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Sensory-Friendly Activities in

Michigan

SenseSational Learning Group and One North Kitchen & Bar

Sensory Friendly "Friendsgiving"!

Join us for dinner!   SenseSational Learning Group has partnered with Autism Eats and One North Kitchen & Bar to host a "Friendsgiving"!  Monday, November 13, 2023, 6:00 - 8:00 pm   This event is entirely Autism family friendly and all behaviors are welcome. The delicious food will be served buffet style and available for you whenever you arrive. We will have sensory friendly toolkits to help support you and your family in enjoying a fabulous meal together with your community!


SenseSational Learning Group and One North Kitchen & Bar

5001 W. Saginaw

Lansing, MI 48917

517-295-3175

Allegan Event

Tuesday Sensory Adventure

Beginning June 13th, on Tuesdays from 10 am–noon Allegan Event will turn off the flashing lights and sounds on the Jumbotron video screens, arcade area, and climbing walls to accommodate guests who are more comfortable in a calm environment without bright lights and loud noises.


Home of the largest indoor ropes course in Michigan, Allegan Event is a 13,000-square-foot family adventure center. Attractions include the Sky Trail® ropes course with Sky Rail® zip rails sitting at heights up to 35 feet, multiple Clip ‘n Climb® walls varying in difficulty, an outdoor Maze, and a Sky Tykes® course designed for toddlers and small children. Allegan Event’s adventure attractions allow participants of all ages to participate in physical activity, connect with peers, and build self-esteem. 


“During the summer Allegan Event is open seven days a week, and we decided one morning should be dedicated to guests with sensory sensitivity,” explained Michelle Liggett, owner of Allegan Event. “It’s my goal to offer an environment that’s fun and pleasant for everyone.”  


Allegan Event also features an arcade with prize redemption, a food and beverage area, and an outdoor patio offering free live music & BBQ every Sunday this summer. Conveniently located 30 minutes from Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, and Holland, Allegan Event is a perfect destination for those seeking an adventurous and unique venue for birthdays, field trips, corporate gatherings, or just a family fun day.


Allegan Event

439 River Street

Allegan, MI 49010

269-430-3961

DNR Outdoor Adventure Center

Sensory-Friendly Days

The DNR Outdoor Adventure Center welcomes friends and families with sensory processing differences to our Sensory-Friendly building hours!  Enjoy the opportunity to explore and experience the OAC with building sounds and ambient noises at a lower volume. During your visit there will be a quiet room with sensory materials available to use. At noon the building will open to the public with volumes returning to standard operating levels. All staff are certified to ensure the best possible experience.


2023 Sunday Dates: Feb 5, April 2, Oct 1, Dec 3 2023 Saturday Dates: June 3, July 1, Aug 5 Time: 10am - Noon


Fee: Complimentary


DNR Outdoor Adventure Center

1801 Atwater Street

Detroit, MI 48207

844-622-6367

SenseSational Learning & TinkrLAB

Sensory Sunday - Play Group

The Learning Lagoon at tinkrLAB 2.0 is the perfect space to engage in developmentally appropriate play based activities. The play will give the children a chance to interact with each other, practice social skills and communication, pretend, and explore a variety of different toys and materials. The Learning Lagoon play space features toys and equipment for gross motor play, manipulation and sensory play, cooperative games, and pretend play. The space will be sensory friendly and the routines will be predictable and safe for children of all ability levels. 


Who can join?  Children under the age of 8. Please keep in mind that this is a shared social play space where children of all ages will be playing next to and with each other.


What if my child has behavior problems?  The lead play facilitator is trained as a behavior analyst and will work with the family to prevent and respond appropriately to challenging behaviors as they arise. Please bring your child's preferred calm down tools and visual aids to help them be most successful in this environment. Some sensory toys will be available to use during the event.


What if my child is nonverbal?  Children of all communicative abilities are welcome to join our group. We look forward to helping our group members learn about different communication styles to allow everyone to feel valued and included.


Who will facilitate?  The lead facilitator will be Sheila Hartley, MS, BCBA, LBA. She is the owner of SenseSational Learning Group, LLC. She provides support for inclusive practices in preschools in the Lansing area. She also provides consultation and coaching for parents to support their child's development through play and daily activities. Sheila is in the dissertation phase of her doctoral program where she is specializing in early childhood education and literacy. She has a masters degree in Psychology and a credential as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. Although Sheila's business focuses primarily on providing consultation and direct support to educators and families of children diagnosed with developmental delays, such as autism, she has taught and supported children who experience a variety of disabilities, including Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, ADHD, and children who are Deaf or hard of hearing. Please do not hesitate to contact us and see if the group and the staff’s experience feel like a good fit for your child. 


How much will it cost?  The cost is $10 for the first child and $5 for additional children. At least one adult must be present with the child at all times. Tickets are available at the door or at www.sensesational-learning-group.com.


SenseSational Learning Group & TinkrLAB

2650 E. Grand River Ave, Suite D,

East Lansing, MI

517-500-8687

Impression 5 Science Center

Sensory Friendly Hours

Explore your Science Center with select exhibits altered to reduce sounds, scents, and lighting stimuli. Guests can expect a limited building capacity, pop-up activity, and map designating the sensory experiences in each exhibit.  Thank you to MiABLE for supporting Sensory Friendly Hours at Impression 5!


  • Dates: July 26, August 9

  • Time: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

  • Ages: Children and adults of all ages welcome with their families

  • Capacity: Up to 250 people in building

  • Admission: Regular admission prices apply. Free for members


Impression 5 Science Center

200 Museum Dr.

Lansing, MI 48933

517-485-8116

Early Autism Services

What Is Autism

Early Autism Services invites you to an Autism Orientation Series Event: 'What is Autism' at our Troy, MI Clinic. Join us as we discuss the characteristics commonly associated with autism, post diagnosis steps, common therapeutic interventions children on the autism spectrum may benefit from, and a variety of resources available to families. We are eager to help address your questions and concerns. Childcare and pizza will be provided. We will be live-streaming the event via zoom for those who are unable to attend in-person.


Event is on Wednesday, May 25th from 6pm-7pm EST


Early Autism Services

Troy Clinic

5877 Livernois Rd Suite 104

Troy, MI 48098

586-291-2553

Aspire Taekwondo of West Michigan

SPD Taekwondo Class

Aspire Taekwondo has the only Taekwondo class in West Michigan taught by a husband/wife duo who are a Master Instructor in Taekwondo and a 20+ years Special Education teacher (Teacher of the Year award winner).


Anchor Point Bible Church Gym

635 Seminole Rd

Norton Shores MI, 49441

616-813-6654

Autistic Play Place

Play-Place

From their website: Play-Place for Autistic Children is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization  located in Sterling Heights, MI. Play-Place’s mission is to provide a  fun-filled, judgment-free, haven of hope for families affected by autism  and other special needs. Through a unique play-powered environment,  combining education and recreation with a variety of social,  occupational and physical therapeutic overtones, Play-Place’s one of a  kind model will be a revolutionary compliment to the autism equation of  intervention and awareness.


Designed to promote cognitive and social development,  sensory integration, balance & coordination, endless hours of  excitement, as well as professional support services and respite relief  for parents and siblings, our curriculum will service all ages.  Play-Place’s bottom line focuses on development, life skills and  independence to assist families with the everyday nuances of “living  with autism.”


Autistic Play Place

39337 Mound Road

Sterling Heights, MI 48310

586-254-6533

TheraPLAYoga

Always Sensory Safe

Mid-Michigan's premier inclusive adaptive yoga studio; optimized for neurodivergent, disabled, and trauma-impacted children, youth, and adults.  Therapeutic, playful yoga and mindfulness for diverse bodies, brains, and abilities across the lifespan.


TheraPLAYoga-Adaptive Yoga Studio

2015 E. Michigan Ave.

Lansing, MI 48912

Abrams Planetarium

Sensory Friendly Shows

From the website: The Abrams Planetarium offers sensory friendly shows on the third Sunday of every month at 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. These shows will run with the lights up, the sound down, and the theater doors open so people can move about as needed. We also provide a place to "chill out" in our lobby. All shows include a live star talk about what is up in the sky that night. We will include a short break between the main show and star talk. Information about what to expect during the show will be provided when you purchase tickets.

 

Admission prices for all shows are:

  • Adults, $4.50

  • Students and senior citizens, $4.00

  • Children (age 12 and under), $3.50

 

Show tickets are not sold in advance. Ticket sales begin 30 minutes prior to showtime. All shows include a current sky talk and last about an hour.

Abrams Planetarium
Michigan State University
755 Science Road
East Lansing, MI 48824

517-355-4672

Identity Salon

Hair Styling in a Sensory Friendly Environment

From their Facebook page: Hair Stylist Wendy Williams will be providing hair services in a safe, calm, and sensory-sensitive atmosphere for anyone with autism, sensory processing disorder, or other special needs.

Wendy has 19+ years of professional hair styling and cosmetology experience and an understanding that the salon environment is not an enjoyable event for everyone. Striving to make every client feel as comfortable as possible, Wendy will be opening up Identity Salon in Grand Blanc on Sundays, by appointment only, to offer full hair services. This will reduce surrounding noises, smells, lights and general environmental conditions that can make the hair-cut experience so overwhelming. Additionally, Wendy will collect background information to gain an understanding of each client's specific sensory needs, provide sensory tools to reduce stimulation, and offer social stories to reduce anxiety.

Identity Salon

545 E Grand Blanc Rd
Grand Blanc, Michigan 48439

810-347-6589

Celebration! Cinema

Sensory Showtimes

Celebration! Cinema has many locations in Western Michigan that offer sensory showtimes. The lights are kept on, the volume of the movie sound is turned down, and closed captioning is turned on. Patrons are free to move about the theater as needed during each screening.

Click on the link above for Celebration! Cinema's events calendar. Select your local theater on the left, and "Sensory Showtimes" on the right!

National Chains That May Have Sensory-Friendly Activities in Your Area: 

Glass Slipper Initiative

Summer Art Paradise

Join Glass Slipper Initiative and Friends of Children with Special Needs for a free accommodating online art event for children with disabilities! It will be on July 22nd from 10 AM to 12 PM, where we'll have multiple stations for different crafts for any skill level. All you'll need is paper, scissors, and some coloring supplies! Sign up at bit.ly/GSI-Summer.  If you can't make the event, but you'd like to be notified about other ones in the future, go to glassslipperinitiative.org and click "sign up" to join our mailing list for future events and opportunities for your kids.

RockonMusic School

RockonMusic Lessons

Use the positive power of music to learn to play  instruments, sing and create. Each one-on-one session is tailored to the  individual's skills and motivations. I specialize in those impacted by  autism or other disabilities. Live Westchester & Putnam Counties, NY  and on Zoom, anywhere....since 2016.


RockonMusicSchool

914-489-0520

Proud to Be Me

Free Dance Therapy Classes for Children with Developmental Disabilities!


This dance class is designed for elementary and middle schoolers with any intellectual, developmental, or sensory impairments! Our beginner-level dance and movement classes currently take place through Zoom and provide a fun outlet for children to let out energy and meet new people. The free class is also designed to help refine and improve things like motor skills, concentration, social/communication abilities, and general happiness.


More information on website (linked above).


Proud to Be Me

734-660-7136

Alamo Theatre

Alamo for All

From their website: "Welcome to Alamo for All - a movie program for young families and guests with special needs.  All shows starting before 2 pm on Tuesdays follow Alamo for All rules, with more shows on the weekends.  Schedule may vary during holidays.  At sensory-friendly Alamo for All shows,

  • Lights are turned up and sound is turned down

  • All ages are welcome (including infants)

  • Talking and noise is allowed and guests can move around

  • Latecomers are admitted

  • Adaptive technology is welcome (but no other electronics, please)

 

Bought a ticket to an Alamo for All show by mistake?  No problem!  Contact the theater and we'll be glad to refund or exchange your ticket for another show.

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

We Rock the Spectrum Kid's Gym

The Gym for All Kids

From their website: "We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gyms was founded to provide a place for children of all ability levels to play and grow together. As the only kids gym that offers an inclusive philosophy we have found all children can benefit from our uniquely designed sensory equipment that is specifically designed to aid children with sensory processing disorders. However, in our experience, all children are able to benefit greatly from this equipment and by allowing children of all ability levels to play together they are able to learn a great deal from each other and become the best motivation for success on every level.

Our Gym Includes:

  • Suspended equipment with swings – for balance and vestibular treatment

  • Crash mats and crash pillows – for fun, motor planning, and strength

  • Zip line – for stress release and joint and body relaxation

  • Trampoline – for building leg and core strength

  • Indoor play structure – for climbing and increasing playground skills

  • Sensory-based toys – for improved auditory processing and fine motor skills

  • Fine Motor and Arts and Crafts Area – for improved hand-eye coordination"

​Check the link above for locations.

Autism Eats

Autism Friendly Dining

From their webpage: Providing autism-friendly non-judgmental environments for family dining, socializing and connecting with others who share similar joys and challenges. ALL behaviors are welcomed!

Check the website above for restaurants and dates!

Cobb Theatres

Sensory Friendly Films

Sensory Friendly showings provide families with varying abilities the opportunity to enjoy a family friendly film where kids can be kids in a safe and accepting environment. The auditoriums are made comfortable by brighter lights and the sound level is turned down. The audience is encouraged to be themselves and interact with the movie, while having fun without the worry of disturbing others. Dance, sing and enjoy the show!!!


All shows will begin at 10am local time. Films, dates and program are subject to change. Tickets are available in person only the Wednesday prior to each showing.


Check the link above for dates and locations.

Marcus Theaters

REEL MOVIES FOR Real Needs

A Special Showing for Families and Individuals with Special Needs. We understand that sometimes it is difficult or uncomfortable for families with special needs children to attend movies together.

 

Marcus Theatres Reel Movies for Reel Needs is a specially designed program to serve families with special needs such as autism or other challenges, who seldom attend movies. Reel Movies for Real Needs creates a welcoming and comfortable environment – lower sound, lights up – where families with children who need accommodations will be able to share the experience of seeing family friendly films at a theatre.

Check the link above for dates and locations.

Urban Air Adventure Park

Sensory Friendly Jump

NEW sensory friendly jump time for our special needs community only, every First Sunday of the month from 10am-12n (time/date varies per location).

No flashing lights, no whistles, low music level, and less crowded. We invite you and your families to join us! Reduced rates available (varies per location). Open to sensory-sensitive individuals, their siblings and care-givers only.

Check the link above for dates and locations.

Studio Movie Grill

Sensory Friendly Screenings

A pillar of SMG’s Outreach since 2003, our monthly Special Needs Screenings are designed for families raising children with special needs. Special Needs Screenings are shown with the lights up and the volume lowered and children are free to move around, talk, or even dance in the aisles during the movie.

The sensory friendly screenings are free for children with special needs and their siblings. Adult tickets are available at before-noon price. There are no advance ticket sales. Parental guidance is always suggested.

Special Needs Screenings are shown at 11:00am at all SMG locations except EpiCentre. SMG Downey, Monrovia and Redlands look forward to offering our special needs screening program in the near future. We are currently in process of installing new seating and will subsequently undergo remodeling to our full concept. These locations will offer special needs screenings as soon as this work has been completed. 

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

Regal Cinemas

My Way Matinee

Sensory friendly movie screenings with sounds lower, lights brighter.

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

AMC Theaters

Sensory Friendly Films

AMC is proud to partner with the Autism Society to offer unique movie showings where we turn the lights up, and turn the sound down, so you can get up, dance, walk, shout or sing! Our Sensory Friendly Film program is available on the second and fourth Saturday (family-friendly) and Tuesday evenings (mature audiences) of every month. Please check your local theatre listings for specific showtimes, and don't forget to share your family fun with #AMCSensoryFriendly.

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

Major Airports

Wings for Autism®/Wings for All®

Wings for Autism®/Wings for All® are airport “rehearsals” specially designed for individuals with autism spectrum disorders and individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities. The programs are designed to alleviate the stress that families who have a child with autism or intellectual/developmental disabilities experience when flying. It provides families the opportunity to practice entering the airport, obtaining boarding passes, going through security and boarding a plane. Airport, airline, Transportation Security Administration professionals, and other personnel also have the opportunity to observe, interact, and deliver their services in a structured learning environment.

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

Sky Zone

Sensory Hours

Enjoy the freedom of jumping. Sensory hours provide a quieter, toned-down jumping experience for those with special needs.

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

Chuck E. Cheese

Sensory Sensitive Sundays

Chuck E. Cheese's is proud to support families who have children with autism and special needs. We now offer a sensory-friendly experience on the first Sunday of every month. Our trained and caring staff is there to make sure each guest has a fun filled visit. The Sensory Sensitive Sundays experience includes:

  • Less crowding and noise

  • Dimmed lighting

  • Show and music turned off or down

  • Limited appearances by Chuck E.

  • Food and games are offered

 

Check the link above for dates and locations.

iFly

All Abilities Night

All Abilities Night at iFLY is a unique event that makes the dream of flight a reality for those in the special needs community. This program has been custom designed for those with physical and cognitive challenges to create an environment of support and inclusion, while focusing on making what seems impossible, possible.​

​Check the link above for dates and locations.

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