Children With Special Needs Enjoy a Day at National Cherry Festival

Every year, the National Cherry Festival dedicates time for kids and adults with special needs to enjoy rides and games with their families.

The name says it all, today is certainly a very special day in Traverse City.

The excitement and enthusiasm for all that is the National Cherry Festival is seen on the faces of so many of the guests.

The entire morning at the National Cherry Festival was all about children with special needs.  

They played games and went on rides, all geared toward their needs.

“It definitely made us realize the definition of happiness.”

Amanda Drinkrow and her husband have four kids. After their oldest son, Bobby, was born with down syndrome, they decided to adopt a child, Mike, from Russia, who also has down syndrome.

“We just wanted to extend that in our family and have Mike and Bobby be able to grow together and just have a wonderful life, a wonderful a semi-independent life.”

Today’s Special Kids Day event was a great for Bobby and Mike, giving them a great opportunity to enjoy all the games and rides at the festival.

“We love it. We think this is such a wonderful event for all children with special needs obviously having a child with special needs there definitely are some challenges going to regular events so having an event where you can kind of go and no body gives you a second look and accept all the children for who they are is wonderful.”

Angie Walker, Special Kids Day Director, explains, “we really tailor this to the kids so we make sure everything is adaptive, that everyone can participate in everything.”

And organizers hope that families like the Drinkrow’s leave with a smile.

“I hope they walk away with having a great day, that they had a lot of fun that they just felt complete accepted and the festival is about them as well.”

Amanda says her entire family plans on attending the Special Kids Day event next year.

Categories: National Cherry Festival