According to Autism Society, about one percent of the world’s population has autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and more than 3.5 million Americans live with ASD. To support this community and increase global awareness, Autism Speaks celebrates World Autism Month every April. Throughout the month in the Hudson Valley, you may spot the movement’s signature puzzle ribbon, which symbolizes the complexity of the autism spectrum.
On World Autism Awareness Day, which falls on April 2, don’t be surprised if you spot local landmarks, buildings, and communities glowing in blue for the occasion. Individuals can get in on the “Go Blue” action too, of course. Pledge at Autism Speaks, then pull out your favorite blue shirt (or jeans), and take part in an effort that spans the globe.
Tuesday, April 2, 5-8 p.m.
Join the Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region at Glennpeter Jewelers Diamond Centre for a night of giving back. Funds from purchased food, drinks, and auction items directly support individuals on the spectrum at the Autism Society of Albany. During the event, discounts are available for a portion of Glennpeter’s selection of jewelry as well. Tickets begin at $30 and can be purchased on Eventbrite.
Sunday, April 28, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Stringham Park, Lagrange
Autism Directory Service, Inc. (ADS) is a registered 501c3 that provides caretakers with grants to lower costs of workshops, camps, and recreational activities. Grab your friends and family and join ADS at the Autism Awareness Community Walk at Stringham Park. Check-in begins at 9 a.m. and the walk starts at 10 a.m. Registration costs $10 per person and is free for both individuals on the Autism Spectrum and children ages five and under.
Month of April
The 11th annual E.A.T. for Autism features restaurants across the Hudson Valley including McGillicuddy’s, Sloop Brewing Company, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chipotle, Tomato Café, and more. These local restaurants donate a portion of their proceeds to Autism Directory Service to help give to families living with autism in the Hudson Valley. Check the program’s website to see which days during the month the restaurants are participating, then bring a printable voucher if needed and let your waiter know you’d like participate in the fundraiser.
Thursday, April 4
Swing by Mill House Brewing Company in Poughkeepsie for the launch of the new “68 schilling” traditional Scottish-style ale named Mr. Anderson. For each pint sold, a dollar will go toward the Anderson Center. Tickets costs $30 for Anderson staff and $40 for the general public.
Saturday, April 27, 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Do you want to feel the rush of leaping out of a plane? You can tandem skydive or participate in a virtual experience for a good cause at Greystone’s Leap for Autism event. Whether you join a team or support a leaper, your efforts will help Leap for Autism work toward its goal of $60,000. Sign up online for a chance to “leap to change lives” and begin the fundraising process.
Sunday, April 7, 2-4 p.m.
For National Autism Awareness Month, Susan Angeles’s new and recent art collages are available for purchase at the Rosendale Café. The artist, who lives in Ulster County and New York City, will donate thirty percent of her artwork sales to the Anderson Center for Autism. The exhibit, “Moving Mountains,” runs April 2-30.
Saturday, May 18, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
BluePath hosts its third annual Walkathon fundraiser at FDR State Park to support the mission of offering individuals a sense of safety and companionship with autism service dogs, which help reduce stress and strengthen social interactions. Donate and sign up online through May 17.
Outside the Valley
Month of April
Locations across the United States
Special edition blue wolf ears are available during the month of April for purchase with a $5 donation across 16 of Great Wolf Lodge’s locations. All the proceeds from the blue wolf ears campaign benefit Autism Speaks. If you snap a picture of you in the blue ears and use #GreatWolfCares on social media, Great Wolf Lodge will donate an additional $5 to Autism Speaks.