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DMNS members Open House on Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2015 in Denver. (Chris Schneider)

4 Front Range Museums with Low-Sensory Hours

Visitors can explore exhibits modified to reduce sensory overload during special events at these museums.

1. Denver Museum of Nature & Science

As a partner in the Autism Society of Colorado’s (ASC) Opening Doors program, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science invites visitors to experience a different exhibit at each low-sensory evening. Hosted quarterly on Saturdays, 6 to 8 p.m., this free programming caters to families living with sensory processing issues. By focusing on a single exhibit, the museum can modify its space as needed, reducing the chance of sensory-overload. The ASC trains museum staff and volunteers on interacting with individuals on the spectrum in positive and appropriate ways. Sign up at 2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver

2. Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus

“We know the museum can be a bit overwhelming for children with disabilities,” says School Programs Manager, Traci McGrath. Since 2013, Denver’s beloved and busy kid-oriented mainstay has been opening its doors early to engage families with sensory-sensitive children. By limiting traffic and scaling back on noise and light on select Saturdays, from 8 to 10 a.m., the museum fosters a calm, safe space for repeat visitors and newbies alike. Free low-sensory mornings are held bi-monthly; reserve your spot by connecting with McGrath at 303-561-0108 or 2121 Children’s Museum Dr., Denver

3. History Colorado Center

This local gem makes Colorado history truly accessible, with free low-sensory mornings presented quarterly, 8 to 10 a.m. To accommodate guests with special needs, History Colorado Center turns down the volume on its media and rolls out ‘touch cartons” with sensory-friendly activities. Staff members are stationed throughout the site to answer questions, and newcomers are greeted with handouts indicating potentially over-stimulating rooms and stations. The result is a personalized experience. For questions, or to RSVP, contact Shannon Voirol at 303-866-4691 or 1200 Broadway, Denver

4. Denver Art Museum

The DAM teamed up with Autism Society of Colorado, Autism Community Store, Firefly Autism and local parent groups to craft programming that showcases its artwork and hands-on activities while immersing guests who prefer less stimulation. On select Saturday mornings, 8:30 to 10:30 a.m., the museum limits attendance and lowers loud gallery sounds. On your first visit, grab a sensory map to see the space’s active and quiet spots and check out the sensory break room. Sensory-friendly mornings are included with general admission, open to the public and free for guests under 18. RSVP online. 100 W. 14th Ave. Pkwy., Denver

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