Accessible Events – March 2014

Welcome to the Access Press Accessible Fun listings, a sampling of theater, music, arts, walks, runs, dances and gala events […]

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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 unveiled its new website on February 17. The site 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



Groundbreaking AXIS Dance Company at the Ordway March 21

AXIS Dance CompanyAXIS Dance Company, one of the world’s most acclaimed and innovative ensembles, will perform one night only at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in St. Paul. The performance is 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 21. A pre-show talk is set for 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 to $48.

Under the artistic direction of Judith Smith, the company of seven dancers—with and without disabilities—challenges the possibilities of movement, expanding and enriching the art form itself.

This remarkable performance will include “what if would you” by Victoria Marks, “Full of Words” by British choreographer Marc Brew and a new work by Amy Seiwert. Hailed by famed choreographer Bill T. Jones as the company that “showed me what dance could be,” AXIS shows are a melding of contemporary dance and disability culture.

“AXIS gives a powerful performance that opens eyes, defies perceptions and transcends contemporary dance,” said Ordway Artistic Director of  World Music and Dance Dayna Martinez. “The company challenges the stereotypes of dance and what the body can do as well as the intricacies between the dancers in a way that mesmerizes you.”

The company was featured on the Fox Network competition “So You Think You Can Dance” and filmed a video recently for AOL.

Founded in 1987, the dance company has paved the way for a powerful contemporary dance form called physically integrated dance. In 1997, Smith led the company to new heights by expanding from in-house choreographers to various commissions from outside the company. Since then, their performances have won numerous awards. AXIS has recently expanded its education and outreach programs creating Dance Access for Adults and Dance Access/KIDS!

The company has toured extensively performing nationwide, as well as in Russia, Europe, and Siberia, in more than 120 cities.

The troupe has received many honors including seven Isadora Duncan Dance Awards. AXIS was one of five companies named ‘Best Dance Companies in San Francisco’ by CBS San Francisco in 2011 and one of the Bay Area’s top 10 high-impact arts nonprofits by Philanthropedia (2010).

Under Smith, the company has commissioned works by such movement innovators as Bill T. Jones, Stephen Petronio, Joe Goode, Victoria Marks, Ann Carlson, David Dorfman, Alex Ketley, Joanna Haigood, Sonya Delwaide, and Margaret Jenkins and worked with world-renowned composers Meredith Monk, Fred Frith and Joan Jeanrenaud. Additionally, AXIS’ own choreographers have created numerous repertory work-expanding AXIS’ repertory to over 75 works. For tickets or information about accommodations, call 651-224-4222, TTY 651-282-3100. The website is



Don’t be on the fence about this conference

The Minnesota AgrAbility Project holds its 21st Annual Fenceline Conference March 16-17 at the Holiday Inn and Suites in St. Cloud. Every year former, current, and new AgrAbility participants along with other individuals interested in the Minnesota AgrAbility Project gather for the two-day conference. The conference provides the opportunity to learn about the most recent advances in technology. Farmers can gather ideas for making life safer and more efficient on the farm and learn from others who have recovered from serious illness or injuries. The conference gives participants time to network with one another, discuss the challenges of farming with a disability and how it effects on the entire family. The theme of the conference for 2014 will be “Keeping the Family Farm Alive.” Topics include an AgrAbility update, legislative update, seating and positioning session for wheelchair users, investing for the future, future planning, caring for caregivers, the four myths of pain and an introduction to Farm Rescue. Vendors will be on site, highlighting and providing demonstrations on new products. Time will be available to visit with the vendors to learn more about products and services that are available to help overcome the barriers farming with a disability may present.

Vendors will be on site, highlighting and providing demonstrations on new products. Time will be available to visit with the vendors to learn more about products and services that are available to help overcome the barriers farming with a disability may present.

The Minnesota AgrAbility Project helps farmers and their families find the right solutions to barriers they face while farming with a disability. The Minnesota AgrAbility Project is dedicated to helping farmers work more safely and independently, and offers practical solutions for a healthy and productive life in agriculture by providing on-site farm consultation, low-interest loans, education and training, safety planning, financial planning, support and advocacy, and a peer support network. It is a partnership of the University of Minnesota Extension Service, Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering Department and EquipALife a statewide Community based organization. Its work is supported through a grant from the National Institute of good and Agriculture (NIFA), and the US Department of Agriculture. For information, call 763-479-8239, toll-free 866-535-8239 or visit



TAAC appointees sought

Metropolitan Council Seeks applicants for four vacancies on the Transportation Accessibility Advisory Committee (TAAC), which advises the council on management policies for special transportation services in the region, including Metro Mobility. The TAAC was created by the Minnesota Legislature and must include riders and advocates for older people and the disability community, as well as representatives of service providers and other appropriate agencies. Applicants are sought from four districts. District B includes western Hennepin, Carver and Scott counties, except for New Prague. District E include parts of Anoka and Ramsey counties. District F includes Washington County and part of Ramsey County. District H includes most of Dakota County. At least half of the committee must be certified as ADA paratransit eligible under the Americans with Disabilities Act and be active users of public ground transportation in the metro area. Terms are up to four years, concurrent with the council’s, and would expire in January 2015. The deadline for applications is April 30. FFI: David Russell, 651-602-1662, [email protected]



Give a puppy a break

Can Do Canines Assistance Dogs has a puppy training program at the Waseca Federal Prison. But help is needed from residents of that area to help, so that puppies can become successful assistance dogs. Volunteers are needed twice a month to provide furloughs in their homes to work on the puppy’s house manners and social skills. This also means taking them in their training cape to stores, restaurants, etc. to expose them to social settings. Can Do Canines will provide all supplies and training; host families will provide love and affection. FFI: Laurie Carlson, 763-331-3000 x113, [email protected]



Share a smile

Brighten the day of a senior citizen in north or southwest Minneapolis and have fun. Visit an elder and do things together: movies, games, crafts or just friendly conversation. Hang out with an elder on a regular basis and do things that you both enjoy, like watching a movie, building stuff, playing games or friendly conversation. One-time or ongoing opportunities through the NIP Senior Program. FFI: Jeanne, 612-746-8549, [email protected], or



Open the Door to Education

Help adults reach their educational goals and earn their GED. Tutor, teach or assist in a classroom with the Minnesota Literacy Council. Give just 2-3 hours a week and help people expand their opportunities and change their lives through education. The literacy council provides training and support and accommodations for volunteers with disabilities. FFI: Allison, 651-251-9110, [email protected],



Host Home families sought

Building Community as a Host Home Family is a 90-minute workshop that will be offered by Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota for families interested in becoming LSS Host Home providers. Through Host Homes, people open their homes and share their lives to provide another opportunity for a child or adult with disabilities to live more fully in their community. The free information session is 10-11:30 a.m. Wed, March 12 at 2485 Como Ave. Pre-registration is required. Host Homes reflects LSS innovative service design, My Life, My Choices, giving individuals with disabilities greater choice, freedom and responsibility in the decisions that shape their quality of life. My Life, My Choices ensures Minnesota’s people with disabilities have access to the services they need and are empowered to lead full, rich and rewarding lives. To complete the registration form, visit  FFI: [email protected]



Free help with house painting

The Metro Paint-A-Thon helps low-income seniors and people with disabilities continue to live independently in their own homes, enriching their lives and their neighborhoods. The deadline to apply is April 14. Each August, thousands of volunteers scrape, prime and paint these homes at no cost to the homeowner. The effort brings stability and renewal to neighborhoods in cities throughout the seven-county metro area. This year, volunteers from companies, congregations, civic groups, and schools will paint homes during the summer, culminating the weekend of August 2-3. To qualify, homeowners must own and occupy a single-family home, in need of paint, but not in need of major repairs. The home must be in Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott or Washington counties. The homeowner must be 60 years of age or older, or have a permanent physical disability (if under age 60) and meet monthly income guidelines. FFI: 612-276-1579,


Matisse: Masterworks from the Baltimore Museum of Art

Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 2400 Third Ave. S., Mpls, hosts a special show of Matisse’s work. ASL event is 1 p.m. Sun, March 16. For tickets special exhibition admission is charged ($20, $16 senior/student). A (usually) free ASL-interpreted public tour is offered at 1 p.m. on the first Sun of each month. Start by the Information Desk in the museum lobby. Interpreted tours may also be scheduled on other days. On the second Fri and Sat of each month at 10:30 a.m., free tours are offered for visitors with memory loss, Alzheimer’s and their friends or care partners (March 14-15, April 11-12, May 9-10, June 13-14, etc.). Assisted listening devices, wheelchairs and verbal description tours are available. FFI: 612-870-3131, 612-870-3140 or TTY 612-870-3132; [email protected] or




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