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Philadelphia Walk Now for Autism Speaks Recap 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012 View Comments

The 10th annual Philadelphia Walk Now for Autism Speaks was on September 15, 2012 at Citizen’s Bank Park. It was a very moving day for all of us. The 10th anniversary-themed stage show was the highlight of our event – it was packed full of hope and messages that children with autism can and will go on to be successful adults with our support. 

The National Anthem was performed by Brendan Gillespie, a 19 year-old with Asperger’s.  10-year committee members shared reflections of what it was like 10 years ago when they started the walk vs. today.  Cathy Kanefsky shared her 10-year perspective and told the crowd about Sam and Adam’s first pay check that’s on its way this week, and Erin Clemens, a 23-year old with Asperger’s shared where she was 10 years ago vs. today and really painted a successful and hopeful picture.  Jasmine Poole, thanked the committee and the crowd for paving the way over the last 10 years so that her son could get an earlier diagnosis, better services, and noted that he has a bright future ahead of him.  At the end, the children of our committee members who started the walk did the count down and sent nearly 15,000 walkers on their way! We raised an incredible $607,292 and the money is still coming in!

Thank you to our amazing Walk Chairs Stacey Harbaugh, Cynthia Day, and Don Strohm.  We also appreciate the wonderful support of our local sponsors – Foundations Behavioral Health, Party Preferred Rentals, CBS local 3, the CW Philly 57, KYW Newsradio 1060, 1210 WPHT, 94WIP, 98.1 WOGL, TherapySource, Devereux Pennsylvania Community Services, Suburban Research Associates, Pennsylvania Trust, Geico, Drexel University School of Public Health and the AJ Drexel Autism Institute.

For more information on the Philadelphia Walk Now for Autism Speaks, contact Megan Tyler at or 852.858.5400. You can view photos and keep up on local events by friending us on Facebook at


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The Autism Speaks blog features opinions from people throughout the autism community. Each blog represents the point of view of the author and does not necessarily reflect Autism Speaks' beliefs or point of view.