Hundreds attend disability sports festival in Palm Desert

This year's event was held at the Palm Desert Civic Center

Disability Sports Festival

PALM DESERT, Calif. - The Disability Sports Festival was held in Palm Desert over the weekend.

This is the second year the festival was held in the Coachella Valley after being created seven years by Cal State San Bernardino professor Aaron Moffett.

"We are trying to provide an opportunity for people to be introduced to sports but also learn how can they go out there and break those barriers and participate in physical activities themselves," said festival director Aaron Moffett.

The event, held at the Palm Desert Civic Center Park was created in partnership with the Desert Recreation District, Incight and the Cal State San Bernardino disability festival. Participants had the opportunity to sign up for more than 20 sports, including wheelchair basketball, tennis, soccer and handcycling.

Among the hundreds attending was 16-year-old Jason Diaz. Diaz was born with a congenital limb defect forcing doctors to amputate his leg when he was 9 months old.

"Sometimes people ask questions and I'm more than happy to answer those questions, other times you say hi and they look at you funny like you're a freak but we are not freaks, we are humans we are just different," said Diaz.

Being different has never stopped Diaz from doing anything. He's competed in several marathons and triathlons and hopes to compete in the Olympics someday.

"I just want to get to the Olympics and show everyone that just because you are born a certain way doesn't mean that you are limited to the things that you do," said Diaz.

Through sports, organizers hope people coming there will gain self confidence and like Diaz, pursue what others may see as impossible

Diaz believes nothing is impossible "it just takes dedication, effort and spirit with all those three you can do anything."

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