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FCVA hits big home run with Virginia ‘Inaugural Inclusion Day at the Diamond’ on August 21

Zaiden Z Weinstein throwing out a pitch on behlaf of Truist.

On Sunday, Aug. 21, Friendship Circle of Virginia held its biggest and most inclusive event to date, the “Inaugural Inclusion Day at the Diamond!”

Giving away 10,000 free tickets throughout the Richmond community, Friendship Circle made it possible for the disability and mental health communities to participate in America’s favorite pastime- some, for the first time ever.

Over 3,000 people requested tickets for the game and even with a rain delay, many fans attended and enjoyed the extra support services provided by Friendship Circle.

What made Inclusion Day at the Diamond different from other Flying Squirrels games started in the parking lot with increased accessible parking and a sensory entry gate for those who might be overwhelmed with the hustle and bustle of the main gate.

Nutasha signing a picture a friend colored of her.

There was a wide variety of services and spaces for all to use to make the baseball game a comfortable and welcoming experience from increased accessible seating, ASL interpreters positioned in both accessible seating and general admission seating, closed captioning, audio description services, and a lower speaker volume.

For attendees who needed a break, there was the sensory zone for adults and kids alike with fidgets, activities, crafts, and a floor space to help get the wiggles out.

The first pitch on behalf of Inclusion Day was thrown by Chief Deputy Attorney General, Chuck Slemp, several members of the disability community, and sponsor representatives. The National Anthem was sung by a local musician, who is visually impaired, Mike Corman.

In honor of Inclusion Day at the Diamond, Friendship Circle has donated 50 sensory backpacks to the Flying Squirrels! These Sensory Bags contain headphones, sunglasses, and custom fidgets.  They can be checked out at Fan Services during any future game!

Since Inclusion Day was a success, Friendship Circle of Virginia plans to make this an annual event, so check the Friendship Circle website for details!

Friendship Circle of Virginia would like to thank their presenting sponsor, fas mart as well as their 8 event sponsors: Abilene Motor Express, Alianz Partners, Dominion DiversAbility, Elephant Insurance, Jewish Community Federation of Richmond, Partnership for People with Disabilities, Rudlin Torah Academy, and Truist.

To see other pictures from the game, visit InclusionDayRVA.com!  And see more below.

To learn more about Friendship Circle of Virginia, please visit www.friendshipcircleva.org.

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