Family Zone welcomes both home and away supporters.
- Family Zone opens at 1.30pm at every home Saturday fixture.
- A number of players have made special appearances this season.
- Football Inflatables and a Game Zone are some of the activities on offer.
The Family Zone underneath the East Stand of the DW Stadium comes to life on home match days as it houses some of the club’s youngest supporters.
Open an hour and a half before kick-off at every home Saturday fixture, the facility welcomes both home and away supporters, with children given free fruit on arrival.
Activities range from arts and crafts, basketball, dance, pool, speed target gun, table football and table tennis, while new for the 2017/18 campaign is a Game Zone which was launched by GAME Digital at the start of this season and features six PlayStation consoles and a virtual reality area.
Regular visitors to the Family Zone are Mother and son Lisa and Michael Hill, who have been attending the facility ever since he introduced her to Latics some three years ago.
Their experience of the Family Zone has been hugely positive, with Michael having the opportunity to meet some of the club’s first team players before games, while also competing in various PlayStation challenges against other supporters.
As part of the club’s Together Week, which celebrates the work of Wigan Athletic Football Club, Wigan Athletic Community Trust and the DW Stadium around equality and diversity, we spoke to Lisa and Michael to learn more about their experience of the Family Zone.
She said: “To be perfectly honest, my son developed my passion for Latics and now I think I’m a bigger fan than what he is! He’s really got me into it and we’ve got so many signed shirts, programmes and balls, and coming to the DW Stadium on match days is definitely our highlight.”
“As a Mum it gives me the chance to meet all the other parents who bring their children along to the games too, and you just build friendships which is great. You can have a cup of tea or coffee with them while the children play and it’s a really happy environment to be in.
“For Michael, the Family Zone has helped to improve his confidence and his social skills have become a lot better since interacting with other children and playing with them.
“He’s got a games console at home but his experience is enhanced when he comes to the Family Zone because he has the opportunity to play against other fans. He loves having an hour or two to himself before the game and it makes me happy to see him having such a good time.”
Michael admits his experience of a match day wouldn’t be the same without the Family Zone, and is hugely grateful for the opportunity to meet the club’s first team stars.
“To be able to play FIFA against the players on the games consoles is amazing and for me it feels a little bit weird because I’m actually talking and playing to some of my heroes before a match.
“The Family Zone is such a cool place and is somewhere I feel really happy at. It’s just brilliant to have a place like this to go to with my Mum at the DW Stadium."
Wigan Athletic Football Club, Wigan Athletic Community Trust and the DW Stadium are committed to respecting and promoting equality and diversity across all its activities through Together.
Click here for more information about Together.