Morgan's Wonderland Fun Park for Special Needs Kids Opens in Texas
Gordon Hartman’s 16-year-old daughter Morgan was born with cognitive and physical disabilities. Four years ago, he sold five successful businesses and started a foundation devoted to the special-needs population. He has raised $33 million dollars in public and private money to create Morgan’s Wonderland, the world’s first “ultra-accessible” family fun park designed for children and adults with physical or cognitive challenges and their family members, caregivers and friends.
Recently, United Cerebral Palsy gave Morgan’s Wonderland the Universal Accessibility Design Award. The award is given to an individual, business, or government agency that has “provided leadership developing a universally accessible environment…enhancing independent living or achieving a barrier-free environment.”
The 25-acre park opened in March 2010 and is built in an abandoned rock quarry northeast of downtown San Antonio, Texas. The facility is completely wheelchair-accessible and features 25 elements and attractions including rides, playgrounds, gardens, and a 575-seat amphitheater. The rides include a carousel with seats for guests not able to sit upright and a special swing that can accommodate wheelchairs. Signs are in Braille.
To ensure the safety of each special-needs guest, Morgan’s Wonderland requires visitors to make an advance reservation prior to each visit. The park limits the number of guests in order to prevent overcrowding and to ensure there are adequate numbers of staff and volunteers on hand to accommodate needs.
The park also employs RFID wrist bands that track each guest’s location in the park and includes personalized critical information such as medical condition and allergies.
During the summer months, until August 14th, the park will be open seven days a week. Admission to the park is free for special-needs guests and for children under the age of three. Accompanying family and friends pay just $5 each. The park is also open to the general public for $15 each visitor. Parking is complimentary.
Reservations can be made online at morganswonderland.com or by calling (210) 495-5888 or toll-free at (877) 495-5888.