Shores & Islands Ohio is committed to providing an Autism/Sensory Friendly vacation experience to all of those visiting our region. We understand that visiting new places can be overwhelming for individuals with sensory sensitivities and autism, and we want to make sure everyone can enjoy all that Shores & Islands Ohio has to offer. With a compiled list of businesses that have taken the extra steps to create a welcoming and accommodating environment for individuals with Autism or Sensory Issues, Shores & Islands Ohio strives to create a welcoming place for families to play and stay. Read more information below from various hotels, restaurants, attractions, and resorts that are dedicated to providing a relaxing and enjoyable experience.
- Provides those in the community with developmental disabilities services including: employment services, day services, transportation, and more, customized to their specific needs.
- A dedicated team will match you with local business employment opportunities. The community benefits from community employment providing diversity and enrichment to the community, promoting equal opportunity within the community, and decreasing dependency on public funding.
Clark Family Sensory Space
- A safe sensory space that offers a variety of sights, sounds, and interactive elements that promote stress-free engagement and physical and intellectual development. Especially for young children and individuals with disabilities.
- A vibrant combination of lights, sounds, textures, touchpads, swings, and more to offer a variety of opportunities.
- Visits are by appointment only. Call 419.626.1048, ext. 3110 to schedule your visit. (1st time visitors will be required to sign a waiver that must be signed by a parent or legal guardian.)
- Offers a ride admission policy and alternate access entrance designed to help safely experience the facilities and provide equal access to all guests. Due to the nature of the attractions, this is only available at Castawave Pool via the entrance.
- Offers a boarding pass program which allows guests with mobility restrictions or cognitive impairments to avoid crowds and waiting in the regular lines.
- Guests who are in possession of a boarding pass will be immediately entitled to arrive at the eligible ride of their choice anytime after receipt of the boarding pass. When the guest arrives at the alternate access entrance of the ride, the guest will receive the next ride time (an actual time) based on the wait time of the attraction on which the guest has selected to participate first.
- Service animals are welcome at Castaway Bay.
- A guest assistance guide with a ride levels chart, a park symbols key, and safety rules is available.
- Visit guest services to obtain a Rider Access form and boarding pass, also available at Frontier Town guest services.
- Assistive listening devices and braille and large print guides are available at guest services.
- Courtesy shuttle is available for transportation to and from park entrances, hotels, and Cedar Point restaurants. (Available to resort guests only.)
- Family care centers are available in first aid stations and in Frontier Town and are staffed daily. Medical equipment storage and refrigeration for guests is offered at first aid.
- If requested at least a week in advance, Cedar Point will provide an American Sign Language Interpreter at live show venues.
- Guests requiring accessible parking spaces should turn on hazard lights and ask a traffic director for the exact location. (Permits are required to use these spaces.)
- Cedar Point offers a quiet room, located at Frontier Town First Aid, for family members or caregivers to take a break and reduce sensory stimulation.
- Private restroom facilities for guests needing the assistance of another guest are available at Main First Aid, Camp Snoopy, Lakeside Pavilion, Frontier Town First Aid, Matterhorn, and the Barnyard restroom on the Frontier Trail.
- Service animals are welcome at Cedar Point. A service animal is defined as a dog or miniature horse that has been individually trained to perform tasks for a person with disabilities. (1 service animal per guest.)
- Individuals who have special diets or need items due to a medical condition may bring small coolers to accommodate such needs. (Please visit guest services for more information.)
- A limited supply of wheelchairs, electric convenience vehicles (EVC), and strollers are available for rent at the rental center located on the right just inside the main gate and at Joe Cool’s Corner Store (wheelchairs only) near the Magnum XL-200 Gate. Online reservations are available for EVC and wheelchairs. (Safe speeds must be maintained by personal vehicles. For any guests using a personal segway please stop by guest services prior to entering the park.)
- Cedar Point offers guests several quiet options that your party can enjoy.
- A wristband program, which will assist you and park personnel in reuniting your group should you become separated, is offered at guest services.
- Follows Cedar Point Amusement Park Guest Assistance Guide.
- A water wheelchair is available for guests requiring additional assistance while at Cedar Point Shores. The water wheelchair may be used by multiple guests on the same say. During your visit, please speak to a aquatics management staff member to obtain access to the water wheelchair, pool lifts, and for further accessibility information.
- Christy’s Corner Café is a non-profit coffee shop employing individuals with special needs diagnoses including: anxiety, down syndrome, genetic conditions, developmental delay, traumatic brain injury, autism spectrum disorder.
- Christy’s Corner Café is named in memory of Christine “Christy” Bosch. Despite her disability she was able to live life to the fullest thanks to the support and encouragement of others. As the sister of one of the founders, Christy and her story was the inspiration for Engaging Opportunities Foundation (EOF). EOF strives to provide opportunities for teens and adults with special needs just like others provided for Christy.
- Engaging Opportunity Foundation (EOF) is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization established in 2018 with the intent of providing employment opportunities for individuals with special needs, providing a service to the community, and teaching life-long employment skills to enhance quality of life. Donations are tax-deductible. EOF is located in Northwest Ohio. Christy’s Corner Café is the first of several businesses planned to achieve this mission.
- Down’s on the Farm hopes to bless and enrich the lives of special needs kids and adults that reach out to them as well as make homes for as many neglected animals as possible. Additionally, the farm educates others about the importance of responsible agriculture and natural growing techniques.
- Down’s on the Farm teaches and helps everyone learn about self-sustainability and helps teach and learn the importance of responsible agriculture and natural growing techniques.
- Daily visits can be planned and made to Down’s on the Farm for anyone interested. They have events on the farm as well as rescued and rehabilitated animals to interact with and care for.
- An escape room themed as an interactive sheriff’s jail is also on the Down’s on the Farm property! It can be booked for sessions as well as an extension at the end for a western-themed photoshoot!
- Facilities permit service animals (other than in or near pools), offering ADA compliant guest rooms with features that are highlighted in the guestroom descriptions portion of greatwolflodge.com, and included are the accessible hotel features described below.
- Accessible front entrance.
- Onsite designated accessible parking.
- Accessible front desk for registration or other guest services.
- Accessible pathways from front desk to guestrooms, including accessible elevators to other floors of the hotel and common room area corridors of 36” width or wider.
- Equipment available upon request to assist with availability needs.
- Accessible common area restrooms and water fountains.
- All retail and food service establishments include accessibility elements.
Water Park and Other Attractions
- Pool areas with some combination of sloped zero-depth entries, transport systems, or pool lifts for accessibility.
- A limited number of waterproof wheelchairs are available for use, at no charge, in two specific locations.
- Closed captioning, and/or transcripts available for certain attractions featuring available entertainment, including interactive live action game; MagiQuest.
- 1st & 3rd Tuesdays of each month, 11 am-2 pm
- No air cannons
Kalahari’s Calming Room
- Providing a safe and convenient place for guests with sensory processing difficulties to visit that provides a bit of comfort during your time at Kalahari.
Sensory Kits (available at the front desk)
- Communication boards, noise-cancelling headphones, and sensory and fidget toys
Safety Kits (available at front desk)
- Outlet covers, motion detector door alarm, soft glow night light, identifying wrist band
Comfort Kits (available at front desk)
- Weighted blanket, sensory eye mask
Sandusky Junior Sailors
*partnered with Adaptive Adventures
- High quality, inclusive and adaptive sailing experience that enriches the lives of the people in the community.
- For children and youth with physical disabilities ages 6-20 years.
Adaptive Sports Programming
- Programming beyond traditional tournaments, which focuses on children with developmental, mental, and physical disabilities.
- Vacationland Federal Credit Union Stadium is an ADA accessible field, where kids can play sports without the mental and physical barriers of a traditional field.
- The park also has a themed ADA accessible playground for kids to enjoy.
- Adaptive t-ball and kickball league is open to all kids with special needs and family members at no cost.
- In association with a local non-profit, Sports Force Parks offer a sports day camp as well. All participants in this inclusive programming become part of the Force All-Stars, complete with a hat and t-shirt.
- Sensory sacks are available onsite at the front office.
- Sensory sacks include: noise-canceling headphones, a stress relief ball, an ID wristband that tells the staff the child has autism (in case your child gets separated from you and your family), and other helpful items.
Sensory Bags (available at the front desk of Visitor Services building)
- Sensory bags include: noise-canceling headphones (both adult and child sizes), whiteboard with marker, sensory and fidget toys, a social story, misting fan, and straws. There is no cost, only completion of a liability form is required.
- Sighted guide tours are also available for up to 2 hours. Sensory experiences may be included upon availability for the day of your visit. Free of charge and must be booked 2 weeks in advance.
- Safari railway and African carousel are ADA accessible.
- Toledo Zoo welcomes service animals and complies with ADA title III regulations.
- A sensory map of the park is available for guests.