Looking to maximize the complete experience for visitors at Binder Park Zoo, the zoo has announced it has partnered with KultureCity to receive a certification to provide a better, more positive experience for guests with sensory issues who visit the zoo.

According to the zoo,

The certification process included special training for zoo staff to recognize guests with sensory needs as well as the ability to handle a sensory overload situation. Special sensory bags containing Puro Sound Labs noise-canceling headphones, fidget tools and verbal cue cards will be available for guests to check out at the entrance gate of the zoo at no charge. Guests can use the sensory bags in the event they feel overwhelmed by the zoo environment during their visit. Additionally, quiet zones inside the zoo are marked where guests can take a break from their visit, or recover from a sensory overload situation.

The issues involved are "sensory sensitivities" for people challenged with sensory regulation, more specifically those individual people with autism, dementia, PTSD and similar conditions. The zoo says for these individuals "a major barrier" to enjoying a visit to the zoo is a sensitivity to over-stimulation and noise. The certification makes Binder Park better prepared to providing help, and ultimately making a visit to the zoo an enjoyable experience.

An example of the Sensory Inclusive Logo provided by Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek. (Binder Park Zoo)

In a release, the zoo says their partner, KultureCity, is "a leading non-profit recognized nationwide for using its resources to revolutionize and effect change in the community for those with sensory needs, not just those with autism".

One of the options for guest coming to visit the zoo will be the option of downloading an app, which highlights all the options available to guests.

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