Spring Break Fun for All Abilities

It’s hard to believe spring break is right around the corner. Wasn’t Christmas just yesterday?! But here we find ourselves, gearing up for longer days filled with sunshine, birds chirping, flowers budding and all things spring. And with spring around the corner, that means it’s time to start thinking about — you guessed it — spring break.

For those of you staying in town over break, we’ve compiled a list of local spring break activities for children with special needs that will keep you busy and having fun.

Visit Your Local Library

Libraries are meant to be quiet places, which means a trip to the local library can be a great way to spend the day, especially for a child who gets easily overstimulated and doesn’t like a lot of noise or commotion. If your child loves to read, or be read to, you can find some special books and select a cozy spot to settle in for some reading. Many libraries also offer programming that is an excellent fit for children with special needs. Be sure to check out your local library’s programming to see what is available for your little one.

Say Hello to Farm Animals

Enjoy some fresh air and family fun at Tyner Pond Farm, located at 7408 East 200 South in Greenfield. This farm is open to the public with chickens, cows, pigs and a store selling their farm-fresh goods.

Another awesome farm to check out is Traders Point Creamery, located at 9101 Moore Road in Zionsville. This beautiful location includes cows and chickens, property for hiking, a milking parlor where you can watch cows be milked in the afternoon, delicious ice cream to taste and a farm-to-table restaurant for dining.

Visit a Community Center

Places like the Monon Community Center offer adaptive programs geared toward individuals with disabilities, and they offer these programs for youth as well as adults. In addition, all of the programs at the Monon Center are inclusive. If you or your family member would like to participate in any of the programs or use the facilities, modifications can be met to fit your needs. The requests for modification of a program must be made one month in advance of the program beginning. Be sure to check out the online guide to see what awesome programs are available this spring.

Experience the World’s Largest Children’s Museum

On March 12, the Children’s Museum is offering a Museum My Way experience. Capacity is limited so you will want to make sure to get online and register if this is something you and your family would like to participate in. Sensory modifications to the museum environment during Museum My Way include limited capacity, quiet area with sensory items, music is turned down or off and edited lighting effects in some areas

Children's Museum

Take a Trip Back in Time

Enjoy the farm and walk through the grounds at Conner Prairie, and you will feel like you have been transported back in time. The second Sunday of every month from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. are Sensory Friendly Hours at the park. Anything that makes loud noises or has bright lights will be shut off unless specifically asked to turn on. Access to the quiet space areas in the buildings and across the grounds will be highlighted for easy access.

Enjoy a Sensory-friendly Afternoon at a Museum

Each month at the Indiana State Museum, the lights are lowered and distractions are reduced to give children and adults with sensory processing differences a chance to enjoy an interactive learning experience in a comfortable and accepting environment. Social narratives will be available at the ticket counter and sensory-based activities will be spaced throughout the museum. Plus, check out a Sensory Bag to make your experience even more enjoyable.

Who says you have to leave town to have fun? As you can see, if you choose to stick around and have a family staycation, there is plenty to do around Indy. In addition to these things listed, be sure to check out nearby parks, the Indianapolis Zoo, movie theaters with sensory-friendly hours for a rainy day, and local Facebook groups to find out if there is any fun happening locally that you won’t want to miss.

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