by Janet Dickelman
We’re getting set for the 2020 virtual conference and convention of the American Council of the Blind and our new theme, “A Path to the Future,” really symbolizes our change to a virtual environment. Since we are not having an in-person gathering, we were able to extend convention dates from Friday, July 3rd through Friday, July 10th.
The convention will open with the ACB board meeting. Special-interest affiliates, committees and our business partners will hold sessions during all 8 days of the convention. Opening general session will be Sunday evening, July 5th. Daily sessions will run Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Eastern time.
Each evening there will be special programming:
Friday, July 3rd: Friends-in-Art Showcase of the Performing Arts
Saturday, July 4th: 2019 fireworks from the Capitol in Washington, D.C. audio-described by Joel Snyder
Sunday, July 5th: opening general session
Monday, July 6th: An industry update from the audio description committee – A review of the opportunities for AD at the movies, on broadcast television, via streaming or by smartphone apps
Tuesday, July 7th: ACB Easy Chair Auction: Bid and win from your easy chair. Over 60 items with exciting vacations, scrumptious treats, latest technology and unique crafts.
Wednesday, July 8th: Smart Access in the Home. Rapid developments in high-tech home appliances and accessible smart home interfaces have transformed the way many consumers who are blind and visually impaired navigate the world from the comfort of their own couch. Join us as we break down where these trends are headed and learn how you can make informed and affordable choices toward making your own home accessible.
Thursday, July 9th: Advocacy updates with Clark and Claire
Friday, July 10th: ACB banquet, which will include the presentation of awards and a keynote speaker, long-time audio describer Roy Samuelson
What Else Are We Planning?
Exhibit hall: Yes, we will have a virtual exhibit hall with all your favorite companies and some new ones too. You can access the hall on ACB Radio from your computer, smart device or your telephone. There will be a calendar each day to let you know the presentation schedule.
Tours anyone? Everyone loves visiting our tour venues! We can’t do that in person this year, but we will even have a virtual tour channel with audio-described tours including the White House; The Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag That Inspired the National Anthem; The National Portrait Gallery - audio description of selected presidential portraits; the Holocaust Museum Houston Main Gallery AD tour; the Wright Brothers National Memorial; the Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Site; the Oconaluftee Visitor Center National Park Service; the Bell Museum of Natural History; and the Mount Rushmore Society. There will be many more virtual tours added to the tour channel, so stay tuned!
2020 Virtual Convention Registration
Want to win door prizes, support ACB special-interest affiliates, receive recognition as an ACB sponsor, receive the conference program in the format of your choice, read the daily newspaper and participate in live events? Your $25 registration fee includes all these benefits and more. Register for the 2020 ACB virtual convention, help provide quality programing via ACB Radio and other platforms, and join ACB on the path to our future. Registration will open on May 21st at 7 a.m. Eastern time for ACB members and May 28th for non-members. Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on June 21st.
To register online, visit acbconvention.org, or call (612) 332-3242 and select option 5 for convention. Leave a message including your name, telephone number with area code, and time zone. Your phone call will be returns as quickly as possible.
2020 exhibit information: Michael Smitherman, (601) 331-7740, [email protected]
2020 advertising and sponsorships: Margarine Beaman, (512) 921-1625, [email protected]
For any other convention-related questions, please contact Janet Dickelman, convention chair, (651) 428-5059 or via email, [email protected].