Friday, Sept. 26, 2008 | midnight
Going for gold
The Nevada Senior Olympics runs Sept. 23-Oct. 19 at various locations. The events are free for spectators. Visit www.nevadaseniorolympics.com.
With more than 1,000 athletes competing in the Nevada Senior Olympics from Sept. 23 to Oct. 19, Reg Rod will stay busy.
As executive director of the organization, Rod, 77, calls himself the general who keeps the 26 events running smoothly.
His desk is messy, and is admittedly unorganized at times, but Rod has been responsible for marketing the games and making them popular.
The event, which happens every other year, serves as a qualifier for the national games. The games are in their 28th year.
"It stays busy all year round for us," said Rod, of Summerlin. "If we start growing like I want to grow, this is going to be a year-round thing."
Rod doesn't compete, but keeps close tabs on everything from his office on South Jones Boulevard. He is aided by General Manager Gary Cotter and Creative Consultant Jason Golub.
"Me and Rod are both totally different but we compliment each other," Cotter said. "I have structure but he has the ability to do the marketing side."
The games will be held across the Las Vegas Valley, from the UNLV campus to the Darling Tennis Center, with the most popular events being tennis and track.
Rod has tried to implement a more health and wellness approach to the games. A Korean War veteran and retired business marketer, Rod said most seniors don't take their health into account until it's too late.
"At 77, I'm looking at the rest of my life and I don't want to spend it as an invalid," he said. "I wish when I was 50 I got in programs like this that would have helped me down the line."
Rod's feelings can be best summed up in the 2008 games' theme — "celebration of life."
"If you can improve their ability to celebrate life longer, they you're doing something good for humanity," he said. "I feel like this is bringing something to the seniors but also to the community because it raises awareness."
Sean Ammerman can be reached at 990-2661 or firstname.lastname@example.org.