ARISE participants and staff came out in numbers to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act at the Oswego City Fourth of July Parade. Following the overall parade theme of â€œAmerican Heritage,â€ ARISE spread the word that Americans with disabilities played important roles in history and have always been part of our heritage.
Participants of the ARISE Social Club, Self Advocacy Network and Teen Group along with ARISE staff and friends created banners and posters showing the contributions of individuals with disabilities including George Washington, Helen Keller, Albert Einstein, Robin Williams, Stevie Wonder and others. Some spectators were overheard saying, â€œI didnâ€™t know they had a disability,â€ after seeing the signs.
The ARISE float and marchers were further recognized by the Greater Oswego-Fulton Chamber of Commerce with the Jaycee Award for the Best Float by a Civic or Volunteer Agency. The achievement capped off an already exciting and successful first participation in the parade.
ARISE would like to thank Scottyâ€™s Towing for the use of the flatbed that allowed ARISE to carry its message to the community, Jeff and Kathy Richards of Grassyland Farm for hay bales, Jim and Patricia Karasek for use of their pick-up truck and donated candy, Deb Doran for photography, staff, participants and many volunteers who dedicated time to make this possible. A special thanks to the parade judges who recognized the role of people with disabilities in our history and in our communities.
For information about ARISE or the history of Americans with Disabilities Act, contact Sabine Ingerson, Director of ARISE Oswego County Offices at 342-4088 ext. 201 or via email at [email protected]