Sales: 1-877-275-4907 Service: 1-877-275-4912Rentals: 1-877-275-4915

Dancing Wheels — One Dancer’s Passion Reaches Over 5 Million

DancingWheels-600For over 36 years, the Dancing Wheels Company has captivated audiences with performances ranging from classical to cutting edge. Eclectic works from nationally renowned choreographers infuse their programs with remarkable diversity, innovation and energy. With an extensive repertoire and a variety of production options, Dancing Wheels provides powerful performances for its audiences.

If dance is an expression of the human spirit, then it is best expressed by people of all abilities. That is the fundamental belief behind the Dancing Wheels Company & School. Considered one of the premier arts and disabilities organizations in the U.S., Dancing Wheels is a professional, physically integrated dance company uniting the talents of dancers both with and without disabilities.

Mary Verdi-Fletcher, the first professional wheelchair dancer in the U.S., is the driving force and founder of the Dancing Wheels Company founded in 1980. Born with spina bifida, Mary wanted to offer others with disabilities full and equal access into the world of dance. An almost unimaginable concept at the time, Mary’s vision and passion have since helped to revolutionize our very notion of dance — as well as what defines a dancer.

Through weekly in-studio classes and community outreach programs, The School of Dancing Wheels uses movement and performance in a unique approach to education and artistic opportunities. Individuals who previously found limited access to the arts due to physical, sensory,
or developmental disabilities enjoy inclusive dance and participatory learning with their disabled and non-disabled peers.

The Dancing Wheels Company’s inspirational mission has touched over 5 million people globally through performances, school assemblies, residencies and workshops. Millions more have enjoyed their artistry via appearances on CNN, Good Morning America, and the TV special Christopher Reeve: A Celebration of Hope.

Mary hasn’t stopped dancing. She is an integral
part of every performance. Her passion is unwavering and an inspiration to us all.

Be There – David Trude

David-Trude-Sand-Surf2Almost 20 years ago Dave Trude was injured in an industrial accident that shattered his T11 vertebrae. He instantly lost the use of his legs, but did not lose his adventurous attitude. Dave had sailed competitively since he was a teenager, but knew continuing this may be difficult from a wheelchair. He quickly learned about the little known sport of Blokart racing, and since then has become one of the top competitors in the world!

The Blokart was designed and developed in 1999 by inventor Paul Beckett. With a background in hang gliding, he was inspired to build a wind powered vehicle that was fun, fast and compact. His vision was a great success as the Blokart can reach speeds of up to 60 mph and be broken down to fit in a carrying case in a matter of minutes. The sport gained immediate interest in Beckett’s home country of New Zealand, and since then has picked up a following in South Africa and the United States. Unlike land sailing, the Blokart is completely controlled by the users hands, which made this the perfect sport for Dave.

In 2016 Trude’s talents were on display at the North American Championships where he took home second place! Just a few weeks later Dave brought home the bronze medal at the Blokart World Championships held in his home state of California. Unfortunately, Dave was unable to compete in the 2017 North American tournament held earlier this month due to a family emergency. However, he is already looking forward to a shot at first place in 2018!

This is How We Roll Fashion Show

fashion_show_fittedEarlier this month the Bryon Riesch Paralysis Foundation held their 4th annual “This is How We Roll Fashion Show”. The event was held just outside of Milwaukee, WI where almost 40 models, ranging in age from 5 to 70, showed off some of the latest trends in fashion. Current Miss Wisconsin winner Courtney Pelot and local celebrity Luke Bebeau hosted the show that was attended by almost 300 people.  This was their largest amount raised to date with over $35,000 being donated to help fund research as well as support the local community.

In 1998, while attending Marquette University, Bryon was injured in a car accident that left him paralyzed from the chest down. Following the accident, his family and friends pulled together to put on a fundraiser that would help with Bryon’s medical costs. This inspired Bryon to form the nonprofit in 2001, that over the past 16 years has raised over $4 million dollars towards the fight against paralysis.  Every year they award research grants to some of the brightest minds and best research facilities in the United States. They also help individuals in the local community with the cost of adaptive equipment, as well as scholarships for college tuition.

Bryon Riesch puts on several other annual events including a golf outing, bowling tournament and a team race for kids. He initially organized the fashion show to bring attention to issues such as inclusion, medical research and improving accessibility. As his organization continues to grow and gain national media attention Bryon is looking forward to helping even more individuals and researchers.

Check out the video below to see some of the “This is How We Roll Fashion Show”

Sam Schmidt: Reengineering Sam

Sam Scmidt-640At the turn of the century, Sam Schmidt was regarded as one of the rising stars in the IndyCar series. On January 6, 2000, Sam was involved in a wreck that left him paralyzed from the neck down. Ever since that day it has been Sam’s mission to get back behind the wheel!

With help from BraunAbility and Arrow Electronics, Sam was provided with a semi-autonomous Chevrolet Corvette C7 Stingray that he is able to drive with slight head movements. He was able to drive this car around a racetrack at over 150 mph!

The video below is a preview for a new documentary that highlights Sam’s journey. The film’s premiere is next week at the Cleveland International Film Festival. Congratulations Sam!

Click here to learn more about Sam’s Corvette

New Jersey Town Raises Funds for Accessible Van

Makayla-BlogThe city of Fair Lawn, New Jersey is a special place with a tight knit community. One of their residents, a young girl named Makayla, just received a new accessible van from MobilityWorks thanks to support from her town. The fundraisers were sponsored by a local company, United Real Estate, and several generous donations were made by local families. Even the mayor was involved and he was very excited to see Makalya’s new van. When the van was ready to be handed over, local reporter Wayne Robbins came out to film an edition of “Inside Fair Lawn”.

You can check out his video below:

The MobilityWorks  of Farmingdale team and Certified Mobility Consultant Donald Dufty were honored to be able to help such a wonderful family. Also a special thanks to everyone in Fair Lawn who helped Makayla receive her new accessible van!

Archives

Stay connected with our social networks
1-877-275-4907