Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb Hosts Successful ‘Sensory Friendly’ Movie Experience

Family movie screened at Smith Opera House in environment specially designed for children with autism
June 11, 2011

Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,I,C-Canandaigua) and the Ontario ARC today hosted a sensory friendly movie matinee at the Smith Opera House in Geneva. The family movie “How to Train Your Dragon” was screened in an environment specially designed for the needs of children with autism.

“It was a pleasure to provide an opportunity for children with autism and their parents and caregivers to watch today’s movie matinee. I am proud to play a part in bringing this special event to local children in the Geneva area,” Leader Kolb said.

A sensory friendly environment includes dimmed theater lights and lowered sound. As noted by the National Institutes of Health, autism affects the brain’s development of social and communication skills. People with autism can have difficulty with social interactions, verbal and nonverbal communication. They can be overly or under sensitive to sight, hearing, touch, smell or taste.

“The Autism Center at Ontario ARC is committed to providing support to individuals with an autism spectrum disorder and their families. Socialization and recreation in a welcoming environment is such an important part of a balanced life. We are so happy to have had this opportunity to partner with Assembly Minority Leader Kolb to provide a comfortable and relaxing movie experience,” Ontario ARC Senior Associate Executive Director Noreen Quinn said.

“Today’s presentation offered local families a chance to experience quality time in a comfortable public setting. I look forward to continuing to partner with the Ontario ARC in the future on other special events,” Kolb concluded.