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The hottest dance floor in town is in Englewood, and it’s quite literally buzzing. It’s a vibrational dance floor. That means the hearing impaired—and anyone who touches the 12-by-12-foot floor laced with bone-conduction technology—can feel every instrument vibrate through their bodies, allowing them to get down to both live and house music.
The vibrational dance floor is the newest innovation for Brewability, the inclusive Englewood brewery and pizzeria staffed by adults with developmental disabilities that’s making beer more accessible to everyone. “The vibrations go straight up through your bones, kind of like speakers,” says Brewability founder Tiffany Fixter. “It surprises a lot of people when they come in—you definitely feel it. It’s a good way to help people understand that not everyone can hear music.”
The dance floor was created by Wheat Ridge-based nonprofit Feel the Beat, with a grant from Aurora’s Developmental Pathways. It works by transmitting sound vibrations through the bones, and it’s just the latest feature that makes Brewability fun for everyone.
The welcoming brewery also has braille menus; a sensory area with noise-canceling headphones, giant Lite-Brites, Legos, and a bubble wall; a variety of adaptive seating; 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 watering hole’s roster of tasty West Coast IPAs, toasted coconut milk stouts, and Champagne seltzers—all of which are brewed on-site. Brewability also serves pizza, because what could possibly pair 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 got older, started Brewability to provide work and job training for disabled adults, as well as to create a welcoming environment in which everyone can enjoy beer. “I had 135 clients, and only one who could get a part-time job,” Fixter says. “I couldn’t go back to teaching knowing that my students will grow up and be right back where they started. They just don’t have any opportunities.”
So she created them via Brewability, which originally opened in northeast Denver in 2016, but when their lease wasn’t renewed, Fixter went shopping for another space. Brewability opened in Englewood near Broadway and Hampden in 2019. Its sister business, Pizzability, had a quick stint in Cherry Creek. But Fixter says that the neighborhood wasn’t exactly thrilled with their concept, so she combined the two in the Englewood spot, where it’s been well-received.
She currently has 25 employees and no turnover—a rarity in the restaurant industry. “I have a waitlist of 300 [potential workers with developmental disabilities],” she says. “I have this untapped market of really loyal, hardworking people. Hopefully other restaurant owners will consider hiring someone who has a disability.”
Next up for Brewability: Working on a blendable menu for people who use gastronomy tubes, or g-tubes, and installing an adult changing table in the restrooms. These modifications, Fixter says, ensure that even more people can enjoy the beer, pizza, and packed dance floor.
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