Pocono Raceway to Build Inclusive Playground in Infield (Update)

Playground Mock Up
Playground Mock Up

UPDATE Pocono Raceway, along with the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, announced today their inclusive infield playground has been renamed the #POCONOMTNS Inclusive Playground. The nearly 5,000 square foot playground, which was designed for children of all ages and abilities to learn, grown and play together, is set to officially open to Pocono 400 camping guests on Thursday, May 30, 2018. Following the race weekend, the playground will be open to local residents and those visiting the Pocono Mountains, free of charge, through the summer and fall months.

“The Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau has been vital in brining awareness to attractions, hotels and properties in our beautiful community," said Nick Igdalsky, Pocono Raceway CEO. “Our new partnership on the #POCONOMTNS Inclusive Playground will provide an inclusive playground for children of all abilities. The reach of our combined organizations will open the playground up, free of charge, to local families and those who vacation in the beautiful Pocono Mountains throughout our racing season."

The #POCONOMTNS Inclusive Playground is located inside Pocono Raceway’s infield. It will include several key inclusive elements. A rocker designed for wheelchair access and seating for the respective caregiver, an element which provides upper-body strength conditioning for children as they use a hand peddler to move a platform back and forth and an aspect which will allow for side-by-side play among children in a wheelchair and those do not require one. For additional details about the inclusive playground, including when it will be open to the public, please visit www.poconoraceway.com/playground.

“We’re looking forward to having a visitors center at each race, so we can educate the race fans one-on-one about all of the things the Pocono Mountains has to offer," said Brian Bossuyt, VP of Marketing of the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau.

Pocono Raceway will also house a Pocono Mountains Visitors Center inside the track and near the #POCONOMTNS Inclusive Playground. The Visitors Center will include materials promoting local area attractions, hotels and activities. It is set to open in June 2019 and will be staffed on race weekends for race fans to learn more about the Poconos. For additional information about the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, please visit www.PoconoMountains.com.

02/01/18 Pocono Raceway announced today they will become the first motorsports facility in North America to house an inclusive playground in their infield. The playground will be designed for children of all ages and abilities to learn, grown and play together. Once built, the nearly 5,000 square foot playground will be recognized as a National Demonstration Site, making it one of top 100 inclusive playgrounds in the country. The playground will be another amenity available to race weekend camping and Infield Block Party guests. It will also be open to local residents and track visitors to use throughout the spring, summer and fall months free of charge.

The playground, which is located on a soft-play area, includes several key inclusive elements. The ‘rock and wave’ is a rocker which is designed for wheelchair access and seating for the respective caregiver. The ‘turn across’ is an element which provide upper-body strength conditioning as they use a hand peddler to move a platform back and forth. The ‘parallel play’ aspect will allow for side-by-side play among children in a wheelchair and those who do not require one. The playground will be designed to allow wheelchair-bound children to access all elements without leaving their chairs and will feature multiple shaded areas for children who struggle with sensory disorders.

Please visit www.poconoraceway.com/playground to see a video and photos of the designed mockups of the playground.

“This project is near and dear to our company’s core values of integrity, respect, growth and community," said Pocono Raceway CEO and Mattioli Foundation Director, Nick Igdalsky. “People who have known about the project prior to today’s announcement have asked us, ‘Why an inclusive playground?’ Our response was ‘Why not?’ We chose to build and open a playground for kids of all ability levels."

The inclusive playground will be a permanent structure located along Earnhardt Road and inside ‘The Tricky Triangle’s’ infield. The playground will be available for public use when the Gate 1 Tunnel entrance is operational for all non-private events at the Raceway. It will also be available for camping and Infield Block Party guests during the 2018 Pocono 400, Overton’s 400 and ABC Supply 500 race weekends.

The playground is scheduled to be open to the public prior to the June NASCAR race weekend. Exact dates will be announced later this year. Once it is open, guests can contact our Operations Department at 570-643-7184 for playground hours of operations. For 2018 event tickets and camping information, fans are encouraged to visit www.poconoraceway.com.

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