03 Jun Everybody in Mt. Airy
Our friends at the Cincinnati Parks Foundation are delighted to announce a new partnership with Luke5Adventures, Cincinnati Parks, and former Park Board Commissioner and accessibility advocate, Kevin Flynn. The new, free program called “Everybody in Mt. Airy” will make it possible for those with disabilities to safely enjoy the benefits of being outdoors like never before.
“I love Cincinnati and one of the great things about this city is our wonderful Cincinnati Parks system. However, it’s been sort of limited since I’ve been in a wheelchair. It’s not easy to go on an unimproved trail. So, this mission is the dream realized of bringing the parks to everyone,” said Kevin Flynn, former Cincinnati Park Board Commissioner.
The all-terrain wheelchairs, called “Rosies,” allow trained volunteers to move “hikers” of any ability over rough trails, down staircases, across creek beds, and much more. For many participants, these chairs will make it possible to be immersed in nature, in ways that would be otherwise impossible. For some participants, this may their first time out on an unpaved hiking trail, surrounded by the forest.
“This program allows persons with disabilities the ability to see, touch, and feel things in nature that were never before available to them. Our desire with this new partnership is to bring these opportunities to so many more,” said Kevin Schwieger, Founder and President of Luke5Adventures.
All hikes are roughly one hour long and depart from Everybody’s Treehouse in Mt. Airy Forest. A former Cincinnati Parks Foundation project, this treehouse is universally accessible and allows everyone, regardless of ability, to experience the forest’s canopy.
“On behalf of the Cincinnati Parks Foundation, we are delighted to bring Everybody at Mt. Airy with Luke5Adventures to your Cincinnati Parks. Creating inclusive programming is an initiative our Foundation is extremely passionate about. We are also most grateful to former Park Board Commissioner Kevin Flynn for donating a new ‘Rosie’ chair to use for the program in Cincinnati Parks,” said Jennifer Spieser, CPF Executive Director.
Kara Kish, Cincinnati Parks Director added, “We believe, very strongly, that our Cincinnati Parks are meant to be enjoyed by everyone. We are incredibly proud to host this amazing program creating experiences for children and families who may have never been able to encounter nature in this way before. Our deepest thanks go to Luke5Adventures and the Cincinnati Parks Foundation for making this happen,”
Anyone with a disability and their family is welcomed to join the program, which occurs once a month. Current hikes are scheduled for: May 8, June 5, July 17, August 14, September 11, and October 9. Registration is required and space is limited. Those interested in the program can learn more and sign up at: cincinnatiparksfoundation.org/programs/everybody-in-mt-airy/