Presenter, Team Leader, Athlete, Conner DiGenova
In this blog, I am spotlighting my dear friend Conner. I was introduced to this young man when our paths crossed during Special Olympics summer games. I was there coaching bocce and Conner was competing in bowling. More recently I've had the great honor of being Conner's dance instructor as he is in his second season of my sensory and movement adult class at Lacey's Performing Arts Center. Conner is not only a participant he has been a substitute assistant several times. Conner also helps me develop weekly playlist by providing music selections for the older classes. It is so exciting to see Conner's love of music and movie soundtracks being shared every week as we dance are way through the decades. If you know this young man then you already know how incredible he truly is. I highly recommend you take a few minutes to read all about Conner and everything he is up to.
1. Tell me your name and a little bit about yourself(hobbies, interest, favorites, etc.)?
My name is Conner DiGenova and I enjoy hanging out with friends, I started a group called Conner's Cryptid Creatures where we go out to investigate different creatures, I do slide show presentations about cryptid creatures, I am involved in Special Olympics sports, I like to go to the movies, I am in Farrah's sensory and movement class.
2. Where do you work and/or your company name?
While I'm working on my Conner's Cryptid Creatures presentation I do that part at home.
When presentations are officially completed I do that at Advocates For Success (AFS)
3. What is your role?
I am the presenter for the presentations. When my group meets and goes out on investigations I am the team leader.
4. How long have you been in this role?
My group was formed in 2020 and i started doing my presentations in 2022
5. What type of skills are important and required for a person to have in your role?
When working on the presentations you need to know how to do Google slides and be able talk in front of a group. During investigations you need to do research on the creatures, history, maps and locations. Know what to look for for evidence- tracks, nests, scat, tree structures, blood tracks, noises, eye shines in the dark etc. You need video cameras -thermal and infrared, and a head lamp if going out in the dark.
6. Please tell the readers something they would be surprised to know about you?
I am very good at knowing celebrity names and what they have played in.
7. What’s a typical day or week for you at your job/organization?
I do my presentations at AFS on Wednesdays so I work on the slide show the other days. Usually Monday or Tuesday I do a practice run through of the slide show and check the time it takes to do it and make any changes.
8. What are some of the challenges of your role?
I do have to ask for help to make sure the information is right, like complete sentences and the correct punctuation and capitalization
9. What are the rewards?
It makes me feel good when I do my presentations and when people want to learn. I teach people about things they didn't know about.
10.Do you have any words of wisdom for the readers?
If you don't like talking in front of a group because you are shy or nervous- Face your fear!! The harder you work the better you get and the more confident you are. Be proud, stick up for yourself and if you need help, ask.
11.Please highlight some of the events/projects/services you're involved with?
I like to travel to different locations when doing the investigations. I like hiking and getting out in the woods. I really liked meeting they crews from the shows Mountain Monsters and Finding Bigfoot. I got to meet Lyle Blackburn who is an author and producer of cryptid documentaries. I also liked listening to Doug Waller, a bigfoot investigator speak at the Tuscarawas County library.
12. What is next for you?
In the future I want to go out to hunt for more creatures. Do more research all day and night. I would like to maybe have some guest speakers when I do my presentations.
13. Please feel free to share anything else you would like to share with readers
Don't forget your camera when you go bigfoot hunting!
So far I have done around 45 different creature presentations. A few of them are bigfoot, werewolves, Minerva Monster and Devil Dog.
My favorite creature is the werewolf. My top 3 favorite werewolf movies are:
1. Wolfman (1941)
2. American Werewolf in London (1981)
3. Howling (1981)
If you have any questions let me know. Thanks so much!!!