Accessible Summer Entertainment - By Ruth Bernstein

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In the heat of summer, one of my greatest pleasures is going to a movie theater and savoring several hours of fantasy in air conditioned comfort.  Movie going can be a challenge for me because, with my severe hearing loss, I have trouble understanding enough dialogue to enjoy the experience.  One solution is to find theaters showing open captions on the screen or rear window captions reflected from an LED panel at the rear of the theater onto a Lucite panel at my seat. Foreign movies with English subtitles are also a good alternative. Listings for captioned and subtitled films at theaters can be found at, and

Watching captioned movies at home is another idea. It’s fun to watch movies on free and premium TV stations. You can also borrow free captioned movies from your local library.  Look for the letters CC in TV listings or for those letters and/or a small television screen in the film description.   

Every summer I enjoy attending captioned performances of  Shakespeare in the Park offered by the Public Theater at the Delacorte in New York. Tickets are available through the Theater Access Project of the Theater Development Fund (TDF/TAP), offering captioned theater on and off Broadway all year round. Click here to learn more.  

Check your local listings for outdoor entertainment including dance performances, mime and  puppetry, much  of which can be visually enjoyable. Lincoln Center Out of Doors is a good choice for New Yorkers.  

Because I am a painter and photographer, I visit cool, comfortable museums a lot. My recommendations for this summer include The Silk Road at the American Museum of Natural History through August 15th, Matisse at MoMA through October 11th, and the National Design Triennial: Why Design Now? at the Cooper Hewitt, through January 9, 2011. Click here for a helpful New York City museum web site. Check individual museum web sites for information on hearing accessible programs.

If you want to catch a sea breeze and enjoy spectacular views of Manhattan, take a free ride on the Staten Island Ferry or visit Governor's Island, a delightful place with all kinds of interesting activities

We are always interested in new entertainment venues and ideas, so please email me your ideas. Thank you and have a good summer.
Ruth Bernstein
Consumer Advocate