A diverse group of people, including children and individuals with disabilities and a person dressed as a Flying Pig mascot gather outdoors for a community event, some are holding balloons.
A collage of two photos. The photo on the left shows two young men smiling and giving thumbs up while they pose with someone dressed as a pig mascot for the flying pig marathon. The second photo shows five people walking together outside.

Ready to Fly

On a sunny Sunday afternoon, dozens of people gathered to walk along the Ohio River. They’re all getting ready for PigAbilities, which is a one-mile event during Flying Pig weekend.

In the spring of 2023, Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities Services (HCDDS) partnered with Queen City Running to start these weekly trainings.

“I’ve run the Flying Pig Marathon before and participated in PigAbilities with friends. I also train with Queen City Running. This partnership was a great way to get more people involved in PigAbilities,” said Ann Myres, lead community navigator for HCDDS.

It’s a fun hour to get together, be active and connect with other people.

PigAbilities Meetups took place every Sunday from February through April. They covered distances ranging from 0.25 miles to 1 mile, along accessible routes in Cincinnati.

Cathy Melvin has been attending the PigAbilities Meetups since they started in February. “I thought it would be good exercise,” she said. “I’m having fun and meeting new people.”

Even if you don’t think you can walk the full mile, Myres encourages people to come out, start with shorter distances, and then build up to the full mile.

“There are plenty of people to support you along the way,” she said. “Sometimes when you are walking and talking with other people, you can surprise yourself with how far you can go.”

This article originally appeared in the Spring 2023 issue of My Life magazine.