fundraiser team” and “top individual fundraiser.”

“For five years, Cleveland Hopkins and Special Olympics Ohio have come together to host one of the coolest events in Cleveland,” said Smith. “Every year, the team turnout is impressive and we look forward to partnering with an organization so dedicated to developing young people and adults into exceptional athletes.”

Special Olympics Ohio provides year-round sports training and competition opportunities for adults and children with intellectual disabilities — giving them opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy.

Special Olympics Ohio serves more than 23,000 athletes throughout the state, including 4,500 athletes in the greater Cleveland area (Cuyahoga, Lorain, Geauga, and Lake counties) and 2,000 in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.

On-site registration for the Plane Pull begins at 8 a.m., and the first pull is at 10. Early team registration is July 10, from 5 to 7 p.m. at West Park Station, 17015 Lorain Ave., Cleveland.

To register online, visit http://sooh.org/events.php?eventID=8411.

For more information about Special Olympics Ohio, visit www.sooh.org or call 614-239-7050.

Daryl Rowland can be reached at darylvrowland@gmail.com.