(WSVN) - A Florida planetarium found a new way for the community to enjoy the Fourth of July without explosive booms.
The Calusa Nature Center and Planetarium in Fort Myers hosted its first sensory-friendly fireworks show over the weekend.
This light show was created for people on the autism spectrum and with PTSD.
“It was the most wonderful thing because I started hearing a few of the kids with the little ‘oohs and ahhs,'” said Board President Connie Bennett-Martin.
She came up with the idea when she was asked a simple question.
“There was a gentleman who came in about a month ago,” Bennett-Martin recalled, “and he was asking if there were any programs for his son that had autism.”
The indoor display features graphics in the planetarium dome accompanied by soft piano music.
Amanda Serrago brought her son Greg.
“He was diagnosed when he was two years old and it’s been very difficult since there’s not really enough places to bring him,” said Serrago. “This is definitely a great place to bring your children, for them to just be themselves.”
Zan Jabara enjoyed the show with her 15-month-old son.
“[This is] his first planetarium show ever, so it’s really exciting to get to check that off the list,” said Jabara. “I think it’s great that they’re putting this on for all children, you know, regardless if they’re on the spectrum or not.”
The environment is all part of creating a safe and inclusive space.
“If we’re going to do stuff for ourselves, the very least we can do is make sure that we’re including everyone else in the fun,” said Bennett-Martin.
The planetarium hosts this event on the first Sunday of each month.
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