Special Events for Children with Special Needs {Updated}

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Here is our BIG LIST of upcoming events specifically designed for local families in Hampton Roads with special needs. Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach
 
When you have a special needs child or family member you aren't always able to plan family activities in the same carefree way that others do. Many local businesses and museums have begun to recognize that there is a need to allocate time for families who may need extra time, or less stress about noise and behaviors, to enjoy all that they have to offer.
 
Here is our list of upcoming events specifically designed for local families in Hampton Roads with special needs. Some events are ongoing, and some are one-time events. Please check links to confirm information and to RSVP if needed. Additions to our FREE Listings can be Submitted HERE.
 
 

Touch-A-Truck (Hampton Roads)
Several of the upcoming Touch-A-Truck Events include a "quiet" or "sensory friendly" hour without horns or sirens. Check out the upcoming list of Touch-A-Truck events here.
 
 
  • Date: Saturday, April 27, 2019 from 9am-1pm
  • Location: Chesapeake City Park 900 Greenbrier Pkwy, Chesapeake, Virginia 23320
  • Description: Join us for our 2nd Annual Autism Superhero 5K! This year we are squaring off Heroes vs Villains! Dress up as your favorite hero or villain! Register for the 5K or Lil Hero (or Villain) Fun Run! Join or Create a Fundraising Team! https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/campaign/autism-superhero-5k-heroes-vs-villains
  • Cost: 5K - Prices and Price increase dates $35 1/28 - 3/1, $45 3/2- 4/27 while spots remain/ Lil Hero Prices $20 1/28 - 3/1, $25 3/2 - 4/27 while spots remain- Last year this race sold out!  
  • Dates: May 1, June 5 from 5-7pm
  • Location: Cloud9 Trampoline Park 825 Greenbrier Circle, Suite P, Chesapeake, VA 23320 

  • Date: Saturday, May 4, 2019 from 10am-1pm
  • Location: The Virginia Zoo 3500 Granby Street, Norfolk VA
  • Description: Individuals with a disABILITY (and a caregiver) can enjoy FREE Admission to the Zoo

Private Jump For Children With Special Needs
 at Bounce House (Chesapeake)
  • Upcoming Dates: May 5, 2019
  • Location: 4300 Portsmouth Blvd, Chesapeake, Virginia 23321
  • Description: Join us for our monthly private jump designated for special needs children. The admission per child is $7 and adults are free. Adults may accompany children inside of the inflatables if need be. The event will be private from 9am-11am but all families may stay to play after we open to the public as well.
 
May Respite Day (Virginia Beach)
  • Date: May 11, 2019 from 11am-6pm
  • Location: Camp Hope Haven 3000 North Landing Rd, Virginia Beach, Virginia 23456
  • Join us for a fun-filled respite day, designed specifically for school-age children and teens who have special needs and their siblings! Participants are paired with volunteer buddies, who will ensure that they are able to fully engage, enjoy the day, and know how special they truly are. Parents have the day to recharge. A sample schedule is available, but keep in mind that we will tailor our activities as needed to meet the unique interests and abilities of the children and teens who attend. Please email us with any questions or concerns. We hope to see you there! 
  • Cost: Families, click the ticket link or go to http://bit.ly/rechargeregistration The $10 registration fee covers the cost of food* and activities.
 
  • Dates: May 18 (Clifford the Big Red Dog), June 22 (Pete the Cat), July 13 (Pout PoutFish), August 10 (Cookie Mouse) October 27 (Where The Wild Things Are), December 14 (Cat in the Hat)
  • Location: Barnes & Noble TCC at MacArthur Center, Norfolk
  • Description: Join Barnes & Noble for a very special story time where all books will be read aloud and signed for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. Children will enjoy a storytime, a character meet and greet ,milk and cookies, and a craft! 
 
  • Date: Sunday, May 19, 2019 from 9-11am
  • Location: Children's Museum of Virginia 221 High St, Portsmouth, Virginia 23704
  • Description: SAVE THE DATE! Join us for a Performing Arts themed Day! Visitors can enjoy music and movement activities. We welcome families with children who have behavioral health and/or developmental challenges. Visitors can explore the museum at their own pace with a reduced number of guests. Adaptive materials are available upon request at the front desk. Families are welcome to stay for the day once the museum opens to the public at 11 a.m.
  • Cost: Admission is $5 per person and one caregiver is admitted for free. Target Audience: Pre-K - 12 years old. 
 
Sky Zone Cares (Virginia Beach)
  • Dates: Sunday, May 19, 2019 at 10am
  • Location: Sky Zone Virginia Beach 2029 Lynnhaven Pkwy, 100A, Virginia Beach, Virginia 23456  
  • Description: Sky Zone Cares is our monthly sensory-friendly event for guests with Autism, Sensory Processing Disorder and special needs. This is an all ages, all bodies, all abilities event.
  • Cost: Guests with special needs get 60-minutes of jump time for $8 and one caregiver jumps free. We strongly encourage all jumpers to fill out their waivers on our website prior to arriving at the park.
 
  • Date: Thursday, May 23, 2019 from 5-7pm
  • Location: iFly Virginia Beach, 2412 Pacific Avenue Virginia Beach, VA 23451
  • Description: Everyone in the special needs community is welcome to participate! Event package includes a pre-flight training session, all the necessary flight gear (suit, helmet, goggles). Each flyer will be assisted by specially trained Flight Instructors during the event with extra attention and accommodations based on participant needs. 
  • Cost: Each flyer receives 2 flights (1 minute each) for only $39.95 and a FREE video! (24 tickets max) Reservations Required.
 
  • Date: Saturday, June 1, 2019 from 9am-1pm
  • Location: Thomas Nelson Community College Peninsula Workforce Development Center 600 Butler Farm Road, Hampton, Virginia 23666
  • Description: or Middle and High School students with disabilities, their families, and professionals. Meet with local service agencies, employers, post-secondary education representatives, non-profit providers, and more! Enjoy workshops that offer information on employment options, job training, savings and financial security, housing, and more!  

ICan Shine Bike Camp (Virginia Beach)
  • Dates: June 24-28, 2019 from 9am-12pm
  • Location: Virginia Wesleyan University, 5817 Wesleyan Dr, Virginia Beach VA
  • Description: iCan Bike Camp registration opens on 4/1 Time to learn to ride? The vast majority of people with disabilities never have the experience of independently riding a conventional two-wheel bicycle during their lifetime. Research shows that over 80% of people with Autism and 90% of people with Down syndrome never experience this thrill. iCan Shine is here to change that with over a 90% succession rate! 
 
  • Dates: June & July 2019
  • Location: Norfolk VA
  • Description: This summer, thanks to the suport of the Tidewater Scottish Rite Foundation, the Old Dominion University Speech and Hearing Clinic will be offering a group for high school students. This is an interactive group for high schoolers in 9th-12th grade (14-18 years of age) with Autism Specturm Disorder. The group was developed to support adolescents and young adults as they navigate transitions during high school, employment, or to secondary education settings. For enrollment information, please contact Chondra Askew by Friday, June 7th at caskew@odu.edu or 757-683-4122 


ONGOING EVENTS
 
Sensory Friendly Movie at Cinema Cafe (Hampton & Chesapeake)
  • Location: Greenbrier Mall, 1401 Greenbrier Parkway, Chesapeake, VA / Hampton Riverdale, 1044 Von Schilling Dr, Hampton, VA
  • Description: We keep the lights up, turn the sound down, and avoid 3D. It is a show where people with sensory disorders can jump, shout, and move about, without fear of judgment.
  • Upcoming Dates: 
    • TBA - check link for updates!
 
Description: AMC is proud to partner with the Autism Society to bring you unique movie showings where you can feel free to be you! We turn the lights up, and turn the sound down, so you can get up, dance, walk, shout or sing!
  • Upcoming Dates: 
    • Sensory Friendly Film program is available on the second and fourth Saturday (family-friendly) and Tuesday evenings (mature audiences) of every month. Check link for current movie schedule.

Description: AMC is proud to partner with the Autism Society to bring you unique movie showings where you can feel free to be you! We turn the lights up, and turn the sound down, so you can get up, dance, walk, shout or sing!
  • Upcoming Dates: 
    • Sensory Friendly Film program is available on the second and fourth Saturday (family-friendly) and Tuesday evenings (mature audiences) of every month. Check link for current movie schedule.

  • The Hitching Post Educational Center 357 Johnstown Rd, Chesapeake, Virginia 23322
  • Dates: April 25, 2019 at 7pm 
  • Description: is hosting Tabletop Thursday (Game Night) on Thursday Nights from 7:00-8:30 in the coffee shop area of our partner company, Hickory Trading Company (Located in the same building). Game night is for teens and young adults with and without special needs. While we will focus on improving social skills and building healthy relationships, our goal is for this activity is to be a lot of fun. It will be "peer" led with trained staff on hand to supervise and coach when necessary.
  • Cost: The cost is $10 per person/family which includes snacks and drinks. We hope to see lots of you there! 
 
  • Dates: Second Sunday of each month from 9-11am. April, May, September, October, November, December 2019.
  • Location: The Mariners' Museum, Newport News VA
  • Description: Have a family member, friend, or loved one that needs a tailored museum experience? Join us for Friendly Hours on the second Sunday of each month. Friendly Hours is an inclusive time where guests with mobility, cognitive, or physical challenges can experience the Museum in a less crowded environment with reduced sound and lighting. 
  • Cost: Free with $1 Museum admission! Friendly Hours will be from 9:00 – 11:00 AM, before the Museum opens to the public. Space is limited, so please register in advance to let us know you are coming.
 
Sensory Open Play at Virginia Beach Library (Virginia Beach)
  • Date: Regularly scheduled at a variety of VB Library locations
  • Location: Rotating Virginia Beach Library locations
  • Description: This program is designed to allow children ages 3-10 to explore a variety of sensory play experiences. While fun for all children, this program is appropriate for children with specialized sensory processing needs to explore sensory stimulation through games, activities and more. Not all activities are appropriate for every age and ability. Caregivers, please plan to assist your child in safely exploring the materials and activities. Online registration is required.
 
  • Dates: Thursdays from 6-7pm. Check link to verify event as scheduled
  • Location: Indian River Community Center 2250 Old Greenbrier Rd, Chesapeake, VA 23325
  • Description: Learn traditional yoga poses sitting down. This chair yoga class will work on flexibility, range of motion, strengthening muscles and joints while reducing stress and anxiety. Breathing exercises will be incorporated as well as some meditation. Bring your own yoga mat, towel, water, and an open heart.
  • Cost: $6 drop-in fee; $20 monthly

  • Date: Twice a month on Sundays
  • Location: Inside Out Learners 317 Great Bridge Blvd., Unit I, Chesapeake, VA 23320
  • Description: We offer two separate socials for our young clients two Sundays each month. 
  • Our Tween/Teen Socials will be from 1-2:30 pm and the Kid Socials will be from 3-4:30 pm
  • During this event, we offer a brief, structured lesson followed by interactive, engaging activities that promote confidence in social skills while developing long-lasting friendships. The cost for refreshments, lessons, activities, and supervision is $20/participant and can be paid through our website. The cost to pay at the door is $25. Once registration is completed via our website link below, it will take you to the payment page. You may register for as many dates as you would like however, each participant must be entered separately.

Funville Cares Day at Funville Virginia Beach (Chesapeake & Virginia Beach)
  • Date: The last Sunday of the month from 9-11am
  • Location: Funville Virginia Beach & Funville Chesapeake
  • Description: FunVille would like to invite you to a Judgement Free Morning for Kids with Special Needs. We will be opening our doors the last Sunday of each month from 9am - 11am and offering a calm and safe environment for kids with disabilities. We will also provide a private room for guest that need a few minutes of downtime to rest from all the fun. The admission rates will be $1 off and parents are welcome to enjoy the fun with their kids free of charge. For more information check out our Facebook page or call us at (757) 963-8683
  
Sensory Sunday at Chuck-E-Cheese (Chesapeake, Hampton & Virginia Beach)
  • Date: First Sunday monthly from 9-11am
  • Description: We open 2 hours early on the first Sunday of every month, specifically for children with autism and other special needs. Reduced lighting and noise. Food and games offered. Trained and caring staff
 
Here is our BIG LIST of upcoming events specifically designed for local families in Hampton Roads with special needs. Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach 
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