VIRGINIA BEACH (WAVY) — A business owner in Virginia Beach is holding an event Monday night focused on children who live with sensory issues. Brandon Stokes owns Haygood Roller Skating Center in Virginia Beach.
He says the idea for this sensory skate stems from a migraine he suffered from one day while at the rink. He realized how much better he felt when he closed himself in a room, turned out the lights, and turned down the music.
Stokes says at that moment it hit him, those who have sensory issues have to deal with that every day. So, he wanted to create an event to get families out of the house and have some fun in an environment tailored specifically for them.
“So we just wanted to do an event where we’re like, it’s safe, it’s clean, it’s really for you. The music will be played really low. The lights will be on, no flashing lights. We’re going to do a couple of games with them, but it’s really more of a winter blues, COVID blues, give back to moms and dads and kids. That’s it,” said Stokes.
Masks are required, but if you forget one or don’t have one, masks will be offered for free. Stokes says a company comes in twice a week to spray the rink for germs and they hired a cleaning service for extra cleaning to wipe everything down in the rink.
The Sensory Friendly Skate Night is at Haygood Skating Center in Virginia Beach tonight from 5:30 – 7:30. A portion of the proceeds from the event will go to Autism Speaks. Wheelchairs are welcome and parents can walk on the rink floor.