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Movies that make sense

Autism Society partners with city cinema for initiative

The early morning screening of “Puss in Boots” on Saturday, Nov. 12, didn’t stop kids from grabbing a bucket of popcorn to enjoy.

The early morning screening of “Puss in Boots” on Saturday, Nov. 12, didn’t stop kids from grabbing a bucket of popcorn to enjoy. Submitted photo

— Many families might see going to the movies as a fun night out, but the booming soundtracks and 3D effects don’t make for the best experience for everyone.

The Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region has partnered with Bow Tie Cinemas for “sense-able movies” and held a showing of “Puss in Boots” on Saturday, Nov. 12, at the downtown Schenectady theater. The society is planning to show around six movies a year at the cinema. It had formerly partnered with Regal Theater in Crossgates Mall, but Bow Tie offered a reduced rate to rent out a theater for a specially tailored showing.

The Elks Club of Rotterdam, Schenectady ARC and Community Loan Fund provided grants to help cover expenses. Families previously had to pay to see a movie, but with community support they can now go for free.

“We were approached by the Elks and they were looking for something to fund within the community … and was aware we were looking for grant support to bring sense-able films to families,” said Janine Kruiswijk, spokeswoman for the Autism Society.

Around 220 tickets were given out for the movies and the showing was sold out within a week.

“It was very successful … we had a wonderful turnout on Saturday morning. Families and kids showed up to watch the movie and enjoy some popcorn,” Kruiswijk said. “It is the first time some families were able to come out to movies.”

She said one mother of an autistic child told her she couldn’t take her daughter to the movies due to the loud noise, but she was able to bring the whole family to the recent showing.

“It was very pleasing for her to do what most families take for granted and be able to go to movies together,” Kruiswijk said.

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