NAC buzzing with bevy of events |

NAC buzzing with bevy of events

Adia Waldburger, of the Record staff

It should be a busy week at the National Ability Center (NAC).

The non-profit committed to offering recreational experiences to the disabled will start off the week with a spot on NBC’s The Today Show.

Yes, the national morning show with Al Roker.

The Park City-based center was able to garner national fame through connections with host Paul Hawkman, who was covering another story that involved the NAC. He was so impressed by the facilities and sports that were offered he felt that the Center needed their own segment.

The piece will air on Monday, July 9 during the 8 a.m. hour. According to NAC development officer Lauren Rayner, the Today show crew spent two days in Park City interviewing program participants and their families and touring the facilities. Activities such as water-skiing, climbing, and equestrian and sled hockey were all covered in the story. The segment will also include a demonstration of sled hockey and adaptive cycling equipment.

"It shows the critical importance of therapeutic sports," Rayner said.

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The excitement will continue into the weekend, when the NAC will combine their Adaptive Cycling Festival with the annual Community Open House. This is the first time the two events have been offered at the same time. Rayner said that in past years, they have received such a good response to both events that they thought it would be a fun for the crowds to be able to cross over.

"We want to draw a crowd of both community members and participants," Rayner said. "We thought we’d combine our most poplar programs."

This year’s festival will focus specifically on beginning cyclists, but there will also be opportunities for the more advanced rider. The event wraps up a month-long focus on adaptive cycling. Rayner says extra emphasis is placed on this sport because it is very easy for disabled people learn the riding technique and it is also a sport open to the able-bodied.

"Anyone can jump onto the cycle," Rayner said. "It doesn’t discriminate. It’s really special that it combines the able-bodied and the disabled. It really goes well with our mission."

Activities at the cycling festival will include a two-day clinic run by U.S. Paralympic cyclist Matt Updike for $40, opportunities to use one of the Center’s adaptive cycles and a group ride. There will also be people on hand to answer questions about mobility, safety, pressure points and the overall health benefits of adaptive cycling.

The open house will include tours, as well as free hot dogs and ice cream.

The Adaptive Cycling Fest will be held July 14-15. The group ride will take off from the NAC at 2 p.m. The Community Open House will be held June 14 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

For more information, call 649-3991 or visit . To register for the cycling clinic call 200-0987.