Today while driving I passed a young man on a bridge overlooking a river. His wheelchair was empty next to him alongside the rural lane and he was standing, leaning over the railing, fishing. That was quite an image on a summery hot spring day for me to contemplate as I continued on my way.
His wheelchair was a straightforward institutional style. He had probably wheeled to this spot from a small town center a quarter mile away. He looked to be enjoying his solitude in a beautiful spot, yet I wondered about his possible isolation. Does he know about the growing availablility of recreational options for people with disabilities? Would he be able to take advantage of adaptive recreation programs nearby? Would he want to? I know from my work that there are still many people who are "stuck at home" - limited by real barriers such as lack of transportation and low income, and even perceptions about what is within personal reach. I hadn't wanted to disrupt him, but I also regret not stopping for a quick chat to see what was biting - and what he knew about adaptive recreation opportunities.
Meanwhile, introductory adaptive recreation events are popping up all over this spring. Discovery Night is taking place Tuesday, May 4 in Wallingford, Connecticut - the subject of a previous posting here. DCR is hosting a Recreation Fair in Boston on Saturday, June 5 - see the sidebar for info. And coming up on Saturday, May 15th, is yet another adaptive sports fair on Cape Cod.
If you live on or near Cape Cod, here is a great opportunity to attend such an event, meet people involved in adaptive recreation, and check out equipment! From 11am - 2pm at the Rehabilitation Hospital of Cape Cod and the Islands (RHCI) in Sandwich, join in on the fun! RHCI is located at 311 Service Road East. Sponsored by RHCI and CAPEable Adventures and other regional organizations, this free event will open doors to sailing, kayaking, cycling, golf and more!
Bike-on, Northeast Passage, Bourne Community Boating, Disabled Sports New England, and the Cape Cod Curling Club will join CAPEable Adventures in presenting a variety of demonstrations. Don't miss out! For further information, call 508-566-3298 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo courtesy of Craig Bautz.