Braille Monitor               October 2022

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News from the Federation Family

A New Chapter in our Texas Affiliate:

On Saturday, August 20, the National Federation of the Blind of Texas formed its Bay Area Chapter. The chapter is located in Alvin, home to our affiliate office, and it serves Brazoria and Galveston counties. These are communities south of Houston.

Our officers are: president, Kayleigh Joiner; vice president, Tamer Zaid; secretary, Heidi Tran; treasurer, Emily Gibbs; and board member, Glenn Crosby. Congratulations to the new chapter and those who have chosen to and have been elected to serve.

First Blind User to Explore with New Tactile Map:

From the Editor: Nathan Ostergaard is the president of the Utah branch of the Blinded Veterans Association. He writes to tell us that he wants to share his good fortune at being given the opportunity to try a new tool.

As a result of an invitation of the United States Capitol accessibility office, I was given the opportunity to be the very first blind user of the US Capitol's new 3D tactile map. This new tactile map replaces its 1988 predecessor. It was installed the previous night, August 23, 2022.

At approximately 10:40 a.m. on August 24, 2022, I was able to demonstrate the use of the new and greatly improved tactile map displaying the US Capitol area in a quite detailed model of monuments and important buildings, streets, and other features with distinct textures for touch. This was a project overseen by the US Capitol accessibility office. I was able to experience both the old version on prior visits and the new version on this latest trip, and I am greatly excited about all the many new tactile features of this new map. It is very wonderful and a great new addition to the Capitol for blind and visually impaired visitors to our nation's capital.

In Brief

Notices and information in this section may be of interest to Monitor readers. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the information; we have edited only for space and clarity.

Applications Now Being Accepted for 2023 Ski for Light International Week:

The Forty-Eighth Annual Ski for Light International Week will take place from Sunday, January 29 through Sunday, February 5, 2023, in Granby, Colorado. Ski for Light, an all-volunteer nonprofit, organizes an annual, week-long event where blind and mobility-impaired adults enjoy the sport of cross-country skiing. The event attracts approximately 250 skiers, guides, and volunteers from throughout the United States, as well as international participants. During the Ski for Light week, each participant is paired with an experienced, sighted cross-country skier who acts as a ski instructor and on-snow guide.

This winter, attendees will ski and stay at Snow Mountain Ranch, part of the YMCA of the Rockies, located near Winter Park. In addition to skiing on one hundred kilometers of wide and wonderfully groomed Nordic trails, participants will have the opportunity to compete in the Olav Pedersen Race/Rally and enjoy many off-snow activities.

“I Discovered Ski for Light at the 2012 event, and my life changed. Through skiing and the opportunities to work with other Ski for Light enthusiasts, I began to imagine what was possible and spent less time and energy dwelling on what I could no longer do after experiencing vision loss,” wrote skier Tim McCorcle.

If you have never before attended what many have called “the experience of a lifetime,” please consider participating in the 2023 Ski for Light International Week. Registration forms and pricing for skiers, guides, and volunteers are now available at The website also provides additional details about the event and frequently asked questions. For more information about participation by individuals who are visually impaired or other aspects of the program, contact the Visually Impaired Participant Recruitment Coordinator, Bob Hartt, at [email protected], or call him at 703-851-8149.

Monitor Mart

The notices in this section have been edited for clarity, but we can pass along only the information we were given. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the statements made or the quality of the products for sale.

For Sale:

I have a Bose Life Style V35 Home Audio Theater System. It Includes Jewel Cube speakers with an acoustic module, and all wiring connections. It is in excellent condition and provides excellent sound for music and movies. I am asking $2,600 or will entertain other offers. Please email Bob by writing to [email protected] or call me at 734-281-8025.

NFB Pledge

I pledge to participate actively in the efforts of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.

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