The Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA) is now offering sensory kits for visitors to the museum. The kits are designed to offer individuals and families alternative ways to enjoy exhibitions in the galleries, special events, and activities in the studio and garden through the use of tactile and auditory aids.
“WMA draws thousands of visitors to downtown Dothan each year, and we work to make each visit to the museum as welcoming and accessible to as many people as possible,” said Dana-Marie Lemmer, WMA’s executive director and curator. “These sensory kits are one part of our larger work to ensure that the visitor experience at the museum engages wide ranging and diverse audiences, from toddlers to seniors, a goal for improving lifelong learning in WMA’s Strategic Plan.”
The kits include child-sized sunglasses and noise-canceling headphones, several small, handheld fidget toys, an activity book, and crayons. Kits are available to check out at no cost at the museum’s front desk, and can help to balance the environment for children with sensitivity to high stimulation.
“We often think of art museums as places of quiet and calm, but the lighting, bright colors, and the bustle of tour groups and guests can cause sensory overload in children with sensory-processing needs. Based on personal observations and experiences with students at WMA, I wanted to ensure we made accommodations for our younger guests who might feel overwhelmed in our space. A great session on making museums more accessible at Southeastern Museums Conference gave me the idea for creating our own sensory packs,” said Brook McGinnis, WMA’s education director.
Upcoming family programs at WMA include the Youth Art Month opening reception on February 28th, First Saturday Family Day on March 4th, Arty Pants for Toddlers weekly in March, and summer camps in June and July. Daily admission to the museum is free; WMA is located at 126 Museum Avenue, adjacent to the Dothan Civic Center.
For more information about WMA’s annual arts programming, call 334-794-3871 or visit wiregrassmuseum.org.View More Stories