Volunteers are needed to help with the Special Olympic Regional Track and Field Games, which will be held May 1 and 4 in Utah County.

Volunteers are needed to help with every event, marking races and distances, serving as timers and judges, as well as "huggers" and "cheerers." Individual volunteers are needed, as well as groups from local businesses, churches, and clubs."The one-time project can really help unify a group of employees," said Lorri Hirst, director of the Volunteer Center. "It is a chance for them to relax, help others, and get to know those they work with in a different setting."

Those planning to volunteer at the regional games need to attend two short training sessions held on April 1 and 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Oakridge School, 1165 Birch Lane, Provo. Special Olympics will try to accommodate those who are unable to attend the training sessions.

The May 1 games will be held at Mountain View High School in Orem from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The May 4 games will be at Provo High School from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Volunteers may help both days, one day, or a half day.

The regional games serve as athletic competition for mentally handicapped people. Winners go on to compete in the state games, which will be held the first week of June at Brigham Young University.

Volunteers will also be needed for the June games. Those who have participated in the smaller-scale regional games are more prepared to help at the state games.

For more information on becoming a volunteer for Special Olympics, call the United Way Volunteer Center at 374-8108.

Other volunteer opportunities in the community include:

- Alpine School District needs volunteers to tutor slower elementary students once or twice a week until school is out in May. Volunteers are asked to commit to a regular shift during school hours.

- The newly reopened Crisis Line of Utah County needs volunteers to help staff the phone lines. Volunteers receive free training and are asked to work a 3-hour shift each week.

- The Utah State Training School in American Fork needs volunteers either on a regular basis or as part of a one-time service project to help with activities, parties, and arts and craft evenings.

For more information on these and other volunteer opportunities, call the United Way Volunteer Center at 374-8108.