DSACK Fall 2021

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Fall 2021

Caroline Simpson

MISSION To celebrate and support people with Down syndrome and their families

1 STATEMENT and to educate ourselves and others throughout Central and Eastern Kentucky.

Keeping up with DSACK

From the Executive Director By Traci Brewer

STAFF Executive Director: Traci Brewer Education Coordinator: Jean Bryant Medical and Community Outreach Coordinator: Courtney Elbert Communications Coordinator – Hana Toupin Office Coordinator – Terri McLean Administrative Assistant – Emily Wright OFFICERS Chairperson: Katie Gilley Chairperson: Kelley Nunnelley Treasurer: Jonathan Wright Secretary: Jay Castenada BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chris Azbell Anna Bullard K.C. Cumbermack Danon Ditto Katie Gilley Corey Hawes Jonathan Rouse Margot Shenning Matt Shorr Becky Toth Laura Yost

In This Issue From the Executive Director


2019 Fall Family Fun Day & Walk Facts


Participating Teams Photo Highlights

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Team Contest Winners


Thank You to Our Sponsors


Parent’s Perspective - Mary Richeson


Let’s Celebrate


This time of year is my favorite. I love the fall colors, cooler weather, and family holidays. As Thanksgiving is just around the corner, I am again astounded by how much I have to be thankful for personally, and how much DSACK has to be thankful for. This has been a season of celebration and change for DSACK. We exceeded our fundraising goal for the Fall Family Day and Walk and even set a record high! We’ve moved to a bigger and more centrally located office, which will give us space to grow, have more programs, and have more parties! I can’t even begin to name the many, many people who made our fall fundraiser such an amazing success. It’s just another reminder of how committed we all are to making sure DSACK continues to grow and thrive to better serve people with Down

your face. At the end of the day, it really is all about perspective, right?

syndrome and their families in the Central Kentucky area. Each and every community partner, team captain, team member, donor, staff member, and volunteer made such a huge difference! We have much to celebrate, and I hope you enjoy the pictures of the many ways our teams did just that! Be sure to check out our Parent’s Perspective written by Mary Richeson. It will truly warm your heart and put a smile on

As we look toward the upcoming months, our staff is already planning 2022 programs and events. We are hopeful that we can start doing things in-person in 2022. I’m so thankful for virtual technology, but I am ready for some hugs! Be looking for announcements about programs such as Parent Advocacy Lab, Healthy Movements, Book Club, New Parent Dinner, Summer Adventure Camp for elementary students, Summer Camp for middle school students, and Next Steps summer camp for teens and adults. That’s just a few, as we know we will be adding in a couple of virtual dance parties, movies, Coffee Chats, and more. However, before we jump to 2022, don’t forget to register for the 2021 Holiday party on Dec.

11, 10 a.m.-noon, at the Marriott. This is a favorite holiday tradition within our DSACK community, and of course, we all look forward to seeing Santa! More details will be coming out soon, so register as soon as you see the announcement. This event fills up quickly! Lastly, we recently switched to a new database, so if you notice you are not getting our emails, please check your spam folder and approve anything coming from Donorview. You can also call the office at 859-494-7809 and ask us to check your email. Along with the new database, we want to start getting all birthdays input for our students with Down syndrome, so we can send them a birthday card. Call or send us an email at dsack.org@gmail. com to let us know that date. Great, great things are happening at DSACK! Thank you for being part of it!

CONTACT INFORMATION Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky 2265 Harrodsburg Road, Suite 370, Lexington, KY 40504 859-494-7809 website: www.dsack.org email: dsack.org@gmail.com DSACK Bylaws and financials are open for review, and the Board of Director Meetings are open to our community. Agenda items are determined well in advance.

Stay Connected You can now RSVP for events right from our website calendar at www.dsack.org DSACK does not endorse the opinions or views expressed by third parties or the products or services they offer. Reference to any specific commercial products, brand names, processes or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute an endorsement. The DSACK newsletter is published quarterly by the Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky, 1050 Chinoe Road, Suite 204, Lexington, KY 40502

To receive our weekly email blitz, email be Terri at: dsack.org@gmail.com To join our private facebook group where you can communicate with other DSACK families, go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/82674673490/ and request to be added to the group. To “like” our official facebook page and receive updates from our association, go to https://www.facebook. com/TheDownSyndromeAssociationofCentralKentucky. dsack.org@gmail.com

2265 Harrodsburg Road Suite 370 Lexington, Kentucky 40504 859-494-7809

Follow DSACK @DSAofCentralKY on Twitter. 2

Visit our calendar on www.dsack.org to see current events, activities and educational opportunities!


2021 Family Fun Day & Walk Facts

58 teams

Thank you to all the teams participating in the 2021 Walk for Down Syndrome!

Champion ($5,000+)

Abel’s Avengers • Awesome Ashton • CGS Express • Chance’s Chromies Lizzie’s Busy Bees • The Ovengers • The Rachel Show • Will Power

825 donors

All Star ($2,000 - $4,999)

Awesome Emily • Brianna’s Bunch • Carter’s Chromies • DownWright Perfect Fans of Emily J • Gabe’s Gang • Jada’s Jewels • Joella’s Joys Joshua’s Fanatical Family • Lindsey’s Rascals • Queen E’s Court • Sam’s Friends & Fam! Scarlett’s Village • Team Blake • Team Meg

New DSACK record reached Rising Star ($1,000 - $1,999)

$150,715 raised

to help grow DSACK programs and services

Alla-About Blu • Bella’s Blessing • Captain Clay & Company Cody’s Crew • Conor’s Corps VII • Extraordinarily Vera • Juno’s Juggernauts Kayden’s Krusaders • Marky Markus & Friends! • Reese Rocks • Toni’s Tigers Tori’s Tornados • White Greer Maggard* • Woods Warriors

Stars ($18 - $999)

28 teams on the t-shirt for meeting the deadline to raise $1,000


Abrianna’s A Team • Action Jaxon • Anna’s Fantastic Family & Friends Bananas for Brianna • Case’s Crusaders • Chad’s Champions Charlee’s Angels • Christopher’s Crew • Conor’s Wolfpack • Eden’s Garden Emmett’s Entourage • Ethan’s Stars • Jayla’s Jingle Bears • John’s Jammers Kicking It with Kennedy • Lincoln’s League • Lincoln’s League of Loved Ones • Loch & Roll Team Adalie • Team Spencer • The B Team 5

Photo Highlights



Team Contest Winners Most Money Raised (Photo on 2022 billboard) The Ovengers Most Members Registered (Photo on 2022 billboard) Brianna’s Bunch Drawings Among Teams Raising $5,000+ (Photo on 2022 billboard) CGS Express Will Power Best Team Theme/ Tailgate Decorations (Leads 2022 Walk) John’s Jammers Drawing Among Teams Registered by July 31 (Photo on 2020 spring magazine cover) Awesome Ashton Teams Raising $2,021 by 8/31 Entered into Drawing for Matching Gift (Matching gift of $2,021) Chance’s Chromies


Thank You to Our Community Partners EMPOWER ($5,000+)

First Six Teams Registered (25 printed save-the-date cards) Brianna’s Bunch, Jayla’s Jingle Bears, Tori’s Tornadoes, Emmett’s Entourage, Charlee’s Angels, Loch and Roll Team with Most New Registered Members 8/30-9/3 (Photo on 2020 save-the-date cards) Extraordinarily Vera

Teams Securing a Community Partner for $1,000+ All-About-Blu, Awesome Ashton, Awesome Emily, Bella’s Blessings, Brianna’s Bunch, CGS Expresss, Chance’s Chromies, DownWright Perfect, Gabe’s Gang, Lindsey’s Rascals, Lizzie’s Busy Bees, The Ovengers, Stewart Home and School

Team that Raised Most Money 9/7-9/11 (Two tickets to 2022 DSACK Gala) Scarlett’s Village Teams Raising $1,000 by Aug. 16 (Team name on back of t-shirt) The Ovengers, Chance’s Chromies, Awesome Ashton, Awesome Emily, Abel’s Avengers, Queen E’s Court, Gabe’s Gang, Lindsey’s Rascals, The Rachel Show, Lizzie’s Busy Bees, Brianna’s Bunch, Sam’s Friends & Fam!, Joshual’s Fanatical Family, Will Power, Marky Markus and Friends!, Tori’s Tornadoes, Joella’s Joys, Jada’s Jewels, All-About-Blu, DownWright Perfect, Bella’s Blessings, Carter’s Chromies, Captain Clay & Company, Reese Rocks, CGS Express, Kayden’s Krusaders, Scarlett’s Village, Toni’s Tigers

Don Jacobs Automotive • Life Plan of Kentucky • MTX • New Vista • US Bank

INSPIRE ($2,500-$4,999) Pop’s Resale

SUPPORT ($1,500-$2,499) Wesbanco • White, Greer, Maggard Orthodontics

CONNECT ($1,000-$1,499)

Animal Hospital of Nicholasville • Kentucky Marble & Granite • Marshall Pediatric Therapy NewTech Systems, Inc. • Pediatric Dentistry of Hamburg • Rainbow Title Stewart Home & School • Stone Commercial Real Estate

FRIEND ($300-$999)

Bank of the Bluegrass • Messer Construction Watson Family Charitable Foundation • Wilson Pediatric Therapy


Air-Time Inflatables • Baby Boo Photography • Hannah Brewer Photography Lamar Advertising • Wildcat Moving • Highbridge Springs


Parent’s Perspective

Let’s Celebrate

Can’t wait to see what happens next Happy birthday Matthew Williamson!

By Mary Richeson Before our daughter, Rachel, arrived, I would have described myself as an always-composed, rarely frazzled, confident mother of three. Happily married to my college sweetheart, Jeff, we experienced life’s ups and downs, but no real unexpected challenges had come our way. Then came the day when Rachel was born. Jeff and I were completely shocked and unprepared for the diagnosis of Down syndrome on Rachel’s birth day. We had never known anyone with Down syndrome or any special needs. Our friends and families largely hadn’t either. We are so thankful to have been connected with DSACK right from the start. Courtney Elbert’s visit in the NICU is one Jeff nor I will ever forget. We were immediately connected with other families of young kids with Down syndrome, and our network has never stopped growing. Three years after Rachel’s arrival, with books read, therapy sessions complete, doctor appointments accomplished, and surgeries performed, I now describe myself as a confident mother of four. Confident that I don’t know what the future holds. Confident that I can’t wait to see what happens next. I had expected Down syndrome to be a largely negative experience, but I was completely wrong. It has been overwhelmingly positive. It’s hard, sometimes really hard. But hard does not mean bad. With Rachel, hard means totally worth it. The love for and acceptance of Rachel from our family, friends, and even strangers has shattered our expectations. The annual DSACK walk has been a tangible way for the people in Rachel’s life to show their support. In our three years of participation, we have raised over $14,000 for DSACK. I cannot explain our success. I am not a 10

The Richeson family, front row: Jeff, Rachel, Andrew, and Mary; back row: Laura and Katie.

fundraising expert. We do not use social media or email blasts. It is simply the outpouring of love on our family from those around us. The thing I love best about the DSACK walk, is recognizing and celebrating the investment of my older children in Rachel. In those first moments of Rachel’s life, when I feared that Down syndrome would cause my older kids to be bitter or resentful, I could not envision the virtues that would be developed in them. Katie, Laura, and Andrew are developing into more compassionate, patient, and considerate people because of Rachel. They are Rachel’s biggest fans, and she is theirs. Their bond with Rachel is different than with each other. Many of Rachel’s successes I attribute wholly to them. Every therapy appointment is met with, “What are we working on this time?” They motivate her, challenge her, cheer

Mary Richeson is a part-time pharmacist at St. Joseph Hospital and a full-time mother, wife, and homemaker. She and her husband, Jeff, live in Lexington with their four children: Katie, 12, Laura, 9, Andrew, 6, and Rachel, 3.

Happy 17th birthday Jordan Lee Ball.

Maya Singleton turned 10 in August. Happy birthday sweet girl. We love you. Daddy, Mommy, Sarah, Makayla, and Hana.

Happy 6th birthday Aryana!y baby girl! You truly are the sunshine of our family and I know year No. 7 is going to be amazing!

Happy 7th birthday, Conor! We love you lots and are so proud of you! Mom, Dad, Davis, and Grayson

Happy 38th birthday Chad, who visited the Badlands with his favorite person his sister Sarah.

Adalie Faith Thomas was born 7 ½ weeks early. She weighed 3.67 pounds. She is our precious miracle who has brought so much joy into our lives. Happy Birthday Adalie!

Eden will be 4 on Dec. 31! Happy Birthday Eden. We love you!

Ethan Bourne is turning 16! We’re so proud of you and the kind young man you’re growing up to be- Mom, Dad, and Ellie

Gemma celebrated her first birthday on September 29. She’s a happy, growing girl who never ceases to surprise her family with her awesomeness!

Happy birthday Huck, who’s enjoying his foster dog, Mine, a service dog in training.

for her, and most importantly, they love Rachel unconditionally. Psalm 94:19 says, “When the cares of my heart are many, your consolation brought me joy.” Children are definitely part of God’s consolation to me. They are each a unique blessing that bring laughter, satisfaction, possibility, hope, and joy. Though the responsibilities of life are great, the joy is abundantly more. I find rest and peace in knowing that God’s plan for Rachel’s life is His and not mine. And so far, life with Rachel is full, and interesting, and rewarding, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Caroline Simpson celebrated her 2nd birthday on Aug. 8. Happy birthday!

Happy 3rd birthday, Rachel!

Happy birthday baby girl! You truly are the sunshine of our family and I know year No. 7 is going to be amazing!

We are so thankful for 24 years of celebrating our Emily Faith. We love you!

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2265 Harrodsburg Road, Suite 370 Lexington, KY 40504 Return Service Requested



To celebrate and support people with Down syndrome and their families

STATEMENT and to educate ourselves and others throughout Central and Eastern Kentucky.

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