Today we’re celebrating World Down Syndrome Day. It’s especially notable that this year the United Nations will be observing this special day with us. What can you do today? Tell others about your experience with Camp PALS and share the gifts and abilities of those with Down syndrome. We at Camp PALS also want to take this occasion to say how privileged we feel to have met so many amazing individuals whom we can call friends, and to have the opportunity to continue working with you all.
(For more on World Down Syndrome Day, check out the NDSS website here.)
Because the fundraising was successful, this summer we will be able to offer four different PALS programs across the country, including the first ever Camp PALS West and two more PALS Tours weekends. Thanks to your efforts, we will be welcoming over 165 individuals with Down syndrome and over 220 volunteer staff members to be a part of these PALS rograms in 2012. We are so grateful for your passion and humbled by your commitment to our community. Thank you sincerely.
With great Camp PALS love,
- Jenni, on behalf of the PALS Executive Board
T.S. Eliot said April is the cruelest month, but he wasn’t training for a marathon in March. The March 18 LA Marathon is this weekend and the Armenta sisters are ready for it. If you want to follow their progress, see videos of Angela’s training group, or send her a note, check out her website here.
On a personal note, I recently ran a half marathon and a week later I was still walking like a duck. I’ve rarely been so exhausted or so relieved as when I got to the turnoff for half-marathoners, while marathoners like Angela and Becky continued on another 13+ miles. Keep up the training! We’re completely amazed at what you’re doing and everyone from Camp PALS will be cheering for you!
We got this note from Katie McCurdy’s family and we wanted to share the news so you could all tune in and catch her Hollywood debut:
Hello friends and family,
Katie has hit the big time!!! She has a small speaking exchange with Julianne Moore in HBO’s movie “Game Change"—premiering this Saturday, March 10th at 9:00pm (EST). Please click here to learn more and be sure to scroll down the screen to the credits - Cast - then Full Cast and Crew and you will see her name—Kathryn McCurdy as "Rope-line Kid Sarah.
You can see clips from the movie here (skip ahead to 4:23).
Stef Altman sent us this note about a PALS get-together in Florida and we wanted to share it with you. If you have any mini-reunions let us know about them—we love to hear from you and we especially love photos!
“I met up with Sam Piazza, Nick Altieri, and David Scott yesterday in Tampa. It was truly a mini Florida reunion! We got frozen yogurt and shot some hoops in Nick’s back yard. Just wanted to let you know!”
That means we’re already halfway to our fundraising goal, and we’re not even into the new year yet. Thanks so much to the many members of the Camp PALS family who have set up donation pages and the hundreds of donors who have made this such a successful campaign so far.
Halfway there means halfway to go, though, so here’s a request for everyone to make an extra push before the holiday season is over. You can set up a page or make a donation
Daniel de Zeeuw is a 5-time Camp PALS counselor and Chair of the PALS Counselor Board
We are incredibly excited to welcome the newest addition to the PALS family – Camp PALS West. The Camp PALS West program launches next summer in the Bay Area, allowing campers age 16 – 25 to experience the magic of Camp PALS on the west coast.
James Kuczmarski and Kate Fleming, and check out the blog later this month for more details.
With great excitement,
Jenni, Josh, Jason & Abby
The Camp PALS Counselor Board today announced the 2011-2012 fundraising campaign with a new, higher-than-ever goal of $50,000. Last year, the Camp PALS community really came together to help us reach our goal of $45,000, and this year we’re hoping they can do it again.
All money raised in the campaign goes towards covering the cost of Camp PALS and PALS Tours. This includes providing scholarships to all campers who need it. The campaign will help ensure that our programs continue to grow and improve, but we also want to make sure that money is never an issue for any camper who wants to attend.
This is why we’re asking for your help to make this campaign as successful as possible. Here’s how you can help us achieve our $50,000 goal:
1) Set up your own personalized fundraising page here (it’s fun and only takes a minute).
2) Tell all your friends and family about Camp PALS—classmates and teachers, co-workers and bosses, coaches and teammates, aunts, uncles and next-door neighbors. Talk to them about what Camp PALS means to you and let them know that every single $1 donated will make a difference to someone you know. No donation is too small or too large!
Get involved today and show us your Camp PALS love. Together we can continue to make Camp PALS the best summer camp in the entire world!
- Send it as an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Send a copy to: email@example.com
- Subject line: “Response to NIH Down Syndrome Research Database & Biobank RFI”
If you still have donations pending, please continue to get them. The official campaign will be over soon, but we can always do more to ensure the long term sustainability of Camp PALS.
Again, thank you all SO MUCH for all you do for Camp PALS. We are lucky to have such a caring, generous community of friends.
See you this summer!
Robert, on behalf of the Camp PALS Board
I thought you would enjoy this video of her performance:
15 Weeks to Go,
So in my capacity as the official weatherman of Camp PALS, I am happy to proclaim that Camp PALS is now six weeks closer! Well, ok, it’s still being held from June 12-18. But with the fact that we are now destined to have six fewer weeks of winter, it just feels that much closer! I, for one, can’t wait!
Wishing all of you an early Spring,
Over the years, the Camp PALS website has developed from a single, text-heavy page to an interactive, photo rich website. Today, we’re excited to unveil the next evolution of the Camp PALS site:
In April we blogged about Monica & David - a documentary featured at Tribeca Film Festival about two adults with Down syndrome who recently got married. The film was met with great reviews and ended up winning the Best Documentary jury award at the festival.
HBO caught wind of the film and will be showing it over the next few weeks– beginning tonight at 8:00 PM ET/PT. Additional show times are as follows:
- October 17th | 3:45pm ET/PT, 2:45pm CT
- October 20th | 8:30am ET/PT, 7:30am CT
- October 20th | midnight ET/PT, 11pm CT
- October 23rd | 9:30am ET/PT, 8:30 am CT
- October 26th | 2:15pm ET/PT, 1:15pm CT
For more information, visit monicaanddavid.com. We hope you enjoy the film as much as we did!
Last Saturday a group of campers and counselors joined thousands of other volunteers and participants for the National Down Syndrome Society’s Annual Buddy Walk in Central Park, NYC. We had a lot of fun and helped raise awareness and funding for the NDSS and its numerous programs.
If you are interested in other opportunities to get involved in the DS community, reach out to us or check out www.ndss.org.