What Marvel and Chris Pratt have to teach us about respect

Guest post by Lucy Crabtree

My mom and I were walking into a movie theater when she brought it up. “So,” she said, “I think I missed something. Did Chris Pratt start some kind of brouhaha?”

I laughed. “Uh, just a little!” I replied, tongue in cheek.

I filled her on what had happened—how last month, Marvel made a short clip starring Chris Pratt to promote their latest offering, Guardians of the Galaxy 2. The clip started out with subtitles, but a few seconds in, Pratt urged viewers to turn up their sound and ignore the subtitles, and motioned as if to wipe the subtitles off the screen. The subtitles disappeared. The rest of the clip continued without subtitles, and did not provide an option to turn them back on. Fans objected, saying that such a move was insensitive toward those who rely on subtitles to understand videos, and Marvel took the clip down.

The next day, Chris Pratt issued an apology video in Instagram, using sign language to express his regret over the Marvel clip and acknowledging the insensitivity of turning the subtitles off. “I have people in my life who are hearing-impaired,” he said in his Instagram post, “and the last thing in the world I would want to do is offend them or anybody who suffers from hearing loss or any other disability.”

Captions are not optional

For many of us, captions are not optional. They grant us access to the most prized commodity of all: information. Information is how relationships are built, purchases are made, and jobs are landed. Even when the information is entertainment, as in a movie trailer, it is still a hot commodity. For better or worse, movies, television, and other media give us cultural reference points and an opportunity to connect with others over these. When Pratt “wiped off” the subtitles in the original video, I literally gasped. “He did NOT just do that!” With a simple sweeping motion, I felt like he was pushing me away from the screen, pushing me away from a community I have just as much a right to as anyone else.

I’ll say again—captions are not optional, and not just for people who are D/deaf or hard of hearing. The universal nature of closed captions means that they assist English Language Learners in synchronizing spoken and written English, foster literacy for children and adults who are learning to read, and make information accessible for everyone, regardless of their degree of hearing. I even learned recently that people with cognitive processing issues rely on captions. Captions, then, should be the norm and not the exception. Marvel was wrong to treat them as optional. I’m grateful for Pratt’s apology and that Marvel acted swiftly to remove the offending video.

An updated vocabulary

Not only do we need captions, we need an updated vocabulary. Several online news outlets, including Variety, People, ET Online, and Yahoo, reported on Chris Pratt’s apology by using “hearing impaired” in their headlines—a phrase Pratt himself used in his Instagram post.

“Hearing impaired,” however, is an archaic term that many people who are D/deaf or hard of hearing have long abandoned. That alone should be reason enough to stop using the phrase—out of respect for and to show hospitality to people who have historically been marginalized. The fact that Pratt uses “hearing impaired” suggests that he does not interact with many D/deaf or hard of hearing people. He does refer to having “hearing impaired” people in his life, but that makes me think that he is either not close enough to them to choose a more respectful term, or that the people in question are from a different age when the term was more acceptable. “Hearing impaired” conveys a sense of being “broken” or incomplete, and puts our hearing loss first instead of our personhood. 

A posture of respect

This “brouhaha,” as my mom called it, is ultimately about respect. Providing or turning on captions and subtitles, and being intentional with vocabulary, shows respect and care for people who are deaf and hard of hearing—who could very well be your neighbors, your kids’ friends, the people in line in front of you at the grocery store. Words, whether they are displayed on a screen during a movie or used to describe someone else, reflect and shape how we think about people who are different from us. Marvel and Chris Pratt will, I bet, be more careful going forward. The rest of us would be wise to follow suit.

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Open-Captioned Movie at The Alamo Drafthouse – Friday, Sept. 27 at 7pm!

2013 has been a great year for open-captioned movies in Kansas City! First, there was Monsters University open-captioned at The Boulevard Drive-In Theater in July, followed by the double feature, Planes/The Lone Ranger in August at the same location. A huge thanks to JJ Jones, The Whole Person and CinemaKC for their hard work in bringing open captions back to KC!

This month, HLAAKC is happy to be part of the effort to encourage local theaters to show open-captioned movies. As part of Deaf Awareness Week, we are thrilled to announce that the movie Rush will be shown at 7pm on Friday, Sept. 27 at The Alamo Drafthouse in downtown Kansas City (1400 Main St., Kansas City, MO 64105 – formerly AMC Mainstreet)! Click here to reserve your tickets online – this will help you select and reserve your seats! Order them today!

rush

The Alamo is a dine-in theater, so you can order your dinner and snacks right from your seat — servers will bring you your food and drink! Doors open at 6:15; join us at 6:45 for a special pre-show presentation from Cady Macfee from Hamilton Relay, who will be presenting the Deaf Community Leader Award.

alamo

Afterwards, hit up the Power and Light District with your friends – the fun doesn’t have to end when the movie’s over!

A few notes about The Alamo:

— No talking/no texting policy is strictly enforced – enjoy the movie free from distractions!
— Patrons must be 18 or older, or accompanied by a parent/guardian.
— Click here for directions and parking info

Thank you, Alamo Drafthouse, for providing an accessible movie for those of us with hearing loss!

See you Friday, Sept. 27!

Click here for more information about Deaf Awareness Week.

Live theater captioning comes to Kansas City!

I grew up in my own little world of musicals. My alone time was often spent lip-syncing to “Sixteen Going on Seventeen” from The Sound of Music, or sashaying around my house mouthing the lyrics to “If I were a Rich Man” from Fiddler on the Roof. If I was lucky and no one else was home, I would belt out my favorite solos in my own not-just-tone-deaf-but-deaf-and-unable-to-carry-a-single-tune voice. Even now, if I spend a weekend catching up on the last season of Glee, I’m prone to spend the rest of the week singing to myself and passé-ing – not walking – around my house.

What I’m trying to say is – I love Broadway musicals. I love song-and-dance numbers. I love the emotion, the choreography, the soul, the solos – all of it. But my own experience with live theater is relatively lacking. Growing up, watching a live stage production was just too much work for me. Sign language interpreters helped clue me in to the dialogue going on onstage, but watching the interpreter meant missing the stage action. Opting to watch the actors instead of the interpreters meant I missed out on important lines. I preferred to stick to videos and later, DVDs, so I could enjoy the story with captions and subtitles.

Then last summer, something wonderful happened. At the 2011 HLAA National Convention in Washington, D.C., HLAA arranged for convention goers to attend a captioned live performance of the musical Wicked. I was a little skeptical – accustomed to sign language interpreters, I could not wrap my head around using captions to understand something that was going on live in front of me. I am so glad HLAA introduced me to live theater captioning – thanks to their efforts and the cooperation of the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center, I was able to fully enjoy a live theater performance for the first time! I watched the captions in conjunction with the stage performers, much like I use CaptiView to watch a movie. It took a bit getting used to moving my eyes from the captions to the stage, but since I am used to captions on the TV, it was much easier transition for me than I thought it would be. I left the convention with one goal in mind: Bring live theater captioning to Kansas City.

Earlier this year, I found out that Les Miserables, one of my favorite musicals, would be coming to Kansas City and immediately started asking questions. Could it be captioned? Who would caption it?  How do I contact the theater? The production company? After a few months of dead ends and wild goose chases, I happened to see a billboard advertising Les Miz being brought to Kansas City by the Theater League. I sent the Theater League and email and discovered they already had a captioning device available. Mark Edelman, Executive Director of the Theater League, graciously invited members of our HLAAKC Steering Committee to check it out.

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Mr. Edelman and his team, recognizing the need for captions of live performances and understanding that not all deaf or hard of hearing patrons are able to understand American Sign Language, developed the device to assist their guests. “We wanted to come up with an audio description system that could be utilized at any performance and did not require familiarity with ASL,” he said.

The Theater League currently has two Mobile Demands that use PowerPoint to display captions for the theater patron. A transmitter set up in the theater controls the flow of the captions so that all the patron has to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the show.

“We ask the producers of each Broadway show we present to send us a copy of the script in some sort of digital form (usually MS Word). We pay to have that format re-written in PowerPoint,” Edelman explained. “I go through the PowerPoint and make changes consistent with the flow of the show. The PowerPoint is transferred to the Audio Description System’s dedicated lap-top. We hook up the transmitter in the theater, hand out the receivers, explain the process and we’re ready to go.”

The Mobile Demand can be placed on a music stand for hands-free viewing during the show, or be held in the patron’s lap. Using the music stand requires specific, accessible seating; holding the device enables the patron more freedom to sit where they like. Once you are at the performance, Edelman explains, the “Presentation Manager will come to your seat, give you the device, explain its operation and turn it on for you.”

All of Theater League’s shows are available with captions, with the exception of shows that have no spoken dialogue or lyrics (such as Tap Dogs, Stomp or Blue Man Group). Click here for a complete list of upcoming Theater League shows in Kansas City.

If you would like to see a show from the Theater League, using the captioning device, simply contact the Theater League with the name of the show and the date(s) you are available to attend. With only two captioning devices available, it’s possible that you may need to choose alternate dates if the devices are in use somewhere else or otherwise spoken for. Catherine Cone, the Director of Ticketing for the Theater League, will help you purchase the appropriate seat for your needs.

Catherine Cone
Director of Ticketing
Theater League
9140 Ward Parkway, Suite 220
Kansas City, MO 64114
816-559-3863 (direct phone)
816-421-4979 (fax)
catherine.cone@theaterleague.org

The Theater League also offers audio description for visually-impaired guests. For more information about the Theater League, please visit their website or email Mark Edelman at tlmedelman@gmail.com.

Thank you, Theater League, for helping make the arts more accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing community in Kansas City!

Do you know of other captioned live events? Let us know in the comments or send us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com.

Show Us the Captions – come to the movies with us!

Show Us the Captions is almost here! This nationwide advocacy campaign is the brainchild of Sarah Wegley, the social chair for the Chicago chapter of the Association for Late Deafened Adults. Sarah blogs at Speak Up Librarian and tells the story of how Show Us the Captions was born here. The campaign is sponsored by Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning.

You can find out more information about the national campaign by checking out the Show Us the Captions Facebook page, or by checking out CCAC’s “Show Us the Captions!” page on their website.

HLAAKC is proud to be part of this advocacy effort; movie captioning is a subject near and dear to our hearts! If you would like to see a movie with friends from HLAAKC, some of our volunteers will be at the following theaters and times on Saturday, Nov. 17:

AMC Studio 30 – Olathe, KS – noon
Cinemark 20 Merriam – Merriam, KS – 2pm
Cinemark Palace at the Plaza – Kansas City, MO – 2pm
Regal Kansas City Stadium 18 — 4pm 

AMC 30 and both Cinemark theaters offer CaptiView devices, and will have several movies and times to choose from. If you would like to join us at one of the theaters listed above, please sign up on our event page on Sign Up Genius. This allows us to ensure that there will be enough CaptiView devices available for everyone for that time period.

If you are interested in seeing an open-captioned movie, Regal 18 will be showing the movie Skyfall open-captioned at 4pm. You do not need to reserve a captioning device for this showing, but please sign up so we know how many people to expect. Friends and family are welcome – the more, the merrier!

And if you can’t make it to the movies with an HLAAKC group, no worries! Please feel free to attend whenever you can make it – we simply want to thank the theaters for their accessibility and increase public awareness of movie captioning. So grab a friend or two and go to the movies!

If you would like to see a movie on your own, here are links to the theaters in Kansas City that have told us they have captioning available for their movies. Captioned content and movie times are subject to change, so be sure to check with the theater before you go.

 AMC Studio 30
12075 S. Strang Line Road
Olathe, KS 66062

AMC Barrywoods 24
8101 Roanridge Road
Kansas City, MO 64151

Cinemark 20
5500 Antioch
Merriam, KS 66202

Cinemark Palace at the Plaza
526 Nichols Rd.
Kansas City, MO 64112

Regal Kansas City Stadium 18
3200 Ameristar Drive
Kansas City, MO 64161

If you have any questions or are having trouble signing up, shoot us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com. We’re happy to help!

See you on November 17!

Cochlear Implant Panel – THIS Saturday, Nov. 3!

Ever wondered about the different types of cochlear implants? Have you ever considered getting one? Do you have one and want to know about the future of the CI technology?

You can find answers to all of these and more at our FREE CI Panel this Saturday, Nov. 3. We are pleased to present this event to the public to give the community a chance to learn more about CIs and the surgical process from renowned national and local resources.

The panel starts at 10am at KU Edwards Campus (12600 Quivira, Overland Park, KS 66213) in BEST 120. We’ll start serving complimentary refreshments at 9am – come early to enjoy free coffee and to meet new friends!

CART (real-time captioning) by 20/20 Captioning & Reporting and interpreting services from Able Hands will be available.

If you have any questions, feel free to email us at hlaakc@gmail.com.

See you Saturday!

Who to visit and what to win at this weekend’s picnic!

Our fourth annual summer picnic is coming up this weekend! Several professionals in the hearing loss field will be hosting booths with information about their services and will be on hand to answer questions and share their resources. Be sure to visit our wonderful vendors!

20/20 Captioning
Associated Audiologists
Deaf Cultural Center
Hamilton Relay and KS Telephone Assistance Program (TAP)
Hearing Loss Association of America – Kansas City Chapter
Hometown Hearing and Audiology
KS Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Kansas School for the Deaf
Med El
Meniere’s Resources, Inc
Midwest Master Loop
MO TAP
MO Vocational Rehabilitation
Omron Healthcare
ZVRS

This year, we are hosting our biggest raffle ever! Funds from the raffle will help send steering committee member Lucy Crabtree as the HLAA-KC delegate to the HLAA National Convention in Rhode Island. We look forward to learning from her experience when she returns! Extra funds from the raffle will also go toward equipment costs for our regular meetings and printing costs for promotional materials. Here are some of the amazing prizes up for grabs (donors are listed in parentheses):

Gift certificate for two free hours of sign language interpreting services (Able Hands Interpreting Services)
Custom iPod ear buds or custom solid hearing protection – winner’s choice! (Associated Audiologists)
Kansas School for the Deaf: A Pictorial History, 1861-2011 (Sandra Kelly, Deaf Cultural Center)
Milo hearing aid (Hometown Hearing and Audiology)
Autographed copy of the novel “Lip Reader,” by Shanna Groves (Shanna Groves)

“Silence,” an original painting by Daniel Pancy (Sherry Mason)

One year free membership to HLAA (Terri Shirley)
Switched at Birth DVD (Lucy Crabtree)
Mary Kay lotion set (Minda Nelson)
Applebee’s gift card (Hometown Hearing and Audiology)
Starbucks gift card (Minda Nelson)
Chipotle gift card (Minda Nelson)
Barnes and Noble gift card (Anna Rundle)
Best Buy gift card (Dennis Selznick)
Chiefs scarf (Dennis Selznick)
Sonic Alert alarm clocks (2) (Teltex, Inc)
Pocket Listenor (Teltex, Inc)

For more information about the picnic, please check out the Facebook event page or send us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com.

See you there!

Fourth Annual Summer Picnic – June 2, 2012!

Join us for our fourth annual summer picnic at Shawnee Mission Park! Our biggest event of the year will offer FREE food and drinks, booths hosted by local organizations with hearing loss resources, and a chance to meet others in your community who are familiar with hearing loss. We have some awesome vendors lined up, including:

20/20 Captioning
Associated Audiologists
Hamilton Relay
KS Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Med El
MO Assitive Technology
Omron Healthcare

If you are interested in hosting a booth to share your resources with the hearing loss community, please email us at hlaakc@gmail.com no later than Friday, May 19. We’d love to have you!

This year, you will also have a chance to win some awesome raffle items, including:

Gift cards
Switched at Birth DVD
One year free membership to HLAA
… and more!

Funds from the raffle will help send steering committee member Lucy Crabtree as the HLAA-KC delegate to the HLAA National Convention in Rhode Island. We look forward to learning from her experience when she returns! Extra funds from the raffle will also go toward equipment costs for our regular meetings and printing costs for promotional materials. If you would like to donate an item to the raffle, please send an email to hlaakc@gmail.com and let us know by Friday, May 19.

Shawnee Mission Park rests on 1,236 acres and boasts a beautiful 120-acre lake and other exciting amenities such as nature trails, play areas, a disc golf course and an archery range! We look forward to hosting our picnic there and hope you’ll join us for the fun!

Dinner will be served at 5pm in Shelter #8. Meat, chips and drinks will be provided. Dessert and side dish contributions are welcome, but not required.

Please RSVP so we can be sure to have enough food for everyone! Either join the event on Facebook or send us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Come see Gael Hannan in May!

You’re at a restaurant or coffee shop. Your hearing aid, cochlear implant or other assititive listening device has fresh batteries. You’re in a prime lip reading spot: Your back is to the light, you’re facing your friend, you’re aware of the conversational topic. But try as you might, you just can’t understand your friend. You adjust your chair for a better view of her lips. You remove the centerpiece that partially blocks his face. Still, nothing. Sometimes, lip reading just doesn’t work. You can do everything right and still not understand the other person.

Our May speaker, Gael Hannan, understands this phenomenon all too well, and addresses it in her poem, “If I Could Move Your Lips For You,” as published in Hearing Health Matters:

If I could move your lips for you, I would.
We’ve been friends forever and I can read your emotions, easily.
But reading your words is tough because your lips don’t move,
Not much.
Friendships with new people, wonderful people, have not flourished
Under the strain of communication, but
You are my friend – I want to keep talking with you forever.

….

So whose fault is it – yours, mine or ours –
When for the ten thousandth time
I must ask you to repeat yourself?
I sense your invisible eye-rolling and sighing.
Immediately, I’m both apologetic and resentful

– excerpted from “If I Could Move Your Lips For You,” by Gael Hannan. Click here to read the poem in its entirety. A special thanks to our friend and HLAA member Sarah Mosher for sharing this poem with us!

Gael Hannan is a writer, actor and public speaker who grew up with a progressive hearing loss that is now severe-to-profound. We are excited for our upcoming seminar with Gael, who will be presenting on “The Masks of Hearing Loss: Bluffing 101.” Every person with hearing loss “bluffs,” pretending to understand what’s going on, even when they don’t. Some of us do it on occasion, while some of us move from one bluff moment to another! This amusing workshop looks at why and when we bluff, why we should or shouldn’t, and how we can ban the bluff in our lives.

We’ll be Skyping live with Gael on location on Saturday, May 5 at KU Edwards Campus, Regnier Hall, Room 153, 12600 Quivira Rd., Overland Park, KS 66213. CART (real-time captioning) will be provided by 20/20 Captioning.

Even if you have not yet RSVP’d, it is not too late to come! We’re excited to hear Gael speak and want everyone to have the opportunity to enjoy her humorous and engaging presentation! Please come – and bring your friends! You can find more information about this event on our Facebook page or by sending us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com.

See you there!

Reminder: RSVP for our upcoming events

Don’t forget to RSVP by this Sunday, April 8, for two of our upcoming events: The Moon Marble Company tour and Gael Hannan’s presentation, “Bluffing 101.” Clicking on the links will take you to each event’s page on Facebook where you can click the “join” button to indicate that you will attend. You may also RSVP for these events by emailing us at hlaakc@gmail.com.

Moon Marble Company Tour
We will meet at the Moon Marble Company at 10:15 on Saturday, April 14, for an hour-long tour of the marble-making factory. All ages are welcome! Tickets are $6 per person, but children age 3 and under are free.

Gael Hannan – The Masks of Hearing Loss: Bluffing 101
On Saturday, May 5, we will be presenting a FREE seminar featuring Gael Hannan. Ms. Hannan is a writer, actor and public speaker who grew up with a progressive hearing loss that is now severe-to-profound. Her presentation, “The Masks of Hearing Loss: Bluffing 101,” looks at why and when we bluff, why we should or shouldn’t, and how we can ban the bluff in our lives.

We’re looking forward to these events and hope to see you there!

Update on March events

Thanks to everyone who came to our March 10 meeting! We were delighted to have Jeanette Christian from 20/20 Captioning present on CART and you can find the transcript of her presentation here. Thanks, Jeanette!

Our next event is Monday, March 19 at the Overland Park Fire Department Training Center. Click here for more information on the event. It’s not too late to let us know you’re coming, so send us an email if you plan to join us. Hope to see you there!

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Church Services

In light of the holiday season, we’ve compiled a brief list of area churches that will offer Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day services that are accessible to the D/deaf and hard of hearing. We hope you find this list helpful as you make your holiday plans. If you know of any other churches that provide accessible holiday services, please let us know in the comments or send us an email at hlaakc@gmail.com. 

Happy Holidays!

-The HLAAKC Steering Committee

Captioned service

Olathe Bible Church
13700 W 151st Street
Olathe, KS 66062
Christmas Eve Servce: Saturday, Dec. 24  at 4:30pm
Christmas Day Service: Sunday, Dec. 25 at 10:30am
The first two front rows of the main auditorium are reserved for those utilizing the captions. 

Sign Language Interpreted Services

First Baptist Oak Grove
400 SE 14th Street
Oak Grove, MO 64075
Christmas Eve Service: Saturday, Dec. 24 at 6pm
Christmas Day: Sunday, Dec. 25 at 10am

Heartland Community Church
12175 S. Strang Line Rd.,
Olathe, KS 66062
Friday, Dec. 23 – 5 p.m.

Deaf International Community Church
Center of Grace
520 S. Harrison
Olathe, KS 66061
Christmas Eve Candlelight Service: Saturday, Dec. 24 at 6:30pm
Christmas Program: Sunday, Dec. 25 at 10am
*Services are conducted in ASL with voice interpretation

Overland Park Church of Christ
13400 W. 119th St.
Overland Park, KS 66213
Christmas Day, Dec. 25 at 8:15am
Deaf-led service in ASL with voice interpretation at 10:45am

St. Paul Catholic Church
900 S. Honeysuckle
Olathe, KS 66061
Christmas Eve Midnight Mass: Saturday, Dec. 24 at midnight
Reserved seating for the D/deaf in the front of the church on the north side; arrive 25-30 minutes early as the church will probably be full


The content provided in this post is for informational purposes only and does not constitute an endorsement by HLAA-KC or HLAA.

A peek into 2012

I have a confession to make. As much as I was looking forward to our holiday party last week, I was tempted to talk myself out of going. It was raining that day. I was cold and tired. I didn’t want to drive that far. Would the restaurant be too loud? What if my white elephant gift is too silly? I’m a little self-conscious about the way I sign.

But something that I have learned with my hearing loss is that sometimes, I just have to do things even when I think I’ll be uncomfortable. How else will I grow? What amazing experiences am I missing out on when I choose isolation over activity? So I went to the party and as always, had a wonderful time! It refreshes me to be around other people with hearing loss because I know they get it. We might not all use the same methods of communication but we always find a way to chat and connect with each other.

So thank you SO MUCH to everyone who braved the rain and the distance and even the unknown to party with us! We had a great turnout at Carino’s at The Legends and I enjoyed seeing so many new faces – I hope we’ll see even more of each other in 2012!

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Our next formal meeting will be Saturday, Jan. 21 from 10:30am-12pm at the Plaza Library in Kansas City, Mo. Our goal for these workshop-style settings is to bring in members and professionals in the deaf and hard of hearing communities to present on topics of interest to those with hearing loss. We have CART available at each meeting and transcripts of past presentations are available under our White Papers tab at the top of this page. Keep an eye on the blog and your email inbox for more details about our January meeting.

We also plan social events each month and our next social event will be Thursday, Jan. 26 from 6:30pm-8:30pm at the Central Resource Library in Overland Park, Kan. Sarah Mosher and Alex Vetor will be leading a beginning sign language class for those who are interested in learning sign language or in brushing up on their signing skills.

So mark your calendars, people, because we want to see more of you soon! We hope you can make it to our January events and as always, if you have any questions or comments, you can email us at hlaakc@gmail.com. You can also find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Have a safe and happy holiday season!

Upcoming HLAA webinars

At our last formal meeting in November, Dennis and I led a discussion on how to manage your hearing loss during the holidays. At the national level, HLAA hosted a webinar on the same topic just a few days before our meeting and if you missed that excellent presentation, you can read the transcript or replay the webinar.

The next webinar is Thursday, Dec. 8 at 6pm CSTBrad Ingrao, Au.D., will be discussing “Basic Acoustics and Electronics.” (Click link to register) From the website: “People with hearing loss are dependent on the electronics in their hearing devices as well as the physics of sound (acoustics) of every room they listen in. This webinar will describe the basics of both acoustics and electronics as they relate to hearing loss and hearing technology.”

For a complete list of upcoming webinars, please visit the webinar schedule at hearingloss.org. For more information on what a webinar is and how to register for one, visit the webinar page.

October Social – Coffee and Chat Night!

Our October social is coming up! You are invited to join us at the Black Dog Coffeehouse (12815 W 87th St. Pkwy, Lenexa, KS 66215) on Monday, Oct. 24, from 7pm-9pm. We’ll just hang out, grab a cup of joe (or tea or hot chocolate or an Italian soda or a scone or…) and get to know each other better. It’s a great and informal way to meet new friends and learn a little bit more about HLAA-KC!

This event is open to the public, so feel free to bring a friend or 12 – the more the merrier!

Hope to see you there!

New monthly social events

When the steering committee met this summer to discuss our plans for 2011-2012, we decided to make some minor changes to our scheduling. Normally, we alternate between meeting at the Plaza library for formal presentations and having social events that are more casual.

However, this year, we decided to add regular social events so instead of having those every other month, we will be planning something fun to do every month! We want to vary the locations of our monthly social events, so if you know of something fun going on in your neighborhood, please let us know! In June, several of us met at the Nelson Art Gallery to enjoy some culture. In July, we went to Crown Center for their free Friday Night Flick – the awesome people at Crown Center turned the subtitles on so we were able to enjoy Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone with the rest of the Kansas Citians who came.

This Saturday, August 13, we are headed to the Shatto Milk Farm in Osborn, MO for a tour. The tour begins at 10am and a sign language interpreter will be provided by Nexus Interpreting. Check out the event on our Facebook page for more information – hope to see you there!

We will continue to have our formal meetings every other month. Our next formal meeting is Saturday, Sept. 17 at 10:30am at the Plaza Library. We will have two guest speakers sharing about hearing loss in the medical profession. You can find more about our upcoming events on our new Events page.

As always, if you have any questions or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact us – we’re happy to answer any questions and are always open to ideas to how we can expand our advocacy and education efforts in Kansas City. You can links to our Facebook page and Twitter feed to the right and our email address is hlaakc@gmail.com.

Have a great week and hope to see you at Shatto this Saturday!