• Chicago Abilities Expo
    CHICAGO
    June 23 - 25, 2017
    Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center
    Fri. 11am-5pm | Sat. 11am-5pm | Sun 11am-4pm

Events and Activities make the total Abilities experience

Add some exciting new activities to your life? Abilities Expo showcases a wide range of events that not only entertain, they also give you the opportunity to try new things, expand your interests and discover ways to be more involved in the local Chicago area.

Here's what we did in 2016. Stay tuned for 2017!

  • Try a variety of adaptive sports
  • Transform your face at the face painters
  • Learn how to work with assistance dogs
  • Break out your dancing wheels
  • Find out how horses can help people with disabilities

There’s a lot going on at Abilities Expo! Be sure to also check out the Free Workshops

* Please note dates and times of events are subject to change without notice. Please check the schedule at the show for final times and events. Abilities Expo is not responsible for the materials or opinions of the speakers.

All Day, Every Day Activities

Adaptive Art Activity

Presented by Zot Artz

Location: Booth #116

Zot Artz

Art for all! Children of all abilities get to stamp and print to make their mark. Use adaptive art tools and shapes to create your very own exciting art creation! Parents will love the fun and creativity plus this activity also helps develop motor skills, concentration, social interaction, self esteem and more! Each child receives their own print to take home. Plan 5-20 minutes for activity. One print per child. While supplies last. Suggested donation of $5.00 per child to cover supply costs. For attendees under the age of 18. See photos and learn more at www.zotartz.com.

Adaptive Gaming Pavilion

Presented by: AbleGamers Foundation

Location: Booth #627

Wheelchair on the beach

Experience adaptive gaming equipment and programs, and talk with other video game enthusiasts. AbleGamers Foundation serves the more than 70 million members of the disabled community by advocating greater access to video games. They are a leader in the development of equipment, programs and services to those living with disabilities, hardships, and quality-of-life issues that are a result of chronic illness or trauma. It is our goal that all people, regardless of their disability, can use gaming as a tool for an enriched social experiences with friends, family, and the world at large. Learn more at www.ablegamers.com.

 

Artist Market

Sponsored by Artfully Gifted

Location: Booth #1013

Artist Market

Meet the region’s artists with disabilities and shop their eclectic mix of original, unforgettable artistry. From photographs and paintings to graphic design, their amazing works will be available for appreciation and purchase. Artist Market sponsor Artfully Gifted Foundation was founded in 2013 for the purpose of supporting young entrepreneurs with disabilities. With both a retail site and now an e-commerce website, they strive to provide a platform for these entrepreneurs to present their products to a wide audience.  Working with the Illinois Center for Rehabilitation and Education – Roosevelt (ICRE-R) they provide a training site for students interested in retail, as well as a means for their students to test-market their works of art and products made in their vocational training classes. Learn more at www.artfullygifted.org.

One-on-One Chess Instruction and Play

Presented by Illinois Chess Vets

Location: Booth #820

Adaptive Chess

Discover chess, a game that is accessible to nearly everyone and enjoyable. Numerous studies have examined the benefits of chess. Chess helps your brain to grow and people who play are less likely to develop dementia. Meet and learn from top players who also happen to have different types of disabilities. Challenge boards will be set up for attendees to learn chess basics and get to try the game. Learn more at http://ilchessvets.org.

Sound-Off, Stories and Selfies Booth

Presented by: United Spinal Association

Location: Booth #914

Soundoff

The Sound-Off, Stories & Selfies Booth offers expo attendees the opportunity to share their stories and perspectives on living with a disability and to learn more about United Spinal's Advocacy Alliance. This is your chance to take the spotlight and provide your personal experiences on video. Your insight and opinions will be used to strengthen the voice of our community and equip United Spinal with the tools to effectively advocate to improve disability rights at the state and national levels. Learn more at www.unitedspinal.org.

Friday, June 24, 2016

12:00pm – 12:30pm

Chess Class and Demonstrations

Presented by Illinois Chess Vets

Location: Events Arena

Adaptive Chess

Discover chess, a game that is accessible to nearly everyone and enjoyable. Numerous studies have examined the benefits of chess. Chess helps your brain to grow and people who play are less likely to develop dementia. Meet and learn from top players who also happen to have different types of disabilities. Attendees will learn chess basics and get to try the game. Learn more at http://ilchessvets.org.

1:00pm – 1:30pm

Boccia Demonstration

Presented by Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Walk and Roll Dance Team

Boccia – pronounced as “botch-ya” or “botch-ee” and also spelled as bocce – is a game by throwing a ball towards a target. It was first played by the ancient Egyptians with polished rocks. The sport is extremely versatile and inclusive - it can be played indoors or outdoors on a hard, flat surface, in either individual or team play, socially or competitively, up to the Paralympic level. With assistive devices, boccia can be played by anyone, no matter their ability. Come watch a demonstration game and give the sport a try for yourself.

2:00pm – 2:30pm

Walk and Roll Dance Team Presents!

Presented by: Walk and Roll Dance Team and Foundation

Location: Events Arena

Walk and Roll Dance Team

Kick off the day with a high-energy, live performance by the Walk and Roll Foundation's incredible wheelchair dance team. The dance team performs unique and captivating routines across the country as well as sharing their stories of adversity and how through determination and high spirits they've gone on with their lives to fulfill their dreams to dance. Following the performance it's your turn! Everyone will have a chance to get out on the dance floor and learn some moves. Follow the Team and learn more about them at www.walkandrollfoundation.org.

3:00pm – 3:30pm

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

Presented by Jodie Diegel, RN, MBA, Founder and President, Mane in Heaven

Location: Events Arena

Mini Horses

Curious about how horses can help people with disabilities? Bring your questions! Miniature horses have been gaining attention for their strengths as therapy animals. This is your chance to meet some "mini's"! Learn why they are called horses (and not ponies) as well as the types of tasks they can perform as service and therapy animals. Time is included to meet the equine staff who will be visiting with their human counterparts. Learn more at www.maneinheaven.org and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mane-in-Heaven.

4:00pm – 4:30pm

Service Dog Demonstration

Presented by Barking Angels Service Dog Foundation

Location: Events Arena

Mini Horses

Discover how service dogs are meeting the needs of people with many different disabilities. Several service dogs will be on hand to demonstrate the how they work to achieve independence in various areas of people's lives. Find out how these dogs can help with many different types of disability, including vision and hearing loss, mobility, autism and seizure/allergy alert. Learn how funding works to acquire a dog and what to expect from your service dog provider organization. Bring your questions! Learn more at www.barkingangelsservicedogfoundation.org.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

11:45am – 12:45pm

Quad Rugby Demonstration

Presented by the Chicago Bears Wheelchair Rugby Team and Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Quad Rugby at the Chicago Expo

Competitive wheelchair rugby is one of the fastest growing wheelchair sports in the world. The Chicago Bears will join us to demonstrate this exciting game - a cross between wheelchair basketball, ice hockey, and soccer. Any individual with impairments in three or more extremities may be eligible to play. This may include, but not limited to: spinal cord injury, post polio and cerebral palsy. Wheelchair rugby is played with four players on a team on a basketball court. The main message of quad rugby is "Smashing Stereotypes One Hit at a Time" and the sport has proven to be a life changer for those who start playing it. Learn more at www.ric.org and www.elpisfactor.com.

12:00pm – 3:00pm

Face Painting

Presented by: We Adorn You

Location: Near Events Arena

Face Painting at the Chicago Expo

Kids will delight at the opportunity to transform their face into a beautiful butterfly, a swashbuckling pirate, or a sweet kitten! Stop by the face painter's stand for a complimentary face painting. Select designs only. Paints are FDA approved professional face paints and wash off with water. Just for kids age 18 and under.

Learn more at www.weadornyou.com.

1:00pm – 1:30pm

Boccia Demonstration

Presented by Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Walk and Roll Dance Team

Boccia – pronounced as “botch-ya” or “botch-ee” and also spelled as bocce – is a game by throwing a ball towards a target. It was first played by the ancient Egyptians with polished rocks. The sport is extremely versatile and inclusive - it can be played indoors or outdoors on a hard, flat surface, in either individual or team play, socially or competitively, up to the Paralympic level. With assistive devices, boccia can be played by anyone, no matter their ability. Come watch a demonstration game and give the sport a try for yourself.

2:00pm – 2:30pm

Walk and Roll Dance Team Presents!

Presented by: Walk and Roll Dance Team and Foundation

Location: Events Arena

Walk and Roll Dance Team

Kick off the day with a high-energy, live performance by the Walk and Roll Foundation's incredible wheelchair dance team. The dance team performs unique and captivating routines across the country as well as sharing their stories of adversity and how through determination and high spirits they've gone on with their lives to fulfill their dreams to dance. Following the performance it's your turn! Everyone will have a chance to get out on the dance floor and learn some moves. Follow the Team and learn more about them at www.walkandrollfoundation.org.

4:00pm – 4:30pm

Service Dog Demonstration

Presented by Barking Angels Service Dog Foundation

Location: Events Arena

Mini Horses

Discover how service dogs are meeting the needs of people with many different disabilities. Several service dogs will be on hand to demonstrate the how they work to achieve independence in various areas of people's lives. Find out how these dogs can help with many different types of disability, including vision and hearing loss, mobility, autism and seizure/allergy alert. Learn how funding works to acquire a dog and what to expect from your service dog provider organization. Bring your questions! Learn more at www.barkingangelsservicedogfoundation.org.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Check back! More events to be added!

12:00pm - 12:30pm

Inclusive Dance Performance

Presented by: Marianne Kyler and The Dance Studio Ltd

Location: Events Arena

Inclusive Dance in Chicago

Young dancers from The Dance Studio Ltd will present a selection of inclusive dance performances followed by a dance opportunity for attendees. This Chicago region dance studio sees dance as a way to encourage imagination and creativity, as well as a means to encourage discipline, self-esteem and self-confidence. They offer classes for all ages and abilities, including classes for children with disabilities that focus on each child’s specific needs. Learn more at www.dancestudioltd.com.

12:00pm – 3:00pm

Face Painting

Presented by: We Adorn You

Location: Near Events Arena

Face Painting for Kids

Kids will delight at the opportunity to transform their face into a beautiful butterfly, a swashbuckling pirate, or a sweet kitten! Stop by the face painter's stand for a complimentary face painting. Select designs only. Paints are FDA approved professional face paints and wash off with water. Just for kids age 18 and under.

Learn more at www.weadornyou.com.

12:45pm – 1:45pm

Wheelchair Tennis Demonstration

Presented by Elpis Factor

Location: Near Events Arena

Wheelchair Tennis

Local Chicago area players will be on hand to demonstrate wheelchair tennis and teach attendees who would like to learn more. Wheelchair Tennis is one of the fastest growing wheelchair sports in the world! It follows the same rules as able-bodied tennis, except the wheelchair tennis player is allowed two bounces of the ball. Adaptive sports like wheelchair tennis offer people with all types of disabilities an outlet to play sports competitively and in recreational programs. Learn more at www.elpisfactor.com.

2:00pm – 2:30pm

Walk and Roll Dance Team Presents!

Presented by: Walk and Roll Dance Team and Foundation

Walk and Roll Dance Team

Kick off the day with a high-energy, live performance by the Walk and Roll Foundation's incredible wheelchair dance team. The dance team performs unique and captivating routines across the country as well as sharing their stories of adversity and how through determination and high spirits they've gone on with their lives to fulfill their dreams to dance. Following the performance it's your turn! Everyone will have a chance to get out on the dance floor and learn some moves. Follow the Team and learn more about them at www.walkandrollfoundation.org.

3:00pm – 3:30pm

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

Presented by Jodie Diegel, RN, MBA, Founder and President, Mane in Heaven

Location: Events Arena

Mini Horses

Curious about how horses can help people with disabilities? Bring your questions! Miniature horses have been gaining attention for their strengths as therapy animals. This is your chance to meet some "mini's"! Learn why they are called horses (and not ponies) as well as the types of tasks they can perform as service and therapy animals. Time is included to meet the equine staff who will be visiting with their human counterparts. Learn more at www.maneinheaven.org and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mane-in-Heaven.

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