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Norwalk Little League Celebrates Challenger Division For Special Needs Kids

Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Challenger Division President Guy Taccone beams as he watches kids at Challenger Recognition Day. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Pictured: the Norwalk Challenger team. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Pictured: the Westport Winners Challenger team. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Families and friends watch the action on the field at Challenger Recognition Day. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Norwalk Little League holds its third annual Challenger Recognition Day Sunday, celebrating the Challenger Division for kids with special needs. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman

NORWALK, Conn. — Norwalk Little League held its third annual Challenger Recognition Day on Sunday, celebrating the division that serves kids with special needs.

Dozens of kids and families came out in beautiful weather to celebrate the 20-plus-year-old program, and to watch a Challenger Division game between the Westport Winners and Norwalk.

The Challenger Division currently includes teams from Norwalk, Westport, Fairfield, Stamford, Darien, Redding and Ridgefield, and includes kids ages 5 through 18.

"We started it n 1995," Challenger Division President Guy Taccone told Daily Voice. "Today is to let people know what's available, what we're about. People have been very supportive, they see the purpose of the game is to have a good time no matter what. In our game there are no outs — the game is modified to fit the needs of the individual kids.

"And the kids have a blast," Taccone added. "Nothing earth-shattering, but they have a blast. And a hit of any kind, and they have a big smile on their faces."

Dawn DiNoto of Norwalk is a big fan of the program, and of Taccone's efforts. DiNoto placed her daughter in the program as a youngster.

"Guy's devotion to the kids is priceless," DiNoto told Daily Voice. "He's individualized the game so the kids can enjoy it. He's our own hometown hero. My daughter started when she was 9 ... she wouldn't even go on the field. Now she's 25, and she's played the whole time. Now she's a 'buddy' who helps younger kids."

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