The Durham Bulls have partnered with KultureCity to make Durham Bulls Athletic Park sensory inclusive. This new initiative will promote an accommodating and positive experience for all guests and fans with a sensory issue who visit the DBAP.
The certification process entailed the staff at the DBAP being trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognize those guests and fans with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. A number of Sensory bags, equipped with noise reducing headphones, fidget tools, verbal cue cards and a weighted lap pad will also be available to be checked out at the Lowes Foods Guest Services by guests who may feel overwhelmed by the environment. The DBAP also has a number of 'Quiet Areas' posted throughout the ballpark as well as an exit/re-entry policy to the stadium for fans who need a quiet space.
In addition, the Bulls have several helpful resources available online to better help prepare for a visit to the ballpark. This includes a ballpark map showing the quiet areas, a social story, and a Sensory Guide for what to expect during a visit to the DBAP, prepared with the help of Emerge Pediatric Therapy. Click here to access these resources.
"Our stadium becoming sensory inclusive is one more step our team has taken to make sure any fan, anywhere, feels comfortable and safe attending a Bulls game," Durham Bulls Vice President Mike Birling said. "We look forward to welcoming fans and families to the DBAP who in the past might not have had the resources they needed."
Sensory sensitivities or challenges with sensory regulation are often experienced by individuals with autism, dementia, PTSD and other similar conditions. One of the major barriers for these individuals is sensitivity to over stimulation and noise, which is an enormous part of the environment in a venue like the DBAP. With its new certification, the DBAP is now better prepared to assist guests with sensory sensitivities in having the most comfortable and accommodating experience possible when attending an event at the DBAP.
"To know that you soon will be able to see families attend a baseball game, a true community binding experience, with their loved ones who have a sensory challenge and who were not able to previously attend, is truly a heartwarming moment," said Dr. Julian Maha, Co-Founder, KultureCity. "Our communities are what shapes our lives and to know that the DBAP is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that everyone, no matter their ability, is included in their community is amazing."
For Sensory Friendly Night on July 28th, presented by Emerge Pediatric Therapy, fans will also have access to a dedicated sensory room on the Suite Level designed and staffed by our partners at Emerge Pediatric Therapy for those who may need a quieter and more secure environment. To visit the Sensory Suite, fans should use the entrance for the PNC Triangle Club located on Jackie's Landing in right field.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.