Accessible Events – March & April 2013

Welcome to the Access Press Accessible Fun listings! Readers looking for additional opportunities to enjoy the arts have these options: […]

Generic Article graphic with Access Press emblem

Welcome to the Access Press Accessible Fun listings!

Readers looking for additional opportunities to enjoy the arts have these options: 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. On the web accessible performance listings are found at, or,, or (c2: caption coalition, inc.), which does most of the captioned shows in Minnesota and across the country.

Sign up to connect with ASL Interpreted and Captioned Performances Across Minnesota on Facebook (or . Sign up to connect with Audio Description Across Minnesota Performances on Facebook (

Want to attend a show but not finding the accessible services needed? Contact t the performing company as far in advance as possible to request the service. Arts organizations can borrow a captioning display unit from VSA Minnesota for free. Call the Minnesota Relay Service at 711 or 1-800-627-3529 with the number of the arts organization box office. With video relay a caller’s VP number automatically connects to a sign language interpreter when making a call to another caller who does not also have a video phone.


MACT*Fest 2013

Ten troupes combine to host the Minnesota Association of Community Theaters festival, at North Hennepin Community College Fine Arts Center Theatre, 7411 85th Ave. N., Brooklyn Park. AD shows are Fri-Sat, March 15-16. Enjoy performances, workshops and a silent auction. Tickets are $10 per session of plays ($8 senior/student or group of 8+); $15 per workshop. Or ask about package rates. FFI: 612-548-1773, [email protected]t,


MN Hands & Voices Youth Art Contest Open House

Lucy’s Coffee Café, Griggs/Midway Building, 540 Fairview Ave., St. Paul, hosts an open house of artwork submitted for the first MN Hands & Voices Youth Art Contest.

The event is 6-8 p.m. Sat, March 16. The theme is “Youth Pride in Being Deaf or Hard of Hearing.” See the art and meet the artists and Cynthia Weitzel, who plans on working with Hands & Voices as an advisor for the 2013 Youth Art Contest. MN Hands & Voices at Lifetrack Resources is a team of trained parents who provide a variety of support services to families with children who are deaf or hard of hearing. The coffee house is owned by Julie Peck, parent of two with hearing loss. RSVP appreciated: FFI: 651-265-2435,, [email protected],


Owl Moon

The Caldecott Medal-winning book, about a father and child walking in a winter wonderland, is performed by Stages Theatre Company at Hopkins Center for the Arts Mainstage, 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins. ASL show is 7 p.m. Fri, March 22. Call about AD performances, at least two weeks in advance of the show’s run through March 24. Tickets are reduced to $11, $9 child/senior, $8.50 weekend/ evening group (12+); apply to the individual needing AD/ASL and one companion; ask for discount and seating section when making reservation. FFI: 952-979-1111 option 4,


Bill W. & Dr. Bob

Illusion Theater presents the story of the men who helped start Alcoholics Anonymous, at the Illusion Theater, 528 Hennepin Ave, 8th floor, Mpls. AD show is 8p.m. Wed, March 27. ASL show date is to be determined. Tickets are $15-20. FFI: 612-339-4944,


Arts Accessibility grants available

Access to the arts for people with disabilities has increased in recent years, thanks to the Americans with Disabilities Act Access Improvement Grants for metro arts organizations are available for the fourth year by VSA Minnesota with money from Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. Nonprofit arts groups in the seven-county metropolitan area can apply for grants of up to $15,000 to help make their arts programming, activities and facilities more accessible to people with disabilities. Deadlines is May 17. Potential projects anything that helps to remove barriers and more effectively serve and attract artists, audience members, board or staff with disabilities. FFI: VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888, [email protected],


Artists around town

Upstream Arts, a Mpls-based program for artists with disabilities, offers a number of programs and services for artists. The mission of Upstream Arts is to enhance the lives of adults and youth with disabilities by fostering creative communication and social independence through the power of arts education. The program website has a blog that is always worth checking, to see what activities Upstream Art staff and artists are doing in the community. The blog is updated regularly. Visit


Take the Polar Plunge

Whether it’s one toe at a time, eyes tightly closed with an uneasy step forward or a fearless cannonball, brave souls are already planning their grand entrance into the icy waters at the 2013 Polar Bear Plunge, presented by Minnesota law enforcement for the benefit of Special Olympics Minnesota. Registration is now open for the 2013 Plunge Season. With 16 Polar Bear Plunge events scattered across the state through March 16, dare-devils and do-gooders alike are sure to be “freezin’ for a reason.”

Brave Plungers jump into the frigid Minnesota waters as individuals or as a member of a team to raise money for Special Olympics Minnesota. Although each participant must raise a minimum of $75 to Plunge, the average Plunger raised more than $200 in 2012. The total amount raised in 2012 was $2.85 million. FFI: 800-783-7732,, [email protected]


Tuesdays at the Capitol

Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (MNCCD) resumes its traditional legislative session schedule once the 2013 legislative session is underway. This includes “Disability Matters Tuesdays at the Capitol” on every Tuesdays, a 10 a.m., briefing in the basement cafeteria of the State Office Building and full membership meetings on Fridays during the legislative session from 12-1 in room 500 N of the State Office Building as well during the legislative session FFI:


MSCOD Town Hall on voting rights

Minnesota State Council on Disabilities wants to hear from Minnesotans about voting options and access to the polls. A town hall meeting is 1:30-4 p.m. Mon, March 18 at Minnesota Department of Human Services, 444 Lafayette Road, Room 5137, St. Paul. There are numerous Minneapolis and Greater Minnesota locations where videoconferencing is offered. Or the event can be web streamed, available in Real Player and Windows Media with a Closed Captioned option. Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie, Jeff Nachbar from Minnesota Council for Non-Profits and Jim Dickson of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) are among the speakers. The event is free but preregistration is needed, at Reasonable accommodation requests should be made during registration. Registration deadline is Thu, March 14.


Disability Day at the Capitol

Brain Injury Alliance Day at the Capitol is Thu, April 25. Make plans now to attend and speak out about budget decisions and plan to meet with your legislators. Events start at 10 a.m. in the great hall of the state capitol with registration, followed by briefings at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m. A rally is at noon, and then participants can break for lunch on their own. The event is free but participants should register. The event is sponsored by Advocating Change Together, Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance People First of Minnesota, Self-Advocates Minnesota, and The Arc Minnesota. FFI: Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance at 1-800-669-6442, [email protected]


Mental health rally at capitol

The Mental Health Legislative Network, a coalition of more than 20 statewide organizations, will hold a Mental Health Rally at noon, Tue, March 12, in the capitol rotunda.

Scheduled speakers include legislators, families and persons living with a mental illness, service providers and mental health advocates. The event, co-chaired by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Minnesota and the Mental Health Association of Minnesota, will focus on improving mental health services for children and adults. An information session will be held before the rally at 10 a.m., at Christ Lutheran Church, 105 University Ave. West, across the street from the capitol. FFI: NAMI, 651-645-2948,


MCIL Disability Day at the Capitol

Metropolitan Center for Independent Living Disability Day is noon-1 p.m. Thu, April 11. Go to a rally and then go meet with your legislators. The MCIL staff will help you find your legislators’ contact information. FFI: Corbett Laubignat, 651-603-2028, [email protected], Cindy, 651-603-2037, [email protected]


Plan for conference

Deadlines are approaching for the 2013 Minnesota State Self-Advocacy Conference, “Together, Yes We CAN!” The conference is April 26-27 at Crowne Plaza, St. Paul Riverfront Hotel, 11 E. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul. Several organizations sponsor the conference. FFI: 651-641- 4053, [email protected]


Aging, ageism, and health care

A free interactive workshop on Aging, Ageism and Health Care is offered by the Gray Panthers and Pratt Community Education, 6:30-8 p.m. Mon, March 18 Pratt School, 66 Malcolm Ave. SE, Mpls. Learn about the challenges of aging and ageism in health care and learn to advocate for your concerns and needs. Pre-register. FFI: 612-668-1100, [email protected].


Free exterior house painting

Metro Paint-A-Thon offers free house painting for low-income seniors and people with disabilities every August, Qualifying home owners whose homes need paint and minor exterior repairs must live in Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott or Washington counties. Deadline to apply is April 12. Eligibility guidelines are online. FFI: 612-276-1578,,


Independent living classes offered

The Metropolitan Center for Independent Living (MCIL) offers free and accessible classes on living independently for people with disabilities. Most classes are held at 1600 University Ave., #16, the green tile building at University and Snelling, St. Paul, unless specified. A new event is a happy hour gathering, with games, movies and fun starting 4-7 p.m. Wed, March 20 . A full calendar of all events is offered online. Enjoy field trips, knitting and crafts, wii fun, cooking, and classes to help with everyday living.

Weekenders outings are for those who are tired of sitting home all weekend. Meet other people who share similar interests and want to meet new people. Next is noon-2 p.m. Sat, March 23 at Hazel’s Northeast. Please bring spending money for this. All other events are free of charge, accessible and mostly scent-free. Please RSVP and give two weeks’ notice of needed accommodations. FFI: Corbett Laubignat, 651-603-2028, [email protected], Cindy, 651-603-2037, [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],


Help with arts calendar

VSA Minnesota is seeking a volunteer or volunteers to assist with the compilation of the monthly VSA Minnesota arts calendar. The calendar lists accessible performances, films, galleries and events throughout the region. FFI: Jon, 612-332-3888 or 800-801-3883, Voice/TTY, [email protected]


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. Accommodations for volunteers with disabilities. FFI: Allison, 651-251-9110, [email protected],


Volunteer with RSVP

Volunteers age 55 and older are eligible to receive free supplemental insurance, mileage reimbursement and other benefits through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) sponsored by Volunteers of America of Minnesota. RSVP/Volunteers of America of Minnesota and AARP Foundation need volunteers with good budgeting and organizational skills to help manage finances of older or disabled low-income individuals. Have a few hours a month to volunteer? Money Management Program staff will train and match you with someone in the community. FFI: 612-617-7821


  • Struggling with Long COVID? Get support. Talk to your healthcare provider.
  • Struggling with Long COVID? Get support. Talk to your healthcare provider.

DON'T LOSE IT! • Keep your Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare active • Fill out and return your renewal forms Watch your mail and go online NOW