TONIGHT: Local organizations partner to celebrate World Down Syndrome Day

Published: Mar. 21, 2019 at 9:15 AM AKDT
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Celebrating differences one mismatched pair of socks at a time.

Thursday is World Down Syndrome Day and agencies are asking folks to celebrate by wearing crazy or mismatched socks.

March 21 was selected as World Down Syndrome Day by the United Nations in 2012 to represent the triplication or trisomy of the 21st chromosome, which causes Down syndrome.

Locally, Alaska Down Syndrome Network is partnering with Hope Community Resources to raise awareness of the one in every 700 babies born each year with Down Syndrome by hosting a party in their auditorium.

As a mother of a child with Down Syndrome, one of the event organizers wants others to know that people with the disorder are people first.

"We just learned to accept him for who he is and give him the opportunity to be the best person that he can be and enjoy life, which he thoroughly does," said Karli Lopez, director of child and family support for Hope Community resources. "He enjoys the same things as other kids, which is picking on his sister, StoryBots and Paw Patrol. So we have a good time."

The celebration takes place Thursday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m, with an expo and party.

It’s free and open to the public at the Hope auditorium (570 West 53rd Ave. in Anchorage) and organizers say you can make your own crazy socks, color, sing, dance, and even support local vendors.