NEWS | April 4, 2012

MIND Institute holds Family Open House for Autism Awareness Month

Free event is open to the public


On Saturday, April 28, the UC Davis MIND Institute will hold a Family Open House, in recognition of Autism Awareness Month. The event will feature fun activities for the entire family, including food, live entertainment, discussion of MIND Institute research and demonstrations. More than 1,000 people attended last year's open house, and more attendees are anticipated this year.

The event will be held at the MIND Institute, 2825 50th St., from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. It is free and open to the public and no reservations are required. Parking will be available in the MIND Institute parking lot adjacent to the facility. 

"We want the community to check us out -- and have a good time while they find out about our research, clinics and family resources. The event will offer something fun for everyone," said Terri Contenti, MIND Institute community relations officer.

The open house will include "Be the Science!" information that encourages people, both typically developing and those with neurodevelopmental disorders, to become involved in clinical research.   Other activities will include train rides, art projects, a charcoal portrait artist, a larger community resource area and bounce houses. Live entertainment will include performances by emcee Jack Gallagher, "I Can Do That!" Very Special Arts hip-hop dance group, the B Street Theatre and the Sacramento Youth Symphony. Slamson, the mascot of the Sacramento Kings basketball franchise, and the GEICO insurance company gecko, both will make appearances. The Cal Aggie Marching Band-Uh! also will perform.

The UC Davis MIND Institute, in Sacramento, Calif., was founded in 1998 as an unique interdisciplinary research center where parents,community leaders, researchers, clinicians and volunteers collaborate to study and treat autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders. The institute has major research efforts in autism, Tourette syndrome, fragile X syndrome, chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). More information about the institute, including the Family Open House, research, helpful resources and previous presentations in the MIND Institute lecture series, is available on the Web at