BRAZOS COUNTY, TX — Bowling is a family friendly sport that people of all ages and abilities can enjoy; that's why Avocation Therapy, a business offering home and community based recreational therapy, chose Grand Station for their first outing.
Alex Chizum stepped up to the bowling lane with his sister, Angelina, ready to bowl.
"He used to really struggle with it, and he used both of the ramp and the bumpers, and he couldn't get in, but now he is doing really good and beat me by like 40 points," Angelina Chizum said.
Alex, who has Autism, is on the special Olympics bowling team.
The pandemic prevented him from playing last year but not even the typical bowling environment was an opponent at this sensory friendly bowling event at Grand Station Entertainment.
"If you notice, he has his headphones on because he doesn't like a lot of noise. He's a little extra sensitive to everything around him," Veronica Chizum, Alex's mom said.
Avocation Therapy hit a strike working with Grand Station. The bowling center accommodated the group by opening earlier, lowering the music, and adjusting the lighting.
"Anything can be adaptive. You just need to have a little creativity," Fiona Allen, the recreational therapist at Avocation Therapy said.
"We don't open until noon typically but we're able to host different groups and things before we open so that it is a little bit calmer, a little bit quieter," Stephanie Lara, marketing and sales director of Grand Station Entertainment said.
This was the recreational therapists first time hosting a group event but plans to hold even more in the future.
"I believe that people with disabilities deserve access to community, resources and recreation but sometimes they need help to access those resources, so I am trying to break down those barriers," Allen said.
Helping preteen and teenagers with special need tap into their passions while also knocking out obstacles.