Inclusive sports: Tell Me Something Good

Tell Me Something Good

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — It’s a big sports weekend on University Hill and the fun doesn’t begin and end with the Orange taking on #1 Clemson in the Dome.  “Orange Central” homecoming weekend on campus also includes an event aimed at everyone. 

IceAbility is an open house on Saturday at the Tennity Ice Pavilion at Skytop.  It’s a first-ever open house sponsored by SU’s Disability Cultural Center, to let folks throughout the community sample accessible ice sports options available to everyone.  SU has been expanding opportunities for sled hockey, sensory-friendly ice skating, even adaptive curling.  The open house is an extension of OrangeAbility, an initiative that has introduced wheelchair basketball and soccer and adaptive rugby to people of all abilities over the last several years.  And those programs will also expand with the opening of the new fitness facilities at the Barnes Center at the Arch on campus, which was dedicated today.

“It’s about being part of your community, and being able to do the things in your community that everyone does,”  says Kate Pollack, program coordinator for the Disability Cultural Center.  “We would like to take down that barrier and welcome people with and without disabilities to all participate in the adaptive sports program at SU.”  

Erik Ryan has been playing sled hockey for more than nine years with his team, the CNY Sled Hockey Flyers.  He says you can’t overstate what it means to have access to adaptive sports programs for people, like him, who use wheelchairs.  “It’s everything, for a guy like me that has a part time job and sits around and plays video games a lot, it’s super important.”

SU promises “family-friendly, frosty fun, including sled hockey, adaptive curling, ice skating and an appearance from Otto the Orange!”  It’s tomorrow, Saturday, September 14th, 1-4pm, at the Tennity Ice Skating Pavilion, 511 Skytop Road in Syracuse.  It’s free and open to the public.  ASL interpretation will be available.  Wheelchairs are welcome on the ice.  Light refreshments will be available through the support of Syracuse University’s Office of Equal Opportunity, Inclusion and Resolution Services.

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