Brand new sensory area amongst many activities at Wausau’s 49th annual Children’s Festival

Published: May. 13, 2023 at 10:35 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - At the 49th annual Children’s Fest, the goal is to unite Wausau for a morning of family fun.

“Children’s fest is about bringing the community together and creating a day for kids to get out and have fun,” says Mark Dorow, Recreation Superintendent, Marathon County. “But also for the community vendors here to engage with each other and create community and build those relationships, as well.”

From playing games, listening to music, and even trying out as a weather man, there’s no shortage of activities to partake in. Including the festival’s first ever sensory area.

“Not only visual, tactile, but they’re able to come in and really experience just a fun sensory, walk through pool noodles, water sensory table, and a bunch of other things,” says Erica Erdman, Founder, GiGi’s Playhouse.

“With as much chaos that’s gloom today, we wanted to create a space for kids that have any sensory needs that they can get away and kind of have a peaceful area to go and engage and have a cool activity,” says Dorow.

Marathon County Parks and Rec approached GiGi’s Playhouse about the sensory area idea. A request that the non-profit was delighted to pull through.

“Um, amazing, our community is pretty awesome,” says Erdman. “And we like to be able to showcase what we do at the Playhouse. But obviously, more importantly, why we do what we do.”

In the end, Marathon Park hopes that families left with enough fun to come back for year.

“Maybe they meet a new person, or a vendor meets another organization that they can collaborate on something with,” says Dorow. “And that the kids come and they leave super happy and excited that they had a good time and they want to come back.”

GiGi’s Playhouse takes donations throughout the year and are always in need of volunteers.

To learn how you can support, click here.