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Are you ready for Halloween?

We sure are! Over the last week or so, we have been pouring through different articles to find the best Halloween safety tips for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. All of the stimulation and sights can be overwhelming, and we want to help you have the best Halloween yet!

We've also added a few tips for people giving out candy!

1. Stay away from costumes with elaborate pieces

Costumes with big, gaudy masks, wigs, shoes and hats may be cumbersome and frustrating to individuals with I&DD. Try costumes with face paint (hypo-allergenic makeup is best) or costumes that don't require big pieces. 

2. Make sure all dress-up shoes fit well.

It goes without saying, if you're going to be walking in a pair of shoes all night, they should fit your feet well. For individuals who may have mobility struggles, it is even more important that footwear be properly fitted. This prevents unnecessary tripping hazards!

3. It gets dark early this time of year...shine bright!

Take a moment to mourn the loss of 8:45 pm sunsets.......

Okay, enough! It's fall, the best time of year! That means it gets dark around 7 pm. With that in mind, it is important to wear reflective gear or bring flashlights to be visible to cars. Some suggestions: reflective vests, headlamps with led lights, flashlights, glowsticks, reflective trick or treating bags...etc.


4. Help your loved one become familiar with the houses/route for trick-or-treating.

If you are going to be trick or treating in a new area, or if your loved one is prone to feeling overwhelmed in stimulating situations, take a few walks on the trick or treat route. Plan out some quiet places you can go if your loved one needs a minute to relax. Familiarize them with colorful doors or decorations they will see on Halloween night. The more prepared they are, the better their night will be. 

5. Adding to that, "Dress Rehearsals" with costumes can add to preparedness!

This isn't just for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Practicing getting in and out of your costume, walking around in it and familiarizing yourself with how it will feel on your body helps to ensure a good Halloween night. 

Some individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities have sensory issues that may be triggered with costume fabrics and materials. It is best to figure this out before the big day!

Additionally, for children or adults who are in wheelchairs, a dress rehearsal will ensure the costume doesnt get caught in the wheels as you are trick or treating!

6. For those giving out candy, walk out to meet trick or treaters in wheelchairs!

Individuals with wheelchairs can't make it up steps and driveways at times. They should not feel they are missing out on the delicious candy. Walk out of your house and meet them at the sidewalk! Include them in the same experience those without disabilities are having. 

7. Use common sense.

This goes for all people, not just those with disabilities...follow common sense safety tips! Abide by the curfew, look both wys before crossing the street, don't knock on doors of dark homes, stay in a lit area and be smart! Stay with a buddy!


If you follow all of these safety tips, you are sure to have a great Halloween. We can't wait to see all your costumes and hear about all the candy you got! Happy Halloween, all!


New Location, Some New Faces, Same Great Golf Tournament!

Excitement was in the air as golfers arrived at Scotland Run Golf Club on Wednesday, September 27th. A new location brought with it the promise of a refreshed golf tournament.

Greeter Anthony Laube welcomed our golfers as they climbed the steps to registration. In a pleasant mixture of both new and familiar golfers, the golf tournament began to fill up.

Golfers purchased bundles with mulligans and chances for prizes and picked up their cooler, moving from registration to the warm up area, participants practiced their putts.

The air was buzzing with happy golfers, thrilled to have a day out of the office.

At 11:30, golfers dined on fresh sandwiches, chips and warm cookies. We wouldn’t have golfers begin on empty stomachs, after all! 

And, they’re off!














Our tournament began as Michael Jones sang the National Anthem in a warm, beautiful voice.

Golfers “started their engines,” and were brought to their assigned holes. Ready to get started, golfers happily waved to the camera. The golf tournament was officially underway!


The Course and the Refreshments (the best part)

Golfers circled through the course and were treated to complimentary beverages. The cool refreshments helped to hydrate the hard-at-work participants during a humid day. 
As the refreshing, cool breeze blew through the course, the volunteer hole watchers dutifully ensured fair play. Volunteers also monitored our contest holes, Longest Drive and Closest to the Pin. (Longest Drive winner: Matt Jakubowski, of Arthur J. Gallagher; Closest to the Pin: Bob Kern, of Mutual of America) 


And now, Dinner (maybe this was the best part)!

Upon finishing play, golfers trickled into the gorgeous banquet room for dinner and awards. The cash bar opened at 5:30, and participants sipped tasty cocktails as they discussed their relaxing day.

50/50 sales circulated the room, with generous guests purchasing tickets at a total of $754 in just an hour! Our prize was split at $377.00 each.

All of our Silent Auction items incited a bidding war, and the winners went home extremely happy. Baskets included a packed NFL Films prize complete with a four person tour of the facility, a generous Scotland Run Foursome with golf paraphernalia and The Arc Gloucester Apparel, an exquisite Paul Stankard paperweight with a studio tour for two and a prized signed Magic Johnson Olympic Jersey. The Philadelphia Union also donated sideline seats for four and a long-sleeve jersey signed by the entire team.

The buffet-style barbeque commenced at 6:15. All hungry golfers’ bellies were full of tasty burgers, mouth-watering bbq chicken, veggies and salad. The warm cookies made another appearance for dessert!

Last but not least, the Award Winners!

After Board President Dave Contino thanked all attendees, Matt Jakubowski, new golf planning committee member, took the podium to announce anticipated winners.


 First place was awarded to Rick Court, James Spindler, Chris   Schiavo and Dave Gloeckner. The tournament winners   achieved a score of just 58!




Close behind in second place was Matt’s foursome, who scored a 59! Brian Jakubowski, Matt, Chris Pitts and Jimmy Sanders happily took home the second place trophies.

Third Place winners hailed from the Center for Family Guidance with a score of 61! Les Pascale, Ed Harris, Larry Pratt and John Clancy proudly raised their trophies before the dinner guests.



Thank You to ALL who helped, participated and ultimately supported Camp Sun N Fun! We can’t wait til next year!


Myth V. Fact


Our annual golf tournament is fast approaching, and with that, we thought we'd cover some golf myths and replace them with facts for you! Golf is truly a game for all, and we want to make sure everyone knows that!

Myth 1: You have to be Good at Golf to Enjoy it/Play

Fact: Golf is a fun, relaxing game no matter what your skill level is. You do not have to be a "pro" to play the game. Golf is outdoor spot, allowing you to breathe some fresh air, take in different scenery and get out and about for a few hours. 

And, if you're really concerned about your golf skills, check out this quick GolfTips article on how to improve your game: 8 Tricks to Become a Better Player.

Myth 2: Golf is BORING!

Fact: Golf can be incredibly entertaining! Picture yoursself hitting a great shot on the course in front of your friends or colleagues. What a rush! Use your tee time as a chance to bond with friends or family, or network with a new business interest. Golf isn't just about hitting the ball and walking after it! And, if you can't play a full 18 holes, try playing 9 instead!  

Our best tip? Focus on the experience and not the final score! 

Still don't believe me? Check out this article about Why Golf Isn't Boring ! 


Myth 3: Golf is a game for men!

Fact: Golf is actually a game for everyone. Did you know: The LPGA tour is actually older than the PGA tour? Golf is a wonderful form of exercise and fun. It is also a great networking tool for women seeking to propel their careers to new heights. It is absolutley a myth that golf is a male-only sport. So, ladies, get your clubs ready and register for our tournament! 

CNBC thinks more women should play golf, too: Why More Women Should Play Golf


Myth 4: "I'm too Young to Enjoy Golf!"

Fact: Once again, golf is a game for everyone. As a matter of fact, many 20-somethings are starting to pick golf up as a past time. Golfers like Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler are changing the image of golf into something more mainstream. 

There are so many reasons young professionals should learn to play golf. Want 7 specific ones? Read this article


"Okay, golf sounds alright after all. How do I get started?"

A great place to start is at our Annual Golf Tournament, coming up next week, 9/27 at Scotland Run Golf Club. We have a super fun day planned, with contests, lunch, dinner, awards and cash prizes. 

Our tournament supports Camp Sun N Fun, our fully accessible summer camp option for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

Participation gets you out on the course and guarantees opportunities for us to maintain an unmatched level of excellence at Camp. 

You can register here! Spots are filling up quickly, so don't wait! 

See YOU on the Course!
























Welcome to Our Blog!

We are so excited to launch our new blog today! We have spent months pouring over research, monitoring local and national news and creating informational and interactive content just for you!

We want to create a place where you can

  • find information about new legislation,
  • read about The Arc Gloucester and the many happenings in and around it,
  • and learn about different things going on in the intellectual and developmental disability (I/DD)world.

Let’s get started by introducing you to The Arc Gloucester, our history and recent accolades!

A National Movement Begins

In 1946, the movement to advocate for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities began. Ms. Laura Sparks Blossfeld, mother of a son with developmental disabilities, wrote a letter to a local newspaper asking, “What can I do for my child?”

Ms. Blossfeld asked parents of children with developmental disabilities to start a new organization for all parents of children with developmental disabilities. In 1950, the largest nationwide organization for individuals with I/DD was formed: The Arc!

In 1949, The Arc of NJ was incorporated. Today, there are 20 Chapters of The Arc in NJ, and more than 850 across the U.S with over 140,000 members.

The Arc in New Jersey

Locally, The Tri-County Unit of The Arc formed. It included Gloucester, Camden and Burlington Counties. They established a Pre-School Center and a speech class.

1956 brought the separation of the Tri-County Unit into separate chapters of The Arc.In 1957, The Arc Gloucester was born! Yep, we’ve been around for 60 Years!

As a matter of fact, we celebrated this milestone with a Gala in April!

The Arc Gloucester

Our first service was a training school in Pitman for children with developmental disabilities who were refused admission into the local public schools. Since then, we have remained at the forefront of developing innovative services based on the changing needs of individuals with I/DD.

Camp Sun N Fun opened in 1968, offering two weeks of residential camping and four weeks of day camping. We have expanded and developed, and since 1976 have offered eight weeks of camping.

The Arc Gloucester offers many different programs and services, including:

Our goal is to encourage individuals with I/DD to pursue a life of achievement and happiness.

Accredited by an International Agency:

In July 2017, the Council on Quality and Leadership (CQL) awarded us their 3-year Quality Assurances Accreditation.

The accreditation is awarded only to agencies who commit to “excellence in person centered services that lead to increased quality of life.” This means The Arc Gloucester consistently gives individuals the support needed to live the lives they want.

Over the next year, we will be implementing new practices to measure the growth and successes of the individuals we serve. As we further develop these, you can expect to read blog posts about them!

We are excited to be a part of a prestigious international network of CQL accredited agencies!

What’s Next?

Okay, so now you know a little more about The Arc Gloucester. Of course, we will continue to write about our programs and services to educate you some more

Our Executive Director, Ana Rivera can’t wait to get started, saying, “These are exciting times at The Arc Gloucester, and I’m thrilled to launch our blog!”


Above all, this blog seeks to be a site you can find reliable, important and relevant information about the I/DD world. We know what we’re doing. We have been around for 60 years because we know what we are talking about.  You can count on us to help you navigate this world!

Welcome to The Arc Gloucester Blog!

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