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We believe in inclusion in community life for people with disabilities. The Arc fosters social connections and relationships throughout the year through parties, gatherings, and other community events.


The Christmas Cookie Party

On December 10, 2023 Board members, community members and friends got together for our Annual Christmas Cookie Party at the Blacksburg Community Center. We enjoyed homemade cookies and holiday songs led by Board member Robert Metz and his guitar. Matt Hudgins was our Santa and the kids enjoyed a craft table while folks visited friends they hadn’t seen all year. At the end, we had a surprise treat! Read below.

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Nancy Camajani and Anita Earhardt
Matt Hudgins
George Rogers
Anita Earhardt
Chris Cadwallader

See more photos and video at Google Photos.


Calling Cards

At the 2023 Christmas Cookie Party, Board member Nancy Camajani presented an idea she hatched for our ALLY Self-Advocates: calling cards for their advocacy visits with delegates. Anita Earhardt, George Rogers, and Matt Hudgins each received a silver case engraved with their initials and a box of calling cards with their names on them. Matt was so moved, he nearly teared up looking at his cards. Nancy’s idea empowers our self-advocates and gives them a new tool!


Blacksburg Holiday Parade

On Friday, December 1, 2023, The Arc of New River Valley marched in the Blacksburg Holiday Parade! Some people walked carrying our new banner, other folks rode in the truck, and still others gave out candy to the kids who came out to watch the parade during a chilly December evening. We had a great time and look forward to a new tradition!


Annual Event

For the second year in a row, we gathered for Arc in the Park on June 10, 2023 at Nellie’s Cave Park in Blacksburg, VA. We enjoyed hot dogs and pulled pork barbecue, salad and watermelon, snow cones and cake! The main event was our Gift Card Raffle and the presentation of this year’s Renee Brown Award to Sheila Roop. The Raffle was our annual fundraiser and highlighted all the great NRV businesses who donated gift cards.


Renee S. Brown Award

Traditionally awarded each year at our Annual Event, the Renee S. Brown award shines a light on remarkable individuals in our community who embody The Arc’s vision: People with disabilities leading full, rich lives as active contributing members of the communities.” In 2023, we presented the award to Sheila Roop in absentia. Sheila just finished her long tenure as the executive director of the Individuals with Disabilites  Agency. Her work enriched the lives of people with disabilities in our community. Read more about Sheila in our 2023 Fall Newsletter (story on page 2).

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