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In partnership with families, the Greater Richmond ARC creates life-fulfilling opportunities for individuals with disabilities.

Tag Archives: RVA

Civitans Keep Camp Baker Cool

Special thanks to Pat Robson, ARC Board Member, for his efforts in securing this gift from Greater Richmond Civitans, Chesterfield Civitans and the Chesapeake District Civitan Foundation, which included two HVAC systems for our Westwood and Camp Baker facilities.

Excerpted from Richmond Times-Dispatch:

ARC camp gets cool donation

Children at Greater Richmond ARC programs were able to keep their cool this summer because of a $21,000 Civitan donation for updated HVAC units.

Chesapeake District Civitan and its Foundation for Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, along with the Greater Richmond Civitan and Chester Civitan clubs, provided the funds for installation of cooling equipment at ARC’s Camp Baker in Chesterfield and Westwood Avenue location in Richmond.

Air conditioning is critical for people with disabilities Keep Reading>>

A Park for All

There’s something for everyone at one of Richmond’s newest parks, and that has made it an especially popular destination in the past year.

The Greater Richmond ARCpark at 3600 Saunders Ave. is 2.4 acres packed with attractions for all ages and all abilities. Among its assets: three playgrounds, a glider and a tree house that are wheelchair-accessible; fitness equipment that’s handicapped-accessible; a charging station for electric wheelchairs; and a restroom with adult changing table. It’s divided into areas for ages 2-5, ages 5-12 and adults. It’s visited by about 1,000 people each week, about half on weekdays and the remainder on Saturdays and Sundays, according to Douglas Payne, communications director for Greater Richmond ARC... Read more>>

Northside ARCpark Celebrates One Year of All-Inclusive Play

The first all-inclusive recreation area in central Virginia, ARCpark, turns one one this month.


Created by the Greater Richmond ARC, the 2.4-acre play area, adjoining ARC’s headquarters at 3600 Saunders Avenue, is estimated to host 1,000 visitors each week during good weather since opening on August 29, 2015.

“If you build it, they will come has certainly held true,” said ARC vice president of development and communications Kim Watson.

Read more about the ARCpark's first birthday at Richmond Family Magazine>>

First ever SummerFest brings 1,800 fans on hot day

To celebrate the ARCpark, more than 1,800 guests visited on July 9, 2016 for the first ever SummerFest.

At this free event, families could enjoy live music from Dharma Bombs and Red Light Rodeo, sponsored by The RVA Group. Firehouse Bar-B-Que, The Dog Wagon and Kona Ice Richmond parked in the ARCenter lot so guests could purchase refreshments. Merry Bee Photo Company captured event memories, and brought along a face-painter.

ARC staff, board and committee members volunteered as ambassadors to share stories and information with interested guests.

While not an official fundraiser, SummerFest donations total nearly $900 and will be used to support people with disabilities served by ARC. 

What’s Happening: Ladybug Fund Winetasting and Silent Auction (RTD)

Your support of the Ladybug Fund made the Richmond Times-Dispatch! Thank you to all who joined us for the Winetasting and Silent Auction -- we had a great time. Read the excerpt below, or continue straight to >>

The 16th annual Ladybug Fund Winetasting and Silent Auction was held April 16 at Richmond International Raceway.

More than 350 guests sampled a selection of international and West Coast wines as well as local specialties from restaurants including The Betty on Davis and Julep’s.

The event raised $67,748. Popular auction items included a champagne brunch at The Jefferson and a private wine class for 20 at Total Wine.

The ARC Ladybug Fund is used to support children with disabilities at the Greater Richmond ARC.

Picture of Doug and Tracy at the PR Awards.

ARC wins Virginia PR award for coverage of ARCpark grand opening

The Greater Richmond ARC received a Capital Award of Merit at the 69th Virginia Public Relations Awards held on May 18th at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond. ARC was honored for its work in promoting the August 2015 grand opening of the ARCpark, Central Virginia’s first all-inclusive park for people of all ages and ability levels.

Crowd view of PR awards.

Each year, Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)-Richmond recognizes outstanding Virginia public relations professionals and their work. Over its 69-year history, the chapter’s awards program has recognized the most creative and effective communications strategies and tactics happening across Virginia.

The Commonwealth Award recognizes exceptional public relations programs or campaigns. 2016 marks the third year in a row ARC has won a Virginia Public Relations award sponsored by the PRSA.

Commonwealth award of merit slideshow.

Congrats to all ARC staff, volunteers, families and visitors who continue to make the ARCpark a success on so many levels!

2nd ARC Art Show a Success: $450 Raised for Artists

The 2nd Annual ARC Art Show drew a crowd of more than 60 staff, parents and board members on Tuesday. Forty-five pieces of art sold, bringing in $450 that will be given to the artists to use for program excursions at ARC. During the first half hour of the event, Vice President of Development & Communications Kimberly Watson purchased the framed ink drawing of the Richmond city skyline. The art, which was submitted by John Coombs, Jr. from ARC’s employment services, now hangs in Watson's office at ARCenter.

Assistant Vice President of Day & Residential Services Emily Lehmann said she thinks the show went very well. She said she had worried the show would not be as good as the previous year, which had support from an outside organization, but that she felt everyone really helped pull it off.

A framed drawing of Richmond drew attention for its intricacy.

A framed drawing of Richmond drew attention for its intricacy.

“The best part was seeing how proud our staff were of the amazing work they helped create,” she said.

More than 40 artists from across ARC’s programs were represented, some with multiple pieces shown. A featured project comprised of marbled silk handkerchiefs provided a tactile experience for visitors, who could touch the silk creations. The handkerchiefs are the final product of a visit from Art on Wheels on May 4.


Marbled silk handkerchiefs made with art on wheels

Participants included adults in ARC Day Support. Marbles were rolled in paint to create the designs.

For Lehmann, the opportunity to showcase creativity and talent from individuals in ARC programs is its own reward. “I just want to see smiles on people’s faces,” she said.

ARCpark a Finalist for 2016 Impact Awards

The Richmond Real Estate Group recognized the ARCpark as a top five finalist for the 2016 Impact Awards. The awards highlight significant real estate deals that have had a positive impact on the region and contributed to the economic growth and prosperity of the local communities they serve.

Bob Sommerville, ARC's Board Chair,  Meg Downs the ARC Development Committee Chair and John Walker, our CEO,  represented ARC at this by-invitation-only event.

Bob Sommerville, ARC's Board Chair, Meg Downs, the ARC Development Committee Chair and John Walker, our CEO, represented ARC at this by-invitation-only event.

We are honored to be included and to have the ARCpark's contribution to the community recognized. You can see the Richmond Times-Dispatch mention on >>

2nd Annual ARC Art Show – Save the Date

  The Greater Richmond ARC welcomes you to join us for our second annual art show. This year, we’ve opened the doors to submissions from all of our programs in all forms of media. See passion, energy, vibrancy and creativity manifest in art; see the joy this process of creating offers as individuals explore new ways to express themselves.

Director of Day Support Services Emily Lehmann said it has been exciting to see the enthusiasm for crafting projects to be in the show. For some, these projects provide another way to communicate. For others, it exposes them to new sensations and enables them to explore likes and dislikes.

DS_ArtShow_Flowers (4)

One Day Support staff member with a background in art therapy has been conducting sessions at least once a week to produce some of the body of work for the show. She emphasized the lesson that art can help people share ideas. “Art is a way to show how we feel and what we think,” she said.

Look forward to an assortment of canvas paintings, drawings, collages and sculptures. Some pieces will be available for sale; proceeds of these sales will be given to the artist to use for bowling, baseball games, restaurants, shopping and more while in the program.

For more information, please contact Emily Lehmann, Director of Day support Services at the Greater Richmond ARC, at (804) 358-1874 or

To learn more about ARC, our programs and our people, visit