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Best places children with special needs will love to play

Safe and stimulating environments where kids can explore, learn and play.

Opportunities for children with special needs

As a society we are still learning and adapting to those with special needs, but FINALLY we are starting to see more resources, programs and inclusion for all kids. So in honor of every family in the Hudson Valley waiting to be included, to learn a new talent or foster a passion, there is a place for you! Check out these top Hudson Valley Hot Spots for children with special needs.

Read More: 10 tips for play dates with kids of all abilities

Sensory Friendly Films– AMC has partnered with the Autism Society to offer unique movie showings where we turn the lights up, and turn the sound down, so you can get up, dance, walk, shout or sing! The Sensory Friendly Film program is available on the second and fourth Saturday (family-friendly) and Wednesday evenings (mature audiences) of every month.  A very cool way the whole family can enjoy time at the movies! Check the site for upcoming movies and dates. Middletown, 845-695-1724.

Kelder’s Farm– Most farms are wonderful for kids with special needs. The entire family can enjoy seasonal berry picking, farm animals and running free. Though not open year round, Kelder’s Farm is a wonderful place for children with special needs and their families. Activities include a giant air pillow, barnyard zoo, corn maze and seasonal berry and apple picking. Kerhonkson, 845-626-7137.

Read More: What you need to know about early intervention

Mid-Hudson Discovery Museum– The Mid-Hudson Discovery Museum is the ideal destination for families and their children. We celebrate childhood learning and are proud to offer exhibits that get kids moving, exploring, building, pretending, collaborating, creating and discovering. Five exhibit galleries and our outdoor children’s garden help families connect in meaningful ways through purposeful hands-on play. Poughkeepsie, 845-471-0589.

Poets Walk– There are so many beautiful parks and landscapes in our area I am always struggling to pull out one or two to highlight in these round- up posts! I chose to highlight Poets Walk for a special needs post because of the different type of landscapes to explore, the quietness and overall atmosphere of this park. Red Hook.

Orange County Sports Club– A special Needs Adaptive Play (SNAP) class for kids interested in gymnastics and movement. The class is 45 minutes and there are many other classes from mommy and me up through pre-teen and more so the whole family can play at the same club! Florida, 845-651-1000.

Lagrange Challenger Bowling Club– Doing some research and I found quite a few towns that offer adaptive sports programs for children and adults with physical or developmental special needs. Lagrange bowling club was just one example that provides a fun, supportive, non judgmental environment that promotes self- esteem and socialization. Check and see if there is something similar near you.

Mid-Hudson Music Together– It’s tough parenting siblings when one has a disability and one doesn’t. Finding classes and things the kids can do at the same time can be a challenge so I love that Mid Hudson Music Together offers a Supportive Family class! The idea is that both children with and without developmental special needs can play and learn from each other. They also offer individual and group music therapy.

READ MORE: 10 Hudson Valley places the whole family can enjoy

Art Fun for Kids–  If art is more your child’s interest, Jerry from ARC is teaching kids of all ages how to draw, paint, cut and paste with special programs including art therapy, to special needs classes and art parties. These classes combine art education and learning the basics with a child centered art therapy approach. Kingston, 845-331-2662.

NatureAccess® program– This special outdoor program promotes the inclusion of people with disabilities in outdoor nature programs. In order to make participation in these programs as smoothly as possible, call ahead to make arrangements and specially trained staff will be there to assist you. This program is open to class trips, summer camp, public programs, outreach visits and group visits.

READ MORE: How to handle the stress and anxiety of a child with Autism