Water Park for the disabled: A dream come true!

water park for the disabled

Water Park. As soon as we hear this word a smile comes to our face, doesn’t it? We start thinking about all the thrill and the fun. As the summer heat increases (or in this case, winter refuses to oblige us), this tends to increase the number of people found in a Water Park to escape the heat. But Alas! Some people can never have this fun. Or can they? I am talking about the Morgan’s Inspiration Island in San Antonio, Texas. A water park for the disabled which has been specially designed for them so that they too don’t miss out on the fun.

Isn’t that awesome?!

Meet the man behind the idea:

Gordon Hartman is the person who worked really very hard for the happiness of many people. People who were not able to enjoy all the fun at Water Parks. And this water park for the disabled has been named after Hartman’s daughter, Morgan.

water park for the disabled

Hartman worked with his 23-year-old daughter Morgan who lives with disability. They worked tirelessly to develop the new place with the help of water park consultants, doctors, therapists, special education teachers, families, caregivers, and members of the disability rights community. And before the official opening on Saturday i.e. on 17 June 2017, small groups were invited to test drive the attractions and give feedback for last minute adjustments.

Exactly how accessible is this water park for the disabled?

The amusement park is fully wheelchair-accessible (!!) and hopes to welcome people with disabilities through careful consideration in design.

The tropical-themed park features six major attractions, including an accessible river boat ride and a wide variety of splash pads — surfaces with geysers, water cannons, and rain curtains. Splash pads, unlike pools, are more accessible to people with mobility-related disabilities, but still provide the full water park experience. Further, a giant jungle tree is provided with large canons. A Rainbow Reef has also been designed with temperature controlled water so that people of all ages can enjoy this. The park has the ability to quickly change the heat of the water in order to accommodate guests who are sensitive to the cold!

water park for the disabled

And that is not all, the park even worked with the University of Pittsburgh to develop a revolutionary new wheelchair called PneuChair that’s propelled by compressed air instead of batteries, making them low-cost and waterproof.

The chairs are incredibly efficient, weighing about 80 pounds instead of hundreds of pounds like battery-operated chairs. The PneuChair takes just 10 minutes to “recharge” with air, compared to the eight hours it takes to charge an electric wheelchair — and they run just as long.

The venue provides parents with a bracelet through which they can locate their child very easily.

water park for the disabled

Some quiet places are provided here for people who get overwhelmed by the noise or the crowds. The tickets for the park are available online. Park ticket sales are limited to ensure a quieter, easier experience for those who visit. Isn’t that so very considerate?

And to top it all off, they have designed the park by keeping water conversation in mind. The water is filtered continuously and then recirculated, which also helps those with immune sensitivities and they need not worry about the water’s quality.

The creators of the park, resist the label of “special needs park”, rather they call it a “park of inclusion”.

water park for the disabled

Morgan’s Inspiration Island will concentrate on inclusion, and inspire people to do things previously that they thought were not their cup of tea. People without disabilities and those with, including individuals in wheelchairs, people with hearing and visual impairments, will be able to play alongside each other and gain a greater appreciation of one another.

“Our goal is to provide a great guest experience in an inclusive, safe, comfortable, not-overly-crowded environment,” park founder Gordon Hartman says.

It is absolutely a great move by him and it’s a treat for special people or in other words we can say Gordon Hartman has provided God’s special people with a blessing.

And the picture below absolutely explains the tremendous happiness he has provided!

water park for the disabled

-Megha Gupta

Edited by Mrinaal Datt

Read more about them here.


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