LEGOLAND Expands Efforts to Provide an Awesome Experience for Guests with Disabilities

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legoland guests disabilities

The LEGOLAND Florida Resort is a place for kids!  Kids of all ages, kids of all interests and kids of all abilities.

When LEGOLAND opened in 2011, their goal was to ensure its facilities are inclusive as possible for guests with a wide range of physical and cognitive disabilities, as well as those with food allergies and other dietary restrictions.  The “Special Situations” section of their website includes a wealth of trip-planning information, including the comprehensive “Guide for Guests with Disabilities,” also available in print PDF form. This form lists ride-by-ride safety requirements, including LEGOLAND Water Park, and outlines the accessibility features of our on-site accommodations for overnight stays.

Before you leave home, LEGOLAND Model Citizens are happy to answer questions and offer advice via the link to the “ADA Form” on the website’s Special Situations page.  Or you can reach out directly using the email LLF.Experience@LEGOLAND.com. It can take up to seven calendar days to receive a response. The “Dietary Guide” PDF on the website provides a list of dining locations serving gluten-, dairy-, soy-, egg- and peanut-free items, as well as the availability of vegetarian and vegan items. The resort’s Food & Beverage team welcomes questions from guests before they arrive at LLF-Food@LEGOLAND.com.

Once you arrive for your vacation, Guest Service Team Members available any time the theme park or water park is open to answer any questions you may have.

The no-cost “Hero Pass” allows a LEGOLAND guest and one helper expedited access to popular theme park attractions.  This is to assist guests who have difficulty waiting in line, such as those with mobility challenges or guests using wheelchairs. Meanwhile, the rest of the guest’s party will receive a reservation to return together at the designated time.

The no-cost “Blue Hero Pass” is offered specifically for guests on the autism spectrum and allows the guest’s entire group expedited access through the Hero Pass entrance of popular attractions.

You can pick up both Hero Pass types from Guest Services under the blue awning near the theme park’s exit. The Hero Pass is offered at the discretion of LEGOLAND staff as a courtesy for guests in genuine need of special assistance and can be revoked if terms are violated.

Beginning in 2016, LEGOLAND Florida Resort began launching a variety of services and initiatives to assist guests with autism spectrum disorders and their caregivers, efforts that have expanded in subsequent years to include the following:

  • Specially equipped spaces in the theme park’s Annual Pass, First Aid and Baby Care facilities serve as designated “quiet rooms” where quests on the autism spectrum and their families can take a break. Noise-cancelling headphones, weighted blankets, squishy toys and LEGO® building tables are some of the complimentary resources available. A similar space also is available within Guest Services at LEGOLAND Water Park.
  • The LEGOLAND Training & Development team has created “social stories” that offer an illustrated, step-by-step walkthrough of every theme park ride and show, so guests won’t be surprised by periods of darkness, loud noises, bright lights or other elements that often can be frightening or overwhelming. They’re available for review at Guest Services.
  • All newly hired resort employees receive specialized training to equip them with skills to more effectively interact with guests on the autism spectrum, as well as their families or caregivers. Consultants include Dr. Craig Glaser, the resort’s medical director, who also serves as medical director of Winter Haven’s Urgent Care Cypress facility nearby.

Traveling with dietary restrictions can be overwhelming.  After arriving, if you’re in search of specific food or must avoid certain ingredients, look no further than the free park maps available throughout the resort. Under “Time to Eat” on the back is a comprehensive guide to what food is served where – making it easy to find specific food or ingredients to avoid. Plus all dining locations have binders with ingredients of every menu item, including restaurants and outdoor carts. And chefs and managers are happy to discuss any special dietary needs with guests during their visit – just ask!

And that’s not all! In honor of World Autism Awareness Day, observed annually on April 2, LEGOLAND Florida Resort once again participated in Autism Speaks’ “Light It Up Blue” campaign by illuminating the theme park’s iconic Grand Carousel with blue bulbs. The famous double-decker carousel will remain blue through April for World Autism Month.

Through a special promotion during World Autism Month in April, LEGOLAND Florida Resort will contribute $10 of each ticket sold to the North and Central Florida markets of Autism Speaks.  Autism Speaks supporters can purchase print-at-home theme park tickets at a discounted rate of $40 plus tax, or combo tickets offering same-day admission to the theme park and water park at a discounted rate of $62.50 plus tax. The offer is available now through April 30 at www.LEGOLAND.com/autism- speaks2, and tickets must be redeemed by May 31, 2018.

And there are other special events coming up to benefit kids in need:

  • On Saturday, April 14, families can race through LEGOLAND Florida Resort during Brick Dash 5K Presented by Publix®. The popular family fitness event benefits Merlin’s Magic Wand, a worldwide charity that has helped nearly half a million children and their families facing the challenges of serious illness, disability or adversity enjoy a magical day out at more than 120 Merlin Entertainments attractions around the world. For more information or to register, visit www.LEGOLAND.com/BrickDash.
  • On Saturday, April 28, LEGOLAND Florida Resort will host a hands-on building opportunity for kids during the Autism Speaks Walk at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla. For more information, visit www.autismspeakswalk.org.
  • On Thursday, June 21, Autism Speaks and LEGOLAND Water Park will team up to host the ninth annual World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™, a global event created to help the aquatics industry work together to build awareness about the fundamental importance of teaching children to swim to prevent drowning. For more information, visit www.wlsl.org.

So what are you waiting for?!  Now’s the time to plan the perfect vacation to the LEGOLAND Florida Resort – perfect for all kids (and grown ups too)!

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