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Royal Treatment From the Fightin’ Blue Hens

March 30, 2009

Quote of the Day: “This marks the 42nd state that the Darius Goes West crew has visited”—driver Daniel, to the crowd at DGW’s University of Delaware screening.

From Baltimore, we headed to Newark, Deleware for a screening at the University of Delaware.

The screening was organized by Nancy Weiss and UD’s Center for Disability Studies (where Nancy teaches), with the support of the College of Human Services, Education, and Public Policy (CHEP) and the Easter Seals Delaware and Maryland’s East Shore.

Before the screening, we went to our hotel, the Courtyard Newark-University of Delaware. The hotel, owned by the University of Delaware as a resource in its innovative hotel, restaurant, and institutional management program, was one of our very favorites that we’ve stayed in.

Tracy, Bill, and Rebecca, all pictured, made us feel right at home. They donated us our rooms, hooked us up with free dinner and breakfast at the hotel’s restaurant, and put a mini-RV on the front desk to sell DVDs. Also, employees watched the movie, and now Tracy is passing on DGW’s request for lodging sponsorship up to corporate Marriott. Their generosity is a great example of what can happen when people see the film and are moved to help Darius reach for his goal. Thanks guys!

The screening itself was held in impressive Gore Recital Hall, of Roselle Center for the Arts.

DGW still-photographer Kevin had a blast wandering the building and taking pictures of its many chandeliers (like the one above)…

striking tiling…

and even a live-feed from the stage on a TV in the hallway.

As the movie played, we talked with Nancy. Like D, Nancy is a big accessibility advocate, so that was naturally a major point of conversation.

While the United States is pretty much the consensus world-leader in accessibility, there’s still a lot of work to do: Nancy and Darius traded horror stories of lack of accessibility in public spaces.

As the movie ended, Nancy gave Darius and the crew a rousing introduction…

and the crowd responded with a rousing ovation.

During the question-and-answer session, there were a lot of questions about the mechanism for hosting your own screening. The answer: it all starts by contacting us and by checking our our online “Host a screening” kit.

After the Q-and-A, the Blue Hens (yes, that’s UDel’s real mascot!) stuck around to buy merchandise.

Then, we went to nearby Grotto Pizza for a late meal with some of the folks who helped Nancy organize the screening.

Check out crew-member John Harmon eating self-consciously as Kevin takes his picture.

Thank you, Nancy, Delta Gamma Sorority, Tracy, Bill, UDel’s Center for Disability Studies, CHEP, Easter Seals Delaware and Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Courtyard Newark-University of Delaware, and University of Delaware students, faculty, and community!


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6 Responses to “Royal Treatment From the Fightin’ Blue Hens”

  1. On March 30th, 2009, Tracy said:

    Hello Friends!

    What a great visit! How lucky are we to have had the opportunity to meet you? We can’t wait until you come back! You changed my team forever and you’re welcome here ANYTIME! Keep up the good work, there aren’t enough people like you in this world! You are making a difference.

    Your friend,

    Courtyard Newark at the University of DE

  2. On April 1st, 2009, Jacoba Smith said:

    You guys are a very strong example to me. Darius you help me want to go on with my day. I learn to be more grateful to live everyday and be who I am. I have written a letter to MTV asking them to post your video on air. I am praying that my wish will be granted. I love you guys. Thank you so much. God Bless You.

  3. On April 1st, 2009, Kristin said:

    Our freshman and sophomore students just finished watching “Darius Goes West” after a day of standardized testing. It was a great experience for them and for the teachers as well. Integrating film into our classrooms is great, but integrating films with a message, especially one as heartening as “DGW” allows our students to experience other lives, other struggles, and other triumphs. Thanks for making such a beautiful and moving film. As a part-time filmmaker and full time teacher, i appreciate the work you put into making this heart-felt tribute to a courageous young man. Keep on truckin’, DGW, and come on out to Phoenix when you get a chance! Cheers to you. .. Kristin

  4. On April 2nd, 2009, Kris said:

    My students have been incredibly moved by this film and the amazing people involved with this project. Imagine our surprise to learn that you were just at U of DE. which is right in our town!! We could throw a rock at the campus we are so close. I had to pause the film to tell my class and they are so disappointed we didn’t know you were local! I am always looking for ways to motivate our students to and this experience has truly motivated them to get involved. You will be hearing from us!!

  5. On April 3rd, 2009, mr.s.s said:

    i im so proud of all that you have done, you are a very brave and strong young man and you have shown every student that they can have the courage to do the same things as many other student…….once again im proud of you,best wishes and god bless…

  6. On April 8th, 2009, lucas said:


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