is only a short and incomplete list of contacts for recreation,
and not all listings here specialize in activities for persons
with vision impairments. In the field of specialized recreation
for the disabled, organizations and agents change frequently.
This is primarily because of changes within the organizations,
due to inconsistent funding, or changes in an organization's
rented or borrowed venues or facilities.
mainstream recreational outlets are becoming more interested
in recruiting persons with disabilities to their programs
and facilities, which increases recreational opportunities
for everyone who is disabled. In many areas, there are now
mainstream recreational facilities that also cater to recreational
enthusiasts with disabilities: both snow and water skiing
businesses, sailing marinas and clubs, horse stables and riding
programs, and many camping, fishing, and hiking outlets are
initial list of recreational camps for the blind and visually
impaired appears below, followed by several general recreation
and travel listings.
the Blind and Visually Impaired
Camps listed below are located only In Oregon, Washington,
and California, and those listed below are specifically for
blind and visually impaired participants. There are surprisingly
few non-religious camps for the vision impaired across the
nation, and many of these are along the Eastern Seaboard,
far from Oregon. There are many camps of varying types that
are affiliated with local or regional churches however, and
requesting a referral or list from the church of your choice
is not a bad idea either.
each camp listed below, it is advisable to make contact to
check the details on their exact location, the camp environment
(forest, rural or suburban countryside, etc.), their eligibility
requirements, the available recreational and additional activities,
how they might be staffed, and the fees per time attended.
Each camp will probably be different in the things you will
need to attend, and likewise the fees requested for camp participation
Some of the older, more well-established camps are slightly
custodial and not particularly mainstream in the activities
they offer; some also occasionally vary the types of activities
they offer to appeal to a greater number of participants.
It is best to check with the camp itself to inquire as to
their activities and outlook, and maybe even talk to anyone
you may know who has attended your camp of interest. And remember;
always investigate way in advance of scheduling your trip
Blind of America
Los Angeles, California
Junior Blind of America, based in Los Angeles, owns and runs
Camp Bloomfield, the camp itself is located near the beach
in Malibu California. Camp Bloomfield serves vision impaired
children, adults and their families. There are many child
and adult sessions during the warm months and three family
sessions during summer. They also offer "buddy camps"
where youngsters can bring a young friend or family member
to the camp for shared activities. Camp Bloomfield offers
swimming, horseback riding, rope climbing, archery, arts and
crafts and many other outdoor and beachfront activities. There
is a $25 initial registration fee per camp. Contact the Foundation
and ask about the camp's eligibility, schedules and activities.
O Box 2178
Belfair, WA 98528
Harobed was only founded in October of 2000 and was established
as a memorial to Deborah Bloom Pigott, who was a blind recreational
enthusiast. She and her husband Jack always wanted to turn
their rural and beautiful 15 acres near the Puget Sound in
the mountains of the Olympic Range into a recreational camp
for blind adults. Upon Debbie's sudden death in August of
2000, Jack and her friends started putting the property in
order to be just that, a rural camp for blind adults and their
property has a small lake, plenty of space for hiking, tent
and trailer camping, nature activities, and work has begun
for a games field for beep baseball and other sports that
are accessible to blind and vision impaired campers. Plans
for horse riding and a more developed nature trail are in
the works, and fees for the camping sessions are still low.
Sessions are scheduled for the summer months, and additional
reserved camping or group use of the camp areas may be scheduled
by calling Jack at the number above or by contacting Rob Cook
at (541) 741-4367.
for the Blind
San Francisco, California
Hills is located deep in the beautiful Napa Valley wine country
and is one of the nation's oldest specialized camps for the
blind. The camp is now a permanent trust of the Rose Resnick
Center (a foundation of the Lighthouse) and is so well appointed
that you may not consider it a camp, but rather a rural resort.
Enchanted Hills has cabins for their guests, nature walks,
large gathering rooms and a variety of activities devoted
to persons who are blind and visually impaired. They have
child and adult sessions and are usually open from June to
September. Contact Director Tony Fletcher for details.
Hull Foundation Camp
O Box 157
Sandy, OR 97055
Oral Hull Camp is located in Sandy, Oregon, just east of
Portland. The 23-acre camp is beautifully nestled at the foot
of Mount Hood and is completely enveloped deep within a virgin
fir forest. The camp has two small lakes for trout fishing,
an "enchanted" botanical garden, and many camping
and trailer sites, with several magnificently developed facilities.
The main hall and its attached areas include a dormitory for
members or visitors, a pool with spa, and a dining commons
area that is exquisite in its accommodations.
foundation was started in 1962 and is now a virtual resort
for the blind and visually impaired. Visitors or members will
find a fully developed place to take a trip to, do tent or
trailer camping, or to call and get in on their scheduled
events. Membership allows reduced rates and greater access
to the camp, but anyone involved in vision impairment can
come and enjoy the facilities and activities year round, though
most scheduled events are during the warmer months. If you
want a near resort atmosphere, give the Oral Hull Foundation
a call and ask for membership and schedule information.
Newbury Park, CA 91320
To Recreation has recreational aids for persons with mobility
impairments, and they also have a variety of aids for daily
living (adaptive goods.). Some of their products may be useful
to blind or visually impaired persons who are also mobility
impaired. Contact them for details or a catalog.
Forest Grove, OR 97116
Information & programs: (503) 359-2568
Registration: (503) 681-9471
AWL is an outdoor recreational nonprofit program that is open
to everyone, though their emphasis is in access to recreation
for youth with disabilities. The outings are designed to access
all persons to recreational environments and nearly all of
AWL's activities are held outdoors and are generally rural
AWL activities are day trips, though occasionally overnight
trips are arranged. Outings are generally held near the Oregon-Washington
border, in recreational areas like the Oregon coast, Mount
Hood or the Columbia River Gorge.
AWL has another recreational component which is specifically
for people with disabilities called the Social Recreational
Companion Program. This program provides disabled participants
with their own companion to allow greater independence during
outings. Call or check the AWL website for more information
or current outings.
Beep Baseball Association (NBBA)
West First Avenue
Topeka, KS 66606-1304
NBBA is a national organization which promotes, encourages
and develops amateur beep baseball programs throughout the
nation and internationally. This nonprofit organization is
devoted to the accessible game of beep baseball, and their
website offers a listing of games to be played, players and
teams, recent game scores, some of the highlights expected
for the upcoming season and other informational tidbits about
the game and players. Check it out for some education about
what blind and visually impaired athletes are up to!
Disability Sports (ODS) offers information about disability
accessible sports programs and venues within Oregon. It refers
interested parties to accessible sports activities, and they
also have a few programs that they administer themselves.
ODs is presently starting a few new sports programs such as
accessible snow skiing, so it might be good to give them a
call or check their website for current information. For more
detailed information, call Eric Patterson at (503) 378-3820,
for Light, Inc.
West Lake Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55408
For Light is a program involving cross-country skiing which
benefits blind, visually impaired, and mobility-impaired individuals
and their guides. They have many scheduled outings across
the country each year and usually have an annual gathering
somewhere beautiful and special to those who love to ski.
Ski For Light outings usually have both cross country and
downhill skiing, as well as learning opportunities for new
and novice skiers, along with sessions at each gathering for
those who are more experienced. Contact them for details!
States Association of Blind Athletes USABA)
N. Institute Street
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
The USABA Is a nonprofit organization that offers information
and sports opportunities to blind and vision impaired athletes.
USABA provides opportunities for competition and training
in track and field, wrestling, tandem cycling, judo, power
lifting, swimming, goalball, and skiing. They are also the
U.S. representative to the International blind Sports Association
and are the Governing Body for goalball (see below).
you check by website or phone, they have a national sports
calendar, a listing of recreational and sports camps, and
also information about their two academic scholarships for
USABA members. Contact them for membership and sports opportunities,
information, or scholarship opportunities.
is a very popular sport among vision impaired sportspersons.
It is basically an adapted form of floor hockey, though a
heavy ball with sound-making capacity is substituted for a
puck. Players have two end goals and must defend their goal
against the other team's attempts to score, much like hockey.
The game is full of exertion and is often quite rough on the
body due to the floor contact, requiring players to suit up
in protective gear. ALL PLAYERS wear sleep shades or some
form of vision eliminator, thus making this game totally equal
to all players. There are several regular goalball teams in
Oregon and there is stiff competition on the west coast from
other regional teams. For more information on goalball, contact
USABA, or call or e-mail Oregon Disability Sports at (800)
869-8180, or visit their website.
mainstream agencies are now seeing the financial impact of
including persons with disabilities in their activities and
tours, there seems to be far fewer numbers of agents and tours
specifically for the disabled. With a will to travel and be
catered to, it is possible to find specialized travel opportunities
for vision impaired travelers; search the web, or contact
a travel agent you know and try to make some plans. The ACB
web page has a current listing of recreational and travel
opportunities for persons who are vision impaired. There are
also resources out there (such as the two final entries below)
that have listings of accessible activities and facilities.
however that in our country today, persons with disabilities
are becoming more involved and integrated into mainstream
activities. Put simply, rather than be inhibited, try including
yourself in any travel opportunity that comes your way. Inclusion
is a right in our country and before you go to another locale
or somewhere less inclusive, take full advantage of the opportunities
available through America's wonderfully increasing accessibility.
Slater is an independent agent who openly states that her
"mission in life is to make cruising accessible for the
visually impaired." Because Sue is vision impaired from
RP and loves to go on cruises herself, she has loads of experience
in setting up exceptional vacation cruises for persons who
are blind or visually impaired and want to bring along friends,
family or their dog guides. Sue usually organizes several
exceptional cruises annually, and contacting her in advance
for details is a must.
14th Avenue NE
Minneapolis, MN 55414
(612) 676-0400 Fax: (612) 676-0401
Inquiry (WI) is for travelers, campers, hikers and recreational
enthusiasts of all ages and abilities. WI trips are meant
to be all-inclusive, and participants of all abilities bring
a sense of integration to the tours. WI trips include camping,
hiking, backpacking, water sports, and a variety of other
outdoor activities. They go all over the country and abroad.
also does accessibility assessments on parks, recreational
areas and facilities that may be public or private in nature.
The findings are placed on their "accessoutdoors"
website. This website also has outdoor products reviewed and
for sale. So check out both sites and get involved in their