Media Advisory
February 26, 2020

Media Contact
Golisano Foundation
(o) 585-586-6650
(m) 585-729-7533
This Sunday!
50+ Organizations Coming Together for First Festival of Inclusion to Kick off Spread the Word Inclusion Campaign
Free! Sunday March 1st 10AM – 2PM at
Nazareth College's Golisano Training Center
Rochester movement one of the largest in the country!
Rochester, NY—February 26, 2020 —More than 50 area organizations will come together March 1 at the Golisano Training Center at Nazareth College for the first-ever Festival of Inclusion . The Festival will present an inspirational day of fun and games for the whole family to promote equality, acceptance and respect for all. It is free and open to the public, and is hosted by the Golisano Foundation , Special Olympics New York , and Best Buddies New York . T he event will officially kick off this year's annual Spread the Word Inclusion campaign, now in its 10th year locally.

Sunday, March 1, 2020
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
11 – 11:40 a.m. Pep Rally

Free Parking in front of the Golisano Training Center

  • Sports activities including Unified Sports Experience, bocce, pickleball, cheerleading, and tennis
  • Music & dance fun with dance troops, singing groups, DJ & dance party
  • Photo booth
  • 50+ community organizations (see list below)
  • Food trucks located outside the Golisano Training Center entrance
  • Tours of local department fire trucks, police cruisers, and other emergency vehicles
  • A pep rally starting at 11 a.m. with guest speakers: Best Buddies Inclusive Cheer (Spencerport and Penfield Cheerleaders) to perform and get the crowd ready; Master of Ceremonies David Quilleon, Best Buddies Senior VP, Global Mission, State Development & Operations; Ann Costello, Golisano Foundation Director; Stacey Hengsterman, Special Olympics NY President & CEO; Daan Braveman, Nazareth College President; Community members speak on how they will be more inclusive; Nazareth College’s Inclusive Choir performs

50+ Organizations Presenting Activity Stations
These regional organizations will present fun, interactive and informative activities and show how they are being inclusive.

ABVI; Al Sigl Foundation; AutismUp; Bach to Rock Music School; Bath Bombs For Charity ; BB Naz Group & Erika Hess - Naz Student Accessibility Services; Best Buddies; Best Buddies - Friendship Walk; Camp Puzzle Peace/The Family Autism Center; Challenger Miracle Field of Greater Rochester; Complex Care Center (CCC), University of Rochester, Medical Center; Disability Rights New York; Easterseals NY ; EIOH Community Dentistry; EquiCenter, Inc.; Erie Canal Boat Company/ RAA Partner; Flower City Down Syndrome Network; GiGi’s Playhouse Rochester; Girl Scouts; Healthy Highway ; Heritage Christian Stables; Homesteads for Hope
Inclusivity, Inc.; Lifetime Assistance, Inc.; Mary Cariola Center; Michael Amy, Yoga & Physical Therapy; Lisa Chidsey, Yoga & Mindfulness; Michael Tuller, Abilities Movement; Music Education Centers; Nazareth College Creative Arts Therapy Department; People Inc.; Person Centered Services; Pet Partners pet therapy ; Pittsford Rotary Interact Clubs; PJ Library, Temple Brith Kiswahili, and Jewish Family Services; Rochester Accessible Adventures; Rochester Sled Hockey; Rochester Special Hockey; Rochester Wheels; Special Cuts; Special Olympics Healthy Hearing Performance Station/Nazareth College Hearing Clinic; Special Olympics New York; St. John Fisher College: Golisano Institute for Developmental Disability Nursing and Wegmans School of Nursing ; Step by Step; The Arc of Monroe; The Autism Nature Trail / Perry CSD; The Hochstein School; The Strong National Museum of Play ; Town of Victor Department of Parks and Recreation; UB Dental ; UB Medical School; Unified ROCS Prom; Universal Movement & Dance; University of Rochester Developmental Pediatrics/ Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities; University Pediatric Dentistry; YMCA of Greater Rochester.
Spread the Word Inclusion Day is Wednesday, March 4
The campaign was created and reimagined by youth, and is intended to engage schools, organizations and communities to rally and pledge their support of inclusion and to promote respect and acceptance of people with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Rochester movement has become one of the largest in the country.

How the Community Can Get Involved!

  • Share what you are doing to be more inclusive in your community, place of work or school visit
  • Make the Pledge to Spread Inclusion at:
  • Social Media: The Foundation will also be following along on social media. Tag us in your pictures and tweets on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram using the hashtags #HowToInclude #PledgeToInclude and #RocRespect.

For complete details of the event visit .
About the Golisano Foundation is one of the largest private foundations in the U.S. dedicated to making the world a better place for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Foundation is devoted to opening doors to opportunity, changing negative perceptions and stereotypes, and forging unprecedented partnerships to ensure individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities have pathways to personal dignity, independence and the best possible expression of their abilities and talents throughout their lifetimes. Founded in 1985 by Tom Golisano—entrepreneur, philanthropist, and civic leader, and founder and chairman of Paychex, Inc. —the Foundation “imagines the possibilities,” advocating for families, fighting for their dignity and giving people with IDD the opportunity to thrive in their communities. With more than $55 million in gross assets and awards about $3 million annually to non-profit organizations in Western New York and Southwest Florida.

About Special Olympics New York - Celebrating its 50 th  anniversary, Special Olympics New York is the largest state chapter in the country, serving more than 67,000 athletes across New York with year-round sports training, athletic competition, and health screenings. The organization also partners with more than 170 schools statewide to offer Unified Sports. All Special Olympics New York programs are offered at no cost to athletes, their families or caregivers. For additional information about Special Olympics New York, to learn more about getting involved, or to make a donation, visit .

Best Buddies International is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment, leadership development, and inclusive living for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).