Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Crotched Mountain Accessible Trails

View of nearby ridge from the top of the Gregg Trail.
Looking for an accessible hike in gorgeous New England mountain scenery? Get yourself to Crotched Mountain! It’s worth the drive!

Recently Tom McCarthy and I found our way to Crotched Mountain in New Hampshire for an autumn treat. It was a 2 hour drive from Amherst, Massachusetts. We’ve been curious about two accessible trails at the Crotched Mountain Rehabilitation Center that offer a hiking opportunity on the wilder side and wanted to get some “state of the art” inspiration. These are the longest accessible hiking trails in a mountain environment in the U.S. and are recognized by Yankee Magazine and New Hampshire Magazine as the best wheelchair accessible trails in 2013.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Take a Fundraising Walk!

Have you ever been on a fundraising walk? Don Summerfield, a stroke survivor living in the Boston area, is a long time participant in DCR’s Universal Access Programs. He also participates in fundraising walks to raise money for important causes. On the morning of October 6th while watching the news, he saw that a walk was happening at DCR’s Hatch Shell on the Esplanade. He hustled down there and joined the walk on the spur of the moment. From his excitement I am learning more about these types of events. Thanks Don for your Guest Post!
I woke up this morning, and while watching the news, one the team leaders of Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk at the Hatch Shell was talking about falling then getting up 8 times as a metaphor for being a Breast Cancer Survivor. I felt a strong urge to help her and others fight this scourge! Getting a second chance to walk again after my stroke in 2002 helped me realize that by walking for others that can't, I can help!

I jumped in to help raise awareness, since I didn’t have time to secure donations for this walk, which had no entrance fee or fundraising minimum. The longest choice was 6 miles. I picked a 2 mile route and walked one mile. Despite occasional rain, it was great walking weather! I saw one person in a wheelchair and no doubt other people with disabilities were present. 40,000 people walked for this event and over 3 million dollars were raised! Not all the walking has to happen on the day of the event, so there are lots of ways to participate.
I like fundraising walks for giving back to those in need and to thank those who give us so much. They are lots of fun! You get to walk with folks that have similar values, like giving back. It is great exercise too!  Of all the fundraising walks I've done, two have made a very lasting impression. One is the BABIS Heads Held High Brain Injury Awareness Walk, which I have done 8 times! I also did the MS WALK in 2010. I’ve raised between $100 and $3000 per walk. Some walks do have fees or fundraising minimums so I usually prepare in advance.
I also raise money directly by word of mouth. Please contact the group that you feel will do the most good! Consider taking a walk to help!!