Sensory Friendly Activities
Sensory Friendly Events | Sensory Friendly Attractions | Performances & Shows | Special Programs | Virtual Tours | Special Accommodations | Front Line Training | Attractions With Toolkits | Personalized Assistance | In The News
The Lansing region prides itself on being a welcoming community and strives to provide the best experience to all guests that visit. It is our goal to be the most sensory-friendly city in Michigan! Therefore, the Greater Lansing CVB is collaborating with regional attractions to provide a supportive and welcoming environment for those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), developmental disabilities, sensory processing disorder, and other neurodiverse individuals and their families. Many attractions and hotels have undergone training to better meet the needs of our neurodiverse guests. Over 1,000 people have been trained and that number continues to grow! The facilities listed below offer sensory-friendly performances, activities and events. The majority of these attractions also have sensory toolkits available to check out as needed. Please contact the attractions directly for details on their offerings.
Lansing was named as one of the top destinations for Autism families in the U.S. by Accessible Journeys Magazine.
Sensory Friendly Events
Wharton Center offers live Sensory-Friendly Performances (SFPs) throughout the season, with activities, quiet spaces, and trained staff -- all within a welcoming, nonjudgmental environment. The lights are not quite as bright, or as black; sound is adjusted to accommodate sensitive ears. The audience is welcome to bring comfort devices and sound-cancelling headphones if needed. . Find Wharton SFP information here.
Call 1-800-WHARTON for more information.Read More
The Abrams Planetarium offers sensory-friendly shows on the third Sunday of every month at 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. These shows will run with the lights up, the sound down, and the theater doors open so people can move about as needed. A place to "chill out" is provided in the lobby. All shows include a live star talk about what is up in the sky that night which follows a short break between the main show and star talk. Information about what to expect during the show will be provided when you purchase tickets.
Click here or call (517) 355-4676 for more information.Read More
A state-of-the-art facility with 20 screens including the IMAX® Experience and DBox.
Lights up! Sound down! Enjoy the BIG SCREEN experience in an accepting environment at Celebration Cinema. Developed in partnership with Family Hope Foundation, Sensory Showtimes make movies extra welcoming to guests with special needs. Click here for sensory showtimes.
Call (517) 272-9289 for more information.Read More
NCG Sensory Friendly Movies are shown without previews, the sound lowered and the lights up. Talking, shouting, screaming and running in the theater is allowed. Certified by Special Need Communities. Find sensory-friendly movies at NCG Cinema here.
Call (517) 316-9101 for more information.Read More
Potter Park Zoo is the first Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited zoo in Michigan to become a Certified Sensory Inclusive Zoo as well as the first to provide braille maps for guests!
FALCONERS is designed to allow children or adults of all ages with special needs and unique challenges (such as autism or developmental disabilities) and their whole family to have an enriching educational experience in a safe, welcoming and sensory friendly environment at Potter Park Zoo (PPZ). All monthly events are free and inclusive for the entire family and/or support group. Many events include hands-on activities and crafts. The activities are designed to engage siblings and other family members in the fun and learning. Potter Park Zoo is the first Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited zoo in Michigan to become a Certified Sensory Inclusive Zoo as well as the first to provide braille maps for guests!
Call (517) 342-2713 for more information. Join the FALCONER'S group on Facebook.Read More
Enjoy the Impression 5 Science Center's special hours designed for an experience that limits the number of guests, includes sensory rooms and quiet spaces with select exhibits, altered to reduce sounds, scents, and lighting stimuli. Register online to reserve space for your family!
Dates: January 15, 2023 | February 26, 2023 | March 19, 2023 | April 16, 2023 | May 28, 2023
Time: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Capacity: Up to 250 people in the building
VIDEO - Watch our video on how to make your own fidget!Read More
- Abrams Planetarium
- Absolute Gallery
- Beggar's Banquet
- Best Western
- Breslin Student Event Center
- Candlewood Suites
- Capital Area District Library - Aurelius
- Capital Area District Library - Downtown
- Capital Area District Library - South Lansing
- Capital Area District Library - Williamston
- Capital City Market
- Capital Regional International Airport
- Case Hall - James Madison College - Michigan State University
- CATA Transportation Center Downtown Lansing
- CATA Getaway Station East Lansing
- CATA Ramp #1 MSU Campus
- CATA Ramp #5 MSU Campus
- Champps Kitchen + Bar
- Charlotte Aquatic Center
- Crowne Plaza
- Dean Trailways
- Dusty's Cellar
- Eagle Eye Golf Club and Convention Center
- East Lansing Marriott at University Place
- Elderly Instruments
- Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum
- Forest Akers Golf Course
- Gier Park Softball Complex
- Greater Lansing Visitor Center
- Hampton Inn & Suites-Lansing West
- Harris Nature Center
- Harrison Roadhouse
- High Caliber Karting and Entertainment
- Hilton Garden Inn
- Hyatt Place-Eastwood Towne Center
- Impression 5 Science Center
- James B Henry Center
- Lansing Brewing Company
- Lansing Center
- Lansing Urgent Care-Frandor
- Lansing Urgent Care-Haslett
- Lansing Urgent Care - Okemos
- Lansing Urgent Care-South
- Lansing Urgent Care-West Lansing
- Launch Lansing
- Marriott East Lansing
- Michigan History Center
- Michigan State Capitol Building
- Midtown Brewing Company
- Mitchell's Fish Market
- MSU Auditorium
- MSU Broad Art Lab
- MSU Dairy Store
- MSU Library
- Munn Ice Arena
- One North Kitchen and Bar
- Pizza House
- Potter Park Zoo
- Preuss Pets
- Radisson Hotel Lansing at the Capitol
- R.E. Olds Museum
- Spare Time Entertainment Center
- Spartan Stadium
- State of Fitness
- Student Book Store
- Studio C!
- Suburban Ice - East Lansing
- The English Inn
- The Henry Center at MSU
- The Kean's Store Company
- Unicorn Lounge
- University Club - East Lansing, MI
- Wharton Center
For a list with virtual tours of even more of Greater Lansing's greatest spots and attractions, visit our partners at Able Eyes and take a look!
Fenner Nature Center
The Visitor Center at Fenner offers exhibits that accommodate a variety of learning levels , each with varying stimulation so all…
Preuss Pets is a Pet Store with a Purpose. We encourage meaningful connections between people and pets by providing healthy…
Woldumar Nature Center
Woldumar Nature Center sits on 178 acres of woodland, prairie and wetland terrains, with over a mile of shoreline on the Grand…
State Capitol Building
Step back into the Victorian era with a visit to Michigan's award-winning Capitol Building. The Michigan State Capitol Tour Guide…
Front Line Training
Throughout the Greater Lansing community, over 850 individuals have completed a customized training to have a better understanding of how to be prepared to serve and welcome our neurodiverse guests through specialized instructors from Residential Options, Inc., Michigan State University and the Mid-Michigan Autism Association. (Since 1984, ROI has specialized in evidence-based practices and therapeutic intervention for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related developmental disabilities. We have worked alongside families to provide real opportunities to individuals with developmental disabilities. We know that a lifetime of support services that fit your family can make a world of difference.)
The following locations have had the majority of their team members participate in the local trainings:
Attractions with toolkits
The following attractions have a sensory toolkit available on site to borrow while you visit. The toolkits contain noise-canceling headphones and a variety of fidgets and are available to guests who may feel overwhelmed by the new environment.
The Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau has a Certified Autism Travel Professional able to assist with a specific questions about traveling to our community. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss any further assistance that we can provide.
In the News
Below are links to some of the great news articles regarding this growing movement to become a more neuro-diverse community:
- Lansing named one of top destinations for autism families in the U.S.
- The GLCVB partnered with WLNS TV6 and the Xavier DeGroat Austism Foundation to highlight the regions sensory-friendly offerings.
- [VIDEO] Katlyn speaks with Juile Pingston of the Greater Lansing Convention and Visitors Bureau about the region's sensory-friendly offerings.
- See was Metro Parent has to say about Greater Lansing's exciting sensory friendly offerings!
- Here’s some great exposure in Grand Rapids on TV8 with sensory friendly information highlighted at about the 2 minute mark of the clip.
- Junie B. Jones and Beyond: How Wharton Center is Leading the Way in Cultivating the Arts for the Needs of a Neurodiverse Community.
- Capital Area Women's Lifestyle Magazine: AREA WORKS TO MEET NEURO-DIVERSE NEEDS
- ‘Most sensory-friendly city in Michigan’ continues opening activities to families
- Bill Geist with Destination Marketing Organization Univeristy speaks with Julie Pingston on Greater Lansing's commitment to a sensory friendly destination.