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Autism & Developmental Medicine Institute plans busy Autism Awareness Month

5K run/walk, Sensory Friendly Film Series, Rick Guidotti anniversary visit highlight calendar

CONTACT: Mike Ferlazzo: 570-214-7410, 515-450-2908 (c),
April 2, 2014


LEWISBURG, Pa. – April is National Autism Awareness Month and Geisinger’s Autism & Developmental Medicine Institute (ADMI) is sponsoring three public events to both raise awareness and celebrate the first anniversary of ADMI’s opening on April 25.

5K Run-Walk for Autism Awareness
Saturday, April 12, Bucknell University cross country course, Lewisburg
Registration from 8-9 a.m., race begins at 9 a.m.

The Bucknell BRAIN (Bucknell Researchers, Advocates & Investigators in Neuroscience) Club is organizing a 5K Run/Walk for Autism Awareness. Proceeds will be donated to the Geisinger-Bucknell Autism & Developmental Medicine Center.

Registration begins at 8 a.m. near the Bucknell soccer fields, across Route 15 from Bucknell’s main campus. The race begins at 9 a.m. and will take place on Bucknell’s cross country course.
Refreshments will be available after the race.

The first 100 people to register will receive a t-shirt. Medals will be awarded to the top three finishers in these age groups: 12 and under, 13-17, 18-22, 23-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50 and up.

Registration is available here. Additional questions may be emailed to

Sensory Friendly Film Series Presents “Shrek”
Sunday, April 13, Campus Theatre, 413 Market Street, Lewisburg
Doors open at 1:30 p.m. with planned activities for children and parents, movie at 2 p.m.

As part of its Community Outreach and Family Support initiative, ADMI and The Campus Theatre are offering children with special developmental needs and their families a chance to experience the joy of seeing movies on the big screen. The Sensory Friendly Film Series will continue in April with the popular animated movie “Shrek.”

The series:

  • Provides a comfortable and accepting environment for those who want to get up, move around or make noise
  • Features family friendly movies in 2D
  • Begins on-time, with no previews or trailers
  • Lowers the volume of music and special effects
  • Provides low-level lighting, instead of total darkness
  • Allows families to bring or purchase snacks

There is no charge to attend this film thanks to a gift by Larry and Roberta Putterman. Those wishing to attend must RSVP with Megan Epler by calling 570-522-6281, or by emailing

Donations will be accepted by the theatre to fund future screenings. The next Sunday screening is scheduled for May 11.

Positive Exposure: The Spirit of Difference, featuring Rick Guidotti
Wednesday, April 23, Campus Theatre, 413 Market Street, Lewisburg
7-8:30 p.m.

Rick Guidotti, an award-winning former high-fashion photographer and prominent advocate working to change perceptions of people living with genetic conditions, returns to celebrate ADMI’s first anniversary and discuss his critically acclaimed photographic exhibition, “Positive Exposure: The Spirit of Difference.” Sponsored by the Geisinger-Bucknell Autism & Developmental Medicine Center, his talk is free and open to the public.

Guidotti delivered a series of popular ADMI-sponsored talks last September. He utilizes photography and video to transform public perceptions of people living with genetic, physical and behavioral differences – from albinism to autism. He has spent the past 15 years working internationally with advocacy organizations, medical schools, universities and other educational institutions. His work has been featured in such publications as Elle, GQ, People, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Atlantic Monthly and Life Magazine.

His exhibition, “Positive Exposure; The Spirit of Difference,” premiered in June 2001 at the People’s Genome Celebration at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. It continues to exhibit internationally and explores the social and psychological experiences of people living with genetic, physical, cognitive and behavioral conditions of all ages and ethno-cultural heritages.

Guidotti is the founder and director of Positive Exposure, an innovative arts, education and advocacy organization.

Those wishing to attend are requested to RSVP by Wednesday, April 16, at 866-910-6484, or

Exhibitions of Guidotti’s photography -- like the ones taken below during his last visit to ADMI -- will remain on extended display at these Lewisburg locations:

April 15-May 3
Packwood House Museum, Tour Center
15 N Water Street
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

April 15-24
Samek Art Gallery, Elaine Langone Center, Third Floor
Bucknell University
Hours: Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.

For more information, visit, or follow the latest ADMI news and more on Twitter and Facebook.

About Bucknell University
Founded in 1846 and located along the banks of the Susquehanna River in historic Lewisburg, Pa., Bucknell University is the largest and one of the most highly ranked liberal arts universities in the country. Students can choose from more than 110 majors and minors in the arts, engineering, humanities, management, and social and natural sciences, as well as extensive global study, service-learning and research opportunities. Bucknell’s 3,500 undergraduate and 100 graduate students from across the world enjoy a low 10-to-1 student-faculty ratio and 150 students clubs and organizations plus 27 Division 1 athletic teams.

About Geisinger Health System
Geisinger Health System is an integrated health services organization widely recognized for its innovative use of the electronic health record, and the development of innovative care models such as ProvenHealth Navigator® and ProvenCare®. As the nation’s largest rural health services organization, Geisinger serves more than 2.6 million residents throughout 44 counties in central and northeastern Pennsylvania. The physician-led system is comprised of more than 20,800 employees, including a 1,000-member multi-specialty group practice, eight hospital campuses, two research centers and a 450,000-member health plan, all of which leverage an estimated $6.1 billion positive impact on the Pennsylvania economy. The health system and the health plan have repeatedly garnered national accolades for integration, quality and service. In addition to fulfilling its patient care mission, Geisinger has a long-standing commitment to medical education, research and community service. For more information, visit, or follow the latest Geisinger news and more on Twitter and  Facebook.

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