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January 15, 2020

Popular series, now in its 10th year, offers free access for families of children with an autism spectrum disorder, are deaf or hard of hearing, or have a visual impairment.

ACTON - The Discovery Museum has announced 2020 dates of their Especially for Me series of free events for families with children with an autism spectrum disorder and/or with hearing or vision loss.

2020 marks the 10th year for the popular free program series which offers families an opportunity to play together when the museum is closed to the general public or capacity is limited in order to improve access. Because admission is free, families may come and go based on their child’s needs without concern for cost. Parents also have the chance to meet other families in similar circumstances, thereby reducing feelings of isolation often described by families dealing with special needs.

Discovery Museum is ADA-compliant and all exhibits are accessible, designed according to Universal Design principles to be both aesthetically pleasing and useable by the widest possible range of people, without regards to age or ability.

Special resources appropriate to each event are provided. These may include noise-reducing headphones, audio-description devices, sensory-based programming, or American Sign Language (ASL) language facilitators. Additionally, food including gluten-free options is provided for all evening events.

All Especially for Me events are free to attend, but preregistration is required. Dates and registration links can be found online at http://bit.ly/EspeciallyforMe.

2020 Schedule

Free Sensory-Friendly Afternoons (during public hours, but no school groups or birthday parties will be scheduled at this time) are on the following Tuesdays, 1:30 – 4:30pm: January 7, February 4, March 3, April 7, May 5, June 2, October 6, November 10, and December 1.  

Free Autism-Friendly Evenings (closed to the public) are on the following Saturday evenings, 5:00 – 8:00pm: January 11, February 29, March 21, May 2, July 11, August 15, and November 21.

Free Evenings for Families of Deaf, Hard of Hearing, & KODA Children (closed to the public) are on the following Saturday evenings, 5:00 – 8:00pm: February 1, April 18, June 6, and September 26.

Free Mornings for Families of Deaf, Hard of Hearing, & KODA Infants and Toddlers (closed to the public) will take place 9:30am – 12:30pm on Monday, March 30 and Monday, October 19.  

Free Visually Impaired Family Evenings (closed to the public) will take place 5:00 – 8:00pm on Saturday, May 23 and Saturday, October 24.

Especially for Me is part of the museum’s Open Door Connections program to provide opportunities for those who face a variety of barriers---financial, developmental, or cultural---to experience the Museum. Especially for Me events are funded through grants provided by the Digital Federal Credit Union’s DCU for Kids foundation, Corning Foundation, Mass Cultural Council, Boston Bruins Foundation, Concord Carlisle Community Chest, Nypro, Sensata Foundation, and the Local Cultural Councils of Arlington, Lexington, and Millis.