Visalia will show support for Autism Awareness Month by lighting up businesses in blue lights and holding local events aimed toward autism awareness
VISALIA – Businesses around Visalia will “light it up blue” for Autism Awareness Month by being lit up with blue lights starting April 2.
Visit Visalia is spearheading the initiative, and will be illuminating their office in blue along with Visalia Convention Center, Visalia Marriott Hotel, the Visalia Wyndham Hotel and Valley Oaks Golf Course. Valley Oaks Golf Course is the first golf course in California to be designated a Certified Autism Center (CAC), which is a facility or organization in which at least 80% of staff members are trained and certified in assisting individuals who are autistic or sensory sensitive.
Visit Visalia is also a CAC, and was California’s first tourism marketing organization to be designated as such. The certification helped earn the organization a spot as a Poppy Award finalist, the most prestigious tourism industry award in the state.
According to Visit Visalia, the city is on track to becoming California’s first Certified Autism Destination. For a place to become certified, its tourism, hospitality and recreation organizations must complete autism and sensory disorder sensitivity and awareness training and be certified by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards.
Autism awareness events will take place in Visalia throughout the month of April and include an Autism Awareness car show at Plaza Park on April 2. The free event is organized by the Central Valley Music Organization to help raise awareness toward autism.
Also taking place on April 2 is the Tulare County Museum Jamboree, where volunteers will be wearing blue in honor of World Autism Day. Tulare County Museum recently earned its designation as a CAC. The free event will take place at the museum.
On April 19, Valley Strong Ballpark will host the “Free to Be Me” night celebrating those with disabilities including autism. Tickets can be purchased at https://www.milb.com/visalia.