On Wednesday, September 29, 2o21 at 3:00 PM, the Lakewood Cultural Center is hosting internationally renowned speaker and hearing loss expert Juliette Sterkens, for “Hearing Loss, Hearing Aids, and How Hearing Loops Can Help.” The speaking event will be held in the Community Room and conclude with a tour of the main theater and a demonstration of the newly installed hearing loop system, now available for Lakewood theater fans to enjoy.
The event is being co-hosted by Let’s Loop Colorado, a locally hearing loop advocacy group, and Assist2Hear, a leading U.S. installer of induction hearing loops. It coincides with the grand reopening of the Lakewood Cultural Center with its newly installed induction hearing loop system. Village Roasters coffee and light refreshments will be hosted by LCC patron and hearing aid expert, Kevin McConnell of Ideal Hearing. Ideal Hearing will also be on hand to discuss individual hearing aid questions at that time!
The event is free and open to the public! Anyone interested in learning about how to more effectively use their own hearing aids or who would like to learn more about how hearing loop technology can assist them in hearing better in a specific space, such as a theater, church, or other large public space would benefit from attendance.
Lakewood Cultural Center’s hearing loop is funded by the NextFifty Initiative. To purchase tickets to a Lakewood Cultural Center production, go to https://lakewood.showare.com/.
The Lakewood Cultural Center’s post-pandemic performance debut tonight consists of a Jazz-age musical comedy, The Drowsy Chaperone, and a newly installed hearing loop system. The hearing loop system will allow theater attendees to clearly and crisply hear the dialogue and music of the production, using their hearing aid telecoil program.
“Does my hearing aid have a telecoil program?” is a common question the first time a hearing aid wearer encounters a hearing loop. Luckily, the Lakewood Cultural Center has thought about that! Kevin McConnell, a theater-lover and Lakewood-based hearing instrument specialist will be on hand to answer inquiries about the telecoil program, as well as schedule free hearing tests.
Patrons with or without hearing aids can enjoy the hearing loop at the Lakewood Cultural Center! For theater attendees who do not have a hearing aid, or do not have their telecoil activate, receivers are available for checkout at the customer service desk, located in the lobby.
For more information about hearing loops and other locations, check out the Assist2Hear hearing loop installation directory or Let’s Loop Colorado. Click here to purchase tickets for a Lakewood Cultural Center production.
Historic Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, Colorado Installs Hearing Loop System
Assist2hear is excited to announce the final completion of another new Colorado hearing loop installation at the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, Colorado. The installation includes hearing loops in both the orchestra and balcony of the historic Aspen music venue. The décor of the theater now consists of new, lush, carpet in the aisles and original flooring within the seating area of the orchestra, and full carpet in the balcony. The hearing loop design for both segments is a phased array system.
A huge part of hearing loop installation in theaters is maintaining the integrity of a venue’s décor, particularly when working with a historic theater. The Wheeler Opera House opened its doors to the Aspen community in 1889, making it 132-years old today. The necessity for a phased array installation in historic venues such as this requires the experience and custom finishing expertise that only Assist2Hear brings to the table, with over ten years of Contacta field-certified hearing loop installation
Phased arrays hearing loop systems ensure a uniform sound for all users, regardless of seating location. They are a best practice for large theaters due to key factors such as size and rise of seating. The Wheeler Opera House required a phased array design in its orchestra because of the large size and the in the balcony primarily because of its rise. Theater patrons will have to look hard to find any indication of wires, as they are well hid either underneath carpet or seats “disguised as a shadow”.
What does “disguised as a shadow” look like? We hope you will go, enjoy the theater’s new hearing loop, and see for yourself. The Wheeler Opera House reopens its doors to the Aspen Community for the Aspen Music Festival taking place July 1st through August 22nd. For more upcoming events at which to enjoy the Wheeler’s new hearing loop, visit AspenShowTix.com.
Hearing Loops at New Catholic Shrine Site
Oklahoma Catholics with hearing loss will have the best sound in the house when they worship at the Blessed Stanley Rother Shrine next year. The site will house a 2,000 seat Catholic church, the largest in Oklahoma, as well as the Blessed Stanley Rother shrine and an educational complex. In addition to being the largest Catholic church in Oklahoma, the church and chapel on the shrine site will also include induction hearing loop technology for worshipers. The hearing loop systems will bring the Word of God directly to the ears of Catholic worshipers with hearing loss and eliminate the echo, reverberation, and ambient noise that often make hearing in church extremely difficult.
Why Catholic Churches Need Hearing Loop Technology
Traditionally, Catholic churches are beautifully cavernous structures with high ceilings and hard surfaces. Unfortunately, the construction of these spaces also causes sound to bounce, a factor that no amount of money spent on a sound system can overcome for a person with hearing loss. In these types of spaces, the ability to hear the Word clearly and intelligbly is nearly impossible for people with hearing loss unless a hearing assistive technology, such a s hearing loop, is utilized. With hearing loop technology, all of the peripheral sounds of a space are filtered out and the sound from the audio system comes directly to the user’s ear. With a telecoil-enabled hearing aid, the Word of the Lord comes directly to their hearing aid wearer’s ear, as clearly as if the Father was sitting on their shoulder giving the sermon! The user simply needs to switch their own personal hearing aid to the telecoil program in order to access the technology – there is no need for additional equipment. If a user does not have a telecoil-enabled hearing aid, then utilize a receiver, however, most people enjoy the system by simply using their own hearing aids.
The History of the Blessed Stanley Rother
Father Stanley Rother was born and raised in Okarche, Oklahoma in 1935. He joined the priesthood in 1963, and in the 1970s brought the Word to worshipers in the parish of Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala. While preaching in Guatemala, a civil war between the militarists and guerillas killed thousands of Catholics. Despite the threat to his safety, Father Rother continued to teach the Word and educate the people of Guatemala. In 1981, Father Rother was executed for his refusal to abandon his people in the time of war. He is the first martyer in the United States and the first U.S.-born priest to be beatified, according to the Archdiocese of Oklahoma. His heart remains enshrined in Guatemala to this day. Visit the website of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma at https://www.archokc.org/stanleyrother for his full biography.
Hearing Loops in Oklahoma Catholic Churches
Hearing loops are in many Catholic churches in the Oklahoma City corridor, including St. Thomas Moore in Norman, Holy Spirit in Mustang, and St. Eugene’s in Oklahoma City. When in the Tulsa area, Catholics with hearing can enjoy the Word through hearing loops located at the Catholic Church of St. Mary or Holy Family. Assist2Hear is the installer for all Oklahoma hearing loops listed, with the exception of Holy Family. For more Oklahoma hearing loop locations, click here .
Since 2010, Assist2Hear has been a leading national installer of induction hearing loop systems throughout the U.S. If your church would like a quote on a hearing loop, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on how hearing loops can help people in your church better hear the Word, please visit our blog post Hearing Loop Systems in Churches.
For more information on the Blessed Stanley Rother Shrine, please visit the Catholic Diocese of Oklahoma’s dedicated page at https://archokc.org/shrine.
Fireworks are fun but the can also cause hearing loss.
As the 4th of July approaches, plans for fireworks and festivities abound. Even though a huge part of the fun of fireworks is their explosion and the sound it makes, it is incredibly important to take safety precautions when setting them off. Fireworks, as well as other loud noises, can be extremely dangerous to one’s hearing. If not carefully enjoyed, fireworks can cause hearing loss that will last a lifetime. The good news is that with two simple considerations, you can prevent hearing loss this 4th of July.
The closer you are to the fireworks display, the louder it is going to be. While it is fun to where the action is, it is also important to remain a safe distance from fireworks to minimize the sound and potential for damage to hearing. According to the World Health Organization, a safe distance from fireworks for an adult is approximately 30 to 45 feet. Be careful though because the safe distance for children is much higher; children need to be at least 150-180 feet away to minimize the possibility of hearing damage due to fireworks. To put that into perspective, 94 feet is the length of an NBA-size basketball court.
Wear Ear Protection
Explosive sounds, like firecrackers, are even more hazardous to your hearing than other loud noises. When igniting fireworks, it is incredibly important to wear ear protection. A variety of ear protection options exist, from cheap foam earplugs available at the gas station to midrange and high-end noise-canceling headphones. Headphones on their own are generally not recommended unless they cover the ears in their entirety. If noise-canceling functionality is not available, it is recommended to use a foam earplug, in addition to the headset. Oh – and we forgot to mention using one’s noise-canceling Airpods works great too!
Resources for Hearing Loss
If you need help due to a hearing loss incident with fireworks or are simply experiencing hearing loss in general, there are places that can help. A simple Google search can locate a local audiologist who can provide a hearing test to quantify how much hearing loss is present and what to do next. In many cities, there are chapters of the Hearing Loss Association of America (https://www.hearingloss.org), which can connect people with hearing loss to local resources, as well as provide a wealth of information and support for people experiencing hearing loss.
Don’t let accidental over-exposure to fireworks on the 4th of July affect you or your child’s ability to hear normally for the rest of their life. Have fun, but be safe!