Over 250 walkers came out for Upstate Caring Parnters’ 26th Annual Buddy Walk. This year’s event was held at Mohawk Valley Community College in Utica on Sunday, September 17, 2023. Opening ceremonies featured Thomas R. Proctor’s NJROTC color guard with opening remarks from Upstate Caring Partners Chief Program Officer, Kathy Klosner, followed by Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon.
Several teams and community organizations came out to support and raises awareness and funds for programs that benefit people with Down syndrome and their families. This annual event also offered an opportunity to network and build connections among those whose lives have been touched and enriched by knowing someone with Down syndrome.
The Buddy Walk included music, tomato pie, snacks and Big Papi’s Coquito Iceys, a community art squeegee canvas that was raffled off at the end of the event courtesy of the Pieces of HeART staff, face painting, corn hole and other activities for children with the help of Utica University men’s ice hockey team.