Hot off the Press!  Access Recreation's FIRST Newsletter
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Quarterly Newsletter & Updates

September 15, 2016
Volume 1 - Number 1
"Connecting People of All Abilities to Outdoor Recreation"
Access Recreation
A Brief History:

Access Recreation, a Portland, Oregon ad hoc committee, developed guidelines for basic information that should be provided about hiking trails and outdoor facilities that benefit hikers of all abilities.   The Guidelines for Providing Trail Information to People with Disabilities can be applied to websites, printed materials and at trail sites.

Based on the success of these Guidelines and with Independent Living Resources as fiscal sponsor,  AR was awarded two Nature in Neighborhoods grants from Metro to conduct 36 trail profiles and to produce 18 videos over a three-year period.

AR was founded by Georgena Moran who discovered the primary obstacle to hiking trails was a lack of useful information before reaching the trailhead.  With basic information, easily accessible on park websites, the user can determine if a trail meets their specific needs and make any necessary preparations ahead of time.

AR committee members represent federal, state and local park and recreation agencies,  organizations, and individuals that support people with disabilities, a passion for the great outdoors and the vision of accessible outdoor recreation for all.
Access Trails Field Team
Georgena Moran - Project Manager, Co-Producer of videos, Head Writer & Editor for website content.   Georgena founded Access Recreation in 2003 and serves as the Project Coordinator.  She is an ICC certified Accessibility Specialist and Plans Examiner, with a passion for outdoor recreation.
Debbie Timmins - Project Support, Communications, Public Relations, Photographer and Writer.  Debbie has been involved with AR since 2009.  Therapeutic Recreation Specialist and formally with Portland Parks & Recreation - Adaptive & Inclusive Recreation. Lover of animals, music and the outdoors.
Sharon Mitchell - Videographer, Photographer and Editor for the Access Trails Project.  Sharon joined Access Recreation in 2009 and serves as Project Facilitator.  She brings a unique skill set to the team as a former Television & Radio Broadcast Journalist.
Access Recreation Website Team
Richard Bosch has been the primary designer and manager of the AR websites.  Since 2009, Richard has been instrumental in AR’s project development.  He is transitioning from this primary role, to volunteer on AR’s Executive Committee.  Richard’s expertise in accessibility and universal design stems from his background as an architect, with Accessible Design, and his professional training at the Commission on Persons with Disabilities in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Eric Rosewall has joined the field team as AR's new web designer and web manager on the AccessTrails Project. In 2011 Eric worked with Richard in developing the AR Guideline website.  He has also worked with our partners, The Intertwine Alliance and Vancouver-Clark Parks & Recreation, on their web information.
Eric is currently the Executive Dir. of Depave, a nonprofit, removing pavement to create more natural spaces.
Access Trails Latest Video
Click Here!
4T Trail - Explore Portland: Trolley, Train, Trail & Tram
4T Trail - Explore Portland: Trolley, Train, Trail & Tram.
A unique way to explore Portland.  To view more videos visit our website at:
On the trail at Cook Park - left to right Kyla Laraway, Georgena Moran,
Marissa Grass, Lucy Jones & Debbie Timmins
Beyond Accessible
A Sensory Point of View
By Georgena Moran

Kyla Laraway, an OT doctoral student with Pacific University, School of Occupational Therapy, served as an intern with Access Recreation [AR] from April – July 2016.  Kyla has a special interest in working with people with post-concussion symptoms, resulting in post-traumatic stress disorder, [PTSD], and other disabilities.   She offered AR an opportunity to expand the information provided on parks and trails to include information relevant for this population.  

Kyla developed a method to evaluate the trail experience based on sensory factors that could impact people with various disabilities, including sensory, cognitive and intellectual disabilities. These sensory factors include auditory processing, visual processing, touch processing, movement processing, olfactory/smell processing and cognitive/safety factors.

Auditory processing refers to noise that might be bothersome, or severely disabling, for some.  For instance, the buzzing of power lines above a trail or the crunching sound of gravel underfoot.

Visual processing refers to conditions along the trail that affect someone's vision, such as, light passing through fluttering leaves on a tree.  This could produce a “strobe light” effect that might be uncomfortable or disturbing for some.

Touch processing could be experienced when moving from forest to grasslands or walking on various types of surfaces.  Tactile factors of touching tree trunks, playground equipment or plant life might assist someone who is relieved of their symptoms through touch.

Movement processing may be a factor of someone's endurance or balance.  It could be remedied if there is information on the length of trail or if there are regular areas to rest, such as benches. Then they can choose whether the seating or length of trail is sufficient.

Olfactory/smell processing relates to smells that may enhance or hinder an individual’s ability to enjoy a trail. These might include the smell of bark chips or the smells from a nearby river.  Flowering plants may also be a factor in affecting seasonal allergies.

Cognitive safety factors may include adequate signage or whether there may be staff on site for assistance.

Kyla reviewed four of the AR trails previously profiled, detailing their sensory factors.  She then trained the AR field team on her sensory evaluation process on a fifth trail.  With this information, the AR field team will be able to apply these sensory factors on future trail reviews, making the AccessTrails information even more inclusive.

The sensory review factors that Kyla developed during her internship, will improve AR’s ability to  provide more people with the information they need to make informed choices on places to recreate –  particularly people with cognitive and intellectual disabilities seeking new places to explore.  Thank you, Kyla, for your contribution to the AccessTrails Project!
Mark Your Calendar
AR Quarterly Meeting
September 22, 2016
1:30pm - 3:30pm
Independent Living Resources
1839 NE Couch St.
Portland, OR 97232
For More Information
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1839 NE Couch St.
Portland, OR 97232

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Access Recreation · 1839 NE Couch Street · Portland, OR 97232 · USA

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