Managing Editor's Note: We realize our readers will not be able to attend this event as a rule. However, as our kids age and we start planning for their futures, I can promise you that the Austin Texas model below should be required reading for all. Thank you to our Contributing Editor Dan Burns, himself father to an adult son with autism, for his tireless work in the brave new frontier - aptly leading the way in Texas.Overview and purpose
Appleseed Ventures and AIM Academy are hosting a get-together in Bastrop, near Austin Texas, on the weekend of Sept. 20-22 for autism families, real estate developers, and financiers, and autism advocates. The purpose is to cultivate a network of resources for parents who seek to create living, working, playing, and healing communities for their adult children on the ASD (autism) spectrum, and to exchange ideas for a pilot community of ASD adults that is self-originating and self-sustaining. Agenda and Program
The get-together will run from 5:00 PM Friday, September 20 through until 12:00 noon Sunday, September 22. We’ll gather Friday at 5:00 PM around the pool at Quality Inn
in Bastrop, caravan to the historic district, take a walking tour of this Victorian frontier city, and reconnoiter for hand-crafted ale at the Bastrop Brewhouse. Dinner is at the Brewhouse Restaurant, at Anita’s, or at your choice of one of the dozen top-ranked restaurants in old downtown Bastrop.
Saturday morning at 8:00 we’ll convoy to McKinney Roughs Nature Preserve for a hike through Lost Pine trails famous for scenic views of the Colorado River.
At 10:00 on Saturday we’ll settle in for the centerpiece of the weekend: our Bridge to the Future Roundtable hosted by AIM Academy and Appleseed Ventures. This is an open, audience-participation event. If you can’t come to anything else, come to this! Our featured guest presenters, Diane Belnavis (Juniper Hill Farms
) and Cathy Boyle (Autism Housing Pathways
), whose work has been featured in Age of Autism, are journeying from Pennsylvania and Boston to share their experiences/successes in housing and employment for our adult children. Diane, Cathy, and other presenters will help develop templates for creating similar success stories in Texas and beyond.
After lunch on Saturday we’ll open our Think Tank: opportunities for discussion and networking in comfortable air-conditioned surroundings at the Special Events Science Center McKinney Roughs Nature Preserve
. Bring your ideas and questions for transition, housing, and jobs!
At 3:00 PM we'll have tubing outfitted courtesy of the Bastrop River Company
. Bring swimsuits. Tubes and lifejackets provided free.
Join us at 6:00 PM for Saturday night dinner at the Bastrop Brewhouse Restaurant, overlooking a scenic bend in the Colorado River and featuring live music and local cuisine. Bring your own instrument or purchase an inexpensive kazoo from LarryLand Music next door and join “Pickin’ on the Porch” (anybody can play) at the Brewhouse for a good time.
Sunday? An optional tour of possible properties in Travis, Bastrop, and Lee counties for establishing a safe, supportive community for our adult children with autism.