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.
Abilities Expo is Back!
We 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.
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, an adaptive climbing wall and so much more for the kids of all ages! If something sparks your interest, you can find out how to engage year-round.
Must-See and Can't-Miss Expo Experiences
There is just so much to see and do at Abilities Expo. Here are a few opportunities you don't want to let pass you by.
Whatever your ability, YOU can conquer the completely inclusive climbing wall! With adaptive equipment and some expert coaching from Paralympian Mark Wellman, the summit will be within your reach.
This all-inclusive drumming activity provide just the full brain and body workout that you need. It will sharpen auditory processing, balance, coordination, strength and cognition. Plus it’s so much fun!
The tech out there is mind-blowing and can significantly improve your independence. But we know that price tag can be overwhelming. Attend the Help Hope Live workshop to unlock your fundraising potential.
Plan Your Visit to Abilities Expo
Don’t miss our life-enhancing exhibits, dynamic workshops and fun events for kids of all ages!
All Day, Every Day
Friday, October 1, 2021
Saturday, October 2, 2021
Sunday, October 3, 2021
Disability Services for Expo-goers
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!
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.
Large print versions of the exhibitor list and the events/workshops schedule will be available by request at the registration counters.
Assistance Animals Play Critical Role
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, October 1: 1:00 - 1:30 pm
Saturday, October 2: 12:15 - 12:45 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.
Learn the Latest Adaptive Dance Moves
Dancing is great for the body, and even better for spirit! Don't miss your change to get in the groove.
Dancing Wheels Company Performance
Presented by: The Dancing Wheels Company
Saturday, October 2: 2:00 - 2:45pm
If dance is an expression of the human spirit, then it is best expressed by people of all abilities. The Dancing Wheels Company will present works from our diverse repertory that unites the talents of dancers both with and without disabilities on stage. With a message of inclusion and accessibility, the Company will display the reach of artistic possibilities while celebrating the universal spirit of dance.
Episodes of the Soul by ZCO Dance
Presented by: Zazel O'Garra, ZCO Dance
Friday, October 1: 3:45 – 4:30 pm
Join us for a live performance of "Episodes of the Soul" by ZCO Dance. Zazel-Chavah O'Garra is the founder and Artistic Director of ZCO/DANCEPROJECT, a physically integrated dance company whose goal is to create performances that are witty, soulful, intelligent, powerful and intriguing. ZCODP seeks to encourage the integration and inclusion of people with disabilities in dance and in society, to present new, exciting, challenging, and inspiring contemporary dance performances to the widest possible audience.
Mary Six Rupert's Tap Dancing Hands Down®
Presented by: Tap: On Tap & Mary Six Rupert, Tap Dancing Hands Down®
Saturday, October 2: 3:15 - 4:00pm
Tap Dancing Hands Down is system of teaching, choreographing and performing traditional tap dance technique using special gloves, with regulation taps attached, and tapping on a wooden board placed in the dancer's lap (or placed on a table.) The class is structured like a standing tap dance class starting with warm-up exercises; single sounds progressing to multiple sounds; and tap combinations that lead to fully choreographed dances.
Never Miss a Chance to Dance
Presented by: Envision Dance Exchange (EDE) and Artistic Director, Susan M. Coutts
Sunday, October 3: 2:00 - 2:30 pm
This event will start with a live performance choreographed by Artistic Director Susan M. Coutts and featuring the members of Envision Dance Exchange (EDE). After the show audience participation and interaction with the dancers will be offered (& encouraged) so that EVERYONE has a chance to join in the fun. Join EDE as it awakens the spirit of dance in everyone!
Get in the Game with
Adaptive Sports & Fitness
The sidelines are no place for you so take your pick from a variety of interactive, adaptive sports. Not only will you get the blood pumping, improve fitness and build confidence, the fun factor is off the charts!
Presented by: Ability Fitness
Saturday, October 2: 4:15 - 4:45pm
Good fitness is vital to improving health outcomes for the disability community. This top-notch fitness program makes fitness accessible to all regardless of age, location, ability or skill level.
Adapted Wheelchair Basketball
Presented by: Henry Viscardi School Wheelchair Basketball Program
Saturday, October 2: 1:00 - 1:45pm
Come try out some adapted wheelchair basketball! The Adapted Wheelchair Basketball Program was created to give children of all levels of physical abilities the opportunity to play together as a team and to reach their highest potential as athletes. The game is structured to allow each child to have fun as independently as possible. The program teaches the players to respect each other's individual needs and limitations as well as providing guidance for learning individual skills, team skills and good sportsmanship.
Adaptive Climbing Wall
Presented by: Mark Wellman, Adventure Athlete, Paralympian, No Limits Tahoe
Sponsored by: Coloplast
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.
Presented by: Ashley Field
Friday, October 1: 2:00 - 2:30 pm
Saturday, October 2: 11:15 - 11:45am
Sunday, October 3: 2:45 - 3:30 pm
Inclusive Cardio fitness drumming with fun music and movements adapted for ALL ABILITIES!! The Drums Alive routine and sharpens skills such as auditory processing, coordination, balance, cognition, strength, fine and gross motor control while using music and rhythmical applications.
GRP Adaptive Fitness workout
Presented by: The Garrison Redd Project and Move United
Friday, October 1: 3:00 - 3:30 pm
This workout is designed for individuals with limited mobility that may require a wheelchair or assistive device. We will focus on building core stability and upper body strength. We will do some banded exercise, such as band pull-aparts, tricep extensions, banded curls and banded rows.
Katie's Komets Wheelchair Basketball
Presented by: Beth Cooke, Katie's Komets
Sunday, October 3: 11:45 am - 12:30 pm
Several of Katie's Komets basketball team will be coming to demonstrate wheelchair basketball skills, have a small scrimmage, and give you a chance to try out wheelchair basketball for yourself!
Qigong Can Change Your Life!
Presented by: Frank Hanley, Owner of Sihing Frank, National Qigong Association (NQA) certified qigong instructor
Friday, October 1: 12:00 - 12:45 pm
Sunday, October 3: 1:00 - 1:45 pm
Qigong (pronounced chee gong) is simple, fun and the benefits and results will amaze you. Challenged by facioscapulohumeral (FSHD) Muscular Dystrophy all of his adult life, "Sihing" Frank Hanley will demonstrate the daily qigong routine that he uses to help combat the disease. Come and learn how to strengthen your immune system, reduce stress, increase focus and concentration, improve breathing, balance and coordination.
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!
Explore how assistive technology can help you or your loved ones bridge the gap between ability and disability! The Showcase will feature an array of assistive technology for people of all disabilities to experience hands-on. In addition, the staff will offer suggestions and share their extensive knowledge to help determine the most appropriate technology match for your abilities and situations. Advancing Opportunities provides services and support to individuals with disabilities and their families so they can lead fuller lives at work, home, school and play. Their team of technology specialists will be available for free hands-on demonstrations of technology and tools. From low-tech tips to advice about sophisticated software, we can help you find solutions.
Get Directions to the Expo from any Location
From Route 1& 9 Southbound:
Exit at “Bonhamtown” onto Main Street, continue for ½ mile to the traffic light. Turn left at the traffic light onto Route 514 East (Woodbridge Avenue). Turn right at the Sheraton Hotel into Raritan Center. Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From Route 1 Northbound:
After crossing the Raritan River Bridge, get into the right lane. After passing, “Open Road Honda”, take the 3rd right hand exit for Route 514/Woodbridge Avenue. Follow Woodbridge Avenue for 3-4 miles. Make a right at the Sheraton Hotel into Raritan Center and Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From Route 287 South:
Follow 287 South to Route 514 West labeled “Raritan Center”. Follow jug handle on the right hand side to traffic light and then follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From the NJ Turnpike (NORTH AND SOUTH)
Follow the NJ Turnpike to Exit 10. Bear right after you go through the tollbooth, following Route 514 West to Raritan Center. Take the first exit marked Raritan Center and Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From the Garden State Parkway Southbound:
Follow the Parkway to Exit 129. Take Route 287 North to Route 514 West. Follow Route 514 West to the first exit marked Raritan Center and Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From the Garden State Parkway Northbound:
Follow the Parkway to Exit 127. Follow Highways 287N/440S to Route 514 West. Route 514 West is the first exit from this route. Follow Route 514 West to the first exit marked Raritan Center. Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From Route 35 & Route 9 North:
Follow Routes 35 & 9 over the Driscoll Bridge, bear right at the end of the bridge. Take the second exit labeled “Raritan Center/ Riverview Drive”. Get into the far right lane and take the Raritan Center Exit. Follow this route all the way down to the second light. Make a right onto Parkway Place. At then, make a left onto Raritan Center Parkway. Follow signs from here which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From Route 278 Westbound:
Take the Goethals Bridge onto the New Jersey Turnpike South. Follow the Turnpike to Exit 10. Bear right after you go through the tollbooth, following Route 514 West to Raritan Center. Take the first exit marked Raritan Center and Follow signs, which are posted throughout the Industrial Park for the EXPO HALL.
From Brooklyn & Staten Island Via Outerbridge:
Take the Staten Island Expressway (RTE 278) to Outerbridge Crossing into New Jersey. Three miles from the bridge are signs for Route 514, Raritan Center. Be in the right lane so you can exit at 514 West Bonhamtown. Follow signs to Raritan Center, exit there and follow jug handle to light. Follow signs for EXPO HALL located throughout the Industrial Park.
From Brooklyn & Staten Island Via Goethals Bridge:
Take the Staten Island Expressway (RTE 278) to the Goethals Bridge. This will bring you into New Jersey. Follow signs to the New Jersey Turnpike South to Exit 10. After Toll Plaza, Bear right and follow signs to 514 West/Raritan Center. Stay in two right lanes and follow jug handle to light. Follow signs posted throughout the Industrial Park for EXPO HALL.
From New York City, Philadelphia, or anywhere in New Jersey by train or bus:
Please visit www.njtransit.com to plan your itinerary. The closest train station to the New Jersey Convention & Expo Center is Metuchen Station. For example, if you are coming from Manhattan, log onto www.njtransit.com and find the Trip Planner at the top of the home page. Enter Penn Station New York in "Travel From," enter Metuchen Station in "Travel To," indicate your preferred day and time of travel, and click the Accessible option if appropriate. The travel planner will do the rest!
For maps and directions, please visit here.
Parking and Drop-off:
Parking is free and located all around the convention center property. If you would like to drop off any passengers before you park, please do so at the flag pole in front of the EXPO HALL.
Transpo to the Expo
Free Shuttle from Metuchen Station
Provided by Abilities Expo
Accessible, round-trip transportation from Metuchen Train Station to Abilities Expo will be provided free-of-charge to expo-goers travelling to the event by train.
Please note due to high demand you will need to sign up for return trip to the station at drop off. This is to ensure we are able to accommodate all returns in a timely manner.
Two to three shuttles each holding 2 wheelchairs plus 7 seated will do laps between Metuchen Station and the New Jersey Convention & Expo Center during the hours of operation. The ride will take approximately 20 minutes, one way.
The shuttle will feature an Abilities Expo sign prominently on the side door panel. Those travelling southbound from New York City should exit the rear of the train to meet the shuttle at the wheelchair accessible ramp at Pennsylvania Avenue and Station Place, pictured blow:
Passengers returning to Metuchen Station will be dropped off at Woodbridge Avenue and Main Street, pictured here:
NJ Transit’s Access Link:
Access Link is the public, paratransit service for people with disabilities who are unable to use the NJ Transit local fixed route bus systems. In order to use Access Link, you must first apply for eligibility. Click here for more information.
Access Link service is comparable to the bus in that it is available during the same days and hours as the regularly scheduled local fixed route bus service, including weekends and holidays.
Eligible individuals may make transportation appointments to the New Jersey Convention & Expo Center for Abilities Expo any day between the hours of 7:30 am and 4:30 pm by calling (973) 491-4224 [TTY (800) 955-6765]. Same day reservations can not be accommodated. Click here for more information on Access Link’s riding policies.
From New York City, Philadelphia, or Anywhere in New Jersey by Train or Bus:
NJ Transit provides accessible travel via rail and bus from all over New Jersey, New York City and Philadelphia. Please visit www.njtransit.com to plan your itinerary. The closest train station to the New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center is Metuchen Station. For example, if you are coming from Manhattan, log onto www.njtransit.com and find the Trip Planner at the top of the home page. Enter Penn Station New York in "Travel From," enter Metuchen Station in "Travel To," indicate your preferred day and time of travel, and click the Accessible option if appropriate. The travel planner will do the rest!
The following taxi services are also available to transport from Metuchen Station to the Expo:
- Independent/Metuchen Taxi: (732) 549-7777
- Available Care Medical Transportation (800) 219-4310
- Gold Medal Transport (732) 994-9929
- Helping Hands Service LLC (855_ 969-3527
Meet the Ambassadors
Local disability activists spearhead Abilities Expo's community outreach initiatives.
Meet the impressive individuals who have chosen to represent Abilities Expo to the Community.
Ian James Brown
Ian James Brown graduated from the United States Air Force Academy. Extremely active, he played football, rugby and volleyball as well competed in boxing, power lifting and martial arts.
Ian became a paralyzed veteran during his service in the United States Air Force.
Undaunted, Ian began a post-baccalaureate program to finish the pre-requisite courses in preparation for medical school.
A native New Yorker with Cerebral Palsy, Sarah resides in Westchester County, just outside of New York City. She is determined and driven to go places and do things that she is passionate about. She says, "I get things done because I have learned that nothing in life comes easy. Everything requires work. Sometimes the work is very, very hard, like physical therapy. It is difficult for me to walk because of my CP, but I try. I work on my muscles and coordination." Sarah currently works in the Marketing Department for Convaid Products, a pediatric mobility equipment manufacturer. She loves to spend time with her family and friends and her service dog, Edison.
"I am so thrilled to be part of Abilities Expo and love the strong sense of community it creates," she said. "I truly enjoy meeting all the people who attend the expo and have made great friends along the way!"
After receiving degrees in Sociology and Spanish (with concentrations in Latin American Studies and Peace & Justice) from Villanova University, Amanda Sullivan pursued her life-long dream of working with the less fortunate. Amanda was an aid worker & missionary for the better part of ten years. She worked with orphans, refugees and abused women and children, mainly in Latin America and The Caribbean. She has lived in Costa Rica, Chile, Panama, Jamaica and Mexico. She's worked with indigenous refugees in the foothills of Guatemala and with people with Hansen’s Disease (also known as "Leprosy") in Ecuador. She was a first responder during Hurricane Katrina & planned a wedding between two beautiful evacuees from The 9th Ward of New Orleans. She was taught how to shine in the face of adversity by some of the most spiritually-wealthy & courageous souls on the planet. Amanda left her heart with the people of Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. During her three and a half years there, she ran an orphanage for little girls, ages 6-14, and taught Spanish classes to children who speak Mayan. She loves the outdoors, sports, meeting inspired people, camping, animals & discovering new places.
Amanda came home to New York City from setting up another shelter in Mexico, for Christmas of 2008. While home, she was involved in two major car accidents within a six-week period. Despite suffering traumatic brain injuries & fracturing/breaking/injuring her entire body from head to toe, Ms. Sullivan's smile was left unscathed in her accidents. She took this as a clear sign to NEVER STOP SMILING NO MATTER WHAT. An athlete her entire life, Amanda has never been one to shy away from a challenge. The last few years have proven to be her biggest challenge yet. Amanda is mobile thanks to her forearm crutches and wheelchair.
Since her accidents, Amanda has met a plethora of incredible people with disabilities. Connecting with other positive people in this beautiful community has helped keep the fire burning inside of her soul. Ms. Sullivan has recently decided to become a wheelchair athlete, thanks to these new friendships, and just purchased her first handcycle! She's keeping her heart and mind opened to all of the lessons that can be learned through adversity. Inspiration is Amanda's motivation!!
National Disability Law Ambassador
Stephanie Woodward is a passionate Disability Rights activist and proud disabled person. She is the Director of Advocacy at the Center for Disability Rights, Inc. (CDR) a disability led, not-for-profit Corporation that works for national, state, and local systemic change to advance the rights of people with disabilities. Stephanie is also a member of ADAPT, a national grass-roots community that organizes disability rights activists to engage in nonviolent direct action, including civil disobedience, to assure the civil and human rights of people with disabilities to live in freedom. Stephanie has been arrested multiple times while advocating for Disability Rights.
Prior to joining CDR Stephanie worked as a litigator in Miami, Florida focusing on Disability Rights. Stephanie attended Syracuse University College of Law where she earned her J.D. with a certificate in Disability Law and Policy and her M.S.Ed. in Disability Studies. Stephanie previously worked for Senator Tom Harkin (IA) and assisted his Disability Counsel on the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions by researching, drafting legislation, and making recommendations for legislative action in regards to disability rights issues. Most recently, Stephanie, along with fellow members of ADAPT, assisted in drafting the Disability Integration Act (DIA) – a piece of legislation that, if passed, would affirm the rights of people with disabilities to receive long-term services in their homes, rather than nursing facilities and other institutions.
While Stephanie’s work spans across all areas of Disability Rights, she is particularly interested in deinstitutionalization, community living, ending violence against people with disabilities, and improving access in the community. She loves talking about legislation that will impact the Disability Community and helping others to become activists for Disability Rights. When Stephanie is not doing Disability Rights work, she can be found playing with her adorable nieces, taking care of her four cats, and eating copious amounts of cheeseburgers and onion rings.
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