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Dear Neurodiverse Visitors: Use These Resources for Your Crystal Bridges Visit

Child with large headphones on

Crystal Bridges strives to be a welcoming place for all and that includes our neurodiverse visitors. The museum offers several resources and opportunities for neurodiverse visitors to have a wonderful museum experience at a pace that works for them. 

This blog rounds up those resources for a quick-and-easy reference. Read on to learn about our offerings. 

You may also contact the museum at Access@CrystalBridges.org to inquire about accommodations for your visit.

 

Crystal Bridges library interior

1. Enter the Museum through a Quiet Space: Use the Library/Administration Entrance 

The Garrison Lobby in the main entrance of the museum contains a large glass dome that can produce an echo effect. Those who experience high sensitivity to loud or crowded spaces may consider entering the museum through the Library/Administration entrance. Use these directions to enter Crystal Bridges through the Library/Administration Entrance.

 

2. Use the Sensory Friendly Museum Map to Navigate Crystal Bridges

Use our new Sensory Friendly Map of the museum to help identify quick exits, areas with low or natural light, and areas that are quiet, loud, or crowded. Please note that as exhibitions and other spaces in the museum change, there may be variations in the areas listed on this map.

 

 

El Franco Lee II, DJ Screw in Heaven 2, 2016, acrylic on black canvas with cassette tape, 60 x 60 x 1 in. Courtesy of the artist

3. Enjoy Neurodiverse Nights in The Dirty South

First Thursday evening of every month, 5 to 8 pm
April 7, May 5, June 2, and July 7

The Dirty South: Contemporary Art, Material Culture, and the Sonic Impulse is Crystal Bridges’ temporary exhibition, open now through July 25, 2022. This exhibition has several loud videos and sound components that may trigger guests who have sensory sensitivities. To create a more welcoming experience for our visitors, we are offering Neurodiverse Nights on the first Thursday of each month. During the hours of 5-8 p.m., the artworks with heightened sensory components will be altered slightly to lower their volume and make them more accessible for our neurodiverse guests. Also, our low sensory space near the Great Hall will be open for visitors to use throughout Neurodiverse Nights.

Tickets can be purchased on the website here, or by calling Guest Services at (479) 657-2335.

 

4. Sensory Friendly Bags are Available for Check-Out

Sensory Friendly Bags contain fidgets, noise-canceling headphones, copies of the Sensory Friendly Map and Social Narrative, and a Communication Aid and writing materials for those who would like an alternate way to communicate with our staff. Bags can be checked out for free at any lobby desk or in the Library.

 

The Studio - families making artwork

5. Hands-On Materials are Available to Touch in the Studio

Located off Walker Landing and accessible via the galleries, the Studio is an artmaking space for both adults and children. Hands-on materials and activities are available in the space including art supplies, books, and toys.

 

an overview image of the crystal bridges campus

7. Check Out These Other Community Resources

Here are a few local/regional organizations around Northwest Arkansas that provide services for neurodiverse adults and children.

PerspectAbility and Tulip Farm

PerspectAbility is a local organization that provides resources for families with neurodiverse needs. They also own a Tulip Farm in Centerton that provides an opportunity to employ neurodivergent adults and to educate the public about their cause.

Project Connect

Project Connect serves as an outreach program for families and others seeking autism spectrum-specific resources in the community. Outreach activities include the Project Connect Autism Resource Guide, Parents’ Night Out and Camp Connect.

Autism Involves Me

Autism Involves Me enhances the lives of people with autism by connecting the NW Arkansas community through greater awareness and resources.

 

We look forward to your visit!