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Getting Started

Mobility Devices

Service Animal Policy

Assistive Listening Systems


Getting Started

Information regarding accessibility features, policies and recommendations can be found here. The Map of the Grounds provides a summary of the accessible facilities and venues including restroom accessibility. 

Here is information for the most frequently asked questions:

  • The Welcome Center GPS address is: 1 Massey Avenue, Chautauqua, NY. Accessible parking (for 30 minutes) is available in the Main Gate Welcome Center Parking Lot. 

During the nine-week summer assembly season: 

  • Parking: The primary parking lot is called the Main Lot. It is located across the street from the Welcome Center at the signal light, follow the signs for Main Lot parking. Accessible parking in the Main Lot is located near the front of the parking lot. A valid state-issued accessible parking permit is required, and standard parking rates apply. Complimentary shuttle buses to the Welcome Center are available.  

  • Vehicle Unloading: The Ticket Office, including Will Call, is in the Welcome Center. All guests entering the grounds are required to present a valid gate pass. Guest with Main Lot parking can obtain a 45-minute pass at any gate to unload or load the content of the vehicle at their accommodations.  

  • Mobility Devices: Electric mobility scooters and wheelchairs are welcome on the grounds. View the Chautauqua Institution Electric Mobility Scooter Policy

  • Transportation: The Institution provides a regularly scheduled complimentary transportation service in the Main Lot and on the grounds daily from 7:40 a.m. to 8 p.m. during the nine-week assembly season. There are additional hours following select evening programs. The Tram and Bus Guide provides details on the bus and tram routes. To request transportation on a shuttle bus with a lift gate, flag down any bus or call the Transportation Office at 716-357-6322.

  • For more information, please contact the Ticket Office at 716-357-6250 or by email at ticketoffice@chq.org.

Mobility Devices

Electric mobility scooters and wheelchairs are welcome on the grounds. View the Chautauqua Institution Electric Mobility Scooter Policy.


Electric Mobility Scooters – Privately Owned

Chautauqua Institution recommends registration of privately owned electric mobility scooters. The registration assists in an emergency, provides Chautauqua Institution staff with a way to reach out to the mobility scooter owner if needed and provides us with information about mobility scooter usage. There is no charge for registration or for the sticker. Registration is only required once; stickers never expire. Registration is done at the Ticket Office by phone at 716-357-6250, by email at ticketoffice@chq.org or in person.


Electric Mobility Scooter and Wheelchair – Rental 

Chautauqua Institution offers mobility scooter and wheelchair rentals during the nine-week summer assembly season. Quantity is limited and early reservations are recommended. See the link below for pricing and reservation details. A credit card deposit is required; there is a non-refundable deposit for cancellations within two weeks of the rental start date. If available, rentals for less than one week are arranged in person on the day of the rental at the Main Gate Welcome Center Information Office.

Pricing and Reservation Period

Service Animal Policy

Service animals are welcomed throughout the Chautauqua Institution grounds; we follow the ADA Requirements for Service Animals.

Service animals generally are defined as any dog trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability. The task(s) performed by the service animal are directly related to the person’s disability. Guests who use service animals must always be with and retain control of their animal, including keeping them on a leash or harness. Staff is not permitted to supervise or take control of service animals.

If a service animal interferes with other guests or is not housebroken, corrective action may include rearranging seating or removal of the service animal from the venue.

Emotional support animals, therapy animals, comfort animals, companion animals and service animals in training are not service animals as defined by the ADA requirements.

For more information about the ADA Requirements for Service Animals, visit FAQ about Service Animals and the ADA.

Assistive Listening Systems

Amphitheater

  • Assistive Listening System: Radio Frequency (RF)
  • Live Captioning (for lecture platform events): Visit captions.chq.org 
  • Complementary Event Loan Program: A limited number of equipment is available for loan for select events.*
    • Mornings: See an usher or go to Gate 4 (the Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation Gate) or the Odland Plaza Screenhouse.
    • Evenings: See an usher or go to Gate 4 (the Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation Gate).

Bratton Theater

  • Assistive Listening System: Radio Frequency (RF)
  • Complementary Event Loan Program: A limited number of equipment is available for loan for select events.* See an usher for assistance.

Norton Hall (Opera)

  • Assistive Listening System: Infrared (IR)
  • Complementary Event Loan Program: A limited number of equipment is available for loan for select events.* See an usher for assistance.

Hall of Philosophy

  • Assistive Listening System: Radio Frequency (RF)
  • Complementary Event Loan Program: A limited number of equipment is available for loan for select events.* See an usher for assistance.

Hall of Christ

  • Assistive Listening System: Radio Frequency (RF)
  • Complementary Event Loan Program: A limited number of equipment is available for loan for select events.* See an usher for assistance.

 Smith Wilkes Hall

  • Assistive Listening System: Infrared (IR)

*The Event Loan Program is offered at events that are staffed with ushers. Otherwise the Assistive Listening System is active, but the loan program is not available. Equipment available for loan includes receivers, headphones and neckloop lanyards. During lecture platform events, live-captioning tablets are available.


Radio Frequency (RF) Assistive Listening System

How It Works
Radio Frequency (RF) takes signal from our microphones and mixing console and converts that signal into a small radio broadcast signal received by a compact (4”x2”) receiver. The receiver connects to headphones, earbuds, or an inductive neckloop. T-Coil technology equipped hearing aids need the inductive neckloop and receiver; cochlear implants may require the inductive neckloop or may have an 1/8” headphone jack to plug into the receiver directly, with no need for a headphone or earbuds.

Event Loan Program
Available at events that are staffed with ushers. Our complimentary Event Loan Program offers receivers, headphones and neckloop lanyards. Guest must provide ID (driver license, credit card, or one-week or multiple-week gate pass) to be held for the duration of the event. At the end of the event the Assistive Listening Services device must be returned to the same location and the ID will be returned. The device is then cleaned and recharged for the next user.

Refer to the Assistive Listening Systems Services listing above for details by venue. Our vendor of choice is Listen Technologies.

Can I use my own equipment?
Yes. In fact, we encourage you to find a set best suited to your own listening needs. For example, you may prefer headphones (over your ears) or earbuds (directly in your ear canal).

Where do I purchase equipment?
You can purchase compatible equipment at the Chautauqua Bookstore or online from Listen Technologies Corporation, our vendor of choice.

Chautauqua Bookstore offers the receiver, neckloop lanyard, both types of headphones and earbuds.

Listen Technologies offers the receiver, neckloop lanyard and both types of headphones. For additional information, contact Listen Technologies Corporation at 800.330.0891 or www.listentech.com.

Will the Radio Frequency (RF) receiver and headphone work with my hearing aid?
It depends on the location of the microphone in your hearing aid. In models with microphone and amplifier housed behind the ears with a connector seating a speaker inside the ear canal, we recommend taking out your hearing aids and using our headphones or, better yet, your own earbuds.

Hearing aids equipped with T-Coil technology should be able to pick up signal from the receiver when paired with the Listen Technologies LA-430 Intelligent Ear Phone / Neckloop Lanyard. Guests are responsible for the proper operation of their hearing aids. ushers can only provide the Listen Technologies equipment and will not know how to switch the hearing aid to T-Coil mode.


Infrared (IR) Assistive Listening System

How It Works
The Infrared (IR) Assistive Listening System takes signal from our microphones and mixing console and transmits it to a receiver/headphone unit using invisible infrared light waves. This technology is line-of-sight. Guests sitting in balconies or other areas with poor sight lines may experience interference or receive no sound signal at all. T-Coil technology equipped hearing aids and cochlear implants only need a pendant device to use with their patch cord.

Event Loan Program
Available at events that are staffed with ushers. Our complimentary Event Loan Program offers the receivers/headphone unit. Guest must provide ID (driver license, credit card, or one week or multiple-week gate pass) to be held for the duration of the event. At the end of the event the Assistive Listening Services device must be returned to the same location and the ID will be returned. The device is then cleaned and recharged for the next user.

Refer to the Assistive Listening Systems listing above for details by venue.

Can I use my own equipment?
Yes. In fact, we encourage you to find a set best suited to your own listening needs. Our system is compatible with other IR Assistive Listening equipment operating at 95 Khz. The SA-1533H can be purchased from Sound Associates in New York City. This device has its own stethoscope-style headphones and a 1/8” standard headphone jack for earbuds, hardwired cochlear implants, or inductive neckloops.


Live Captioning Services – captions.chq.org

Thanks to a generous gift from Chautauquans Ted and Betsy Merchant in 2019, live captioning is available during the lecture platform in the Amphitheater.

Getting Started

  1. Connect your device to the internet. Instructions for our complimentary Wi-Fi are below.
  2. Go to captions.chq.org.
  3. Once the lecture program begins the captions will appear on your device.

How It Works
This is a closed captioning system, meaning captions are visible by visiting captions.chq.org with an internet-connected device. The audio content during the lecture in the Amphitheater is converted to text and displayed at captions.chq.org.

Event Loan Program
Available at events that are staffed with ushers. Our complimentary Event Loan Program offers a limited number of tablets. Guest must provide ID (driver license, credit card, or one-week or multiple-week gate pass) to be held for the duration of the event. At the end of the event the Assistive Listening Services device must be returned to the same location and the ID will be returned. The device is then cleaned and recharged for the next user.

Refer to the Assistive Listening Services listing above for details by venue.


Complimentary Wi-Fi

Amphitheater
The network is called “Amphitheater Guest.” To access this Wi-Fi network:

  1. From your home screen, go to Settings > Wi-Fi
  2. Turn on Wi-Fi, if not already on
  3. Tap the network “Amphitheater Guest”
  4. Check “I accept the terms of use” and tap “Connect”

If the chq.org page does not pop up:

  • Tap your Safari, Chrome or other browser icon
  • Visit wifi.chq.org. You are now connected to the Amphitheater Guest Wi-Fi

Other Locations
The network is called “CHQ Guest” and is available throughout the Institution grounds. View the Wi-Fi map.

Will I have to connect to the complimentary Wi-Fi every time I use it?
Yes. Periodically you will be prompted to reaccept the terms of use.