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 will be back
in October 2021
In the meantime, stay safe!
New products and tech. High-impact workshops. Fun, inclusive recreation including at all-inclusive climbing wall. Abilities Expo New York Metro has it all so register for free today! Here's what attendees are saying:
“We go every year. Can’t wait to go again and see all the new amazing things!”
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.
Join the world-famous Rollettes for some hip-hoppin’ dance fun! Get a front row seat for their dynamic performances, then you get to learn their signature dance moves and how they make it look so effortless.
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 in Disability Community
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
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
Under the direction of Founding Artistic Director Mary Verdi-Fletcher, The Dancing Wheels Company is recognized as the first and foremost professional physically integrated dance company in America uniting the talents of dancers both with and without disabilities. Since its inception in 1980, the highly skilled ensemble of stand-up and sit-down (wheelchair) dancers has reached over five million people worldwide with innovative mainstage performances, school assembly programs, guest appearances, masterclasses and numerous outreach activities.
Envision Dance Exchange Performance
Presented by: Envision Dance Exchange of Dance Innovations
Join us for a live performance by the Envision Dance Exchange of Chatham, NJ, an integrated dance and creative movement company for dancers of all abilities. This company of young artists performs dances that bring together individuals with and without disabilities, embracing everyone's ability to and passion for dance. Dancers create friendships, learn from one another, and have fun through movement. Following the performance, there will be a brief opportunity for questions regarding the company, opportunities to get involved, and a chance to join in the fun!
Every Body Dance!
Presented by: Center for Modern Dance
Join the Center for Modern Dance Education (CMDE) for a short performance featuring a physically integrated cast, followed by an interactive dance workshop for all ages and abilities! Stretch your body and your imagination through the language of dance. Founded in 1962, CMDE is an award-winning nonprofit organization with the mission to make dance available to everyone.
Fulfilling My Passion to Sing
Presented by: Free Players Ensemble
The Free Players Ensemble is a singing group of adults that are differently abled. These individuals have different challenges that make them unique to the world around them - causing them to shine because of their individuality.
The Rollettes Los Angeles Presents!
Presented by: The Rollettes
Join us for a high-energy, live performance by 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.
Tap Dancing Hands Down
Presented by: Mary Six Rupert, Tap Dancing Hands Down
Tap Dancing Hands Down is a tap-dancing troupe that is inclusive of those with mobility disabilities. This includes tap dancers and tap dancers with disabilities tap dancing with their hands. Join us for a demonstration!
Unlock Imagination with Face Painting
Treat your kids to a little magic at Abilities Expo! Let them indulge in the fantasy of transforming into a graceful fairy, a mysterious wildcat, a delicate butterfly, a swaggering pirate or choose from another inspired design.
Don't miss this wonderful opportunity for your little one to build self-esteem, develop a sense of self-importance and showcase their individuality. If your child has sensitive skin, don't worry. Only high-quality, non-toxic, professional, FDA-approved theatrical make-ups will be used to capture your son or daughter's fancy. And when you can convince them to transform back into their real selves, some good old-fashioned soap and water will do the trick.
Get in the Game with Adaptive Sports
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!
Drums Alive with Ability Beats
Presented by: Kimberly Ferrara, Inclusive Fitness Coach, Drums Alive
This drumming activity delivers fun as well as a full brain and body workout! It's ideal for all ages and all abilities! Ability Beats follows a 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.
Quad Rugby Demonstration
Presented by: The New York Warriors Wheelchair Rugby Team
Join the Association of Blind Athletes of New Jersey for demonstrations and opportunities to try blind sports! Goalball, soccer (5-a-side), beep baseball, and golf will be available! Join us for the fun!
Wheelchair Basketball Demonstration
Presented by: The Henry Viscardi School
The Adapted Wheelchair Basketball Program was created to allow 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 designed to allow each child to be as independent as possible while on the basketball court. The program gives the children a chance to have fun, to learn how to respect the abilities of their fellow teammates as well as fostering good sportsmanship and fair team play.
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!
Here is a past Abilities Expo line-up.
Check back 3 months out to find out what's in store for 2021.
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 (800) 955-2321 [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.
Sign up for the Abilities Buzz
Stay in the know on disability news and info.