Tag: Autism Connection of Pennsylvania
Autism Connection Board of Directors Meeting
A Magical Connection Fundraiser for Autism Connection of PA
On Saturday, April 29, 2023, our friends at A Magical Fundraiser are hosting 13th Hour Entertainment and Autism Connection of PA for a casual night out at the Tonidale Pub in Robinson Township. A Magical Connection is a fun, high-sensory event that benefits the region’s autism community.
This event features:
- Mindwarp Show featuring Mentalist/Magician Steve Haberman with the vocal talents of Tracy Lynn
- Disc Jockey and Dancing by Nite Life DJz
- Basket Raffle and 50/50 drawing
Autism Connection of Pennsylvania spoke with the talented Tracy Lynn and the amazing Steve Haberman.
Autism Connection (AC): You’re involved in many different endeavors. Can you share about 13 Hour Entertainment, A Magical Fundraiser, the Mindwarp show, and your partnership?
Tracy and Steve (TS): 13th Hour Entertainment Inc. is a company specializing in family and corporate entertainment. We have combined with Magic Wand Princess Parties, Nite Life DJz and other entertainers to provide A Magical Fundraiser to help organizations that have fundraising needs. We provide the entertainment for these functions along with advice on how to make fundraising events successful. From years of working at these events, we have learned a lot about how the organization can maximize their efforts and money generated. Over the years we have worked with schools, fraternal organizations, companies, and other charitable organizations. Our Mind Warp Show is one of the most popular entertainment options for this type of event. It combines magic, comedy, and music into one show that appeals to all audiences.
AC: How did you become involved with A Magical Connection Fundraiser for Autism Connection?
TS: We have a lot of friends and family who have children or relatives that are on the spectrum. We have been wanting to do a fundraiser for a few years now to benefit autism awareness, because we think it is important for families to know the support that is there for them and truly feel accepted. With the pandemic, our plans were put on hold. We have a very close friend who has autism that guided us to the Autism Connection of PA, and we couldn’t be happier to be working with this foundation.
AC: Do you have any outstanding experiences with people on the autism spectrum as a performer/artist?
TS: Many entertainers that work with 13th Hour Entertainment have performed for people on the autism spectrum. Magician Steve Haberman in particular, performs at numerous schools throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia for school assemblies and there are normally kids at these events who have a range of disabilities, autism, and hidden differences. He has performed for children with special needs in smaller groups and birthday parties as well. Steve also provided magical entertainment for a convention at Pittsburgh’s David Lawrence Convention Center for an autism conference. During this conference, Steve performed multiple magic shows throughout the day for the kids while parents attended various meetings and lectures. It is our great pleasure to work with the Autism Connection of PA on a fundraiser for this very important cause.
Ticket and Sponsorship Information Here
If you have questions about this event, feel free to call Tracy Lynn at 13th Hour Entertainment, (412) 926-3472 or email her at [email protected].
Support for Autism Connection of PA directly impacts people of all ages facing many challenges related to autism. Contributions raised will fund: help for families seeking resources, development of inclusive, sensory friendly areas across Pennsylvania, first responder training, virtual and in-person workshops, school homeroom and assembly talks about hidden differences, educator and administrative training, justice system reform, and so much more.
Visit Wednesday Wake Up Call for weekly updates of our current work.
The official registration and financial information of Autism Connection of PA may be obtained form the PA Department of State by calling 1-800-732-0999. Registration does not imply endorsement
Sensory Friendly Hour at Phipps Conservatory
In collaboration with the Autism Connection of Pennsylvania, Let’s Move Pittsburgh is hosting a Sensory Friendly Hour at Phipps on Wed., Oct. 26. Individuals with sensory concerns and their families are welcome to join our team for a self-guided tour of the conservatory, including engaging sensory-friendly Discovery Station activities along the way.
To ensure a peaceful walk through the Conservatory, lights and sounds will be minimized. Participants will receive a social story via email detailing the experience prior to arrival. Please park in the center island and enter through the Welcome Center. Masks are required for this event.
Registration is $2 per person ages 2 and up; children under 2 may attend free of charge. Registrations are available for 5:30 p.m. or 5:45 p.m. arrival times. Select your time of arrival below:
Run for Autism Labor Day Half Marathon/10k/5k presented by Gingerbread Man Running Company
Gingerbread Man Running Company presents the Labor Day Half Marathon on MONDAY September 5, 2022, that will benefit Autism Connection of Pennsylvania. Learn more about them at http://autismofpa.org A portion of the race proceeds will benefit ACOP.
We have events for the whole family. Runners can take on our half marathon course, 10k, or 5k.
Registration and parking will take place at the Youngwood Fire Department, with a short walk to the race start. Please consider donating to our local fire department, as they were an integral part of making our race a success! You can do this online when you register.
Race day registration will be through Run Sign Up only. No paper registrations accepted the day of the event.
The course will take place on the 5 Star Trail, connecting roads, and the wooded trail near WCCC.
Half Marathon Course: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/gp/bookmark/view/id/7388658
10k Course: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/gp/bookmark/view/id/7388726
5k Course: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/gp/bookmark/view/id/7388688
There is a 3 1/2-hour cap on the half marathon and 10K, so both courses are a run-only course. Participants may walk or run the 5k course. Awards will go to the fastest time for runners. There are no separate awards for walkers.
The Half Marathon begins at 7:30, followed by the 5k and 10k shortly after. You must be registered by 8/15/2022 to be guaranteed race materials. Late registrations will be offered a water bottle or a shirt from previous year events. Half marathon participants will also receive a finisher medal. Awards will be given to the overall male/female finishers and the top age group finishers for each event.
Packet pickup information will be emailed a week before the race and posted on our Facebook event page.
The Most Important Thing
This is really important is usually that last passing thought I remember about the very important thing I was holding before my memory goes stark white. The phenomenon of blanking out after placing an important item (amusement park tickets in the upcoming scenario) isn’t uncommon. I mean, they even make memes about it.
So when Autism Connection received an email from a parent in the aftermath of absentmindedness, we completely understood.
“We were an hour into our drive to Idlewild when I realized I left the tickets at home. Major mom fail. Any chance there are etickets on file?”
They’re print only but show them the receipt in this email and let them know what happened. I can relate to this 100 percent because it’s something I’ve done countless times. I’ll give Idlewild a call in the meantime. Also, they can call me if you run into any issues trying to get in.
I’ll also try to find the numbers on your tickets, too.”
We called Idlewild and got a disappointing response at first—They need barcodes, not ticket numbers or receipts. The barcode is the ticket in. Very important. The Idlewild employee was patient in listening to me plead our case, and we tossed solutions at the problem, including having the family email the barcodes after they return home. We were left with “I’m not sure what we can do. I’ll talk to the front office, but we’re really busy.”
We left Autism Connection’s contact information in hopes for a quick call back. In the meantime, we reached out to the family rapidly approaching Idlewild.
“Idlewild said they need the barcodes, so they don’t think they can do anything on their end. I’m waiting for her to call me back. Sorry about the delay. She said the park is very busy right now. Hoping to hear back asap.
If you have them scanned on your phone, they can get the barcodes. If not, we’re hoping they make an exception today.”
We didn’t get a call back from Idlewild, but we did get an email.
So many different things to stress about…headphones, snacks, water…that it’s easy for things slip my mind. (Many things) added to my distractions…
…They did let us in, and the exit pass to help with the lines was also a lifesaver.
We had a great day and a successful family outing minus my mom fail.
Thank you for the discounted tickets and making a call. Certainly, give them a shout out for being so flexible and understanding.”
Happy ending, yes, but one aspect of the situation, a phrase, continues to gnaw on my thoughts.
“We had a great day and a successful family outing minus my mom fail.”
To the Parent from Autism Connection:
You didn’t fail. You had a human moment; a completely understandable human moment, and you had the presence of mind to reach out to people who truly want to help.
That is the most important thing.
Pittsburgh Marathon 2022: Water
Autism Connection’s team joined forces with a slew of dedicated volunteers at the 2022 Pittsburgh Marathon.
It was 6:00 in the morning, and we were surrounded by water; gallons and gallons of water waiting to fill paper cups. There were heavy clouds weighted with water above us. Under Fluid Captain, Norm’s, direction, volunteers quickly assembled paper cups, filled them, then placed cardboard slats on them so we could layer the cups in stacks three layers high.
We were cold. Large droplets slowly slapped the tables. Norm handed out rain ponchos with a kind, insightful smile, “You’re gonna need this.”
We braced for runners and rain. Hand cyclists whizzed past so quickly some volunteers thought they were motorized vehicles. Then the first marathon runners glided by. It was captivating, and we seemed to lose awareness of the rain pellets.
The lead runners moved with seemingly little effort. Those that followed showed signs of struggle and determination as some reached for cups of water. Each captured cup was a triumph.
We were soaked. There was a quick streak of lightning and a thunderclap, and we braced for more. But when the clouds released, a thunderous rumble of cheering voices burst through the deluge. The harder it rained, the harder we cheered. And the runners pushed forward.
We faced challenges, white numbed hands, soaked shoes, road closures, barriers, and rain.
But that’s what the autism community does. We acknowledge and overcome obstacles. We circumvent barriers and face challenges head on. We accept the downpours and try to make the best of them, with the belief they will let up at some point.
And sometimes we cheer as we persevere.