A Decade of WRTS: We Rock the Spectrum’s First Grand Opening
August 5, 2020 | In: Events , News , Uncategorized , Why We Rock
September 1st, 2020 marks a momentous occasion: We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym officially turns 10! As a decade of We Rock the Spectrum draws near, we take a trip down memory lane to the moment that started it all: the grand opening of our first location in Tarzana, CA.
The idea of We Rock the Spectrum was born in Dina Kimmel’s home. As the mother of a child with special needs, she noticed both her son, Gabriel, and neurotypical daughter, Sophia, enjoying the sensory equipment she had set up in her bedroom. This type of equipment was not easily accessible to most special needs families and was also very expensive. It was at this moment, Dina knew she needed to create a space where both her son and daughter, as well as children of ALL abilities, could play and learn together at an affordable price.
In 2010, this dream became a reality and Dina became the CEO and Founder of We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym. Based in Tarzana, CA, her first gym opened its doors on September 1st, 2010, and immediately became a valuable resource to the special needs community. Dina filled her gym with sensory equipment, specially designed to aid children with sensory processing disorders but enjoyable by children of ALL abilities. Each piece of equipment she brought in was vetted to make sure it exercised the seven senses and helped children Play With a Purpose. She staffed her gym with caring and experienced specialists and volunteers and even started the Rock Shop to help families in the special needs community easily access sensory-based toys and resources.
On September 19, 2010, Dina held the official Grand Opening celebration for her Tarzana gym.
Since opening in 2010, We Rock the Spectrum – Tarzana has grown to become the flagship gym for the We Rock the Spectrum franchise. As the West Coast Regional Training Facility, We Rock the Spectrum – Tarzana now offers a wide range of services, from Open Play sessions to Respite services, and exciting programs such as birthday parties and School’s Out programs. The equipment in the gym has been revamped as well, with two new pieces joining the roster of sensory equipment since opening in 2010. Currently, We Rock the Spectrum – Tarzana has a total of 12 specialized pieces of sensory equipment that help children achieve positive physical, emotional, and social development. The Rock Shop has also grown extensively with the addition of Melissa and Doug toys, known for their award-winning, open-ended toys that foster early brain development.
To this day, Dina and We Rock the Spectrum – Tarzana strive daily to continue to carry out We Rock the Spectrum’s mission of being a safe haven and “finally a place where you never have to say I’m sorry!®” We can’t wait to see We Rock the Spectrum – Tarzana continue to grow in the upcoming years!