ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Wild and Xcel Energy Center, in partnership with Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM), today announced complimentary sensory kits will be available for fans with sensory needs when attending events at Xcel Energy Center. Beginning Tuesday, Oct. 22 when the Wild takes on the Edmonton Oilers at 7 p.m. CT, sensory kits will be available for all events at Xcel Energy Center.
Sensory kits are designed to cater to fans with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including, but not limited to, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The goal of the kits is to help enhance the game experience for individuals who may require a more sensory-friendly environment.
"We are grateful to partner with Autism Society of Minnesota to be able to provide our fans with sensory needs a first-class game experience," said Wayne Petersen, Minnesota Wild Director of Community Relations and Hockey Partnerships. "Hockey is for everyone and we are proud to continue to create a greater State of Hockey."
Additionally, the Wild, along with Xcel Energy Center and the Saint Paul Arena Company, will undergo staff training from AuSM in an effort to help better serve individuals with sensory needs.
"The Minnesota Wild and Xcel Energy Center are at the forefront of creating an inclusive space that is welcoming for all in our community," said Ellie Wilson, AuSM Executive Director. "The training and sensory kits will help arena staff support the needs of all participants, making games and other events accessible and enjoyable for everyone."
Sensory kits will be available for check out at Guest Services located at Section 105. Fans will be able to personalize kits to their needs by choosing from a variety of items that cover auditory, olfactory, visual, tactile, proprioceptive, and communication needs. Additionally, fans will receive a printed social narrative for Wild games.
AuSM will be featured as the Charity of the Month at Tuesday's game, presented by Andersen Windows. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. CT on FOX Sports North and KFAN 100.3 FM.
About Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM)
For nearly half a century, AuSM has been a place where everyone can learn, access services, and develop skills for navigating what can be challenging emotions and complex information. Services include membership, workshops, the Minnesota autism conference, AuSM Skillshops, the Life with Autism Series for newly diagnosed and specific life stages, specially tailored summer camps for youth and adults with autism, interest-based social skills classes with community partners, Counseling and Consulting Services, support groups, Autism Direct Support Certification training, sensory-friendly events, advocacy, Information and Resources, and customized autism training.
As the autism diagnosis rate increases, so, too, does the need for programs and services to help people with autism thrive. As the state's oldest nonprofit autism organization, AuSM relies on the generosity of our community to carry out our important mission. 100% of donated dollars stay local, benefitting Minnesota families and individuals touched by autism. AuSM is Minnesota's First Autism Resource®. For more information about Autism Society of Minnesota, visit www.ausm.org.