by Carla Ruschival

The 47th annual convention of the American Council of the Blind will be one of the biggest and best ever. Make plans now to be in Louisville July 4-12 for all the information, exhibits, fun and friends.

The Galt House Hotel is home to ACB for convention week. This beautiful hotel, overlooking the mighty Ohio River, has undergone a multi-million-dollar renovation. Its standard rooms in the Rivue (west) Tower are spacious; its executive one-bedroom suites on the east side let you "live it up" with a separate parlor for entertaining friends. Every suite comes equipped with a fridge. Enjoy scrumptious delicious entrees and to-die-for Kentucky Derby pie at the hotel's four restaurants. Relax with friends at the outdoor pool, or bring your guitars and gather 'round the piano in the new 24-hour third-floor lounge area for an old-fashioned sing-along.

General sessions and exhibits will be just steps away from registration, the Information Desk, and the ACB Cafe on the east side. Afternoon programs and evening functions will be found in both towers.

But wait! There's more! The Galt House is within a few blocks of 4th Street Live, Louisville's fun-filled entertainment district with lots of restaurants. Grocery stores, drugstores, and other businesses are nearby (a long walk or short taxi or trolley ride away).

Explore Kentucky with ACB Tours

Visit historic Bardstown (an hour from Louisville) for a tour of Maker's Mark Distillery; or enjoy a delicious dinner and the "Stephen Foster Story," a live outdoor musical featuring songs such as "I Dream of Jeannie with the Light Brown Hair," "Annie Laurie," "Oh Suzanna" and "My Old Kentucky Home." Try your luck with the horses and eat lunch on Millionaire's Row at Churchill Downs. Visit the Louisville Slugger, Muhammad Ali, and Frazier Arms museums, all within easy blocks of the hotel. Discover how glass is blown, pizza dough and candy are made, and braille, large print and recorded books are produced.

The serious side of the 2008 ACB convention is packed with outstanding workshops, seminars, exhibits, and programs. Here are just a few highlights already on the schedule:

* Special workshops on rehabilitation (Monday), transportation (Tuesday), and employment and careers (Wednesday);

* Seminars, training and users' groups on a variety of adaptive technology;

* Special informational sessions for human service professionals, blind vendors and small business owners, teachers, attorneys, and artists and musicians;

* Discussions and programs for parents, students, guide dog users, braille readers, people with low vision or who have both a hearing and visual impairment; and

* Programs, workshops and events for diabetics, Lions, women, international and multicultural attendees, sports fanatics, and lesbians and gays.

Getting to Convention

Join the race to the 2008 ACB convention by making your hotel reservations now. Choose a standard room in the Rivue (west) tower for $85/night, or spend convention week in style in an executive suite (fridge included) for $105/night. Rates are single/double, and do not include tax; add $10 per night for each additional person in the room. Call the Galt House directly at (502) 589-5200 for reservations.

Keep up with all the latest convention announcements. Join the acbconvention e-mail list by sending a blank message to [email protected].

For convention questions or special concerns, contact Carla Ruschival, convention committee chair, at (502) 897-1472 or by e-mail at [email protected], or call the ACB national office at 1-800- 424-8666.

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