News & Media2022-02-24T11:45:55-06:00

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Cosley Zoo is Certified Sensory Inclusive

KultureCity has partnered with Cosley Zoo to make the zoo and all of its programs and events sensory inclusive. This initiative promotes an accommodating and positive experience for all guests with sensory issues that visit the zoo.

As part of the certification process, staff at Cosley Zoo were trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognize guests with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. Weighted lap pads and sensory bags, equipped with noise canceling headphones, fidget tools and verbal cue cards, will also be available to guests who may feel overwhelmed by the zoo atmosphere.

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 overstimulation and noise, which can be an enormous part of the zoo environment. With its new certification, Cosley Zoo is now better prepared to assist guests with sensory sensitivities in having the most comfortable and accommodating experience possible.

“A key component of Cosley Zoo’s mission is to promote conservation by connecting people to animals and nature. It is very important to us that all visitors have that opportunity and that they feel comfortable when visiting the zoo. Our staff was eager to participate in this training in order to ensure that we are doing the best job possible to provide a welcoming environment for our visitors with sensory needs,” said Zoo Director Susan Wahlgren.

Prior to visiting the zoo, families can download the free KultureCity app where they can learn about the sensory features that are available and where they can access them. Also on the app is Cosley Zoo’s Social Story which will provide a preview of what to expect while visiting the zoo.

“To know that you soon will be able to see families visit the zoo, a true community binding experience, with their loved ones who have sensory challenges and who were not able to previously attend, is truly a heartwarming moment. Our communities are what shape our lives and to know that Cosley Zoo is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that everyone, no matter their ability, is included in their community is amazing,” said Dr. Julian Maha, co-founder of KultureCity.

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. Since the program’s inception, KultureCity has created over 200 sensory inclusive venues in three countries.


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Mike Williams Cosley Classic Photo Gallery | August 2019