Theme parks are kind of everything to your kiddo. Come on, you know how your littles get a rush from seeing their favorite characters IRL. Oh, and then there are the super-fun rides too. But what happens if your child gets easily overwhelmed by the sites, sounds and crowds? Well, Sesame Place wants to make their theme park a sensory sensitive place. And that’s why they’re becoming the first Certified Autism Center (CAC) theme park in the world.

Sesame Street’s Pennsylvania theme park, Sesame Place, is taking on a serious subject — autism. Not every visitor to the park can handle the heightened sensory setting. Enter staff training in understanding guests who have special needs. This includes learning about autism as well as social skills, communication issues, emotional awareness and sensory processing.

Oh, but the training isn’t it. Of course not. Sesame Place will also provide guests (who need special services) with quiet spaces, accessible dining (and dining that limits or is moved away from the cavalcade of characters), low-sensory parade viewing areas, sensory rooms and noise-canceling headphones.

The park will also have a Ride Accessibility Program (RAP). This program helps to match guests with rides that they’ll enjoy and feel safe on. Parents can get a RAP questionnaire when they enter Sesame Place. The park’s Welcome Center will validate it and provide a personalized list of rides/attractions to try. RAP members are eligible for the Special Access Program. This program provides priority boarding on the park’s attractions.

What do you think about Sesame Place becoming a CAC? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

—Erica Loop


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