CIP Amherst: End of Summer Wrap
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CIP Amherst: End of Summer Wrap

The following is a special needs program update from Asperger’s & LD College Programs. You may also click here to read the original article on the main program website.

The summer session at CIP Amherst has come to a close, and looking back on all the great activities the students took part in, this was a great period for everyone, with a wide variety of events in which to be involved. Also, all the students who took summer classes finished with above average grades.

Western New York had what the locals call an old fashioned winter—lots of snow and cold days—but as a result, we know how to really enjoy summer, and there are many festivals and great destinations where all the great features of summer can be experienced and enjoyed.

Staff and students of CIP Amherst did several great nature walks. We are located on the shores of the Niagara River and Lake Erie, with the Erie Canal running through the area and Lake Ontario just a short drive to the North. We took advantage of our shoreline paths as well as our many area parks and preserves to get out and shake off winter’s punch. Swellness activities included a few scavenger hunts at a local park and a day of kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding in the canal.

sam ben joe ub bike trail

We also did festivals and carnivals of all kinds: food fests, cultural fests, music fests, and just plain get-out-and-celebrate-life fests. Students also did a Swellness activity at a local farm, holding baby farm animals, milking a goat, grooming horses, taking a wagon ride, and learning how the farm operates during the seasons.

Amherst Fair
Amherst Greek Fest
CIP Amherst at Rick James Memorial


We went to a few Buffalo Bisons Triple-A baseball games—the Bisons are the farm team for the Toronto Blue Jays—and we saw some great ball. We also had our own staff vs. students softball game, organized by Sam, one of our students.

Amherst Baseball
Amherst Baseball
Buffalo Bisons


We went to the Medina Railroad Museum, which combines professional railroading with modeling for hobbyists.

Staff took students to see fireworks on the Fourth of July, and everyone had a good time “Oohing” and “Aahing” at the spectacle.

The students also had a weekly art class that was very well attended. A visiting art teacher brought out the creativity in the students, and the social aspect of sharing ideas and conversation during the sessions made this a popular event on the students’ summer schedules.

On a few rainy evenings, the students hunkered down at the CIP office and played Apples to Apples.

Amherst Apples

We spent one of our last activities doing community service at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical gardens, and staff and students weeded an outdoor garden of medicinal plants. It was a hot day, but everyone put in a worthy effort and showed what kind of students we have here at CIP Amherst — the kind who are willing to give back.

Amherst Garden Volunteer
Amherst Garden Volunteer
Amherst Garden Volunteer


All in all, it was great summer session here at CIP Amherst. There was something for everyone, and everyone finished with positive memories to look back on.

You can see more photos on our Facebook page.