Zamperla Donates Accessible Happy Swing to Give Kids The World
Zamperla, one of the world’s leading amusement ride manufacturers, has donated a new ride to Give Kids The World Village (GKTW), the Central Florida nonprofit that provides cost-free wish trips to critically ill children and their families.
Zamperla presented the swing yesterday at IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando, Florida. The swing will be on display during the Expo before being installed at GKTW later this month.
The Happy Swing, the company’s signature kiddie ride, can be enjoyed by both children and their parents, and for children staying at GKTW, it has a special component: The ride is wheelchair accessible. This unique and inclusive ride will ensure children of all abilities will enjoy swinging alongside their family and friends.
— ACEonline.org (@aceonlineorg) November 14, 2018
“We removed the four middle seats of a 12-seat Happy Swing, so you can roll a wheelchair in and secure it. You can have a child or young adult in a wheelchair experience the ride,” said Michael Coleman, North American Sales Manager for Zamperla.
“The entire Zamperla family has been a treasured partner of the Village for many years,” said Pamela Landwirth, president & CEO, Give Kids The World. “We are truly grateful for their generous donation and continued commitment to helping us give families a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Their understanding of the special needs of our families, and ingenuity to create something everyone can enjoy, means so much to all of us. This new swing will be a magical addition to the Village and a wonderful gift for the precious children we serve.”
This is Zamperla’s third ride donation to GKTW. The new swing, along with a train called JJ’s Express and a pedal-powered flyer called Lori’s Magical Flight, provide accessible and magical rides for children at the Village.
For Zamperla, the hope is to continue to build more accessible attractions.
“We absolutely want to continue creating more accessible attractions,” Coleman said. “The majority of our rides now all have ADA transfer capabilities. We present it to everyone on every ride we sell. With the number of individuals with physical or mental disabilities, we’ve got a solution that’s going to be helpful for them.”
“Give Kids The World brings joy and happiness to children, and that is what we do at Zamperla, too,” said Alberto Zamperla, president & CEO, Zamperla. “We are honored to provide our rides to the families who stay at the Village and hopefully help create special memories for them.”
This wheelchair accessible ride is the third ride donation made by @ZamperlaSpa that will bring children of all abilities smiles, laughter and fun for years to come! @IAAPAHQ #IAE18 pic.twitter.com/6hmwnnTXqv
— GiveKidsTheWorld (@GKTWVillage) November 13, 2018
When asked about what it meant to him to work with Give Kids The World, Coleman noted that it “stirred up a lot of emotions.”
“Just in my family alone, my mother-in-law was wheelchair bound for the latter part of her life, and I know those struggles personally on how inaccessible things can be,” he said. “My father-in-law’s girlfriend of many years has a young son who has Down’s Syndrome, who is, based on that disability, excluded from a lot of attractions. To work with an organization whose goal is to provide people with limited access, full access and give them the opportunity to experience things is touching, really.”