Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

Accessible Recreation: A Personal Perspective

Filed under: Living with a disability — by Glenda at 3:54 pm on Saturday, May 30, 2009

Darrell using the wheelchair lift to board the Greyhoound bus Early Wednesday morning found both Darrell and I boarding a Greyhound bus to Whistler Village. After much effort, we were both loaded and our chairs securely strapped into the bus. By batting my blue eyes and stating that I had done before, I was able to stay in my scooter on the bus; otherwise, I would have had to switch over to a bus seat and my scooter stored below, which I could have done, but sometimes its more the principle of it – not everyone can get out of their chairs.

Telus Conference Centre in Whistler Two and a half hours later, along the Sea to Ski Highway that is still undergoing major reconstruction, we arrived safely in Whistler – a host city for the Olympic and Paralympic 2010 Winter Games.

A curb cut poorly designed and maintainedI understand that much work had been done to improve the accessibility of the village in preparation for the Paralympics. But, to be honest, I was less than impressed by what I saw. On the short walk from the bus loop to the Telus Conference Centre, the curb cuts were not well-defined and were in ill-repair. In the Conference Centre, I needed assistance to get around the tight corner into the washroom.

It is quite possible that I encountered the least accessible areas in an otherwise very accessible village. But, obviously, work is still needed before Whistler is invaded by an army of wheelchair users in less than ten months!

The reason for our day adventure was I had the pleasure of  presenting with Karen and Emese from the SPARC BC (Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia) at the annual BC Recreation and Parks Association (BCRPA) Symposium. I presented my lived experiences with accessible recreation. All went well except for committing the presenter’s carnal sin: ran out of business cards. Ooops!

Presentation is offered below. Enjoy!

Visit Flickr for more photos from Whistler trip.

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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Comment by Snoopy

October 19, 2009 @ 1:35 am

Hi there I’ve seen your website before! I see that you said you took a Personal Scooter on a Greyhound bus on the Access lift not a wheelchair! There is policy at Greyhound Canada about scooters and the wheelchair lift! If you are curious about this policy; you can go to: “” and scroll to where it says ” Customers with Disabilities” and this page will provide the information you need! Transport Canada set out this “No Scooters on Wheelchair Lifts with Greyhound Canada due to safety reasons! I have spoken with the Management at the Vancouver Greyhound Station on this as well and they said that Personal Scooters will be transported as luggage underneath the bus- free of charge! If you do wish to book and use the wheelchair lift on future trips; you will have to use a wheelchair only not the scooter if you want travel on Greyhound Canada. I am a team member on the ” Measuring Up Committee of Council” for People with Disabilities. Another great wbsite to check out is ” We are working on improving the accessibility rate for Whistler,BC. I happen to be disabled myself but physically and in a wheelchair full-time! I hope this information has been helpful and will clear up issues on your bus travels!

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