2010 Step Up for Autism Review

Posted by Step Up for Autism - April 1, 2011 - News - 1 Comment

The threatening grey clouds, a few scattered raindrops and a chilly autumn breeze, certainly didn’t dampen the spirits of those who put their best foot forward and stepped it up for a great cause.

After months of planning, The Resource Center’s first ever “Step Up For Autism” walk got off the ground Saturday, September 25th. Several turned out to take part in the event more than a year in the making, to help raise funds and awareness for those with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Last year a group of families got together and made it known that Erie, PA was the nearest place for children with autism to receive social skills training. So on the heels of a successful walk several years ago, another was created to benefit youth with autism and other developmental disabilities. About 20 or so make up the committee, which consists of several parents and grandparents of those with autism, as well as TRC staff.

100+ people took part in this years two mile fun walk which started the TRC administrative offices on Dunham Avenue in Celoron. Each registrant received a t-shirt, and a goody bag filled with little mementos, including pencils with the event logo. The cost to register was 20 dollars, but those who were able to raise 50 dollars or more, either on or off-line did not have to pay the fee. Prior to the start of the walk, organizing committee member Julie McCarthy, whose son Andrew has Asperger’s Syndrome, gave a moving opening address and also took time out to thank the other parents who helped organize the event, as well as the many corporate sponsors that donated to the walk.

Following Julie, who is also a member of TRC’s parent support group, Celoron Mayor Jack Keeney and New York State Senator Cathy Young expressed their thanks and appreciation as well to all who took part. Then TRC resident crooner John Graham brought the house down with a rousing rendition of the National Anthem. The walkers lined up and began their trek from TRC, through Lucille Ball Memorial Park and then back to TRC

But the day didn’t end there. Outside, there were several games for the kids to enjoy, as well as face painting, ??? the clown and a visit from Sparky the Fire Dog. Plus, the inviting smell of grilled hot dogs and other assorted snacks filled the air as well for guests to enjoy after the walk. All the food, snacks and drinks were donated for the event. Inside the TRC conference center, guests were invited to take part in a cake auction and a silent auction. Again all the auction items were generously donated from a number of businesses within the community. Celebrity cake auctioneers included Mayor Keeney, Chautauqua County Legislator Mark Tarbrake and myself, Cable 8’s Mark Goshgarian. Between the three of us and the ten or so cakes, and the generosity of those on hand, we raised ??? dollars. The silent auction raised ??? dollars as well.

Proceeds from the entire event, will help support a social skills group TRC started back in July. The group is called SUCCESS, Supporting, Understanding, Changing, Coping and Everyday Social Skills.

Plans are already in the works for next year’s walk, set for Saturday, September 24, 2011. If you are interested in learning more about the walk, or in volunteering for the event, you can call Tess Kerzner at 661-1057 or Vicky Bardo at 661-1477.

One comment

  • Julie McCarthy says:

    Truly looking forward to year 2 of this fantastic, worthwhile, funfilled community event!

    Let’s all come out and “Step Up For Autism!”

    Julie

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