• 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.

  • 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

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.

Emergency Preparedness Resource Booth

Presented by: Regional Emergency, Fire, and Disability Preparedness Experts from Government Agencies and Non-Profit Organizations

Location: To Be Announced

Artist Market

Meet representatives of disability and emergency management organizations who are active in emergency planning and are working to ensure the NY Metro region will be more resilient when disaster strikes. Regional emergency, fire and disability preparedness experts will be on hand share vital personal preparedness tips to help individuals with disabilities and their caregivers. Learn how to create realistic plans to meet your needs, maintain your independence, and recover from various emergency and disaster situations that could impact the Chicago region - including power loss events, snow storms, looting, fire and active shooter events. Visit the Emergency Preparedness Resource Booth and exchange your questions and concerns for free information and resources so you too can prepare and personalize your own emergency plan.

Friday, June 23, 2017

11:30am - 4:30pm

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Location: Booth #720

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Come and visit the Abilities Meet Up Zone for a fun place to relax and interact with peers. In the tradition of a town square, the Zone is the perfect place to meet other attendees, share experiences and get answers to your most urgent questions. Enjoy the photo booth and share your pics to Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #AbilitiesExpo.

12:00pm – 12:45pm

Boccia

Presented by: Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Adaptive Boccia

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 erst 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, pat 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.

1:00pm – 1:45pm

Power Soccer

Presented by: Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Power Soccer

Watch and learn as members of the U.S. Power Soccer Association demonstrate and train attendees on the techniques of power wheelchair soccer. Discover this very active and growing sport that is open to power wheelchair users of all ages. See how players combine their skills as wheelchair users with the speed and power of the chair itself, to participate in this extremely challenging game similar to soccer. Then try the sport out for yourself and learn where you can get involved in the local area. Learn more about power soccer at www.powersoccerusa.net and www.houstontx.gov/parks/adaptivesports.html.

2:00pm – 2:30pm

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Presented by: Auti Angel, Abilities Expo "Dancebassador", star of Sundance Channel's Push Girls

Location: Events Arena

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Dancing has fast become a popular activity for all abilities. Auti Angel, the Abilities Expo "Dancebassador" will share a dance demonstration with attendees. Then it's your turn to try some moves as Auti leads you in her one-of-a-kind workshop. Auti Angel, the pioneer of wheelchair Hip-Hop dancing, has danced with "Straight Outta Compton's" Eazy-E & N.W.A. along with LL Cool J and Ludacris just to name a few. However, she gets no better joy than dancing with others who also have awesome unique abilities. Dancing crosses the boundaries of age, gender, and physical ability; including individuals using both manual and power wheelchairs. You won't want to miss this unique demonstration and a chance to express yourself through movement! Learn more at www.autiangel.net and www.autiangel.com.

3:00pm – 3:30pm

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

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

Location: Events Arena

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

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.

4:00pm – 4:30pm

Service Dog Demonstration

Location: Events Arena

Service Dog Demonstration

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!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

11:15am – 11:45am

Service Dog Demonstration

Presented by: Kristin Hartness, Executive Director, Canines for Disabled Kids

Location: Events Arena

Service Dog Demonstration

Discover how service dogs are meeting the needs of people with many different disabilities. A service dog will be on hand to demonstrate how dogs work to achieve independence in various areas of people's lives – from picking up a cell phone to providing physical stability, even counting money! 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.caninesforkids.org.

11:30am – 4:00pm

Face Painting

Presented by: We Adorn You

Location: Meet Up Zone, Booth #720

Face Painting

Kids will delight at the opportunity to transform their faces! Stop by the face painter's stand for a complimentary face painting. Select designs only. Paints are FDA approved professional face paints and water. Just for kids age 18 and under. Based on availability. This is a popular activity and we recommend you arrive early to ensure a spot. Please note the line for face painting closes 30 minutes prior to the published ending time for the event. Learn more at www.weadornyou.com.

11:30am - 4:30pm

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Location: Booth #720

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Come and visit the Abilities Meet Up Zone for a fun place to relax and interact with peers. In the tradition of a town square, the Zone is the perfect place to meet other attendees, share experiences and get answers to your most urgent questions. Enjoy the photo booth and share your pics to Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #AbilitiesExpo.

12:00pm – 12:45pm

Quad Rugby Demonstration

Presented by the Chicago Bears Wheelchair Rugby Team and Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Quad Rugby Demonstration

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.

1:00pm – 1:30pm

Criptaedo and Self-Defense

Presented by: Paul Brailer, Criptaedo

Location: Events Arena

Criptaedo and Self-Defense

Discover tools for independent fitness and self-defense! Learn from Criptaedo creator Paul Brailer who has spina bifida as well as a black belt in Karate. Find out what you can do to defend yourself, using your body, your wheelchair and other tricks of the trade. Learn more at www.criptaedo.com.

2:00pm – 2:30pm

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Presented by: Auti Angel, Abilities Expo "Dancebassador", star of Sundance Channel's Push Girls

Location: Events Arena

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Dancing has fast become a popular activity for all abilities. Auti Angel, the Abilities Expo "Dancebassador" will share a dance demonstration with attendees. Then it's your turn to try some moves as Auti leads you in her one-of-a-kind workshop. Auti Angel, the pioneer of wheelchair Hip-Hop dancing, has danced with "Straight Outta Compton's" Eazy-E & N.W.A. along with LL Cool J and Ludacris just to name a few. However, she gets no better joy than dancing with others who also have awesome unique abilities. Dancing crosses the boundaries of age, gender, and physical ability; including individuals using both manual and power wheelchairs. You won't want to miss this unique demonstration and a chance to express yourself through movement! Learn more at www.autiangel.net and www.autiangel.com.

2:45pm – 3:15pm

Inclusive Dance Performance

Presented by: Marianne Kyler and The Dance Studio Ltd

Location: Events Arena

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.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

11:30am – 3:00pm

Face Painting

Presented by: We Adorn You

Location: Meet Up Zone, Booth #720

Face Painting

Kids will delight at the opportunity to transform their faces! Stop by the face painter's stand for a complimentary face painting. Select designs only. Paints are FDA approved professional face paints and water. Just for kids age 18 and under. Based on availability. This is a popular activity and we recommend you arrive early to ensure a spot. Please note the line for face painting closes 30 minutes prior to the published ending time for the event. Learn more at www.weadornyou.com.

11:30am - 3:30pm

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Location: Booth #720

Abilities Meet Up Zone

Come and visit the Abilities Meet Up Zone for a fun place to relax and interact with peers. In the tradition of a town square, the Zone is the perfect place to meet other attendees, share experiences and get answers to your most urgent questions. Enjoy the photo booth and share your pics to Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #AbilitiesExpo.

1:00pm – 1:45pm

Wheelchair Tennis

Presented by: Elpis Factor

Location: Events Arena

Adaptive 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

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Presented by: Auti Angel, Abilities Expo "Dancebassador", star of Sundance Channel's Push Girls

Location: Events Arena

Auti Angel's "FreeStyle Dance Workshop"

Dancing has fast become a popular activity for all abilities. Auti Angel, the Abilities Expo "Dancebassador" will share a dance demonstration with attendees. Then it's your turn to try some moves as Auti leads you in her one-of-a-kind workshop. Auti Angel, the pioneer of wheelchair Hip-Hop dancing, has danced with "Straight Outta Compton's" Eazy-E & N.W.A. along with LL Cool J and Ludacris just to name a few. However, she gets no better joy than dancing with others who also have awesome unique abilities. Dancing crosses the boundaries of age, gender, and physical ability; including individuals using both manual and power wheelchairs. You won't want to miss this unique demonstration and a chance to express yourself through movement! Learn more at www.autiangel.net and www.autiangel.com.

3:00pm – 3:30pm

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

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

Location: Events Arena

Miniature Therapy Horse Demonstration

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.

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