CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas, April 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- CITGO Petroleum Corporation marked its 18th year as presenting sponsor of the Special Olympics Area 2 (South Texas) Spring Games on April 2. More than 600 athletes from 16 area counties convened at Flour Bluff High School in Corpus Christi to compete in the 33rd annual Spring Games. Volunteers from the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery were on hand to help escort teams during opening ceremonies, run track and field events, serve as timekeepers, park cars, and congratulate competitors.

CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery Manager of Operations and Maintenance Alirio Zambrano officially opens the Special Olympics Area 2 South Texas Spring Games by expressing the importance of inclusion and working together to support athletes with special needs.

Special Olympics Texas ("SOTX") creates opportunities for more than 55,200 children and adults with intellectual disabilities to participate in physical fitness activities and build friendships. The Area 2 Spring Games are one of more than 300 Special Olympics Texas competitions held yearly across the state.

"Making life better for the community is a goal that Special Olympics Texas and CITGO both share," said Margaret Larsen, President and CEO of SOTX. "CITGO has supported Special Olympics Texas for more than two decades and the efforts of its Corpus Christi volunteers help make the Area 2 Spring Games a fun and fulfilling competition for our athletes."

CITGO, its refineries and Marketers and Retailers are strongly committed to helping the communities in which they operate. In 2015, CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery volunteers donated more than 240 hours of their time to Special Olympics activities. In addition to the annual Area 2 Spring Games, the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery supported several Special Olympics events, including a family night, an annual conference and a fire truck pull, with the goal of improving quality of life and encouraging camaraderie among Special Olympics athletes. The CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery and its employees have also given their time and support to many other community organizations, including the Muscular Dystrophy Association, United Way and Charlie's Place. Corpus Christi's CITGO Miracle League Field empowers children with mental or physical disabilities to play baseball on a cushioned synthetic turf accommodating wheelchairs and other walking assistance devices, while preventing injuries. 

"At CITGO, we greatly value our long history with Special Olympics, as we share its commitment to building inclusive communities by providing the joy and inspiration of sport to our friends with intellectual disabilities," said Art Klein, Vice President and General Manager of the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery. "Special Olympics Texas has made these Spring Games a very special day for hundreds of competitors throughout the Lone Star State, and we look forward to being a part of this event each year."

The CITGO commitment to Special Olympics stretches far beyond the State of Texas, with CITGO refineries, Marketers and Retailers in 27 states and Washington, D.C., contributing to the cause. Last summer, CITGO served as the official fuel sponsor for the Special Olympics' Unified Relay Across America, which brought the Flame of Hope along three routes traversing the country destined for Los Angeles, site of the 2015 Special Olympics Summer World Games. CITGO provided fuel for 36 support vehicles traveling with the torch along each of the three simultaneous routes.

About CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery
The CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery, which celebrated 80 years of operations in 2015, provides more than 1,000 jobs locally, while generating more than $345 million per year in support of the local economy through salaries, services and taxes. In addition to producing high-quality fuels for its network of nearly 5,500 independently owned and operated CITGO branded stations across the country, Corpus Christi refinery employees make a major positive impact on the community. In 2015 alone, CITGO employees in Corpus Christi volunteered more than 2,900 hours of their personal time to local and national charities. Since 2013, the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery and its employees have provided more than 10,000 volunteer hours and approximately $3.3 in support of community organizations such as United Way, Charlie's Place, Muscular Dystrophy Association, The Miracle League, Catholic Charities, the Special Olympics and a variety of environmental and preservation initiatives, such as the revitalization of the Gateway to Corpus Christi, Hans and Pat Suter Park and Adopt-A-Beach Clean Up. The 80th anniversary of the Corpus Christi Refinery last year was preceded by the 70th anniversary of the CITGO Lake Charles Refinery in 2014 and is being followed by the 90th anniversary of the CITGO Lemont Refinery in 2016, with CITGO facilities marking three significant milestones in three consecutive years. For more information on the CITGO Corpus Christi Refinery, visit

CITGO, based in Houston, is a refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals and other industrial products. The company is owned by CITGO Holding, Inc., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. For more information, visit

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