Wintrust Arena reaching out to families with special needs

Wintrust Arena and Arie Crown Theater have now joined the growing number of Chicagoland venues working hard to be more inclusive for families with sensory needs.

Wintrust Arena, home of the DePaul University basketball teams and Chicago’s WNBA team, the Chicago Sky, worked with KultureCity for the Sensory Inclusive certification. Not only did the staff at the arena and theater undergo training to recognize guests with sensory needs, they also learned how to best handle a sensory overload situation.

In addition, sensory bags equipped with noise canceling headphones, fidget tools, verbal cue cards and weighted lap pads will also now be available. 

“With nearly 1 in 5 people worldwide impacted by a disability, any action we can take to make our campus more welcoming is important,” says Larita Clark, acting CEO, Metropolitan Pier and Exposition, which owns the Wintrust Arena and Arie Crown Theater.

As part of the efforts, families can also download the free KultureCity App to see where to find the sensory help at the arena and theater and also a social story that provides a preview of what to expect during an event there.

“To know that you soon will be able to see families attend a basketball game at Wintrust Arena, a true community binding experience, or any of the varied events at either venue with their loved ones who have a sensory challenge and who were not able to previously attend, is truly a heartwarming moment,” says Dr. Julian Maha, co-founder of KultureCity.

Also certified by KultureCity is the United Center, Cosley Zoo, Sears Centre Arena and Guaranteed Rate Field.

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