WALKING TRAIL FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED PROVES POPULAR
The sun was warm, the foliage lush and bird calls filled the air when a group of customers from the Center for Vision Loss visited the new Sensory Trail at the Pool Wildlife Sanctuary in Emmaus on September 3, 2013. Designed to stimulate the senses and meet the needs of the visually impaired, the trail was developed by Lehigh Valley Business Group CEO and founder, Kevin Cope and constructed by volunteers including Devin Garcia from Boy Scout Troop 43 who earned his Eagle Badge for his efforts. Doug Yingling, Center for Vision Loss Executive Director, and Rita Lang, Manager of Innovative Programs, were asked to consult on the project which was dedicated on August 27.
The Sensory Trail is located along the top of the Wildlands Conservancy’s Pool Wildlife Sanctuary. Walkers are guided by a rope fence as they take in sounds, smells and feelings along the pathway. Sensory stations with educational panels written in Braille are highlights. There is also a Seasonal Box where visitors can reach in and touch different items such as acorns, a bird’s nest or deer antlers. It is anticipated that the walk will help everyone understand the role that all of our senses play in our lives and how loss of vision can impact our lives.
Agency customers really enjoyed their visit to the Sensory Trail. In addition, they had the opportunity to touch animals in a program in the Conservancy’s Education Center and then go back outside to enjoy a different walk. “Our visit today was the first of many that we will make as a customer group in the future,” stated Rita Lang. “We plan to return for different experiences as the seasons change.”
For more information about the Sensory Trail contact the Wildlands Conservancy, 3701 Orchid Place, Emmaus, PA 18049 at 610-965-4397 or visit www.wildlandspa.org.