By Amusement Today | February 28, 2013
SAN ANTONIO, Texas — San Antonio’s new destination for family fun includes world-renowned Morgan’s Wonderland theme park and its newest neighbor, 8,000-seat Toyota Field, a new multi-purpose stadium and home of the San Antonio Scorpions FC pro soccer team.
Morgan’s Wonderland will begin its 2013 season at 10 a.m. Friday, March 1, while the Scorpions will play their first home match against the Tampa Bay Rowdies on Saturday, April 13. During spring break, the theme park will be open daily from March 8 through 17. The latest information on admissions, operating days and hours of operation can be found at MorgansWonderland.com.
“Slowly but surely, what once was Longhorn Quarry in Northeast San Antonio is being transformed into a destination focusing on family entertainment, sports, recreational activities, concerts and special events,” said Gordon Hartman, CEO of The Gordon Hartman Family Foundation who — along with wife Maggie — have been the catalysts for Wonderland, Texas. “What’s truly remarkable is that everything that happens at Wonderland, Texas, benefits those with special needs.”
Net profits from the Scorpions, Toyota Field and the South Texas Area Regional (STAR) Soccer Complex, with 13 top-notch fields for league and tournament play, have been designated to help non-profit Morgan’s Wonderland meet its financial obligations as well as expand programs and services for the special-needs community, Hartman explained.
“Morgan’s Wonderland is a safe and affordable family theme park with more than 25 attractions including rides, playgrounds and gardens,” he added. “It’s the very first park of its kind because it was designed with special-needs individuals in mind but built for everyone to enjoy. It’s been gratifying to welcome more than 300,000 guests from all 50 states and 37 other countries in just three years of operation.”
This season, the 25-acre park will continue to offer discounts for both active-duty and retired military personnel, season passes and discounted multi-ticket packages. Admission for those with special needs is always free of charge, while admission fees for accompanying family members, friends, caregivers and the general public are nominal.
Furthermore, Morgan’s Wonderland will host Senior Fridays, special activities for senior adults featuring fishing, ballroom dancing, card and board games, exercise classes and other popular pastimes. And, on specified days, the Mom’s Coffee and Conversation Group will meet for free coffee and conversation while their kids enjoy supervised play and activities. Other 2013 programs will include Educational Field Trips for school groups and the opportunity for Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts to earn patches.
Special events for 2013 will include the Eggstravaganza Easter Egg Hunt in March, the Fiesta San Antonio Wildflower Bike Ride in April, a Salute to the Military and First Responders in July, More Delightful Than Frightful Halloween in October and “A Wonderland Christmas” in December.
The inspiration for Morgan’s Wonderland came from Hartman’s 19-year-old daughter Morgan. Her soaring spirit despite personal challenges sparked within Hartman a deep desire to create a haven not only for those with special needs but also for their families, caregivers, friends and the general public. “Inclusion is the overarching objective for Morgan’s Wonderland,” he said. “Our vision is to play an instrumental role in helping establish more ultra-accessible family fun parks throughout the nation and the world. Already we’ve received expressions of interests from more than 20 cities globally.”
In 2007, The Gordon Hartman Family Foundation created SOAR (Sports Outdoor And Recreation), a non-profit organization to raise funds for building Morgan’s Wonderland. Construction on the $34 million park began in spring 2009, and its grand opening ceremony occurred April 10, 2010. In addition to Morgan’s Wonderland, STAR Soccer and the Scorpions, another “resident” of Wonderland, Texas, is Monarch Academy, a school for students with special needs next to the park.
Morgan’s Wonderland is located at 5223 David Edwards Drive in Northeast San Antonio just west of IH 35 at the intersection of Wurzbach Parkway and Thousand Oaks Drive. For more information, call (210) 495-5888.
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