Meeting Your Special Needs in the Park

fall sunset over looking miles of colorful trees
Sunset at the Ledges Overlook

NPS / TOM JONES

Do you or a loved one need special assistance? Are you a father who uses a wheelchair and would like to teach your son to fish? Would your friend who is blind enjoy hearing stories of the past aboard a rumbling train? Would your daughter who is deaf be amazed seeing a heron swallow a fish as a sign language interpreter translates a bird program? Does your child who has been diagnosed with Down Syndrome and want to attend overnight camp? People with disabilities is an ever-growing group in our nation. This is the only group that any person can become part of at any time. Cuyahoga Valley National Park is here to remove barriers and build enjoyable experiences for everyone.

If You Have Mobility Needs

  • Many of the park’s most popular attractions are fully accessible: the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail (including the Beaver Marsh near Ira Trailhead), Canal Exploration Center, the Everett Covered Bridge, Brandywine Falls (upper boardwalk), and the heronry along Bath Road.
  • Begin your adventure at Boston Store Visitor Center. Pick up or download the park’s Schedule of Events. Ranger-led program descriptions include trail surface, presence of stairs and hills, distance, and pace.
  • Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad has a car with a lift. To request seats in it, call 800-468-4070 ext. 1.
  • All children can earn a badge using the park’s Junior Ranger Handbook or Junior Ranger, Jr. Activity Cards.
  • Horseshoe Pond has an accessible fishing pier close to the parking lot.
  • The picnic shelters at Octagon and Ledges are accessible rental facilities. Book them at recreation.gov.
  • The national park and its partners offer self-guided Canalway Quests. Rhyming clues tell a place’s special story. Quests list mobility considerations; several are wheelchair accessible.
  • Stanford House offers an accessible room for overnight lodging.

If You Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

  • Cuyahoga Valley National Park can provide assistive listening (AL) devices or sign-language interpreters for park programs. Please make a request two weeks beforehand. Contact us at 440-546-5992 or cuva_access@nps.gov. Check the Schedule of Events for programs offering AL devices upon demand.
  • At Canal Exploration Center, exhibits are open captioned and AL devices are available.
  • Boston Store Visitor Center provides a subtitled video about the national park.
  • AL devices and a captioned version of the Voices of the Valley audio tour are available aboard Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.

If You Have Visual Needs

  • Large-print versions of this and other bulletins, the park’s Schedule of Events, and the Valley Volunteer newsletter are available upon request by calling 440-546-5991.
  • Winter activities and tandem bike programs are offered in conjunction with the Cleveland Sight Center throughout the year.
  • Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad Audio Tour

If You Have a Cognitive Disorder

  • Ohio Winter Special Olympics are held annually in the national park. Check the winter Schedule of Events for details.

  • Ask about our ranger-led programs, Junior Ranger Handbook, and Junior Ranger, Trailhead Activity Cards.
  • Environmental Education Center (330-657-2796 ext. 100) and Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad (800-468-4070 ext. 1) can accommodate groups of children or adults with special needs.

Serving You Better

Are you or a loved one apprehensive about participating in park activities because of a mental or physical condition? Ranger Arrye, the park’s accessibility coordinator, can help you plan a great visit. Contact her at 440-546-5992 or rosser_access@nps.gov. Suggestions on how to make the national park more welcoming to all visitors are encouraged. If you or your organization want to become more involved, consider becoming a Park for All Volunteer. Provide input on planning projects and find volunteer activities that match your interests and schedule. To learn more, contact the volunteer office at 330-657-2299 or volunteer@cuva.

Check the Valley Guide!

Our park schedule of events has a calendar listing with symbols to show which programs are accessible. The Valley Guide is availible at Boston Store Visitor Center. Events are also listed on our online calendar.




Last updated: May 30, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

15610 Vaughn Road
Brecksville, OH 44141

Phone:

(330) 657-2752

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