Every August, hundreds of participants visit the Jasper County Fairgrounds in Rensselaer, Indiana to take part in the Expo for Special Persons. Daryl Flood Driver Mark Smith has been a mainstay at this event, since it’s inception 26 years ago. Mark gives tours of his Mayflower moving van to children and adults with disabilities. Mark loves watching the kids climb up into the driver’s seat, honk the horn and smile. “It’s the smiles on the people’s faces that keep me coming back,” says Smith. “It’s their time, their big day. We try to make it that way.”
Mark coordinates with fellow Mayflower Transit agent, Ron Rossi of VIP Transport (Corona, California), to gather van operators from transportation companies all over the United States for this one day event. Drivers, like Mark, not only donate their time to attend the event, but also contribute via monetary donations, snacks, drinks and giveaways. With carnival games, face painting, rides in stock cars. motorcycles and big-rig trucks, the Expo gives people with disabilities a chance to try things they may not physically be able to do. At no cost to the attendees, they enjoy an afternoon of free entertainment and a delicious BBQ lunch!
View pictures from the 2014 Expo for Special Persons below: