Down Syndrome Association of Ontario, Global Down Syndrome Foundation show the world that there are no limits


Ontario, Denver (Thursday, April 8, 2021) – Today Down Syndrome Association of Ontario (DSAO) and , Global Down Syndrome Foundation (GLOBAL) proudly announce that a dedicated group of people with Down syndrome have broken the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDSTM title for Most people doing the Raise the Roof Dance move online simultaneously.

On March 21st, World Down Syndrome Day, and then again on March 27, nearly 600 people from 27 countries participated in a round-the-world dance party that culminated in the record-breaking feat.

“Global Down Syndrome Foundation and Down Syndrome Association of Ontario are proud to be able to tell the world that a dedicated group of people with Down syndrome have broken a Guinness World Records title,” says Michelle Sie Whitten, President & CEO of Global Down Syndrome Foundation. “This shows the world that children and adults with Down syndrome can and should have big aspirations that lead to extraordinary achievements.”

“We are grateful to the Guinness World Records company for giving us this opportunity,” says Domenic Gentilini, Chair of the Down Syndrome Association of Ontario. “It was actually quite a challenge with many requirements. It was also an opportunity during this devastating pandemic to virtually gather, celebrate, and be joyous. We are so proud of our attendees and, of course, our teams at DSAO and GLOBAL.”

Celebrity participants included Zack Gottsagen and Frank Stephens. Key sponsors included:

Down Syndrome Connection of the Bay Area, Down Syndrome Association of Peel, Down Syndrome Association National Capital Region, Down Syndrome Association of York Region, Down Syndrome Association of Brantford, Waterloo Down Syndrome Association, Down Syndrome Association Simcoe County, Down Syndrome Association of Peterborough, Down Syndrome Guild of Greater Kansas City, and RE/MAX.

The 21-hour dance party was supported by The Sonic Crew and 21 DJs including Shane Beard, who happens to have Down syndrome. The dance party started in Australia then moved to Malaysia, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, England, Ireland, Canada and ended in the United States.

“I was happy to support GLOBAL, DSAO and of course win a Guinness World Records title!” says Zack Gottsagen, award-winning actor from The Peanut Butter Falcon. “It was great to see some friends, make new friends, and bust a move!”

“We participated as a family for all three attempts,” says Rachael DiCarlo. “We had a fabulous time and appreciated all the organization that went into it. When our little butterfly Laurel was born, we had no idea about all the milestones that would be met – and now we can add a Guinness World Records title to her amazing accomplishments!”

The official attempt was verified by Guinness World Records Adjudicator Andrew Glass. GLOBAL and DSAO broke the record with 170 successful participants. The previous record was 99.


Domenic Gentilini
Chair, DSAO
[email protected]

Andrew Glass
Adjudicator, Guinness World Records
[email protected]
Twitter – @GWR

About DSAO

The Down Syndrome Association of Ontario (DSAO) is a charitable, non-profit organization composed of 19 local Down syndrome associations from across Ontario, Canada. Together, we coordinate the efforts to raise awareness, educate, and encourage the inclusion of people with Down syndrome and their families across Ontario. Our areas of focus include Health Care, Education, and Social Services. Visit and follow us on social media (Facebook & Twitter: @DSAOntario, Instagram: @ondownsyndrome).

About Global Down Syndrome Foundation

The Global Down Syndrome Foundation (GLOBAL) is the largest non-profit in the U.S. working to save lives and dramatically improve health outcomes for people with Down syndrome. GLOBAL has donated more than $32 million to establish the first Down syndrome research institute supporting over 400 scientists and over 2,000 patients with Down syndrome from 28 states and 10 countries. Working closely with Congress and the National Institutes of Health, GLOBAL is the lead advocacy organization in the U.S. for Down syndrome research and medical care. GLOBAL has a membership of over 150 Down syndrome organizations worldwide and is part of a network of Affiliates – the Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, the Sie Center for Down Syndrome, and the University of Colorado Alzheimer’s and Cognition Center – all on the Anschutz Medical Campus.

GLOBAL’s widely circulated medical publications include GLOBAL Medical Care Guidelines for Adults with Down Syndrome, Prenatal Testing and Information about Down Syndrome, and the award-winning Down Syndrome WorldTM magazine. GLOBAL also organizes the Be Beautiful Be Yourself Fashion Show, the largest Down syndrome fundraiser in the world. Visit and follow us on social media (Facebook & Twitter: @GDSFoundation, Instagram: @globaldownsyndrome).

About Guinness World Records

GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS (GWR) is the global authority on record-breaking achievement. First published in 1955, the iconic annual Guinness World Records books have sold over 141 million copies in 22 languages and in more than 100 countries. Additionally, the Guinness World Records: Gamer’s Edition, first published in 2007, has sold more than 4 million copies to date.

Guinness World Records’ worldwide television programmes reach over 750 million viewers annually and more than 3.3 million people subscribe to the GWR YouTube channel, which enjoys more than 450 million views per year. The GWR website receives over 19.9 million visitors annually, and we have over 15 million fans on Facebook. The Guinness World Records commercial sales division provides customized consultancy services for some of the world’s top brands and agencies to help place record breaking at the heart of their marketing campaigns, employee-engagement programs, and live and experiential events.