The Centers for Disease Control’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network has just reported that 1 in 42 children in Minnesota has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This is the second highest rate of the 11 data collection sites throughout the country. Minnesota data was collected from Hennepin and Ramsey Counties only, which is where nearly one-third of Minnesota’s population base lies.

Overall, 1 in 59 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This reflects a 13.2 percent increase over the previous report of one in 68 prevalence rate (previous study: 1.5% population with ASD; newest study: 1.7% population with ASD). Boys also are 4.6 times more likely to be identified with ASD than girls.

As we know that some people in our community are affected by this, we thought we’d share some information from the Autism Society of Minnesota, an organization working to support people with autism throughout their lifespan.


Sensory Friendly Sundays at the Walker
Sensory Friendly Sunday is a new, free monthly event for kids, teens, and adults with sensory processing differences or autism and their families, offering the opportunity to make art together, explore the galleries, watch a short film, or just hang out in a different setting. The galleries will be closed to all other visitors, allowing guests to enjoy the museum in a calm environment where accommodations such as quiet spaces, noise-canceling headphones, and fidgets are provided.

Dates: May 6, June 3, July 8, Aug. 5, Sept. 2, Oct. 7
Time: 8-11 a.m.

Cost: FREE, but registration is encouraged.

Flint Hills Family Festival and Panda’s Home Sensory Friendly Performance
On June 1-2, join the Ordway for the 2018 Flint Hills Family Festival. Plan a day of excitement with your friends and family, featuring the best international performing artists from around the globe! This festival will include a sensory-friendly performance of Panda’s Home on June 2 at 10 a.m. The smallest Festival-goers will embark on an immersive theater experience that follows a panda on an imaginary journey through China’s stories, traditions, and culture. Through the use of dance, sound, interactive projected images and play, the dancers and students alike will encounter bamboo forests, monsters, fireworks, and kites as they explore the five elements of Wu Xing-wood, fire, earth, metal and water. Presented by Compagnia TPO (Italy) in co-production with China’s TONG Production and Teatro Metastasio Di Prato.

Major League Baseball and Minnesota Twins Autism Awareness Day at Target Field June 3
Join AuSM for a fun day at Target Field as Major League Baseball and the Minnesota Twins celebrate Autism Awareness Day on June 3. Those purchasing game tickets through AuSM’s unique link will have the opportunity to participate in an on-field parade before watching the Twins take on the Cleveland Indians. Ticket purchase through AuSM’s link includes the pre-game parade, a seat at the game, and a $3 donation to the Autism Society of Minnesota. Cheer for the Twins while supporting those you love with autism! Tickets are $22 each and must be purchased by May 13, 2018.



AuSM classes and activities offer low-stress, accepting environments that promote learning and growth while celebrating neurodiversity. AuSM programs are conducive to youth and adults who fall within the wide range of the autism spectrum. Call 651.647.1083 ext. 22 or e-mail for more information. View the full catalog by clicking here.

Options include:

In Harmony with Autism (ages 6-14)
CAST Summer Showtime (ages 10-17)
Minnesota Zoo, Zoo Explorers (ages 8-11)
Minnesota Zoo, Photo Safari (ages 12-15)
Minnesota Zoo, Zoo Crew (ages 16-19)
Como Zoo & Conservatory, Dip, Dive, Discover (ages 13-18)
Lowry Nature Center, Outdoor Adventure (ages 13-18)
Eastman Nature Center, Outdoor Adventure (ages 13-18)
AuSM Artists at Mia (ages 11-18)
Toneworks Camp Art (ages 10-21)
AuSM Filmmaking with FilmNorth (ages 14-18)
CSz Improv Beginner and Advanced (ages 14-26)
AuSM On the Town (ages 14-26)
NEW! AuSM On the Town Adventure (ages 14-26)
NEW! Minnesota Zoo Classes for Adults (age 18+)
NEW! Monthly Birthday/Game Night for Adults (age 18+)