Brewability’s new dance floor lets everyone dance to the beat
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The hottest dance floor in town is in Englewood, and it’s literally buzzing. It’s a vibratory dance floor. This means that the hearing impaired – and anyone who touches the floor 12 feet by 12 feet with bone conduction technology – can feel each instrument vibrate through their body, allowing them to tune into both live music and house.
The Vibrating Dance Floor is the newest innovation from Brewability, Englewood’s inclusive brewery and pizzeria staffed by adults with developmental disabilities, making beer more accessible to everyone. “The vibrations go straight up through your bones, much like speakers,” says Brewability founder Tiffany Fixter. “It surprises a lot of people when they walk in – you really feel it. It’s a good way to help people understand that not everyone can hear music.
The dance floor was created by Feel the Beat, a non-profit organization based in Wheat Ridge, with a grant from Aurora’s Developmental Pathways. It works by transmitting sound vibrations through the bones, and that’s just the latest feature that makes the brewing ability fun for everyone.
The welcoming brasserie also offers menus in Braille; a sensory space with noise canceling headphones, giant Lite-Brites, Legos and a bubble wall; a variety of suitable seats; weighted silverware (which helps stabilize the hands for people with tremors); and a color-coded menu for easy ordering. Here, everyone has access to the list of delicious West Coast IPAs, toasted coconut milk stouts and champagne seltzers, all of which are brewed on site. Brewability also serves pizza, because what could go better with beer and fun?
Fixter, an autism educator who became frustrated with the lack of job opportunities available in Denver for her students as they aged, started Brewability to provide work and job training for adults with disabilities, as well as to create a welcoming environment in which everyone can enjoy Beer. “I had 135 clients, and only one that could get a part-time job,” Fixter says. “I couldn’t go back to teaching knowing that my students would grow and come back to where they started. They simply have no opportunity.
So she created them through Brewability, which opened in northeast Denver in 2016, but when their lease wasn’t renewed, Fixter went looking for another space. Brewability opened in Englewood near Broadway and Hampden in 2019. Its sister business, Pizzability, made a quick move to Cherry Creek. But Fixter says the neighborhood wasn’t exactly thrilled with their concept, so she combined the two in the Englewood spot, where it was well received.
It currently has 25 employees and no staff turnover, a rarity in the restaurant industry. “I have a waiting list of 300 [potential workers with developmental disabilities],” she says. “I have this untapped market of really loyal, hardworking people. Hopefully other restaurateurs will consider hiring someone with a disability.
Next step for Brewability: Work on a mixable menu for people who use gastronomy tubes, or g-tubes, and install an adult changing table in the restroom. These changes, according to Fixter, allow even more people to enjoy beer, pizza and the crowded dance floor.
3445 S. Broadway, Englewood