For families of children with special needs, finding fun places to go can be a nightmare because of loud noises, bright lights, and large crowds. Thankfully, many places have recognized the problem and are now offering sensory-friendly options. Here is a list of 7 sensory-friendly places in the Tampa Bay area for children with special needs.
AMC partners with the Autism Society to offer sensory and family friendly movies on the second and fourth Saturday of every month. For specific show times, check your local listings.
Cobb Theatres offers sensory-friendly showings of their own. Once a month they hold a family-friendly showing for kids in a safe environment. All shows begin at 10 a.m. Check your local Cobb Theatre for listings.
Sky Zone is an indoor trampoline park. Once a month their Tampa location holds a sensory-friendly session with turned off and lights turned down. This is a great place for children to learn fun, new skills in a safe, controlled environment.
LEGOLAND Florida has placed a great emphasis on making their park more autism-friendly, including providing “quiet rooms” for special needs families. LEGOLAND employees also receive bi-annual training from staff at Autism Speaks to educate new hires.
On the last Sunday of every other month, the Glazer Children’s Museum provides special needs families with an opportunity to explore the museum with lights and sounds turned down. Sunshine Sunday also provides families with a number of resources around the community.
Great Explorations is another great opportunity for special needs families. On the second Sunday of every month, Great Explorations closes to the public from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., turns down lights and sounds, and also provide a “cool down” room. They supply families with many community resources as well.
We Rock the Spectrum carries uniquely designed equipment specifically for children with sensory processing disorders. The idea of the gym is for children of all ability levels to be able to play, learn, and grow together through an all-inclusive philosophy.
We look forward to more businesses following suit in making Tampa Bay an even more autism-friendly area for special needs families. For more information about Engage Behavioral Health, visit our About Us page, or contact someone from our team today.