December 01, 2008
Quote of the day: “Ice, big time.”—Kent State football player, admiring Darius’s bling.
Next up, the crew headed to Kent, Ohio for a screening at Kent State University.
Our host, Sue Smith, took us out to dinner as soon as we got into town.
Sue works at KSU’s Student Accessibility Services. They ensure students at KSU have access to everything, from large-print and braille books to transportation and parking.
After dinner, Sue led us to the Student Recreation and Wellness Center, where we played basketball and exercised, then hit the pool.
The accessible pool at the center was incredible. It had a ramp leading into the water, and special wheelchairs that don’t get messed up when wet.
We had a great time in the pool. Darius has a lot of mobility in the water, and mild aquatic exercise gives many people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy a chance to work out and have fun.
We even formed the Darius Goes West Synchronized Swimming Team.
We figure it’s got a chance to be a solid fundraiser. People can pledge that every time Collin and John sync a pirouette, they’ll buy a RV.
The lifeguards at the pool were great, too. They even took some of the braver crew-members to a hill out back where we inner-tubed down the slope.
Fun, but soooooo cold!
The next day, we forayed into the wind and lake-effect snow and met up with Sue, who also braved the weather. We had a delicious lunch at the Schwebel Garden Room on campus, then spread the word about our screening.
Sue, who was inspired by our Tim Campbell-hosted screening in Akron, did an incredible job advertising the event: every table in the student center had a flyer about the film.
Student Accessibility Services had also been getting out the word. When we stopped by to meet with some of the faculty and staff, we were met with our volunteers for the night’s screening. They were even selling DVDs with an RV.
Next, as a special treat, Sue enlisted the help of KSU Director of Football Operations, Casey Wolf, to get D some time with the football players!
We met their entire starting offense. The guys showed us some plays, like the “Goslabi draw” here…
and the “Reverse-I’ll-Walk-To-Atlanta” here.
After the demonstrations, we split into teams and played a game of backyard-style pickup. The guys were great, making sure all of us got involved. Goooo, Golden Flashes!
Next, Sue led us to another KSU institution: Spirit Rock. She had cans of spray-paint ready for us. At first, we thought she was just really into vandalism…
but then she told us that various groups and organizations repaint the rock every few days. We at Darius Goes West never pass on a good marketing opportunity, so we made sure to put up our awesome site…
while crew-member Sam drew a picture of Darius. If we could have linked the rock to our on-line store, we would have.
As the snow picked up, we made our way to the Cartwright Hall Auditorium for the screening.
Despite the rough weather, a lot of folks made the trek to see the film.
Our volunteers were great; Student Accessibility Services made KSU a fun and rewarding visit…
and we are incredibly grateful to Sue for quarterbacking our stay at Kent.
Thanks so much, Sue, Amy, Mary, Lauren, Student Accessibility Services, Casey, the football team, and KSU! We had a blast!
18,565 DVDs sold!