Hillside Special Swim Meet

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It was a hot but festive day when Special Olympians and local swim club members gathered for the 22nd annual JoAnn Young Special Olympics Swim Meet at Staten Island’s Hillside Swim Club, on Saturday, July 16.

“It was so hot even the spectators wanted to jump in,” said swimmer John Buttermark. “The pool was crowded with swimmers from all over the city. If it was any more crowded, we would be on top of each other’s heads, but we swam in our lane with our goggles.”

Hosted by Special Olympics Staten Island, the event included Special Olympians from On Your Mark, Special Olympics Manhattan, Special Olympics Queens, Special Olympics Hudson County, Special Olympics Bronx and Swim Kidz from Wagner Aquatics.

The Knights of Columbus marched in with the athletes that also included interclub swimmers from host Hillside Swim Club, Village Greens Swim Club, Great Kills Swim Club, and South Shore Swim Club.

Richard Salinardi, executive director of Lifestyles, and Dr. Robert Griswold, vice chair of Lifestyles board, thanked the sponsors and all the groups participating for their support.

The enthusiastic St. Joseph-St. Thomas Cheerleaders encouraged all the swimmers to do their best.

“I medaled in the individual medley – 50 meters of freestyle, backstroke, butterfly, breast stroke,” explained Buttermark. “I was kicking my feet like a bullet or a bat ski boat — like batman was inside me, driving me.”

Everyone was proud of the competitors who were awarded medals for their accomplishments. The festivities ended with lunch that included hot dogs, French fries, pretzels and snow cones.

-Greg Perosi with Kathryn Carse.

[See full video coverage below.]

Photos: Meredith Arout for Life-Wire News Service.

Full video:

Lanza Hosts Special Needs Fair at JCC

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Parents of people with special needs connected with services and opportunities at the 2016 Special Needs Resource Fair, May 13th at the Manor Road Jewish Community Center.  “What Every Parent Should Know” was the theme of the event, hosted by New York State Senator Andrew J. Lanza. Life-Wire News Service reporters and photographers were on hand to cover the event.

Video hosted by Steven Filoramo, Anthony Pabon, and Raheim Gladden for Life-Wire News Service. Photos by Raheim Gladden and Jonathan Chernock for Life-Wire News Service.

Living with Down Syndrome: Eric Schwacke

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This is my story about Down Syndrome.  It is a disability that we have that we cannot over come, but we can overcome our handicap.  I believe that anyone can overcome their difficulties.  Encourage your sons and daughters to overcome their disabilities or difficulties.

  • Eric Schwacke for Life-Wire News Service.


S.I. MakerSpace: Building Dreams

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Join us behind the scenes at Staten Island MakerSpace, where dreams are built.  Co-Founders Scott Van Campen and D.B. Lampman discuss the work that is happening at their location in Stapleton.  We also talk to designer/engineer Mike Buffington about the rhytmicon he is building at MakerSpace.

S.I. Developmental Disabilities Council Rally

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The Staten Island Developmental Disabilities Council took their message on the road Friday, bringing its Legislative Rally to legislators across Staten Island.  Here is their first stop, where Senator Anthony Lanza had a spirited discussion with the Council regarding new housing for people with disabilities and increasing salaries for direct care professionals.

A video of the rally will follow.

Photos: Meredith Arout for Life-Wire News Service.

Coming Soon: MakerSpace & Living w/Downs

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Currently in production: video features exploring Down Syndrome and Staten Island MakerSpace.

1: Filming of Living with Down Syndrome: Featuring Eric Schwacke. (Photo: Jonathan Chernok)

2: Anthony DiFato conducting an interview at Staten Island MakerSpace. (Photo: Gregory Perosi)