Having not been to a Broadway Theater in more than three years, we decided it was time to return.

We chose a show to see and purchased tickets. On our way into Manhattan, we talked about the theaters and their accessibility. In 2021 I had read hat the Jujamcyn Theater Group had settled a lawsuit and was going to make all five of their theaters accessible. This is the third large theater group that has agreed to improving its theaters for people with disabilities. With the improvements in the Shubert and Nederlander organizations, there will now be 22 broadway theaters that will be available to those with varying disabilities. That is about half of the Broadway theaters. Although it should be all theaters, this is an improvement over what has been in the past. 

Just knowing that these theaters are “accessible” is not enough in itself. More information is needed. The good news is that detailed information about accessibility is available for all to see. You just need to know where to look.

We found two very helpful sites,  www.theateraccessibility.nyc and www.seatplan.com, provided a wealth of information about accessibility in specific theaters.

For those who know TDF (Theater Development Fund), Theater Accessibility NYC is a collaboration between them and The Broadway League. Their website says, “…theater is for everyone…Broadway should be accessible for everyone regardless of disability. Theater Access NYC brings all the information you need to plan your trip to Broadway, together in one easy-to-manage place.” This website offers lots of detail.

www.seatplan.com is another site we think is quite valuable. It has detailed accessibility information on more than 40 Broadway theaters, from getting into the theater to specifics about seating, restrooms, etc. 

One needs to visit these websites to get a better understanding of how valuable they are. We hope you will do that to have the best theater experience you can.   Enjoy!

Vermont is lovely at almost any time of the year, but Autumn is special. The colors are beautiful when the “Green Mountains” become a blaze of oranges, yellows, reds and browns, before being covered in white

If you have a mobility limitation and think a trip to see the colors would be too difficult, know that there are places in Central Vermont that are accessible enough to make it worthwhile.

You can have an easily accessible stay at the Killington Grand Hotel, a full-service hotel, with an accessible pool, a view of the mountains, Preston’s Restaurant, and wood-burning fireplaces in the main and lower lobbies. 

Close to here, the following restaurants on Killington Road can accommodate mobility challenges -  The Garlic, The Foundry,  Rivershed, Dominic’s Pizza, and Sushi Yoshi (For specific details check each of their pages at www.destinationaccessible.org).

Drive East on Route 4 towards Woodstock, and you will find the accessible Long Trail Brewery. If the weather cooperates you can have a beer and some food sitting outside, by the river. 

Woodstock is a quaint town to visit, but know that this historic town has many venues that require at least one step up, or sometimes down, to enter.

Continuing East on Route 4 towards Quechee, you will find Worthy Kitchen, another accessible restaurant with good food.

If you travel farther east on Route 4, make a left when you see the sign for Simon Pearce. Go over the covered bridge, turn left and you will come to Simon Pearce, restaurant, glass blowing factory and store. Be sure to stop and look around, watch the glass-blowing and look at the falls, even if you don’t have a reservation to dine.

Drive a bit father east you will come to Quechee Gorge, You can park in the lot, walk on the sidewalk and have a look at the Gorge below. 

Everywhere you look, the colors will dazzle. You can’t help but enjoy the views !

Don’t miss out on this wonderful time of the year in Vermont.

Long Island park in winter

by Roberta Rosenberg, Destination Accessible US Inc.

No one can deny we are squarely in the middle of winter. February 4th is the exact middle, between December 21st and March 21st. Until a few days ago, it has been a relatively benign season. That being said, there is still a good bit of this season left. Many of us have been staying in, staying safe, until spring arrives and until many of us can get the Covid-19 vaccine. 

What can those of us do who want to be outside, get some fresh air, visit someplace new, enjoy the outdoors?  We are here to tell you that there are places for you on Long Island, places that are beautiful in winter. Places you may have visited before, and places that you may have never been to. Surely, they are different from what we find at them in spring, summer and fall, but nevertheless beautiful in their own way. We have not found any place we have gone to be busy, so distancing is easy. Another plus for staying safe!

www.destinationaccessible.org has detailed information for more than 30 Long Island parks on its website, Each of these offers a unique experience.  Some of them are more accessible than others, but each is worth a trip.

Want a walk along a boardwalk, try Sunken Meadow, or Robert Moses.

Want a river walk, go to Bayard Cutting Arboretum. Want a walk on the South Shore, visit Wantagh Park. Want a walk at Oyster Bay Harbor, try Theodore Roosevelt Park. Want a walk close to a town,  Harbor Front Park in Port Jefferson is great!  Looking for a walk around a lake, visit Eisenhower Park. Want a park with handicapped- accessible playgrounds, try Eisenhower or Sands Point Preserve. Looking for a walk where you might be able to see the New York Skyline, go toNorman Levy Park on a clear day.  Want a park with a labyrinth, then it’s Avalon Park in Stony Brook. You can even visit the Anne Frank Memorial Garden.  There is much more, but we will stop here and invite you to visit www.destinationaccessible.org to “know before you go” for more detailed information about what you will find at each of these and more!

The only thing you need to be aware of is finding open restrooms at these destinations. We have tried to give the best information we have on this topic,  but it is sketchy at best. We suggest going with the idea that you most likely will not find restrooms or food. 

Be prepared for your adventure by dressing appropriately. For me, layers are the way to go. Several thin layers work better for me than one or two thick ones.  I am in love with instant hand warmers. I find that putting them inside my mittens makes a huge difference, and they stay warm for hours. Warm boots are great, waterproof even better. Although, if I am going to be really “walking,” i just use wool socks inside my sneakers.

We hope you will take advantage of some of the nice days that winter does have and find the beauty in someplace new.

As always, we at Destination Accessible, advise you to visit a venue’s website, when planning a visit to “know before you go.”

Vaccines are arriving, but so are variant of Covid. Even if we are vaccinated we still need to wear masks. But what kind and how many? One or two masks together? One layer or more in each mask? Which type of mask? It certainly can be confusing. Click the link below to read one of the most comprehensive articles we have found on the subject. Stay strong, don't give up now!

https://disabilityhorizons.com/2021/02/filter-vs-medical-vs-fabric-face-masks/?ml_subscriber=1626852862472492910&ml_subscriber_hash=d4n6&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=face_masks_choosing_the_best_for_you&utm_term=2021-02-27

        by Roberta Rosenberg - Destination Accessible US Inc.

Although I can hardly believe it , Holiday Season 2021 has arrived. It seems to me yesterday was Labor Day, not Thanksgiving ! No matter what I believe, it is here. 

Many of us have returned to indoor activities and some of us are still hesitant about being inside.  If you are not inclined to be indoors, know that there are places to go and ways to enjoy the holidays that offer easy accessibility.

One of the easiest ways to experience the season is with a “drive through or drive- by,”  of one of the holiday light shows. All you need to do is get into a vehicle and go! (Although in most cases you need to secure tickets in advance). Jones Beach has “The Magic of Lights.”  “A Bug’s NIght,” is at the Nassau County Museum of Art. The town of Riverhead has a Holiday Light Show as do the Girls Scouts, in Smith Point Park. 

If you can manage it, Milleridge Village has a lovely Holiday Village, complete with shops and Santa. Although there are bricks underfoot, it is quite accessible. 

Two of our favorite, easily accessible, places any time of the year are the Brooklyn Botanical and the New York Botanical Gardens. Both have holiday lights. The New York Botanical Gardens also has their wonderful holiday train show, which is indoors. 

Harbor Front Park in Port Jefferson is easily accessible and always lovely. From here it is easy to walk through town, with its shops, restaurants and festive decorations.

If you don’t need the holiday decorations, but want a beautiful, easily accessible outdoor place to take in the view, you can’t go wrong with any of the following: Sunken Meadow State Park Boardwalk (with a view of Long Island Sound), Theodore Roosevelt Park (with a view of Oyster Bay Harbor), Heckscher Park in Huntington, or the Long Beach Boardwalk (with a view of the Atlantic Ocean). 

If you are going into Manhattan, check out its newest, accessible park, Little Island, overlooking the Hudson River.

You can’t go wrong with any of these things to do as part of a fun, holiday season. 

Best wishes to you and your family for a Happy Holiday and New Year!

If you want the accessibility details of any of the above venues please visit, www.destinationaccessible.org, to “know before you go!” We always suggest also visiting a venue’s website for very up-to-date  information, such as pricing, hours open , etc. 

by Roberta Rosenberg

Happy New Year!  2022 has certainly arrived with a punch. Most of us believed that things would be much better by now.  Unfortunately, Covid had a different idea and brought us Omicron, in full force just as this New Year arrived. I would venture to say that, at the very least,  most of us are really tired of dealing with it. That being said, we still do need to be careful, both for ourselves, loved ones, co-workers, etc. 

Even though we want to be careful, some still want to go out to meet friends for dinner, etc. Masks are required in many places, with enforcement being rather lax. New York City has met the problem by requiring vaccinations for restaurants and other indoor spaces. Long Island has not embraced this line of thinking, but some Long Island restaurants have taken it upon themselves to do what NYC has done, and require proof of vaccination for indoor dining.

This article is not about accessibility for those with mobility challenges. It is about venues that are requiring proof of Covid vaccination for indoor dining.  The information comes from a Newsday article by Erica Marcus. Before I list the places, I must caution you to check for yourself, if the policy is still in existence when making a reservation.  I discovered that several of the restaurants I initially knew about have since changed their policies. During these uncertain times things can change quickly. As we tell visitors to our website, www.destinationaccessible.org, you always need to check a venue’s website, or call personally, to “know before you go,” for up-to-the-minute information. 

If you visit any of these venues, please share with our their policies,  as well as their accessibility.  If you know of any others, we would love to add them to our list. The only one we have personally visited was West End Cafe, and that was well before Covid. 

1. West End Cafe, Carle Place, www.westendli.com, (516) 294-5605 

2. Kristi Mediterranean Grill, Woodbury,  www.krinti.com, (516) 224-4661

3. Sandbar, Cold Spring Harbor, www.sandbar.com, (631) 498-6188

4. Takumi, Commack, www.takuminy.com, (631) 543-0101

5. Grasso’s, Cold Spring Harbor, www.grassosrestaurant.com (631) 367- 6060

6. BTW, Oceanside, www.btwoceanside.com, (516) 208-5322

7. Black Sheep Ale House, Mineola, www.blacksheepalehouse.com. (516) 307 - 1280

Most of us have library cards and generally know about the wonderful array of services our libraries offer. Depending on your local library, besides borrowing actual books, books on tape, and audio versions, they may offer performances, classes both in person and on zoom, reference help, and services for patrons with disabilities. 
I was recently reminded of another great perk that comes with having a library card.  Your Long Island Library Card doesn’t cost anything to get, and doesn’t have any fees. It does, however, come with many perks, including one that many people don’t seem to know about - the Museum Pass Program. 
The Museum Pass Program offers card holders the opportunity to reserve free passes to many Long Island and New York City museums. From the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan to the Parrish Art Museum on the East End of Long Island, you can find a museum to visit. Whether you admire art, want to learn about science and history, or  explore different cultures, visiting a museum lets you discover new things. 
Go to your local library’s website to find out what museums it offers passes for. You can usually reserve a pass for up to four people at a time.  Some passes can be printed online, others require pick-up at the library. Check your library’s website for details, as each library seems to have a somewhat different set up. Library offerings differ and there are restrictions, so be sure to check. If you have any difficulties you might want to pay a visit to your library or call for assistance. Librarians are always ready and willing to help.

by Roberta Rosenberg

“January 29th, is National Puzzle Day, the perfect day to do a little brain exercise. Whether it’s a crossword, jigsaw, or Sudoku, (to name just a few) puzzles engage our brains in more ways than one. Scientists have discovered that when we work on a jigsaw puzzle, we utilize both sides of the brain, improving memory, cognitive function and problem solving skills in the process. By utilizing puzzles, people can stimulate the brain to improve a number of skills.” (National Calendar Day)

But, I think the best thing about puzzles is that they are fun!  Whether working on The New York Times crossword (not me), doing a Sudoku, wordsearch, jumble, or having a jigsaw puzzle out on a table, we are usually enjoying ourselves. Puzzles are generally relaxing and engrossing, yet sometimes frustrating.  Finishing one offers a sense of accomplishment. And, puzzles are inexpensive indoor activities, especially during the winter months.

The first jigsaw puzzle ( initially called “dissected maps” ) was probably made in 1767, by a mapmaker. The world’s first crossword was published in December, 1913 in the “New York World” Newspaper. During the Great Depression, puzzle sales soared to over 10 million per week. During our Covid Pandemic, puzzle sales increased 300-400%, probably because puzzles are well-suited to staying at home. (information obtained from "The Jstor Daily,” article by Rebecca Bodenheimer - 12/16/20)

Considering all of the benefits of puzzles and, between winter in full swing and Covid still keeping many of us indoors,  I thought now would be a good time to research some of the best places to obtain puzzles, both puzzles to do online, and places to get puzzles to do “in person.”

From my research I am listing some of what seem to be the best places to get the best puzzles. This list is, by no means, complete.  If you have other suggestions PLEASE share them with us.

Best Places to purchase Jigsaw puzzles:

- Amazon   -   biggest selection

- Dawdle  and Mondo   -   great selections

- Jiggy   -   most beautiful artwork

- Puzzle Masters   -   unique object puzzles

- ebay   -   rare vintage puzzles

- Walmart   -   kids’ puzzles

Free puzzles online:

www.dictionary.com   -   daily crossword puzzles

www.boatloadpuzzles.com    -   free online  crosswords

www.washingtonpost.com  and www.games@washingtonpost.com

www.games@aarp.com   -   daily crosswords

www.thewordsearch.com   -   free word searches

www.razzlepuzzzles.com   -   you select the difficulty 

www.247wordsearch.com   -   good selection 

www.arkadium.com   -   a variety of free word games

www.sudoku.com

https://.games.usatoday.com

by Roberta Rosenberg

Are you or someone you know on the Autism Spectrum and preparing for a flight?  If there are communication, social interaction and/or sensory sensitivities you can watch and learn what to expect during airport security screening by viewing a short video on the www.tsa.gov website.

TSA Cares is a helpline that has been created “to provide travelers with disabilities, medical conditions and other special circumstances additional assistance during the security screening process.” (TSA website) 

Take note that this is only available for help through the screening checkpoint. If you need in-flight assistance, or wheelchair assistance from curb to flight you need to contact your airline.

The TSA Cares helpline ( 855 - 787 - 2227) is available on weekdays from 8:00 am to 11:00 pm ET and weekends from 9:00 am to 8:00pm. You can also all the federal relay at 711. If your flight is within 72 hours you must call. If you are getting in touch earlier than that, you can go online to fill out the required form for assistance. 

At some airports across the country there is a program called “Wings For All,” for children with special needs. I would describe it as a flying rehearsal, The child (and family) get to go to the airport to see what it is all about. You can find out more about it online as well. As far as I can tell, in the New York Metro Area,  it is only available at JFK and Newark airports.

We at Destination Accessible always advise you to “look at a venue’s website,” to get more information. We ask you to do this for more  information and to see the video. 

We hope that this has been helpful.

Enjoy your flight!

Bussani motors web site

by Roberta Rosenberg

Destination Accessible US, Inc. is excited to welcome our newest sponsor, Bussani Mobility. Their vision of “helping those with disabilities regain their ability to enjoy full and complete lives,” is compatible with our mission of “enriching the lives of people with mobility challenges.” We are proud to have them support us!

Bussani Mobility was founded in 1974 by John Bussani, who had been injured while in the Service. When he returned home and saw fellow servicemen who had become disabled, he wanted to do something to help them have normal lives again. He started by installing hand controls for their cars, in their driveways, and one by one, was building cars for them to drive or be transported in. From there, the business has grown into a full dealership with multiple locations.   (information from their website)

Bussani is an automotive dealership for people with disabilities. Specially modified vehicles can accommodate someone with carpal tunnel syndrome to someone who is a quadriplegic. Because of his commitment and the experienced team of professionals at Bussani Mobility, many people with special needs have regained independence and freedom. Their motto is “If you can dream it, we can get you there.” What sets them apart is their ability to meet the needs of the owner. The vision behind Bussani Mobility has always been to help those with disabilities regain their ability to enjoy full and complete lives.  (information from their website)

Visit their website, www.bussanimobility.com, or call (516) 938-5207, for more information.

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