Seahawks unveil ‘sensory’ room at Lumen Field for fans overwhelmed by crowd noise
Sep 23, 2022, 10:29 AM | Updated: 12:11 pm
(Courtesy of the Seattle Seahawks)
Every NFL team knows that Seahawks games are loud and that the 12’s always bring it on game day, which is why it might surprise you that Lumen Field has a room meant to give quite the opposite experience.
The Seahawks unveiled its updated “sensory” room at Lumen Field Friday designed for those that need to get away from the stimulation of the loudest fanbase in football.
Karen Wilkins-Mickey, Vice President of Diversity Equity and Inclusion for the Seahawks, says it’s for fans who have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), are on the Autism Spectrum, or anyone who can become overwhelmed by loud noises, crowds, and bright lights.
“It has noise-canceling headphones, earplugs sensory toys,” Wilkins-Mickey says.
She says the sensory room is located in the guest services area and is available for stadium visitors to use, 15 minutes at a time, during games and concerts.
It was remodeled with the help of the non-profit group KultureCity, which also trained about 400 stadium staff on how to recognize and help fans who have sensory needs.
Because, she asks, “why can’t they have the same experience?”
The same question was raised by Seahawks General Manager John Schneider and his wife Traci, after they discovered their son Ben was on the spectrum.
The room is named after Ben and features his artwork.
Wilkins-Mickey says it’s a place for anyone who needs a short break from the action, including her own son.
“I can bring him and know that there’s a place where he will be welcome. He can get away, calm himself and then return to the fun of the game.”
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