Participant FAQs

  1. Why is the date and location changed for Steps for Autism?

Previously, Steps for Autism was held inside in March. Moving the event to May allows us to relocate the event to a pandemic-safe outside venue that will allow for space for social distancing and opportunities for different, engaging activities. We’re excited to be at the beautiful Como Lakeside Pavilion from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. on May 23!

  1. How do I get a Steps for Autism 2021 T-shirt?

To purchase official Steps for Autism in Minnesota 2021 apparel, including the 2021 t-shirt, visit our new apparel store on A portion of all sales will support AuSM’s programs and resources for the local autism community. Order by May 3 to have your apparel delivered on time to wear during Steps for Autism on May 23. Orders placed after May 3 will be delivered after Steps for Autism 2021.

  1. How do I get a Steps for Autism 2021 medal?

Participants can receive a commemorative medal for participating in the walk at the event for $5, or for $6 if you prefer to have your medal mailed to you. When you register, you can opt in for a medal if you choose.

  1. How long is the walk portion of the event?

We invite participants to walk a distance that works for them. The path around Como Lake is 1.67 miles, but walkers are welcome to turn around at any time. AuSM will offer a checkpoint with Three Rivers Park District partway along the lake path. If you’re participating virtually, choose your favorite walk path for your Steps walk.

  1. Where can I park?

Como Lakeside Pavilion has two public parking lots located on either side of the pavilion; however, these lots are first come, first serve. There is additional parking around the lake and on city streets in the area.

  1. What activities will be at Steps for Autism 2021?

Steps for Autism will include:

  • An all-abilities walk route
  • Activity stations featuring the Three Rivers Park District, the Ramsey County Sheriff, the Ramsey County Library, AuSM Camps, a quiet space, yoga, and costumed characters
  • An autism resources fair, featuring businesses and organizations that offer programs and services for families and individuals with autism
  • Opportunities for community connections
  1. Can I attend if I don’t fundraise? Can I fundraise if I don’t attend? Do I need a team to fundraise?

All are welcome at Steps for Autism, a free event for our community. You can attend without fundraising, and you can fundraise without attending. You can gather a group to fundraise as a team, or fundraise on your own. Though you don’t have to fundraise, we encourage you to ask your family, friends, and network to donate as the dollars raised stay local to support programs and services for those with autism in our neighborhoods.

  1. Are there fundraising incentive prizes?

Raise $250+: Receive a team name sign along the walk route that you can take home (or pick up if you’re attending virtually). Must raise $250 or more by May 17 so we have time to create your sign.

Raise $500+: Receive an AuSM-branded picnic blanket for your enjoyment this summer and beyond.

  1. Will there be opportunities to buy books and sensory items from the AuSM Bookstore?

AuSM will offer books and sensory items online to limit contact between customers and products and ensure safety. Items can be accessed for purchase on AuSM’s website, and there will be AuSM Bookstore representatives in the pavilion to help with orders through personal mobile devices.

  1. What are the safety procedures regarding COVID-19?

AuSM is closely monitoring federal, state, and local guidelines to ensure the safety of our participants and that our event complies with all COVID-19 requirements. At this time, the following procedures are planned for the in-person Steps for Autism event:

  • All participants and staff must wear a mask.
  • If you are experiencing symptoms of illness do not come to Steps for Autism.
  • We ask all participants and staff to practice social distancing. Signs and guidance will be posted to help participants maintain distance.
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided throughout the event for all participants.
  1. What if being in the crowd of participants overwhelms me?

AuSM respects the sensory needs of our community members and will provide a quiet space for those who need to take a break from the activities.

  1. Will Steps for Autism be cancelled or rescheduled because of weather?

Steps for Autism will take place rain or shine!