City Lifestyle

Want to start a publication?

Learn More

Featured Article

The Sensory Spot

A Haven for Inclusive Play

“There are so few options out there for very, very young children, and the IDD community, including our kiddos with sensory needs,” shares Kayla McDonald, co-owner of The Sensory Spot in Parker, Colorado. “A lot of play areas around the country have sensory-friendly ‘zones,’ which in my mind always provided an image of separation. At The Sensory Spot, our entire space is catered toward this population. Not only that, but we have created the space in a way that children of all backgrounds can interact. It breaks my heart to think any children would feel left out, or different because of the way they interact with the world, and we are working hard to build a community where everyone is embraced and loved.”

Searching for safe and welcoming sensory-friendly experiences became a personal journey for Kayla and her husband, Kyle, co-owner of The Sensory Spot. Their son Carter's preference for sensory-friendly play sparked this vibrant space’s inception. The result? The Sensory Spot—a carefully curated play space, boasting a full line of sight and a capacity of 25 max at any time.

“We take pride in the amount of consults and research we did to ensure an inclusive, sensory-friendly environment,” shares Kayla. “The fact that each child learns and expresses themselves differently and at different paces is important, so we... offer comfort items including blackout tents, noise-canceling headphones, light-filtering glasses, weighted blankets and much more,” which allow for deeper exploration, as well as opportunities to reset and disconnect without having to leave the space. “One of our guests put it wonderfully... saying there are no ‘no’s’ in our space.”

Encouraging creativity rather than having guided play is The Sensory Spot’s forte. “This [gives] children a sense of ownership over their play,” explains Kayla. Resources for creativity include art tables, whiteboard walls, chalkboard walls, felt walls and much, much more. “My favorite activity is our rotating sensory bins,” shares Kayla. “We rotate themes every week and have two activities going at a time. One side of our tables is always entirely open-ended and more tactile focused, while the other side is typically a goal-based exercise.” Visits average 90–120 minutes. Average ages are 6 months to 6 years, although Kayla says “kiddos” as old as 15 have a ton of fun.

Parents are welcome (and needed) at The Sensory Spot but are strongly encouraged NOT to clean up after their kiddos. “I know the stress of cleaning up after your child, and that is not the reason people come to our space,” Kayla shares. “[To] ensure total comfort of all attendees, we pick up behind kiddos as they play—with pauses to enjoy the games ourselves too...”

So whether you’re looking for individual play, art classes, movement classes or workshops, The Sensory Spot will be your new favorite hangout. There’s so much to do. January’s calendar was filled with therapy dog visits, a sensory-friendly concert, sensory-friendly movie nights, tactile painting, a Fyzical-hosted social–emotional workshop, the Silent Book club, clothing/toy swap and yoga (including kids' yoga, big/little yoga, and toddler yoga). Many of these activities are part of a regular series. 

Rates start at $18. Unlimited visits, monthly plans and multi-visit packages are also available. Visit or 18870 E. Plaza Dr., Unit 102,  in Parker, Monday through Friday (9 a.m. to 6 p.m.) or Saturday (9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) for more information.  Check the “Live Occupancy Tracker” ( or call/text (720) 793-1460 for up-to-the-minute availability.

Searching for safe and welcoming sensory-friendly experiences became a personal journey for Kayla.

  • Owners and their son.
  • Kids with the therapy dog.