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Skateboard Park Offers Accessible Skate During Disability Awareness Month

Emily Reed, WNIJ

A DeKalb skateboarding park recently opened its doors as part of a national effort to promote disability awareness. 

According to the Department of Labor, National Disability Employment Awareness Month is observed each October and "celebrates the contributions of workers with disabilities and educates about the value of a workforce inclusive of their skills and talents."

Advocates around the country are spearheading different events as part of the month which seeks disability inclusion.

Ariel Ries, owner of Fargo Skateboarding in DeKalb, says she wanted to give people with disabilities a safe place to experience the indoor skate park.

“So, something that might be intimidating if there’s a lot of people using it – I wanted them to have this time to come and try it,” Ries said.

Credit Emily Reed, WNIJ
Caprisha Shamira Williams participates in the accessible skate held in DeKalb

Caprisha Shamira Williams came out to support the cause. She has Cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, but says it doesn’t stop her from participating in a variety of activities.   

“You know, obviously, I’m not going to run a 10K,” she said. “But you don’t have to worry about that. There are other opportunities – there are other things you can do – there’s a way to do everything.”

There are a number of events scheduled around northern Illinois this month. The DeKalb Public Library will host a poetry night Tuesday night to articulate disability, mental health, and neuro-diversity.