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Comfort Zone open house set for Thursday
Sunflower Diversified Services special day continues with pancake feed
biz mlee comfort zone
Victoria enjoys a view from the bridge in the Comfort Zone at Sunflower Diversified Services, with the help of Steffany Gehring-Aden, Sunflower life skills instructor. The Comfort Zones grand opening will be held simultaneously with the Chamber of Commerce Coffee.



A special day for Sunflower Diversified Services will begin with an open house at its Comfort Zone therapy center, 1521 K-96. The event will be held simultaneously with the Chamber of Commerce Coffee at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 16.

"We thought this would be a great way to formally announce the Comfort Zone’s grand opening," Sunflower Executive Director Jim Johnson said. "Everyone is welcome to attend and learn about this facility, which is so important to many of the people who count on Sunflower."

The non-profit agency serves babies, toddlers and adults with developmental disabilities in Barton, Pawnee, Rice, Rush and Stafford counties.

The Comfort Zone focuses on adults, including those with severe disabilities. It features plants, a walking path, pond with a fountain and fish, an aviary with many birds, tactile wall that offers shapes and textures to touch, and a nearby spa. Other therapies include range of motion, object identification, games and enhancement of communication skills.

"Many staff members and generous donors spent their time and shared their talents and donations to create this comfortable atmosphere," Johnson said. "The Comfort Zone is especially helpful to people who cannot tolerate the stress of noisy, hectic environments. People can now enjoy the relaxation of water, sound, light and tactile therapies.

"The facility is offering these opportunities to people who have more intensive support needs, including retirees," Johnson continued. "In addition, people who have Sunflower’s in-home support may use the Comfort Zone as a quiet getaway."

The special day will continue with Sunflower’s annual Chris Cakes pancake-and-sausage dinner at the Prince of Peace Parish Center, 4100 Broadway. Tickets are $5 each and dinner will be served from 4 to 7 p.m.

"We welcome the community’s participation in these events," Johnson said. "We always are eager to share information about the people we serve."

Sunflower is supported, in part, by tax dollars. However, many of its programs, including the Comfort Zone, would not be possible without private donations.