ArtsQuest partners with Accessible Festivals to improve accessibility at the music festival
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Following the premiere of its first inclusion zone for Musikfest 2021, ArtsQuest has partnered with Accessible Festivals to add a second inclusion zone to the 2022 map. The Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network sponsored inclusion zones will be located on the north and south sides of the festival footprint.
Accessible Festivals, a non-profit organization dedicated to making music and other forms of recreation accessible to all, recruited ASL performers for Inclusion Day at Music Fest on Sunday, August 7, continuing the tradition for its second year Follow along at the nation’s largest free music festival.
“Some see music as a universal language. It’s also an exceptional tool for bringing together community members from diverse backgrounds,” said Leah Barron, Accessible Festivals Director of Programs. “That’s why it’s so important to make it accessible! When musical performances incorporate American Sign Language interpreters, assistive technology and other arrangements, all can feel the powerful and unifying impact of music.”
“Accessible Festivals continues to be an excellent partner for ArtsQuest as we continue our work to ensure our events are accessible to all,” said Ryan Hill, ArtsQuest’s senior director of programming. “Accessibility is at the core of our mission; the word access appears in just six words in ArtsQuest’s mission statement. Leah and her team working together with our amazing Musikfest staff and volunteers will help people who otherwise would not have been able to enjoy what Musikfest has to offer can now.”
Musikfest Inclusion Zones are sensory-enabled spaces that provide services, tools, and amenities to help people of all ages and abilities with sensory processing disabilities. Rooms feature Silent Sound System headphones playing relaxing music, weighted lap pads, moon mats, sensory toys, mindfulness activities and awareness education, coloring and activity books for all ages and abilities, and more. Outside the dedicated relaxation room, playful games and activities such as hula hoops, blowing bubbles, and a mist fan (on the south side only) will be available to try and explore.
The North Inclusion Zone is located at the NJM Insurance Family Square and is open from 5pm to 9pm on opening day and from 12pm to 8pm during the rest of the festival. The South Side Inclusion Zone will operate at the SteelStacks Playground on Saturdays and Sundays from 12pm to 8pm during the festival. These rooms can be used free of charge.
The Sunday, August 7th ASL rendition will be provided for the following shows:
Poets for Justice presents… World Changers: Speaking Hope to the Future (3:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. in the ice house)
coast to coast (5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Air Products America Square) The Funkitorium (7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Air Products Americaplatz) Baha men (9:30 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. Air Products America Square)
Accessible festivals is a non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that music and other forms of recreation are accessible to all abilities. Inspired by the beauty and universal language that connects us all through music, Accessible Festivals provides advice and training for volunteers and professionals in the live events industry, and educates the general public on the value of inclusion and accessibility through innovative programs, events and Experiences with a focus on music and art.
Visit musikfest.org for more information on other events and activities taking place during the music festival.
music festival will take place from August 5th to 14th, 2022. This year’s lineup includes Disturbed, Ja Rule & Ashanti, Kip Moore, Ziggy Marley – A Live Tribute to His Father, Olga Tañón, Counting Crows, Willie Nelson & Family, Kelsea Ballerini, ALABAMA and Gift. This year’s ‘Fest includes a preview night on August 4 with headlining Boyz II Men. Visit musikfest.org for more information.
Aside from the music festival, ArtsQuest offers countless opportunities to the community throughout the year, including various musical, artistic, cultural and educational experiences at its SteelStacks and Banana Factory campuses.
ArtsQuest’s mission is to provide access to exceptional artistic, cultural, and educational experiences by leveraging arts and culture as key enablers of economic development for our urban communities. ArtsQuest™ supports this mission through the presentation of performing and visual arts, film, art education classes and outreach, youth programs and cultural events.
Through festivals like the flagship event Musikfest; the Banana Factory Arts Center; and the ArtsQuest Center at the SteelStacks arts and culture campus, ArtsQuest programs reach more than 1.9 million people annually. The organization’s programs and events, approximately 50 percent of which are free to attend, have a combined economic impact of more than $136 million per year in the region. ArtsQuest is a proud member of NIVA, the National Independent Venue Association.
Information provided to TVL by:
Kelley Andrade, ArtsQuest
Public Relations Coordinator