What a long, fun-filled day we had at Hershey Park on Saturday! After meeting at the Westminster Community Center at 11 AM, the 16 Barrier-Free social clubbers piled into staff cars and rode to Hershey Park!
The first stop everyone made? The Chocolate World Tour, of course! The groups divided and followed the journey of how Hershey's chocolate is made--from cocoa beans to shipping. The ride included singing cows, talking chocolate, and a small treat at the end! It was a great way to start the day, and gave everyone a chance to see, smell, and learn about the chocolate-making process!
After Chocolate World, we made our way into Hershey Park. There was so much to do and see. Some of our more adventurous friends--led by our adventurous staff member, Britt, went immediately for the big rides! They chose to do the sooperdooperLooper, the first ever looping roller coaster on the East Coast. It’s a 57-foot tall coaster with one big vertical loop, followed by all sorts of dips, drops, and bunny hills. Other social clubbers, who love thrills, but not loops, rode the Wave Swinger, a classic ride that allows riders to fly through the air and see the park. The third group, those of us who aren’t big fans of rides all together, had some lunch while we waited.
Our second stop was Reese’s Cupfusion-- a video game-based ride where gamers are secret agents tasked with protecting the chocolate factory to ensure that the world never goes without the Reese’s Cup. Our agents did exceptionally well, and everyone came out with a smile on their face.
The entire group went together to ride the Monorail. With open windows, we were able to see everything as we rode above Hershey Park, ZooAmerica, and historic downtown Hershey. We even saw the actual Hershey factory! It was a pleasant ride, and a nice midday break before going back to coasters.
mThe sun started to set when we exited the Monorail, and the holiday lights came on! There were lights everywhere! Santa’s Sleigh could be seen on top of the Comet, being pulled by all his reindeer, and all the trees lit our way as we walked to our next adventure.
Britt led her thrill-seekers to the Sidewinder-- a coaster that goes forwards and backwards, for a total of 6 loops! The rest of us enjoyed Founder’s Way, a section of the park that holds amusement classics such as the Carrousel, the Tilt-a-Whirl, and the Scrambler. Skyview, a ski lift that brings riders over the park, was a fan-favorite. Social clubbers bought keychains, clothing, and candy for souvenirs!
Below is a short video of some of our friends getting ready to ride!
We finished our day back at Hershey’s Chocolate World. Exhausted from such an action-packed day, we found some tables and got some dinner. We exchanged stories and heard all about roller coasters and shopping! A few people asked if we were going to come back. We certainly hope so!
After dinner, we packed up and walked back to our cars. We continued sharing stories from the day, of friendships that were created, and the fun times that were had. We met everyone’s parents/counselors back at the Westminster Community Center and bid them farewell.
We are so happy with how the day went! We were thrilled to see the fun that everyone had. We are approaching the end of the year, and can’t wait for our next social outing in January at Meltdown DiY Art Studio in Eldersburg, Maryland!
Barrier-Free's November social outing was full of friends, delicious food, and wonderful times!
We were also fortunate enough to host this Social Club outing on a a Greene Turtle Funds with Friends fundraiser day! Barrier-Free earned 20% of the bill for anyone who dined at Greene Turtle in support of Barrier-Free.
Here are some highlights from the social clubs hours (6:30 - 8pm). If we missed you earlier in the day, we appreciate your support and presence.
Social Clubbers having an awesome time together!
Our waiter Kevin was incredible and such an asset to the Greene Turtle team.
Barrier-Free families coming out to support and take in the good times!
Pictured above: Actors Gary & John, and the Boyle and Nuzzo families.
Pictured below: Actor Jenny with her boyfriend, Richard, and support staff, Jenny Yingling.
Smiles all around from our Barrier-Free bunch!
Pictured above: Actor Geoffrey and the Wolf Family.
Pictured below: The Silverman Family.
Support throughout the community!
Pictured above: McDaniel Staff, Jill Millison & Melanie Conley, from the Student Accessibility & Support Services (SASS) Office and co-workers of our Creative Director, Britt Burr, supporting Barrier-Free's work!
Pictured below: Ernie & Darlene Burr, parents to Britt & Lauren, spreading their Barrier-Free love!
A special thank you to The Arc Carroll County for sending in so many clients to enjoy a meal together in support of Barrier-Free!
Pictured below: An Arc client enjoying her night out!
We'll see you at our next Social Club!
It was a brisk fall night when our Barrier-Free social clubbers met at the entrance of Screamland Farms, Maryland’s Premiere in-your-face haunt for our first Social Club outing!
Our first stop was the food stand. To warm up before the sun went down, friends filled up on chicken tenders, fries, and hot chocolate. Then the real fun began! Some of us sat around a bonfire to stay warm (and away from the scary). Britt took the rest of the group to the spooky things. Their first trip was through the Hayride of Haunts, where participants sat in a truck bed full of hay, and rode through the dark as monsters tried scare them. The group even saw Sam, a Barrier-Free actor, when he jumped up out of the cornfield. One social clubber, Grace, said that a crazy clown offered her a “haircut,” but it would entail cutting off her scalp as well! Needless to say, we're very glad Grace didn’t take her up on that offer.
Unfortunately, photos were not allowed on the Hayride, but trust us when we say it was spooky!
We also had a huge surprise while waiting at the bonfire! Langston, our newest social clubber and long-time friend, arrived! We were so excited to see him! After everyone caught up on the happenings of the hayride, Langston joined the crew on the walk-through of Barn of Bedlam. I personally can’t say what went on inside the house, but from the outside, we heard screams and saw a very large man with a bloody apron and chainsaw chase our friends out of the building! So scary!
Check out the video of everyone’s reactions below!
After the barn, some of us waited in line for a fortune teller. The rest walked around to see some of the haunted displays. Then our night came to an end. We waved goodbye to everyone and told them how much we were looking forward to seeing them again.
We are so grateful to everyone who showed up and made our first Social Club outing of the year a huge success.
Our November meetup will be held at The Greene Turtle in Westminster. It will also serve as a fundraiser to raise money for future programming! .
Social Club Forum Recap
On Thursday September 26th, Barrier-Free participants, families, counselors, and friends gathered at the Westminster Community Center to discuss and collaborate about the future of Social Club - while enjoying some ice cream!
Together we brainstormed a long list of potential social club outings.
Here's what was shared:
Over 35 in attendance at our Barrier-Free Ice Cream Social!
We also discussed some key points including - what we wanted to get out of Social Club, days, times, transportation, and cost.
What We Want to Get Out of Social Club:
**Unfortunately Barrier-Free is not a large service agency and does not own company vans/vehicles. We brainstormed some transportation options.**
Barrier-Free Staff getting set-up for Ice Cream Social!
Pictured left to right: Sandra Roll (Board Treasurer, Concessions Manager, mother to Britt & Lauren Burr),
Laura Stall (Barrier-Free Content Creator, Board Secretary)
In the coming days, we will announce the outings, dates, and costs for Barrier-Free Social Clubs in October, November, and December.
By announcing in advance, it is our hope that Social Clubbers and families can plan accordingly for dates, costs, and transportation.
Announcements will be made via email, website, and social media.
Make sure you're on our email lists and social media to be the first to hear!
It might seem relatively easy to think about how to treat people with disabilities with respect. But sometimes, we do things that we don't necessarily realize aren't proper etiquette. So what is the proper etiquette when engaging with the disability community? Read on!
First of all...people with disabilities are just that: people. The Golden Rule of "Treat Others the way you'd like to be treated" applies everywhere. There's no *special* way to talk to them. Just talk to them. But, there are some small intricacies to be aware of.
Person-First Language: The person comes before the descriptor. Therefore, you wouldn't say "a disabled actor." We say "actors with disabilities." This type of language emphasizes the person first, not their disability. Disabilities can be seen as part of someone's identity, but it's not their entire identity. Sometimes, it's important to think about whether a disability really needs to be addressed at all.
A second reason why this is important is to avoid generalizations. One may not mean anything if they were to say something like "The disabled" or "The autistics," but that erases the identities of the people whom they are actually talking about. "People with Disabilities," and "People with Autism."
Wheelchair Bound vs. Person Who Uses a Wheelchair: People are not bound to their wheelchairs. They are not restricted to wheelchairs. Wheelchairs are often actually quite liberating to people with physical disabilities, because it provides them mobility.
Wheelchair Etiquette: A wheelchair serves as a person's legs. Unless you have explicit instruction from the user or their companion (if the user is nonverbal), you should not attempt touch or attempt to move the wheelchair. If you want to offer help, offer it only if you can see that the user is struggling to do something. But remember that touching other people's bodies unsolicited is always inappropriate, and since the wheelchair often serves as legs, it's inappropriate as well.
Conversations: You can have conversation with someone who uses a wheelchair the same way you do with anyone else; just look at them and talk. Try not to bend over or kneel down just to talk to them--this can be patronizing--and if you can, sit to be at eye level. But don't take any extra steps that you don't need to; it's just a regular conversation! And avoid asking about the wheelchair--unsolicited questions like "So how do you do xyz?" are inappropriate.
Companions or Counselors
Some people with disabilities are frequently accompanied by counselors or companions. If you have a question for the person with the disability, just ask them. I personally have worked with children with disabilities, who were perfectly capable of verbalization, and had other people ask me a question about the child. If the intended target of the question can't answer for themselves, their counselor will step in. But don't immediately assume that a person with a disability can't answer for themselves! Even if they are nonverbal, talk to them, because they will very likely pick up that you are treating them like children, by talking about them to someone else instead of right to them. Address everyone!
Some Final Quick Tips...
Don't ask someone what their disability is.
Don't stereotype disabilities! While some people with disabilities will have shared qualities or behaviors, don't assume everyone with that disability will,
Don't assume every person with a disability needs the same type of accommodation.
If you have questions, the CDC offers this table of the "do's" and "don'ts" of language used for and with people with disabilities.
We at Barrier-Free work tirelessly to ensure we have an open, accommodating space full of respect for others. It's important to educate others, and correct them when needed.
We can work together to make a friendly world!
Published by Laura Stall
Copyright © 2019 Barrier-Free, All rights reserved.
Have you heard any of these terms before? Have you read them in a script?
There are so many theater terms used in the process of staging a production. Some are fairly straightforward: we know what a director is, what an actor is, and what a script is. But what about cheating out? What does it mean to spike?
Well, let's explore!
Let's start On Stage!
Stage Left: When an actor stands on stage, facing the audience, his or her left is referred to as stage left. All terms are relative to the actor.
Stage Right: When an actor stands on stage facing the audience, his or her right is stage right.
Upstage: When an actor moves away from the audience towards the back of the stage, they are moving upstage.
Downstage: When an actor moves to the front of the stage, towards the audience, they are moving downstage.
Centerstage: The center of the stage, from the actor or audience perspective!
Backstage: The area behind the curtain that can't be seen by the audience is backstage. This is where actors grab props, change costumes, or simply wait for their next cue.
Now on to Staging!
Blocking: Shortly after handing out the script, the director will start blocking. This is when the director, assistant directors, and stage manager will work out which actor stands where and when. This is no small task! The director has to make sure everyone on stage can be seen when they are on stage, whether they're delivering lines or simply providing reactions!
Cheat: To cheat is to make an action onstage look real, despite the fact that the actor isn't really doing said action. Most often, the term used is cheating out. Have you ever watched a production and noticed the actors are facing more towards the audience than each other? They're cheating out, because it's the best way to show the audience their expressions, and makes it much easier for the audience to hear!
Spiking: When the stage manager and stagehands work out where the set pieces will go during the show, it's called spiking. Usually the spots are marked with tape--a bright color so stagehands can see it in the dark between scenes!
Striking: Removing things from the stage is called striking. Usually, this refers to the end of every show weekend, when crew--and sometimes cast!--take all set pieces, props, and extras off of the stage and move it to either storage or, if the props are personal belongings, their houses! However, sometimes, if a scene calls for an empty stage, the director will call for the crew to "strike the set," meaning they'll just take everything backstage.
Tech Week: Tech Week refers to the final week before the shows. Rehearsals usually happen more often, and can last longer, depending on what the director wants. The reason it's called Tech Week is because the show is run through completely using all sound, light, and visual tech that the stage manager and director planned to use. Tech week is good for last minute changes, too! You never know how something translates to the stage, so it's important to be flexible!
Call Time: A call time is the time the director has the actors show up at the performance space. Generally, call times can seem way earlier than the actual performance, but it's because actors need to get ready! They need to get into costume, make sure their props are in place, and ensure they're all ready to perform!
Time Calls: Time Calls, not to be confused with the term above, are given by the crew, and tell the cast how long they have before the show starts. On in five!
Curtain Call: Take a bow! At the conclusion of a show, when everything is resolved, the curtain will close. When it opens, the entire cast comes out to bow. This is called a curtain call. During the curtain call, the cast will acknowledge the staff who help in tech, the music, and the backstage hands. It's very important that everyone is celebrated!
There is clearly a lot going on in the show process. We only touched on a short list of terms! We try to include everyone in the process, so it's important to share our knowledge so we can all grow together! Perhaps we'll do another list down the line, but for now, enjoy this quick post! More will come as the season begins!
Copyright © 2019 Barrier-Free, All rights reserved.