I was sorry to learn about the cancelation of the Feats of Clay event. Having moved to Lincoln just a couple of years ago, I told a number of friends to be sure to attend this year. Not only were the art exhibits impressive but so was the very unique and historic setting. One certainly got the feel of the old Gladding, McBean plant. The smell of the former work setting took me back in time. The plant’s importance to the decoration of California’s historical buildings, connection to present day art work, and to the vitality of the city of Lincoln became obvious.
I told my wife while attending, the setting was not ADA compliant. I also noted it was a private company which volunteered the space. I was responsible for over 10 years for dealing with compliance issues in a public agency. The act has benefitted both the employer and the employee. However, I have seen the liability fear and/or the costs take away opportunities for both handicapped and non-handicapped alike.
There are many very interesting places in the U.S., which may or may not be accessible to handicapped or even non-handicapped people. I don’t think the intent of the ADA was to shut down to the public those places where 100 percent don’t have physical assess.
In this day and age of virtual tours, is this even necessary? Even if it were possible to make some places compliant, it would often destroy the historical character and ambiance. Everyone loses when these places are closed to the public.
My wife and I were more then willing to sign a release from liability to experience Feats of Clay at the Gladding, McBean setting. I’m not sure what can be done but I do know the citizens of Lincoln, their friends and family, and tourists have suffered a great loss.
Paul Harling, Lincoln