Special Needs & Concerns

Please let us know how we can help you get the most out of your visit. Below is a summary of information related to common questions. If you have questions or if your concerns are not addressed by the information provided, please contact the Information Desk at (432) 426-3640.

Altitude Sentitivity
Assistive Listening
Emergency Response
Entrances
Lighting
Parking at the Frank N. Bash Visitors Center
Respiratory Issues
Restrooms
Service Animals
Visual Impairment
Wheelchairs/Transport Chairs
 

Altitude Sensitivity

The Visitors Center is located at 6,235 ft. above sea level, and some portions of our public programs may take place at elevations around 6,800 ft. Some people experience varying symptoms related to altitude sensitivity. These symptoms may include fatigue, headache, nausea, and dizziness. Limit physical activity until you are fully acclimated to the altitude, and drink plenty of water. If you experience discomfort during a public program, let your presenter know, and they can assist you.

Assistive Listening

Assistive listening devices are available free of charge for all public programs offered by the Visitors Center. These devices consist of a small wearable receiver and earpiece. Neck loops are available for those using Cochlear implants or T-coil compatible hearing aids.  If you would like an assistive listening device, please notify the Information Desk attendant prior to the start of your program. Our staff will instruct you on how to operate the device before the program begins. Please return assistive listening devices to the Information Desk at the conclusion of your program. 

Emergency Response

The Observatory will contact 911 in the event emerency response is required. Portable defibrillators are located at all facilities regularly accessed by the public. Program presenters are trained in emergency procedures and will assist you in the event of a building evacuation.

Entrances

All public entrances at the Frank N. Bash Visitors Center are wheelchair accessible.

Lighting

Lighting levels are kept low at all evening programs to provide the best possible views of the night sky for all visitors. Your eyes will need time to adjust to the low light levels; please refrain from using white flashlights in the Telescope Park. Red lighting is provided throughout the Telescope Park and Ampitheater, and all telescope operators carry red flashlights. Staff are happy to provide assistance navigating the Telescope Park in low light conditions.

Parking at the Frank N. Bash Visitors Center

Accessible parking is provided in the main parking lot at the Frank N. Bash Visitors Center. Please note the distances to various areas around the Visitors Center.

Respiratory Issues

The high altitude at our location can aggravate some respiratory conditions. If you require supplementary oxygen, an asthma inhaler, or other such device, be sure to bring these items with you on any programs you attend. Portable oxygen units are permitted on all programs.

Restrooms

Wheelchair accessible restrooms are available at the Frank N. Bash Visitors Center. Restrooms are located indoors and capacities are limited to provide social distancing.

Service Animals

In accordance with federal regulations, trained service animals accompanying their handlers/owners are welcome inside of the Visitors Center and at all of our public programs. UT policy, in accordance with the State Attorney's General Office, does not allow pets (including emotional, comfort, or other therapy/support animals) in Observatory buildings or in indoor/at outdoor public program venues.

Visual Impairment

We are able to provide accommodation to visitors with limited or no sight through a variety of tactile graphics, models, and other resources. Please notify us ahead of your visit so that we can prepare resources for your planned activities. 

Wheelchairs/Transport Chairs

One wheelchair and several transport chairs are available for use at the Visitors Center free of charge. Notify the attendant at the Information Desk if you need access to a chair. Be aware that the walk from the Visitors Center to the Amphitheater (see distances here) is inclined rising 15 ft from the Visitors Center building to the Amphitheater building.