Accessible Happenings and Events

More events information: VSA Minnesota is here. The website has a large calendar at in the upper right hand corner of […]

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More events information: VSA Minnesota is here. The website has a large calendar at in the upper right hand corner of its home page. 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 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.



National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) Minnesota offers a series of free classes on children’s mental health Fri, Oct. 13 at Super Saturday for Children’s Mental Health Awareness at Prior Lake High School, 7575 150th Street West, Savage. This event is being held during national Mental Illness Awareness Week, Oct. 7-13. Morning classes from 9:30-11:30 a.m. include Recognizing Early Warning Signs, Understanding Early Episode Psychosis, Eating Disorders: How to Identify Them and Support a Loved One, and The Quest for Resiliency – Moving from Stressed Out to Chill. Afternoon classes from 12:30-2:30 p.m. include Mental Health Crisis Planning for Families, Special Education: Helping Students Succeed, and Understanding the Children’s Mental Health System. Lunch at 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. will be provided and resource tables will be available during this time. FFI: Liz Babkin at 651-645-2948 ext. 109, [email protected] or see “classes” at



PACER Center offers many useful free or low-cost workshops and other resources for families of children with any disabilities. Workshops are at PACER Center, 8161 Normandale Blvd., Bloomington, unless specified. Workshops are offered throughout the state. Advance registration is required for all workshops. At least 48 hours’ notice is needed for interpretation. Ask if workshops are live-streamed. Check out PACER’s website and link to the newsletter of statewide workshops that allows participants to pick and choose sessions catered to their needs.

How Parents Can Effectively Communicate with the Individualized Education Program (IEP) Team offered 6:30- 8:30 p.m. Mon, Oct. 15 in Austin. The interactive workshop helps parents learn to advocate for their child in the special education process. Parents receive tips and tools to help them become more effective communicators as a member of their child’s IEP team.

Transitioning to Employment offered 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thu, Oct. 18 in Grand Rapids. Families of youth will receive information on career exploration and planning, including preparing their youth for employment, information about agencies that provide independent living, financial and employment services and supports.

Tech for Girls Club: Painting with Robots offered 10-11:30 a.m. Sat, Oct. 13 at PACER Center. Art and robotics collide in this fun workshop for girls. Code a Sphero robot and use it to create your own painting and photography masterpiece. This workshop is led by TPT, Twin Cities Public Television. No coding or photography experience is necessary; all skill levels are welcome. Workshops are free but advance registration required.



Olmstead Subcabinet meets 3-4:30 p.m. Mon, Oct. 29 at Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, Minnesota Housing, 400 Wabasha St. N, Suite 400, Lake Superior Conference Room, Treasure Island Center, St. Paul. Agenda includes follow up on the Direct Care Workforce recommendations, agency work plans and updates on the quality of life survey. To make public comments during the October Subcabinet meeting, notify the Olmstead Implementation Office at 651-296-8081 Agendas are posted one week prior to meetings,  with minutes posted two weeks after the meeting. Sign up for updates here. The Community Engagement Workgroup holds its final meeting for 2018 1-4 p.m. Thu, Oct 18, also at Treasure Island Center. Other options to access updates are on Facebook.



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 Council provides training and support and accommodations for volunteers with disabilities. FFI: Allison, 651-251-9110, [email protected], or at their website.



Reach for Resources offers Social Seekers for individuals (age 15+) on the autism spectrum. Social Seekers activities include games, crafts, discussions, outdoor recreation, and other opportunities for socializing. The program is designed to build group cohesion, sustain friendships, and provide gentle verbal redirection when needed to assist individuals with issues surrounding conflict, assertiveness, boundaries, and more. The next session will run on Wednesdays, 5:00-6:30 p.m., from Sept 12-Nov. 28, but participants can join at any time with advance registration and a required intake. The group meets at the Depot in Hopkins, and cost is $200 for the 10 weeks. FFI: 952-393-5866.



Vision Loss Resources provides free and low-cost activities in the Twin Cities for people who are blind or visually impaired. Life skills classes for those 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, at least three working days prior to an event. The calendar is also available on the Vision Loss Resources website and as a printable large-print PDF document for those who wish to print their own or additional copies. FFI: RSVP hotline, 612-843-3439; activity line and audio calendar, 612-253-5155,



The Metropolitan Center for Independent Living provides many life skills classes as well as fun outings and events for people with disabilities. MCIL is at 530 N. Robert Street, St Paul and most activities are there or start there. Classes and events are listed on the website, Click on “Classes Groups and Sessions” for updated information or to print their calendar. Please give two weeks’ notice if the alternative format or other accommodations are needed. Events are free, accessible and mostly scent-free. FFI: 651-603-2030



Jewish Family Service of St. Paul, in partnership with Sholom Home East and the Alzheimer’s Association, facilitates a caregiver support group for people who are providing care to a loved one suffering from dementia. Designed to provide proven resources and methods for caregivers who are caring for someone at home or considering in-home services or a transition to assisted living or long-term care. Meets 3-4 p.m. on the second and fourth Mon of each month in the Community Room at Sholom Home East, 740 Kay Ave., St. Paul. Free and open to the public. RSVP. FFI: Grace, 651-690-8903, [email protected], or Cassandra, 651-328-2014, [email protected]



ILICIL Independent Lifestyles, 215 N. Benton Drive, St. Cloud, offers a number of classes, events and other opportunities for Minnesotans with disabilities in central Minnesota. The center offers its own programming and hosts, other groups. One group it hosts is the St. Cloud Area Parkinson’s Disease Support Group meets 1-2:30 p.m. the third Mon of each month. The center has a full schedule of its own activities including support groups, classes and more. FFI: 320-267-7717



AuSM offers free support groups for adults with autism spectrum disorder. Groups include those for adult family members, women with autism spectrum disorders and independent adults with autism. Check the website for upcoming groups. Groups meet at the AuSM offices at 2380 Wycliff St. FFI: 651-647-1083 ext. 10,



Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM) announces a new free resource for caregivers and parents. The Caregivers of Kids with Autism Support Group provides a space for parents and caregivers of children with autism ages 4-21 to come together, discuss challenges, share solutions and form relationships with families in similar situations. Many families report feeling alone or isolated, and support groups allow caregivers to make meaningful connections. Meeting at 10:30 a.m.-noon on the second Sat of each month at AuSM, 2380 Wycliff Street #102, St. Paul, and led by a therapist. FFI:



The St. Cloud Area Parkinson’s Disease Support Group meets 1-2:30 p.m. the third Mon of each month at ILICIL Independent Lifestyles, 215 N. Benton Drive, St. Cloud. Free. Meetings are open to those diagnosed with Parkinson’s, their families, caregivers and the general public. The group provides support, education, and awareness about the disease. FFI: 320-529-9000


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