Autism-friendly theme park opens

The Sesame Place theme park in Pennsylvania has been designated a certified autism center, with staff trained in autism sensitivity and awareness by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards.

Sesame Place is the first theme park to receive the board’s certification. It added information to its website for parents like a sensory guide that explains how each attraction might impact a child with sensory processing issues.

The park is also opening two quiet rooms on Sesame Island with adjustable lighting. One of Sesame Place’s walk-around characters is Julia, a Sesame Street Muppet with autism.

The park, located in Langhorne outside Philadelphia, opens April 28 for the season.

— Associated Press

Hints from Heloise

Potholders prevent counter burn marks

Betty M. in Bend, Ore. writes: I have a couple of burn marks on my bathroom counter because I set my curling iron down when it was very hot. To avoid any more accidents like that, I bought a silicone potholder, and now I lay the curling iron on that and there are no more burn marks on my counter. I also can toss the potholder in my suitcase when I travel.

Amy C. in Rock Hill, S.C. writes: Because it grows aggressively, I plant my mint in plastic containers that I sink into the edges around my garden in shady areas. Besides containing the plants, it repels deer.

Jack W. in Olney, Md. writes: Those cotton fillers from prescription bottles are great for wiping the lint and smears from eyeglasses.

— King Features

Fired staffer sues for eavesdropping

A man who lost his job is suing his former boss for listening in on a conversation over the phone after the man accidentally “pocket-dialed” his boss.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that James Stephens was talking to his wife in 2016 about his boss, Georgia Subsequent Injury Trust Fund Director Mike Coan, who is a former state lawmaker.

At the time, Stephens didn’t realize that he had pocket-dialed Coan, who could hear the conversation. Not liking what he had heard, Coan told Stephens he could resign or be fired.

Stephens has now filed a lawsuit, arguing that Coan knew he’d been inadvertently pocket-dialed, but continued to listen to the conversation, violating Stephens’ privacy.

Coan says he is immune from Georgia’s eavesdropping law because he was acting as a state employee.

— Associated Press