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BCTAC Happenings

Members meet in large or small groups, either in person or via video chat, to plan and organize events over the course of the year. The group has developed their set of goals and objectives for the organization and plans each activity to align with their mission.

As individual and collective interests and goals change and evolve, the activities they plan and execute also evolve. Everyone has a voice in the planning, organizing and execution of activities, the direction of the group, and the steps that must be taken to achieve its purpose.

BCTAC members enjoy participating in many social, educational and recreational activities. One agenda for the group is to generate funds that can be used to offset costs of admission and related fees for these events.

Check out what's coming up on the Bridge School Academic calendar. For questions and inquiries on upcoming events, contact .

Rock Art

We're looking for volunteer artists to collaborate on "Rock Art" with BCTAC!

What: A BCTAC member will be paired with YOU, a community artist, to collaborate and create a masterpiece.

Inspiration: Photographs from the Annual Bridge School Benefit Concerts.

Why: BCTAC’s mission and vision is to achieve greater community involvement by connecting people together and educating and influencing the public on people with disabilities.


  • February 25, 2017 - 2.5 hours - introductions, overview and project planning AND
  • March 18, 2017 - 2.5 hours - create the masterpiece together

Where: The Bridge School

INTERESTED IN COLLABORATING? Contact Tike DeMarco or call 650-696-7295.

Download, print, and distribute to local artists! [PDF, 188KB]

Skiing and Shenanigans

It's a family affair! BCTAC and Bridge School families are headed to Achieve Tahoe! Come ski a black diamond or two with us on February 4th at Alpine Meadows -Achieve Tahoe! If you're down for the snow and slopes, the cool people will be at: 1960 Squaw Valley Rd, Olympic Valley, CA 96146. Head to the main office and let them know you're looking for The Bridge School crew.

Thanks to Marina G. at Achieve Tahoe for the fabulous coordination.

Appreciation Luncheon, Book Drive and Skating!

Book drive and Skating! BCTAC is taking a moment to share a special thanks with all of our volunteers who work so hard to help us achieve our mission.

Where: Winter Lodge in Palo Alto. 3009 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto, CA 94306

When: February 11th, 1:00-2:30

What: A BIG thank you, fantastic skating and a book drive for St. Vincent de Paul's. A book bin will be at the Winter Lodge from Friday, February 10th through Tuesday, February 14th.

Your to-do: Stop by, donate a book, say hello, chat with us as we skate, and meet some of the folks who've helped us along the way!

Please let us know if you'd like to stop by. Contact Tike DeMarco or call 650-696-7295.

California Telephone Access Program

Content by Patrick Regan
Co-President, BCTAC
Co-Coordinator of Activities and Events, BCTAC

The California Telephone Access Program (CTAP) recently gave a presentation and demonstration at The Bridge School to interested BCTACers about the California Relay System and the accessible telephone equipment that is available at no charge to qualified California residents with disabilities. CTAP is part of the Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program (DDTP) which is under the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).

Love Miller, our CTAP presenter, David Weiss from CTAP and Fred Nisen, a lawyer who uses the Relay System on a regular basis, demonstrated placing calls using the system. There are two ways someone can place a call. The first is through Skype (e.g., visually assisted speech-to-speech calling) and the second way is using the traditional speech-to-speech relay with the phone. Both ways provide the assistance of a specially-trained Relay Operator who serves as a communication assistant. The presentation and demonstration were very informative.

Interested in getting a Speech Generating Device (SGD)? We also learned great news from the CPUC about its program that provides funding for Speech Generating devices. The CPUC is now a provider of last resort options. This means the DDTP will fund SGD expenses that are not otherwise covered by private insurance or other insurers such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Medi-Cal. This is great news for California residents who need an SGD but are unable to obtain funding through any other source!

On behalf of BCTAC, we'd like to thank Silke Brendel-Evan, Love Miller, David Weiss & Fred Nisen for collaborating with us and for sharing such a great presentation. Next, we will be getting a few of interested BCTACers, on board with using the system!

For more information, visit the CTAP website and/or click to download the presentation.

CTAP and CRS presentation at The Bridge School [PDF, 4.4MB]

check out the gallery

2016 Bowl-a-Thon Fundraiser

April 9, 2016

BCTAC BOWL-A-THON smAACdown - The BCTACers are getting ready for another wild and crazy time on the lanes. Join the fray!

Where: Sea Bowl in Pacifica


  • 4:00pm - ARRIVAL FRIENDS & FAMILY - chat with the Crew, buy raffle tickets, make a pledge!
  • 4:30pm - 6:30pm - BCTAC Crew Bowling & Raffle - support the Crew as they throw down
  • 6:30pm - 7:30pm - PARTY! Join the Crew for their special presentation and party

You can also help us with our community service outreach by bringing a used book for the Society of St. Vincent dePaul's Books 4 Hope Book Drive.

2014 3rd Bowl-a-Thon Fundraiser

BCTAC's 3rd Bowl-a-Thon Fundraier was THE SmAACkdown on the lanes at SeaBowl in Pacifica! The gang had time to bowl, heckle a few buddies, chat with some cool peeps and buy/sell raffle tickets for the AWESOME raffle prizes. 

Raffle Prizes:

  • Pegi & Neil Young 8x10 Autographed Photograph – donated by Craig Abaya, Rock Photographer
  • Neil Young 8x10 Autographed Photograph – donated by Craig Abaya, Rock Photographer
  • Pixar Prize Pack – Short films DVD, Ratatouille DVD, 100 Collectable Postcards donated by Brad Winemiller, Pixar
  • Rock Art Print "Guitars" – Print from The 25th Annual Bridge School Benefit Concert donated by BCTAC
  • Handcrafted Maple Natural Edge Bowl – donated by Tom Kingshill of Eureka
  • StyleKouncil Closet Cleanse – 3 hours of Closet Curation donated by Katherine Yeh
  • BCTAC Sweatshirt – Sizes Small, Medium, Large available, donated by Patrick, Suzanne & Matt Regan of Alaska
  • Movie Mania – movie tickets donated by Holly and Scott Peartree
  • Tickets to the Academy of Sciences – donated by the Academy of Sciences
  • Two 11x14 Art Prints – donated by local artist Lindsay DeAlba
  • Two 8x10 Art Prints – donated by local artist Lindsay DeAlba
  • Pixar Autographed Surprise – donated by Brad Winemiller, Pixar
  • Tickets to the deYoung Museum or Legion of Honor Museum – donated by the Legion of Honor Museum

All proceeds benefit BCTAC directly. Check out the photos on BCTAC's Facebook.

Thank you to EVERYONE for your support. BCTAC truly appreciates you!

2012 2nd Bowl-a-Thon Fundraiser

The 2nd Bowl-a-Thon was a blast, not to mention a rousing success! Teams Thumping Cracked Thumbs, Oh Split!, and SharkStrike kicked it in their personalized tees at Sea Bowl Bowling Alley in Pacifica, CA.

On the lanes, amidst the cheers of friends and families and a little harassment between teams, folks played hard for their strikes. Glamorous Gabriela, of team Oh Split!, and Wild Ty, of team Thumping Cracked Thumbs, hit it hard and were the top scorers for their teams. Congrats to everyone!




A huge ‘thank you’ goes out to:

  • our friends and family who joined in the day’s fun
  • those who sent their cheers and support from near and far
  • those who generously donated to support this amazing group

And a tremendous ‘thank you’ to:

  • The BCTAC crew - You guys ROCK!
  • Neil and Pegi Young
  • The anonymous donor who generously paid for the lanes  (WOW!)
  • Craig Abaya
  • Elena Pena
  • Aquarium of the Bay
  • Kampena Motors


Team SharkAttack

  • Rebecca K. – Striker
  • Clay H. – Bonez
  • Alan F. – Big Al
  • April B. – Apee
  • Matt M. – Strong Bear

Team Thumping Cracked Thumbs (a real bowling term!)

  • Ben A. – Thunder Ben
  • Thanh D. – Lightening Thanh
  • Jake W. – Just Jake
  • Tyson R. – Wild Ty
  • Elisabeth H. – Lizzy
  • Annie P. – Awesome Annie

Team Oh Split!

  • Max B. – Menacing Max
  • Ben Y. – Eggman
  • Kolya A. – KocaKolya
  • Gabriela C. – Glamorous Gabriela
  • Jake A. – Ladies Man

Check out the teams preparing for the Bowl-a-Thon!

2011 1st Bowl-a-Thon Fundraiser

The 2011 1st Bowl-a-Thon was an amazing success! Hasseb and Ben Y. were our top bowlers. Gabriela was our top money maker for the most pledges. Who needs bowling shoes when you have the ‘champ ramp’ and a crew that bowls hard core? It was a great turn out and the enthusiasm of the bowlers was infectious. Everyone had a blast!!!

check out the gallery

Creativity Explored Tour

Thanh shares her creative process with the San Francisco State Conversation Club and the BCTAC group with an unprecedented tour of her work area at Creativity Explored – Second Studio (CE2).

Presentation by Thanh

Check Out the Gallery

I have been going to Creativity Explored since December of 1998. Creativity Explored operates two studios and I attend the smaller studio site on Potrero Hill, Creativity Explored – Second Studio (CE2). Currently, I attend four days a week, Tuesday through Friday. However, when I was attending SF State (August of 1998 through summer of 2005), I only came during the winter and summer breaks.

Creativity Explored is an art program for adults with developmental disabilities, where we can express ourselves through the creation of art. We create many drawings, varieties of abstract paintings, stories, animation videos, and many other art forms.

We artists choose which teacher to work with; the teachers rotate and we get a chance to work with different teachers. For instance, I work with a different teacher almost every day, but I'll work with the same teacher weekly to accomplish projects in a few months. About twenty artists usually work here every day, and it is 1:4 or 1:6 ratio (meaning one teacher for every four to six artists). We sometimes have volunteers to work one-on-one with us. We also have a Habilitation Aide, who helps us with eating, and other daily living skills as needed.

When I begin working, I use my communication device to tell my teacher what color and what medium that I want to start off with. Then, the teacher usually removes the talker from my mount and puts it somewhere it can't get dirty. I use my own voice for letting my teacher know when I need them to come over and assist me with changing colors or changing mediums. When I draw, I usually point at the colors that I want from a color selection of paint markers, pens, or pastels on the table. They help me grab the tool I need to use. While I am working, the instructor will give me suggestions and guidance, but it's up to me to make the final decision. I also let them know whenever I want them to rotate the piece around by giving them a rotate signal.

My family and I moved to this country from Vietnam in 1980 and we settled in Illinois initially. This Vietnamese Countryside Landscape was one of my very first pieces I did in 2005 after I graduated from SF State and began attending CE2 on a regular basis. There is a mountain, rolling hills, a bunch of little houses, trees, rocks and sand in this charcoal drawing.

The second piece is a painting of my mother that I did in 2009. The painting originated from a photograph that I used to recall a memory of my mother in the snow in Illinois. I did three pieces of her. This is the second one. I did this one by looking at the painting on paper from the original photographic image, and then working from it instead of the photograph. And lastly, I did a charcoal drawing by looking at this painting on canvas. Each piece strengthens the memory I have of my mother.

Painting is a similar routine as when I draw. I point at the paintbrush from a selection of different-sized paintbrushes. The teacher checks in with me sometime and asks me if I want to change paintbrushes for adding details to my artwork. I choose the paint color from a color selection in some little containers on the table, and the teacher asks if I want it lighter or darker. If the color I specify is not there, I point at a color in a color chart. They mix the colors for me or I do it myself.

Every six to seven weeks, we have an exhibition on different themes at the Creativity Explored Gallery on 16th Street near Dolores Street. The public can come and view or purchase our original artwork there. The art sale proceeds are shared equally (50/50) between the artists and Creativity Explored. We also have opportunities to exhibit our work in shows outside of Creativity Explored; sometimes these venues are in other countries.

I am also a Tier II Artist, which means that I am in the process of creating a cohesive body of work that represents my personal style and interest in landscapes and portraits. My work is marketed professionally, and I am in the process of seeking representation at a local gallery.

Besides working on our artwork, we go on some art-related field trips to museums or other places. Usually one teacher accompanies one to three artists on a field trip. I get inspiration from looking at the other artists' artwork, and sometimes I can see that some pieces have some similar styles to my own.

Thanks for coming to the tour.

Does anyone have any questions?

Questions & Answers

  1. When did you start working here?
    I started in December of 1998.
  2. How long have you been working here at CE2?
    I have been working at CE2 for 12 years.
  3. What kind of art do you do?
    I do all kinds of art: Non-figurative/abstract and also figurative work such as people, landscapes, animals, etc. I usually use paint, ink and charcoal but I've also done printmaking, video animation and sculpture.
  4. Where do you do your art, just at the site or at home too?
    I only make art at the CE2 studio.
  5. How do you do your art?
    It depends on what the art project is. Sometimes I use pictures for reference, sometimes I use images from my imagination, and sometimes I just start painting or drawing and see what comes out.
  6. Do you get help when you paint?
    I get as little assistance as possible so that what I create is as much of a product of my efforts as possible. Obviously, if I drop a brush or a pencil on the ground, I need someone to help retrieve it. Occasionally, I'll use adaptive devices, but I usually just hold whatever implement (pencil, brush, marker, etc.) I'm using in a conventional way.
  7. What tools do you use to paint with?
    I usually use brushes. Sometimes they are sponge brushes.
  8. Is painting your favorite art form?
    I like painting, but I think drawing is my favorite.
  9. What is your inspiration, other than StarTrek?
    I'm inspired by many things. People, landscapes, objects.
  10. Who inspires you?
    Other artists.
  11. How do you decide what you want to paint?
    Usually, there will be an upcoming CE2 art show with a specific theme, and I'll work on something related to that theme.
  12. Where is your favorite place to paint?
    In the CE2 studio.