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New WaterFire Access Program Boat Dedication to take place on August 25th, 2018

WaterFire is proud to announce the Access Program Boat Dedication on August 25th, which will be part of the lighting ceremony

With the generous support of Lead Access Program Sponsor Bryant University, its Graduate, & Physician Assistant Programs, WaterFire board member Mark Scott and the help of WaterFire Access Boat Captain Mark Karas, along with volunteers and individual donors, WaterFire Providence has been able to bring back the Access Program to the WaterFire 2018 season.

WaterFire’s commitment to include each and every visitor resulted in WaterFire’s Access Program; The Access Program is offered by WaterFire to accommodate individuals with disabilities so they may enjoy the magic of WaterFire free from the physical restrictions and challenges the outdoor location might present.

Ms. Wheelchair Rhode Island and other WaterFire visitors enjoy the first Access Boat ride of the 2018 WaterFire Providence season. Photograph by John Nickerson.

The Access Program Boat Dedication will take place prior to the lighting ceremony at the guest boat dock adjacent to Memorial Park and the College Street Bridge at 6:30 pm. The public is invited to celebrate with us as we toast to the new boat and reveal its dedication. Access Boat donor Mark Scott and representatives from Bryant University, its Graduate, & Physician Assistant Programs will be lighting the wall and the Access Boat will officially receive its name, Sandra Jane.

WaterFire Providence is excited to welcome Bryant University, its Graduate, & Physician Assistant Programs as the Lead Access Program Sponsor. “We are honored to partner with WaterFire as two organizations dedicated to enhancing people’s’ lives. Together, we recognize and celebrate the value of all people in our community,” said Bryant Provost and Chief Academic Officer Glenn Sulmasy.

As the first fully accredited PA program in Rhode Island, we recognize the crucial need to be part of the solution to the complex healthcare challenges for our community including providing universal access for all,” said Robert Jay Amrien, MPAS, PA-C, director of Bryant’s Physician Assistant program. “Sponsoring the WaterFire access boat “Sandra Jane” seemed like a perfect way to raise awareness of health care disparities, including our disabled citizens.”

WaterFire board member, Mark Scott, generously donated the pontoon boat used for the Access Program in memory of his sister Sandra Jane Scott-Peavey, who passed away at a young age but was always dedicated to helping others and spreading happiness.

Giving to the Access Program allowed me to give to WaterFire beyond the art installation itself, and to provide access to those that might not be able to enjoy it otherwise.  I cannot imagine a better way to honor my sister who lost her fight against leukemia.” Said Mark Scott, WaterFire Board Member. He continues: “ And while I am doing my part, this program couldn’t be successful without the financial backing by sponsors such as Bryant University, its Graduate, & Physician Assistant Programs to ensure that it can continue for a long time.”

WaterFire Access Boat Captain Mark Karas’s dedication to the Access Program throughout the years has been unprecedented. When WaterFire’s original Access Boat was unfit for use, he spearheaded fundraising campaigns and engaged many longtime volunteers and boat captains to do the same. Captain Karas is truly moved by the donation of the new boat and is honored to be a part of this Dedication.

About the author

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I've worked at WaterFire Providence since 2003. For the first 9 years of my career, I worked in the Production Shop learning all of the details that go into the physical production of the event. In 2012 transitioned to the role of managing WaterFire's social media and web presence. I now head up WaterFire Providence's digital projects including, web, social, databases, and our physical IT infrastructure.

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