Abilities ambassadors hale from all corners of the disability community. They are leaders, writers, artists, entrepreneurs, veterans, athletes, celebrities, advocates and parents to special needs kids, and they may have just the answers you are looking for.
If you have a story to tell to the disability community, then we want to hear it! It could be an informative article on the range of subjects featured to the left. It could be meaningful advice base on your wealth of experience. It could be serious or entertaining and conveyed through words, video or images. It just has to be your story.
WWe can't wait to show you all of products, technologies and resources to help you up your game! Buckle up for an all-inclusive climbing wall, a slew of adaptive sports, fun dance opportunities, info-packed workshops and more. It's all free so join us and register today. (Then we'll all go out for BBQ!)
Coronavirus Update: As we welcome you back to live, in-person Abilities Expos, please note that we will follow all CDC, state, local and venue protocols regarding COVID-19 safety measures. We also encourage attendees to mask up for their own safety and the safety of others.
Abilities Expo brings you thousands of game-changing products, services and technologies all under one roof. Regardless of the type and level of your disability, we strive to provide the resources you need to exceed your own expectations and thrive.
Attend free, info-packed workshops on issues that matter to you. Get tips on financial planning, making your home more accessible, traveling with a disability and how medical cannabis can help a variety of conditions. There's more, check it out!
Find your new favorite pastime at Abilities Expo! Try such inclusive activities as adaptive sports, dance, assistance animals and so much more for the kids of all ages! If something sparks your interest, you can find out how to engage year-round.
In our efforts to ensure a positive show experience, Abilities Expo endeavors to accommodate the disability community with a host of special show services including loaner scooters, sign language interpretation, free wheelchair, captioning services for the workshop and so much more!
Special Show Services for People with Disabilities
For those who would like assistance in getting around the show, free loaner scooters are available during show hours on a first come, first served basis. Is your wheelchair in need of a tune-up? Look to the Free Wheelchair Repair Pavilion for minor maintenance.
American Sign Language interpretation services will be available for those need translation. Workshops will also offer CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) services where everything spoken by the presenter will be captioned on a large screen.
Animals have become an intrinsic part of the disability community. Some are essential to the healing process, while others help their human partners become more independent.
All About Service Dogs
Presented by: Kristin Hartness, Executive Director, Canines for Disabled Kids
Friday, December 3: 1:00 - 1:30 pm
Saturday, December 4: 11:15 am - 12:00 pm
Sunday, December 5: 11:45 am - 12:30 pm
Discover how service dogs are meeting the needs of people with many different disabilities. Find out the many ways service dogs can help achieve independence in people's lives – from picking up a cell phone to providing physical stability, even counting money! Service dogs are available for many different types of disability, including vision and hearing loss, mobility, autism and seizure/allergy alert. Learn about funding support, the process to acquire a dog, and what to expect from your service dog provider organization.
Friday, December 3: 3:00 - 3:30 pm
Saturday, December 4: 1:00 - 1:45 pm
Sunday, December 5: 1:00 - 1:45 pm
Join us for a high-energy, live performance by Conner & Samantha of the Rollettes Los Angeles, an incredible wheelchair dance team. The dance team performs unique and captivating routines across the globe 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!
The sidelines are no place for you so take your pick from a variety of interactive, adaptive sports. You’ll get the blood pumping, improve fitness and build confidence
…and the fun factor is off the charts!
Presented by: Mark Wellman, Adventure Athlete, Paralympian, No Limits Tahoe
Sponsored by: Coloplast
All Day, Every Day
The Adaptive Climbing Wall is open to people of all abilities! There is no better person to learn adaptive climbing from than Mark Wellman of No Limits. Mark is a former Paralympian and Park Ranger, and he is the first paraplegic to summit El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite National Park. Come climb the wall using Mark's innovative adaptive climbing techniques and adaptive sports gear. Climbing has tremendous benefits—building confidence, developing goal-setting skills, increasing strength and improving flexibility.
Intro to Chair Yoga (13+)
Presented by: Jackie Gadd, BYOMYOGA
Friday, December 3: 12:00 - 12:45 pm
Saturday, December 4: 4:00 - 4:45 pm
Our adult class will incorporate stretching and strengthening, with explanations of body-appropriate adjustments and/or use of applicable props. We'll begin with centering, flow through easy-to-follow (and remember) sequences and close with meditation/relaxation to refresh both the body and mind.
Presented by: KidNetic Games
Saturday, December 4: 2:00 - 2:45 pm
The Kid-netic Games is an annual weekend athletic event for students ages 2-22 (if still attending high school) with physical impairments such as amputations, spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, dwarfism and other orthopedic impairments.
Rise Adaptive Sports
Presented by: Rise Adaptive Sports and Move United
Friday, December 3: 3:45 - 4:45 pm
Saturday, December 4: 12:15 - 12:45 pm
Rise Adaptive Sports offers an array of adaptive sports opportunities. Their mission is to assist persons with physical challenges to Recover, Inspire, Succeed and Empower themselves and others by providing inclusive adaptive recreational sports programs. Join them for a Sitting Volleyball and Quad Rugby demonstration at the Expo.
Roll with the Wind: Ride-Along Racing Experience
Presented by: Ainsley’s Angels of America
All Day, Every Day
Test-drive the Ainsley's Angels athletic ride-along experience! For anyone who would otherwise be unable to experience endurance events, Ainsley's Angels creates "Angel Teams" by pairing Athlete riders with runners to compete in endurance events and road races. The Athlete rider is the core of the team and pulls the runner across the finish line with smiles, cheers and immeasurable inspirational spirit.
Presented by: RISE Adaptive Sports
All Day, Every Day
Come on out for your chance to try out all sorts of adaptive sports! Sit volleyball, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby, indoor soccer, handcycling and more!
Presented by: Rise Adaptive Sports
Friday, December 3: 1:45 - 2:45 pm
Sunday, December 5: 2:45 - 3:30 pm
Join us to try out WCMX (wheelchair skate). We will have the ramps, chairs, helmets and knee & elbow pads, you just need to bring yourself! Please note this event was designed for children
Wheelchair Basketball Demonstration
Presented by: UT-Arlington Movin Mavs & Move United
Sunday, December 5: 2:00 - 2:30 pm
Come check out some wheelchair basketball action! This fun adapted sport gives disabled athletes of all levels of physical abilities the opportunity to play together as a team and to reach their highest potential as athletes.
Presented by: Louis Nicolosi, coach of the Houston Apollos Wheelchair Lacrosse program & Physical Therapist at TIRR Memorial Hermann
Saturday, December 4: 3:00 - 3:45 pm
Lacrosse is a fast-paced, full contact sport utilizing numerous skills to catch, carry, pass and shoot a ball into a goal using a lacrosse stick. It is a great off-season companion sport to basketball with the season running between the months of May to August. Wheelchair lacrosse offers the complete package—the speed of basketball, the skill of hockey and the toughness of rugby. Come out and try it for yourself!
AT Showcase: Interact with Tomorrow’s Technology Today
Explore how assistive technology can help you or your loved
ones bridge the gap between ability and disability!
Assistive Technology Showcase
The Abilities Expo AT Showcase, sponsored by the Texas Technology Access Program (TTAP) of the University of Texas at Austin, is your chance to explore how assistive technology can help you or your loved ones bridge the gap between ability and disability!
TTAP is dedicated to increasing the access for people with disabilities to AT that offers greater control over their surroundings and an enhanced ability to function independently. They develop programs to improve access, advocacy and awareness of assistive technology to meet the needs of Texans with disabilities.
The area's most celebrated artists with disabilities will feature an eclectic mix of original, unforgettable artistry. From paintings to photos and more, their amazing works will be available for appreciation and purchase.
Art Spark Texas challenges perceptions of how people contribute by creating an arts-inspired, inclusive community of individuals with diverse abilities. They are an expert resource on inclusive arts—creating and maintaining an accessible and open community where everyone can participate. Their goal is to provide support and training to the public, enhance personal growth, and offer Texans access to the creative work of people with diverse abilities.
Stay on the service road approximately half a mile.
Dallas Market Hall will be on your right.
Directions | From the Tollway:
Take the Dallas North Tollway South to the end.
Once through the toll plaza, exit immediately on Wycliff.
Follow Wycliff until it dead ends into Harry Hines Blvd.
Take a right on Harry Hines and stay in the left lane.
At the next light, take a left onto Market Center Blvd.
Dallas Market Hall will be the closest building on your right.
Directions | From Fort Worth:
Take IH30 East through Arlington, Grand Prairie, and into Dallas.
Once you see the downtown skyline, get into the left lane and prepare to exit on 35E North (Stemmons Freeway).
Once on Stemmons, proceed to Market Center Blvd.
Exit Market Center Blvd.
Stay on the service road and proceed through the light across Market Center Blvd.
Dallas Market Hall is immediately on your right.
Directions | From Irving:
Take 183 East or 114 East to the merge with 35E South at Texas Stadium.
Once on 35E South, go approximately 7 miles to Market Center Blvd.
Exit Market Center Blvd.
Take a left.
Go under the bridge and take another immediate left to stay on the service road.
Dallas Market Hall is directly on your right.
Parking and Drop off
Parking is free. Spaces are located directly in front of the Hall's entrance and in the adjacent 3-level parking garage. If you would like to drop off any passengers before you park, please do so at the front of the hall before proceeding to park.
Transpo to the Expo
Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART)
Visit Dart.org to plan your trip to Abilities Expo.
Local disability activists spearhead Abilities Expo's community outreach initiatives.
Meet the impressive individuals who have chosen to represent Abilities Expo to the Community.
Gina Jenkins McWilliams
Gina lost her right leg below the knee as the result of a car accident 16 years ago. As she delved into the world of adaptive sports, she was continually in search of volleyball opportunities for women with disabilities. She finally found them when asked to attend the first ever women’s sitting volleyball camp, held at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO, in February 2003.
Dylan Rafaty of Plano serves as the Vice Chair of the Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities. Dylan is currently Director of Business Development & Partnerships for C-Hear, Inc., a company that developed a way to make images accessible and heard. He is Founder / Chief Navigation Officer for DylanListed, LLC, a transition and support services provider for people with disabilities and veterans. Dylan also proudly sits on seven boards/committees benefiting local school districts, nonprofits and community organizations.
I went to SMU, Meadows School of the Arts, on a music scholarship pursuing a degree in Vocal Performance and Music Education, hoping to be a professional opera singer. My life took a drastic turn in 1997 when I was hit by a car in front of my childhood home, which altered my path as a classically trained opera singer. This experience, as well as other life changes I experienced as a teenager, made me re-think what I was going to do with my life.