The City of Chattanooga invites the public to enjoy a free day at the Chattanooga Zoo on Saturday, September 17, for GoFest, a festival celebrating people of all abilities. The City of Chattanooga created the event 12 years ago as part of an initiative to help improve accessibility, break down barriers and raise disability awareness.
“All Chattanoogans should be able live a life without limitations. As a community we can remove unnecessary barriers to achieving those goals,” said Mayor Andy Berke. “GoFest connects Chattanoogans with needed services and community programs while also raising awareness for people living with disabilities.”
From animal encounters at the Chattanooga Zoo to adaptive sports, GoFest offers active opportunities for people of all ages and abilities. The fun, free day includes interactive exhibits like Touch-a-Truck, where children can explore military vehicles, snow plows, and recycling trucks, as well as entertainment such as face painting and photos with costumed characters.
While the animals and activities are a staple of GoFest, the mission is to raise awareness and connect people living with disabilities to needed services. Some programs the City of Chattanooga offers include the Mayor’s Council on Disability, an ADA Community Resource Directory published by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, and classes, events, and programming from the City’s Therapeutic Recreation Division.
“Multicultural Affairs works every day to make Chattanooga a more inclusive place for people of all abilities. Connecting people of all abilities helps build a culture of understanding and a community that works together for everyone,” said James McKissic, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs.
GoFest also showcases civic-minded organizations, businesses, and social service agencies, which share info on the health, educational, assistive technology and transportation resources available in Chattanooga.
What: 12th Annual GoFest
When: Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, FROM 10 AM – 3 PM
Where: Chattanooga Zoo
301 N. Holtzclaw Ave.
Chattanooga, TN 37404
Parking: Parking at the Chattanooga Zoo will be limited, but there will be several spaces reserved for people who use wheelchairs. The public is urged to use the free shuttle, which will run from Engel Stadium (1130 E. 3rd St.) to the Chattanooga Zoo. Please see the attached map and flyer.