Solar Eclipse for the Visually Impaired

Solar Eclipse for the Visually ImpairedSolar Eclipse for the Visually ImpairedSolar and lunar eclipses happen everyday, but on Monday, August 21st, for the first time in almost 40 years, the path of the moon's shadow passes directly over the United States! The last time a total solar eclipse was visible across the entire contiguous United States was during the June 8, 1918 eclipse.

Viewing parties similar to the one hosted by AADL are not hard to come by, but what about those that are visually impaired? Here are two options for those that are not able to view the eclipse:

The American Council for the Blind in collaboration with Nashville-based trained audio describer Julia Cawthon, will describe the eclipse as it happens and provide a vivid “translation” of the visual event into words for the benefit of anyone who tunes in. Click here to access the broadcast, or dial 605-475-8130 and select option 4 to listen by phone.

The Eclipse Soundscape Project, from NASA's Heliophysics Education Consortium, will also deliver a multi-sensory experience of this exciting celestial event. The project includes real time audio descriptions of the eclipse, recordings of the changing environmental sounds during the eclipse, and an interactive “rumble map” app will allow users to visualize the eclipse through touch. You can download the iOs app here; an Android app will be available soon.

Community Conversations: The Mental Health/Substance Use Disorder/Opioid Crisis in Washtenaw County

Sheriff Jerry L. Clayton, U.S. Congressman Tim Walberg and U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell invite you to attend a vital kick-off conversation with residents about the mental health/substance use disorder/opioid crisis affecting all of us across Washtenaw County. The conversation will take place on August 21, 2017, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at Saline High School. Come together as a community to learn, provide input and discuss how to address this crisis which is devastating to many families. To register for this event click here, e-mail wyattk@ewashtenaw.org or call 734-973-4613.

Support Group for Parents of Suicidal Children

A new support group for parents caring for children with suicidal thoughts and behaviors will have its first meeting on Monday, August 21, 2017 from 7pm-8:30pm. This meeting will be held at the Washtenaw Intermediate School District (WISD) building located at 1819 South Wagner Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103.

This new support group will be led by trained National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) volunteers, and is a collaborative effort with NAMI Washtenaw County, Washtenaw County Public Health, Community Mental Health, University of Michigan Depression Center and the WISD.

Please note that participants will be the parents or guardians of children (middle-school aged to 25 years old) who are currently exhibiting suicidal thoughts or behaviors, or have done so in the recent past.

Please contact Alison Paine, NAMIWC at alisonpaine21@hotmail.com with additional questions.

AADL has a number of books related to this topic, as well as occasional events for those going through the grieving process.

Washtenaw County Preparedness Expo: September 2nd

The American Red Cross of Washtenaw County has invited the community for a Family Preparedness Expo, where attendees can learn from local emergency management response agencies & non-profits about what to do before, during an after disaster strikes.

There will be fire extinguisher training, Hands-Only CPR, a disaster preparedness workshop and more.

Admission is free and open to the public: Saturday, September 2nd from 10:00 AM-2:00 PM. At the American Red Cross 4624 Packard Rd. Ann Arbor, 48108

Brainfuse: Live Tutoring & Homework Help

Homework giving you a headache? You may want to log on to Brainfuse. Their Live Homework Help is available from 2:00 PM-11:00 PM everyday (except Federal Holidays) & the interactive Study Suite is accessible anytime with your aadl account log in information. For more information about all the amazing facets of Brainfuse read these FAQs. Using Brainfuse can make learning fun for parents & kids! College students and adult learners can benefit from it, too! Give it a try!

SPRING AWAKENING

Spring Awakening today is, for some, what Rent was in the ‘90s. Originally written as a German play by Frank Wedekind in the 19th century (and promptly banned), it resurfaced as a rock musical by Duncan Sheik in 2006. Starring Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff of future Glee fame, the show took home eight Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Original Score. It was recently revived on Broadway by Deaf West Theater in 2015, receiving an additional three Tony nominations.

The story follows teens under oppressive boarding school and home regimes as they navigate a multitude of difficult topics including sexuality, pregnancy, abortion, suicide, neglect, and abuse – serious stuff! That’s why Ann Arbor in Concert – which is producing the show for one night only on Saturday, July 15th – is working to ensure that prospective patrons learn as much about the musical’s content and topics as they can before deciding if the show is right for them. The Ann Arbor District Library is presenting, “Spring Awakening: How a 19th-Century German Play Rocks with Relevance Today,” a talk and discussion led by Corner Health Center Health Educator, Social Worker, and Teen Peer Education Theatre Troupe Leader, Craig VanKempen, MSW, MPH. This event will take place on Monday, July 10, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Library’s Downtown Branch.

The Library offers a plethora of additional resources for community members to educate themselves about Spring Awakening and its topics. Patrons can check out the musical score or soundtrack to hear the incredibly powerful music and decide if the more explicit lyrics are their cup of tea. Frank Wedekind’s Four Major Plays is also available for those interested in reading a translation of the original story.

One of the primary conflicts of the musical is that the adults prioritize avoiding their own discomfort over their children and students’ safety. Today we know that, although uncomfortable at times, understanding and talking about sex, consent, suicide, and bullying reduces shame, promotes accurate information, and enables people to access resources when they need help. How different would the story of Spring Awakening be if Wendla’s mother had talked to her the way that Grandma talks to her grandchild in Anastasia Higginbotham’s book, or if members of the entire community had been about to check out resources like Kate Bornstein’s book from their local library. Today we also have many excellent organizations in our community including Ele’s Place, Ozone House, SafeHouse Center, and Corner Health Center to provide additional support and resources to those who need them.

Spring Awakening is not a show for everyone, and Ann Arbor in Concert has posted a parental advisory to encourage prospective patrons, particularly those with younger family members, to learn more about the show before purchasing tickets.

AADL's Pulp has published a preview about the show.

Ann Arbor in Concert’s one-night-only performance of Spring Awakening will be on Saturday, July 15, 2017 at 8 p.m. at the Power Center. Tickets are on sale at www.a2ic.org or at the Michigan Union Ticket Office.

Summer GED Class Registration

Registration for the Ann Arbor Public Schools Adult Education GED class will be held at the Malletts Creek branch on Wednesday, July 5 at 11:30 a.m. Classes will take place at this branch on Mondays and Wednesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. All classes and testing are free, but there is a $15 deposit for the textbook. You do not need to be a resident of Ann Arbor to participate. If you have any questions or require accommodations, please call the Adult Education office at (734) 997-1250.

Washtenaw County MSU Extension Summer Courses

The schedule for Washtenaw County Michigan State Extension summer courses has been released! Hot topics include parenting on your own, money management, and home ownership education. See the flyers attached to this blog for more information on course schedules. Further information and publications are available at the Washtenaw County MSU Extension office or by calling 734-997-1678.

MSU Extension provides information and education that helps people identify problems and find solutions to improve their homes, families, farms, businesses or communities. MSU Extension's goal is to provide practical, timely, research-based information and educational programs to help residents meet local needs. Extension programs are guided by experienced faculty and staff members across Michigan.

Queer Prom

Join Ozone House and Corner Health as they host this year's Queer Prom! The event will be held Friday, June 23rd from 7-11 p.m. at Bona Sera Underground.

If you are 14-20 years old, and identify as LGBTQ or are an ally, this party is for you! Admission is free, but an RSVP is required. Interested persons should text "TXTRSVP QUEERPROM" to 313131 or visit the Ypsi Queer Facebook page.

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