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Free water sports clinic in Fairfax Co. this weekend for children with disabilities

people play water sports
At a free event in Virginia, children with physical or developmental disabilities will get to go water skiing, kayaking, tubing, paddle boarding, canoeing and more. (Courtesy So Kids SOAR)
people waterski
The 14th Annual So Kids SOAR Adaptive Water Sports Clinic takes place Saturday, July 13, at Pohick Bay Regional Park in Lorton. (Courtesy So Kids SOAR)
a child in a lifevest
The goal is to empower children with disabilities through sports and recreational activities, by building confidence and creating memories. (Courtesy So Kids SOAR)
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people play water sports
people waterski
a child in a lifevest

At a free event in Fairfax County, Virginia, this weekend, children with physical or developmental disabilities will get to go water skiing, kayaking, tubing, paddle boarding, canoeing and more.

鈥淭hey get to be seen, they get to be heard,” said Kierra Johnson, a programs analyst with D.C. nonprofit. “They get to be themselves, they get to gain confidence.”

The 14th Annual So Kids SOAR Adaptive Water Sports Clinic is scheduled to take place Saturday, July 13, at Pohick Bay Regional Park in Lorton. Children will have access to adaptive equipment and instructors. A total of about 120 families are coming this year, up from 57 families in 2023.

Johnson鈥檚 brother Quinn joined the fun last year.

鈥淢y brother is on the autism spectrum, and he did a water sport clinic,鈥 she said. 鈥淗e just had a big old smile on his face. I鈥檓 glad my brother gets to be one of those people to have the opportunity to try something new and have fun.”

So Kids SOAR holds adaptive clinics once or twice a month, but this is one of the group’s biggest events of the year. The goal is to empower children with disabilities through sports and recreational activities, by building confidence and creating memories.

鈥淭here was one kid who went tubing for the first time and his mom broke down in tears,鈥 Johnson said. 鈥淚 think she was really proud of her son for trying something new and just being a kid for a change, instead of (being) looked at or judged unfairly. It was awesome.鈥

The clinics are open to children with disabilities ages 4-24 and are 100% free for families participating.

鈥淚t always warms my heart every time someone is having fun or smiling or just expressing joy with trying something new,鈥 Johnson said.

So Kids SOAR is in need of volunteers. You can learn more .

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