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Amusement Park For Those With Special Needs Set To Open

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A first of its kind park offering rides, playgrounds and other amusement activities designed specifically for those with special needs is set to open this week in San Antonio, Texas.

The $32 million facility called Morgan’s Wonderland is fully-accessible. One ride, for example, is an off-road adventure where park goers sit in vehicles designed to accommodate wheelchairs while traveling through the twists and turns of rocky terrain.

In addition to rides, the park also includes a sensory village, a lake for fishing and a garden complete with calming music and art. Safety features like wristbands enabled with tracking devices are also available.

The facility was created by Gordon Hartman, a philanthropist whose daughter, Morgan, has a disability.

“They have an opportunity to do things they’ve never done before, like ride in a swing or a carousel or sit with their family in a train,” Hartman told The Washington Post about the park experience for people with disabilities. To read more click here.

Admission is free for visitors with special needs, but everyone else pays $5. Reservations are required for the park, which opens March 3.

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Comments (8 Responses)

  1. djackspci says:

    I have had the opportunity to visit Morgan’s Wonderland here in San Antonio. I have to say – this place is utterly amazing! They have thought of everything, right down to making a secluded and soothing quiet area for folks to go sit, in case they get over-stimulated and need a break.

    I have also met the park’s founder – Gordon Hartman. He is an extraordinary person with a huge heart and great vision. This is the first of it’s kind in the world and I know it will be a model for many more parks just like it.

    I encourage everyone to check out their website and tell your friends!

  2. dlmgraham says:

    I look forward to visiting this park! We have been to Cedar Point, Walt Disney World and Busch Gardens with our special needs son. He’s 6 and has developmental delays with autistic-like behaviors. Cedar Point and Disney were nightmares. Our other kids had a great time, but it was too overwhelming for our son. Busch Gardens was much better. If you bring in your child’s IEP, they give you a special pass. It allows you to leave the line and return later and go to the front of the line. That was a lifesaver! Everyone was so friendly and understanding. It made the trip more fun for all of us. I look forward to making a trip down to Texas next winter!

  3. rasheeda_waters says:

    I think this amusment prark was a great idea because it is inclusion for young children with disabilities and they will get to experience thrills and excitment as regular children in a amusment park.. Gotta love it!

  4. BubbleEyes says:

    It is about time there are things for our kids to enjoy!

  5. meganf says:

    What a great idea! If we ever take a trip to Texas, we will have to check this out. By the way, I noticed dlmgraham’s comment about Disney parks being a nightmare with a special needs kid. We recently went to Disneyland in CA. If you have anyone in your party with special needs, you can get a “Guest Assistance” pass from Guest Services. The pass allows you to go through the exit for most rides or shortens the wait time for other rides. We had one person with epilepsy and one child with autism spectrum so having this pass really kept the stress level down for both of them. I’m sure it would have been a nightmare without it.

  6. Tanya Jarvis says:

    Well that’s great,but would be ever better if it were in Australia too.

  7. Marge Goglin says:

    What a wonderful idea!

  8. Andrew Cowell says:

    What an amazing idea!

    Its great the US can cater for people with cerebral palsy, here in the UK things like this are years away. As i’ve mentioned before, in the UK there seems to be a general lack of awareness of the condition – this doesn’t make it easy for people, (like myself) who work with children with cerebral palsy, to find suitable outdoor activities that take the disorder into account.

    Im trying to raise awareness of the disorder by sending suitably informative resources to people on my contact list, and asking them to forward it.

    If anyone knows of a similar link to the one above that explains the fundamentals of the disorder in a simple manner, that would be much appreciated! Anything we do to spread awareness can only be a good thing,

    P.S. I may plan a visit for my children to Texas for Morgans Wonderland – sounds perfect!

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