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 The Arc Jefferson - St. Lawrence


       The Arc Jefferson - St. Lawrence

May 7 , 2024

The Arc Jefferson – St. Lawrence Foundation (, held the 17th annual walk to promote acceptance of Autism Spectrum Disorders on Saturday, April 27, 2024 at SUNY Potsdam’s Maxcy Hall in Potsdam, NY. There were over 325 people in attendance and thanks to community support as well as sponsorship, the event raised almost $37,000.

“This year’s Walk was even more successful thanks to the support from our donors and business partners,” stated Michelle Carpenter, Foundation Executive Director. “The people we support and their families nearly doubled contributions from last year, so we will be able to assist that many more people with critical supports that would not be funded through other means.”

The event was hosted by WWNY-TV’s Jeff Cole. The top fund-raising teams included: Team Judson Street, Team Ariyonna, and Team Jaxon. The top individual fund raisers were Alex Adel, Greta Bellardini, and Kaitlyn Fredette.

This year’s theme was “Lord of the Rings” and there were costume and flag contests. The costume contest winners included: Oliver Borrelli, Adalynn Hewey, Ameila Merchant, Wesley Gayle, Matthew Hewey, Greta Bellardini, Jonah Basta, Julian Stearns, and Rylie Stearns. The flag contest winning teams were: Team Judson Street and Team Jaxon, with an honorable mention for Team Trory.

The activities were provided by students from the St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES Education and Human Services program. Sponsors for Autism Acceptance Walk include: Gold Sponsors: Caskinette Ford; Community Bank; Haylor, Freyer, and Coon; New York State Industries for the Disabled; OneDigital; and United Food Services Operators & Performance Food Service. Silver Sponsors are: Alesco Advisors; EDF Renewables; First Student; and Northern Credit Union. Media Sponsors include WWNY 7 News and Stephens Media Group.

Funds raised from the event will assist in supporting programs at The Arc Jefferson - St. Lawrence such as the Bridges Program. Bridges provides individualized services for people with developmental disabilities starting at three years old with a specialization in the Autism Spectrum. Students participate in a variety of skill development activities addressing social, daily living, and academic skills using principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. Additionally, services are offered in the child’s home, in the community, and in their school. For more information on these programs, call 315-386-3055.

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In the photo from left to right: Elroy the Elk, Greta Bellardini, and Jeff Cole, and Isaiah Walrath.

Autism Acceptance Walk 2024

About The Arc Jefferson – St. Lawrence Foundation, Inc.:
The organization was established in November of 2012 to receive and administer funds through fundraising and other initiatives to support The Arc Jefferson – St. Lawrence in continuing to provide essential services for the children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in our community. For more information, visit