Fair rides adapted for those with special needs, all included in the fun
GOSHEN, Ind. -- Ferris wheels, roller coasters and bumper cars. Those are just some of the many rides that are a right of passage for kids going to any fair.
Monday at the Elkhart County Fair, that opportunity was extended to everyone.
"It's just kind of a neat day where all of the kids can come out and have fun," says Alyssa Yutzy.
It's a typical site to see: kids lining up, anxious to ride the rides at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair.
But for Anna Yutzy and her family, it's a little different.
"Anna was born with a hole in her diaphragm," her mom, Alyssa, explains. "She's had her trach her whole life. She's been on a ventilator her whole life. And last year, we actually went on hospice."
That doesn't stop Anna from having fun.
"I like to do crazy stuff," says the nine-year-old. "Roller coasters and slides."
The Elkhart County Fair took the rides down a notch.
Fair officials slowed them down, kept lights on, and gave extra time for passengers to get on and off.
It gave people with disabilities a chance to have fun at the fair.
But that wasn't all.
"[It gives] able-bodied people the ability to see the many things that people with disabilities can do," says Doug Thorne, the Director of Disabilities Awareness Day at the fair.
"It's really neat. A lot of times, our kids don't get to do the things that other kids get to do," adds Yutzy.
Anna was able to join in the fun: the laughing and screaming, and just being a kid.
"She laughs the entire time. She just has so much fun," says Yutzy. "She's a daredevil."
This is the eighth year the fair has done the Disabilities Awareness Day.