Welcome to the Access Press Accessible Fun listings, a sampling of theater, music, arts, walks, runs, dances and gala events for our community. Readers looking for additional opportunities to enjoy the arts have these options:
VSA Minnesota has a large calendar at in the upper right hand corner of the home page. VSA Minnesota would like feedback on the design, so users should weigh in on the site or at[email protected] or 612-332-3888 ext. 2. The new website is intended to be easier for volunteers to maintain and expand. Users of the site should change their bookmarks if they haven’t already done so.
For information on galleries and theater performances around the state join the Access to Performing Arts email list at [email protected] or call VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888 or statewide 800-801-3883 (voice/TTY). To hear a weekly listing of accessible performances, call 612-332-3888 or 800-801-3883. Another web events listing is (c2: caption coalition, inc.), which does most of the captioned shows in Minnesota and across the country. Facebook is another way to connect with performances. Sign up to connect with Audio Description Across Minnesota. Connect with ASL Interpreted and Captioned Performances across Minnesota on Facebook.
ADA Celebration is July 25
Twenty four years ago, people with disabilities officially gained the same rights and freedoms as other U.S. citizens when the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990. Minnesota’s statewide ADA 24th Anniversary Celebration is 10 a.m. – noon Fri, July 25 at Rooms 2370-2380, Elmer L. Anderson Department of Human Services Building, 540 Cedar St., St. Paul. The event is free and open to the public. No pre-registration is required.
Guest speakers include Darlene Zangara, new Director of Minnesota’s Olmstead Plan Implementation Office and wheelchair basketball star Rose Hollermann, 2012 Paralympic Games U.S. team member. Entertainers include St. Paul writer-storyteller Leslye Orr and musicians Tony Wentersdorf and Mary Parker. Light refreshments will be provided by Lunds Byerly’s of Roseville.
Accommodations for people with disabilities include ASL services, CART services and audio description. Anyone needing other disability-related accommodations must make requests by July 17 by contacting Cindy Tarshish at [email protected] or calling 651-603-2015 or 888-630-9793. Tarshish can also answer general questions about the event.
Event sponsors are University of Minnesota Disability Services, ADA Minnesota, VSA Minnesota, Access Press, Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services, Department of Human Services, State Services for the Blind, Minnesota State Council on Disability, Disability Viewpoints and the Metropolitan Center for Independent Living.
Summer update for MN-CCD UPCOMING EVENTS
The Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (MN-CCD) hosts an important membership meeting 2-4 p.m. Tue, July 15 at Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, Conference Room 1C, 2485 Como Ave, St. Paul. Learn about the events and activities that MN-CCD has in the works for the summer and fall months. The Policy Committee will be presenting the results of the May’s policy survey, which sought member insights and input in identifying MN-CCD’s lead policy priority for the 2015 Legislative Session. The Grassroots and Communications Committee will be discussing candidate forum and town hall forum activities for the late summer and fall. Hear about the strategic planning teams and their progress. A detailed agenda will be released soon. Email [email protected] with questions and watch for call-in details.
PACER hosts symposium
More than 1,000 teachers, parents, and school administrators will attend the Ninth Annual PACER National Symposium about Children and Young Adults with Mental Health and Learning Disabilities, Thu, Aug. 7 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The symposium is designed to enhance awareness and identify strategies for responding to mental health and learning disabilities in children and young adults from the perspective of teachers and parents. It features excellent nationally known keynote speakers and breakout workshop presenters, including Larry Wexler, Division Director for the Research to Practice Division of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs will discuss seclusion and restraint, suspension, and disproportionality. Advance registration is required. $25 fee and includes lunch. FFI: 952-838-9000, 800-537-2237 (toll free), www.PACER.org
Olmstead listening sessions
Opportunities to comment on Minnesota’s draft Olmstead Plan continue. The plan, which is the state’s guide to improving services to people with disabilities, is awaiting community input. The Olmstead Sub-Cabinet, a group with representatives from several state departments and agencies, will hear comments. The final listening session is Mon, Aug. 11, but no location has been determined. FFI: http://tinyurl.com/m88uh4n
Help with estate planning
Goodwill Easter Seals, Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota, St. David’s Center and the law firm of Maser, Amundson, Boggio & Hendricks host a free meeting on estate planning at 5:30 p.m. Thu, Aug. 14 at the Gramercy Room, Gramercy Park Cooperative, 6711 Lake Shore Dr., Richfield. Free parking is available in the ramp at the back of the building and additional parking across the street at the Woodlake Centre Building. One CEU ethics credit is available for social workers. Participants must preregister by Aug. 12. RSVP via email to [email protected] and put ESTATE in the subject line.
Vision loss group offers activities
Vision Loss Resources offers free and low-cost activities in the Twin Cities for people who are blind or visually impaired. Life skills classes for people with low vision, card games, craft classes, book clubs, walking groups, dinners out, special outings and technology classes are among the offerings. Participants need to RVSP to participate. FFI: RSVP hotline 612-843-3439; activity phone 612-253-5155, www.visionlossresources.org
Art Show: Tara Innmon
Vision Loss Resources, 1936 Lyndale Ave. S., Mpls. hosts a free art show by Tara Innmon. The show is open 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Fri. Born with congenital glaucoma, Innmon graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1972 and worked as an occupational therapist for a number of years. Most of her 188 visual artworks were created between 1988-92. Totally blind since 1994, she has turned her artistic focus toward writing, graduating from Hamline University in 2008 with an MFA in creative writing and working on her childhood memoir. FFI: VLR: 612-871-2222, VSA MN: 612-332-3888, http://vsamn.org/art-show-tara-innmon.
Minnesota Fringe Festival – July 31 to Aug. 10
The 21st annual Minnesota Fringe Festival features 169 companies presenting 865 performances of theater, dance, performance art, storytelling and other theatrical entertainment at 19 Mpls venues, all accessible to people with mobility impairments. Shows last 60 minutes or less, and a new show starts every 90 minutes.
Performing groups come from Minnesota as well as from across the country. This year’s festival features 14 audio described shows, 10 ASL-interpreted shows and eight shows featuring performers with disabilities. Buy tickets online or get at each venue. A $4 Fringe button is required of all attendees. Attend one show for $12, get a four-show punch pass for $44, a ten-show punch pass for $100, or an Ultra Pass for unlimited shows for $225.
Punch cards are transferable and may be used by multiple people to attend one performance (as long as everyone has a button). Fringe box offices accept cash, checks and credit cards and open 30 minutes before each show time. Advance reservations ($1.75 fee) guarantee your seat. This reservation fee is waived for people using access services, with the code “access.”
The 2014 Fringe Festival schedule with show descriptions will be searchable starting July 1 here and available for printing at home. For a daily recording of shows presented with AD or ASL, call VSA Minnesota at 612-332-3888. FFI: www.fringefestival.org