Recent Activity

Check out the silent auction and raffle at Buddy Fest NW! It is a FUNdraiser after all!

Power Pumpers, beer gear, wine tastings, hotel stays, restaurant gift certificates, self-care & wellness, coffee & accoutrement, tickets to sports events & attractions, jewelry, fitness, toys, Portland-made shoes & clothing, and more amazing prizes arriving every day!


Get Involved!

Get Involved2.jpg

Contact or mparker@nwdsa.og

Click Here for Sponsor Pack

October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month! Help support the programs and outreach we offer the community throughout the year.

Donate now

The 20th Annual Buddy Fest NW is now in the books!

Thanks to all of our supporters for such a fantastic day and for helping to make our work possible! Thank you to Cody Sullivan, Dan Jarvis-Holland, and our parent speakers for bringing home the importance of high expectations and dreams! Thanks for giving us these reminders: PRESUME COMPETENCE, BE COACHABLE, AND FREE OUR PEOPLE!

Please share your pride by tagging #BuddyFestNW in your photos or sending to We will gather and post photos soon! Please also continue spreading the word about Down syndrome acceptance to help us towards our goal.  Donations can be made to Buddy Fest NW through October in honor of Down Syndrome Awareness Month.  So please share and save next year's date -- September 21, 2019 for the 21st Annual Buddy Festival and Walk!

Special thanks to #KGW for covering our celebration and bringing attention to the important work of the NWDSA! Click Here To Watch!

Buddy Fest Color Logo 500px.jpg


Moda Center Commons

Register online by Sept. 20th
Registration Fees:
Adult 18 & Up:  $15

Child 4 thru 17:  $10

Age 3 & under: Free!

Let's celebrate Down syndrome and the strength of our community! Registration includes a 2018 Buddy Fest NW t-shirt, an accessible walk, food & drink, and all the fun we can pack into a festival!  Online registration is now closed.  Day of registration is available and credit cards will be accepted. Please still join us!

Donations will be collected through October in honor of Down Syndrome Awareness Month. Thank you to all our Buddy Fest Supporters!!!

Donations received by Sept. 20th qualify for these prizes (awarded at the walk)

  • Teams raising $3,500 or more win an iPad Mini!
  • Teams raising $1,500-$3,499 win a Kindle Fire!

Please join us for the biggest party of the summer and the largest NWDSA fundraiser of the year!


Keynote Speakers Cody Sullivan, Matt Schweitz & James Phillips

Cody & friends-2.jpg

Cody Sullivan achieved his personal goals and made history this spring by becoming the first student to complete four years of college in Oregon!  Cody, Matt and James will share about their inclusive college experience, the importance of embracing everyone’s unique talents and abilities, and how we all have something to teach. Cody and his friends look forward to the day that inclusion of people experiencing intellectual disability in all areas of our community is the norm and that celebration of college completion is a personal one and not outside the norm. They have experienced first-hand the strength of community and the positive changes in our lives when we learn, grow, and work together.

Cody Sullivan is a self-advocate, student athlete, Kindergarten teacher aide, friend, boyfriend, son, and brother whose accomplishments been covered locally and nationally.  Matt and James are college classmates and friends who’ve been fortunate to have Cody as a guide. See below.

KGW: Educational achievement for Oregon man with Down syndrome

Inside Edition: Student Makes History

Special Guests Daniel Jarvis-Holland and Emma Frome

Dan & Emma Then & Now.jpg

This year marks a very momentous occasion for Daniel Jarvis-Holland and Emma Frome: two childhood friends who had a dream of going to college together and will realize that dream this fall! Raised within the NWDSA community, these young adults are already seasoned advocates for themselves and disability rights. They have been raised to believe in the power of their own dreams and have been allowed their own voice. They have experienced first-hand the benefit of person centered planning, high expectations, and inclusion.  This year Dan has graduated high school from Benson Polytechnic and next year both Emma and Dan will be attending college at Portland State University – an opportunity they both worked to create through their awareness and vision!  Together, along with their parents and a supportive community, they have celebrated accomplishments and worked to create possibilities for themselves and others in our community.

Dan is the son of NWDSA Board President, Steven Holland, and NWDSA Executive Director, Angela Jarvis-Holland, and Emma is the daughter of Angela Frome, NWDSA Program Director. Emma is a fierce friend and Dan is ever working to FREE OUR PEOPLE.

Entertainment provided by...

Emcee Tony Starlight •

Tony Starlight is a performer and venue owner who's been entertaining Portland and beyond with music and comedy for over 20 years. Tony has lent his talent to us as Buddy Fest NW Emcee for several years.

Tony & stormtroopers.jpg

The Unipiper •

Local legend and keeper of Portland weirdness the Unipiper will be leading the walk!


The Nu Wavers •

Blake Sakamoto (Dan Reed Network) shares his love of the music that made memories for generations with his band The Nu Wavers! The Nu Wavers perform your eighties favorites, college radio classics and alternative gems with five distinct singers that capture the diversity of '80s music.

Nu Wavers with Kenny and logo.jpg

Wallace •

Wallace is on a mission to move us! A collection of Portland's most stalwart musicians including long time NWDSA supporter, Newell Briggs, have combined forces to share singer/songwriter Erin Wallace's new independent project. Wallace's brand of rock, soul, blues and pop-influence lyricism is guaranteed to shake the shack and raise the roof!


Unicorns! •

Come get a selfie or feed imaginary apples to life-sized paper mache unicorns by Portland artist Jonas Hartley and join in the contest to name the fanciful creatures!

unicorn crop.jpg






of your goal reached









Celebrating 20 years.JPG

Buddy Fest NW promotes acceptance and inclusion of all people with Down syndrome. The walk brings together participants from Portland metro and SW Washington – family members, friends, professionals, community leaders and individuals with Down syndrome.

NWDSA's mission is to create and nurture a loving and inclusive community celebrating every individual with a disability, including Down syndrome.

October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month. We invite you to share your knowledge of the potential of individuals with Down syndrome with others in your community.

Day of Schedule

10:00 AM Registration Opens and Festival Begins
10:45 AM Special Performance
11:00 AM Welcome, Speakers, and Thank you's
11:35 AM Group Photo
11:45 AM Accessible Walk Begins
12:00 PM Music and Food Service Begins
12:15 PM Youngest Baby Boy and Girl Announced
12:30 PM First Half of Raffles Announced
12:45 PM Second Half of Raffles Announced
1:00 PM Silent Auction Closes
1:30 PM Buddy Fest Wraps Up

Parking Pass

This parking pass will be required for discount parking until 1pm the day of Buddy Fest.  Printable PDF available in downloads section below. Parking Pass 2018.jpg

Thanks to Team Bullwinkles and Shakyra Rosario for their first place fundraising efforts last year!


2017 Top Teams

1st Team Bullwinkles
2nd Soleyl's Bright Shine
3rd Oliver's Gold Fish
4th Team Dan
5th Archer's Team

2017 Top Individual Fundraisers

1st Shakyra Rosario
2nd Eric Cerdena
3rd Allen Scobba
4th Alice Miller
5th Shannon Larisey

Our Newest Participants

View All

The 20th Annual Buddy Fest NW supports a variety of programs offered or supported by the Northwest Down Syndrome Association. Thank you to all of our supporters. Our work would not be possible without YOU!

Social Media.jpg