Last Friday LightHouse brought together as many as 1,000 blind marchers and their colleagues, friends and extended families. As we paraded down Market Street, holding banners, dancing, shouting —led by the ever-festive Extra Action Marching Band – each of us felt an immense sense of pride and privilege to be part of this vibrant, strong and diverse blindness community. We walked side by side with friends from organizations far and wide, such as Guide Dogs, California School for the Blind, the Hatlen Center, the Earle Baum Center, the World Institute on Disability, the Paul K. Longmore Institute university professors, blindness educators, along with attorneys, political figures, entrepreneurs, technologists and the many other community leaders who turned out for this unforgettable event.
At the end of the parade, it couldn’t have felt more right to finally cut the ribbon and pour into LightHouse’s new headquarters, filling each room with activity. Guests explored our student residences, experimented with Arduino and soldering in the STEM lab, passed in and out of our many communal spaces and, most of all, enjoyed each other’s company and excitement.
What kicked it all off, though, was the speeches on the steps of City Hall; which we are proud to be able to present to you in full on the above video. In addition to these few moments from social media and our photographers on the ground, we will continue to share the memorable sights and sounds throughout the week.
We’ve already seen a tremendous response on social media, but we’d like to continue to hear about your favorite memories from the event. Send your observations, photos, sounds and videos from Friday’s celebration to us on Twitter, Facebook, Dropbox or email.