White Cane Safety Awareness Celebrations

The white cane is a symbol of strength and independence for blind and visually impaired people.  According to the American Council of the Blind, the white cane was first introduced in the United States in 1931 by a member of Lions Club International after he saw an individual crossing a busy street with a black cane that seemed to be extremely difficult for motorists to notice.

On October 6, 1964, Congress passed a joint resolution to grant the President of the United States the power to proclaim October 15th of each year as White Cane Safety Awareness Day.  President Lyndon B. Johnson proclaimed the first White Cane Safety Awareness Day within hours of the passage of the resolution.  Since its inception, White Cane Safety Awareness Day has both celebrated the white cane and brought awareness to those who are not familiar with what it is like to travel under the guidance of the white cane.

Events and celebrations throughout the state are being sponsored by the State of Vermont Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI) and VABVI.


List of Events:

  • Oct 3rd, 2017: St. Alban’s – A Walk-a-Thon at the Collins-Parley Sports and Fitness Center with proceeds benefiting the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired.  10:30 AM -12:00 PM.
  • Oct 11, 2017: Burlington – A community walk along Church Street with accessible GPS devices for the visually impaired.  Assemble at 11:30 AM at the Church St. side of Burlington City Hall.  Walk to conclude at the Overlook Café for light refreshments.
  • Oct 13, 2017: Montpelier – Meet at the State House on the lawn at 1:00 PM.  State and local officials will be in attendance.  All will walk to the Savoy Theater.  A video presentation highlighting the accomplishments of a St. Alban’s high school senior who is visually impaired followed by a Q&A session.  Light refreshments will be served.
  • Oct 13th, 2017: Castleton – An experiential walk through the campus and town followed by light refreshments.  Meet at 11:30 at Castleton University, Campus Center, 1787 Room, 47 College Drive, Castleton VT
  • Oct 14th, 2017: Brattleboro – A bowling in the Dark event. Proceeds from the event benefit services at the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired.  1:00 to 4:00 PM at the Brattleboro Lanes.
  • Oct 14th, 2017: St. Johnsbury – Information Table and mall walk at the Green Mountain Mall from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM.


For more information about this year’s White Cane Day celebrations throughout the state contact:  Carol Wood, Vermont Division for the Blind & Visually Impaired, 802-786-5822 / carol.wood@vermont.gov or Dan Norris, Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired, 1-877-350-8838, ext: 101 or dnorris@vabvi.org. Also, check out our FACEBOOK for additional details and event updates!

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