Monday, December 5, 2011

Bee-lieve Campaign: Happy Birthday Walt Disney!

"Our heritage and ideals, our code and standards -- the things we live by and teach our children -- are preserved or
diminished by how freely we exchange ideas and feelings."

~ Walt Disney, born on this day in 1901

Happy birthday Walt Disney on every December 5. By far the most world-renowned individual, the man behind Disney theme parks, movie creations, characters, and a vast line of merchandise; and being from Missouri myself, where Walt spent a majority of his young life, he is a local celebrity. 

As noted in a previous post, our little bees have celebrated many adventures in Walt Disney World theme parks; some courtesy of wish-granting organizations (find a complete list HERE), while others simply are annual family vacations or even just a weekend adventure. Focus on the importance of catering to all individuals, despite their limited mobility or special needs requests, makes Disney parks the most wished for destination.... the parks go above and beyond to live up to these expectations by making special families comfortable and ensuring their needs are met while enjoying the time of their life away from the chaos of lives. At Disney parks, the world of doctors, hospitals, and fear of the unknowns completely vanishes for a time and families are able to enjoy their selves away from the stress of the days. 

*All of the children pics scattered in this post were submitted from our family-to-family resource network of hydranencephaly families (thank you!).

Ethan with Mickey & Minnie

Disney offers guided information via their Guests with Disabilities Guide that is available on their site, which offers details on what services and capabilities are available to these special guests in accordance to this overview:

Walt Disney World Resort is committed to providing access to as many Guests as possible. Specific accommodations are made for mobility disabilities, hearing disabilities, visual disabilities and service animals.



Walt Disney World Resort offers accommodations for Guests with mobility disabilities, including providing access to most attractions and offering rental wheelchairs and electric convenience vehicles (ECVs).


Assistive Listening systems, Reflective Captioning, Sign Language interpretation, Text Typewriter telephones, Handheld Captioning, Video Captioning and written aids are available to help Guests with hearing disabilities.


Ethan & Aurora

Audio Description devices, Braille guidebooks and digital audio tours are available to help Guests with visual disabilities.


Trained service animals are welcome in most locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort; however, all service animals must remain on a leash or in a harness at all times and, please note, Cast Members are not permitted to handle service animals.


Brennan & Family, 2008

Should you or any member of your party have a photosensitivity or seizure disorder, we recommend that you check with your personal physician for specific instructions before visiting Walt Disney World Resort.

Show lighting effects, specialty lighting and other visual effects are used extensively. Lighting effects include strobe lights and other pulsating lighting effects, as well as:

Exterior building accents (e.g., strobe-like effects incorporated in outdoor signs)
Dance club lighting (e.g., mirror balls, flashing and spinning dance floor lights, among others)
Other attraction and show effects (e.g., simulated lightning, explosions and chaser lights)

Entertainment, events and performances are continuously changing and their show environments can vary throughout the day, making it impossible to list all possible lighting combinations. Therefore we are unable to give a definitive listing of strobe or lighting effects.


Walt Disney World Resort hotels rooms provide added comfort and certain services for Guests with unique needs. Rooms for Guests with disabilities may include:
  • Wheelchair-accessible bathrooms
  • Wheelchair-accessible ramps and elevators
  • Rooms designed for the hearing impaired
  • Rooms to accommodate service animals
Specific features and services vary depending on the selected Disney Resort hotel. Please review the room descriptions for more detailed information.

If traveling with a large party to assist someone with a disability, Disney Resort Hotels offer spacious rooms for 5 Guests or more.

Do you have a loved one with extra special needs? Have you spent an adventure at a Disney Theme Park with your special family? I would be thrilled to read your experiences in the comments below, thanks!!

Brennan & Family, 2008

And if you're planning to take a trip to one of the parks, or like us a Disney Cruise vacation, you can also get the ultimate source book for all things Disney PassPorter's Open Mouse:

PassPorter's Open Mouse for Walt Disney World and the Disney Cruise Line: Easy Access Vacations for Travelers with Extra Challenges

PassPorter's Open Mouse for Walt Disney World and the Disney Cruise Line offers more than 400 pages of up-to-date information, photographs, maps, charts, and honest advice by two of the Web's most respected Disney experts. This guidebook covers 24 categories of traveling challenges, embracing dietary choices and hundreds of medical and mental health issues. Features include detailed descriptions of every Disney ride and attraction with a focus on traveling with special challenges; comprehensive information on Disney resort hotels to help choose the best lodging and accessible rooms; insider advice for dining at Disney with a special diet; tales and tips from dozens of travelers; and advice so you can feel safe and comfortable. Find everything you need to enjoy Disney to the fullest, from one of the most trusted names in Disney travel.

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