Saturday, October 12th marked the 7th annual Minnesota Walk Now for Autism Speaks. We gathered together inside the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota and rose over $195,000 for Autism Speaks with more money coming in every day.
The Minnesota Autism Speaks community was thrilled to have our Community Ambassador, Rebecca Yeh, Miss Minnesota join us for this special day. She mingled with our Walkers, took pictures and best of all, played a beautiful piece on her violin, which she won the talent competition for in Miss America in September.
For the second year, we introduced a passport program for participants to stop at 4 passport stamping locations scattered throughout the resource fair. When passports were completed with all 4 stamps, participants put their passports in a drum for a drawing to receive a variety of fantastic prizes, including an X-BOX which was donated by Microsoft.
Cassadee Pope, the season 3 winner of “The Voice” had a fantastic meet and greet after the Walk with our top 20 fundraisers. Cassadee Pope spent a few minutes with each person to sign a free copy of her CD and took a photo with them.
The Minnesota Walk had nearly 50 resource fair vendors and sponsors. A special thank you to the 2013 sponsors including Autism Advocacy and Law Center, Lovaas, DECO, Partners in Excellence, Risk Solutions Resources, Minnesota Autism Center, Frito Lay and Central Roofing Company. Also, thank you to our media partners, K-TWIN and CBS Outdoor. Our In-kind donors are always so generous to the Minnesota Walk. Thank you to Joe’s Crab Shack & Nickelodeon Universe. A very special thank you to the Mall of America for hosting our event.
The Mall of America so kindly provided Autism Speaks a free kiosk to sell merchandise for the two weeks leading up to the event, which was a huge success. We not only sold merchandise but also had wonderful conversations with people from around the country about Autism Speaks.
A huge thank you to our Walk Chair, Jen Zipf for her leadership and dedication to Minnesota Walk Now for Autism Speaks. Thank you to the 2013 committee members and Volunteers. For more pictures and information about the Walk, please visit www.walknowforautismspeaks.org/minnesota