This Disabled Man's 'Magic Dance' Is Guaranteed to Make You Smile

His accomplishments—including running his own restaurant—prove that Down syndrome doesn't have to get in the way of dreams.
Jan 7, 2014· 0 MIN READ
Shaya Tayefe Mohajer is TakePart's News Editor.

Meet Tim Harris. You'll be glad you did—except you might wish you were meeting this affectionate man in person.

The Special Olympics champion owns a restaurant in Albuquerque, N.M., called Tim's Place—and the menu is simple: breakfast, lunch, and hugs.

In between carrying trays of food to his customers and telling his cooks that they are the greatest, the sweet-mannered young man has taken more than 40,000 customers into his arms.

That's because, as Tim likes to say, "the hugs are the best part."

We love that about Tim, and so do his parents, who helped him open the restaurant with financial backing, and his brother, Dan, who works as the restaurant's operations manager.

To his family's knowledge, Tim is the only adult with Down syndrome to own a restaurant in the United States, though they hope many more will follow. According to the National Down Syndrome Society, one in 691 babies is born with the extra genetic material that causes it, making Down syndrome the most common genetic condition. Today, about 400,000 people in America have it.

"People with disabilities can do anything they set their mind to," Tim says in the video.

He adds, "We are a gift to the world."

Watching his "dance of magic" in the parking lot outside the restaurant—a morning ritual of joy—we can't help agreeing, and we wish Tim a great deal of success.