Children with special needs share magical moment with Santa at Oakland Mall in Troy

Next sensory-friendly Santa event takes place Dec. 9

TROY, Mich. – Santa can be imposing and frightening to children, and there is a lot of calculation that goes into changing the Santa experience.

At Oakland Mall this year, Santa is specially trained as part of a partnership with the mall and Autism Speaks. Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families.

Arrangements can be made for special events with Santa that are sensory-friendly for children with special needs or even those who for whatever reason need quiet time and a private space.

This compassionate, sensory-friendly event allows families who have children with special needs to experience the time-honored tradition of a Santa visit in a comforting environment prior to public hours. 

The next sensory-friendly Santa event is being held again at Oakland Mall Dec. 9 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Visits are free. For more information visit,

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