HPU’s Council for Exceptional Children have been hosting this special Valentine’s dance for 16 years. Pictured from left are community members Ed Rambach and Christie Elliott.
HIGH POINT, N.C., Feb. 9, 2023 – Love was in the air for High Point University’s Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and the local community at a special Valentine’s dance hosted by HPU and the High Point Parks and Recreation’s ASPIRE (Adaptive Sports, Programs and Inclusive Recreation) unit on Feb. 7.
The local community was invited for dancing, games and food at the Nathaniel S. Morehead Recreation Center in High Point. Each year, HPU’s CEC organizes the holiday event, which includes a dance, games, special Valentine’s Day crafts and painting a kayak for ASPIRE’s kayak program.
“These dances play a very vital role in inclusion in our community,” said Stephanie Hedgecock, local coordinator for the Special Olympics of High Point. “Our participants really enjoy the social aspect that comes with these dances. They get to see familiar faces and friends from HPU and friends in their community they haven’t seen since our last dance.”
The CEC co-hosted two dances in the fall semester in October and December. Participants dressed up in Halloween costumes and had a special visit from Santa Claus at the dances.
“The dances are so important to create a community that is inclusive and open to individuals of varying abilities,” said Sarah Geller, a sophomore majoring in special education. “High Point has such a rich sense of community, and the special pops dances help keep the community a unified place for all.”
This event is a way for HPU students to connect with, develop friendships and support individuals in the High Point community. The CEC consists of majors from across campus with a common interest in promoting awareness and providing support for individuals with disabilities. The student organization has hosted this event and others over the last 16 years.