No lights and music at rides and games at NC State Fair for AccessABILITY Day

Diane Wilson Image
Sunday, October 15, 2023
No lights, music at rides and games for AccessABILITY Day
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A unique atmosphere at the NC State Fair on Sunday.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- A unique atmosphere at the NC State Fair on Sunday. While there were big crowds throughout the day, for part of the fair, no lights or music were on any rides and games to make the fair more accessible. It's called AccessAbility.

The first time, Hannah McCalip brought her son 8-year-old Remi McCalip, she says she only brought him due to AccessABILITY Day.

"Absolutely, we wouldn't have come out otherwise, definitely less sensory overload just with the lights being down, music being down and then crowds can get really overwhelming because it's that sort of chaotic energy where children with autism don't know how to react to it," she said.

ALSO SEE: NC State Fair 2023: Tickets, policies and special event days

As part of AccessABILITY Day, there was a Bandwith Chill Out Zone that offered a break from the busy atmosphere.

"We feel it's very important just to help kids, especially kids with different disabilities be able to access and be at the fair and enjoy that time. When, you know, it's not usually accessible for people," said Grace Meyer with Bandwith.

Remi enjoyed the Chill Out Zone as he got to show off his new Minecraft toy.

"He was feeling very overwhelmed by everything, especially the noises just from a lot of people being in one spot and this gave him a good opportunity to just be," Hannah said.

Outside the fair, there was an arts and crafts zone specifically designed to be inclusive and adaptive. It was open to anyone wanting to enjoy AccessABILITY Day at this year's state fair.

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