World's First Accessible Waterpark

a woman smiling
Curated by
Kristen Sachs
Content via Curb Free with Cory Lee
Curb Free with Cory Lee
Curated by
Kristen Sachs

Cory is a world traveller and is always up for adventure. But there was one adventure he hadn’t tried until recently – a waterpark.

accessible waterpark

Morgan’s Inspiration Island, located in San Antonio, Texas, is the world’s first accessible waterpark. Cory, who has spinal muscular atrophy and is a power wheelchair user, couldn’t wait to try it out.

"Morgan’s Inspiration Island is an inclusive water park, where both those with special needs and those without can play together."

man with sma uses an oxygen-powered wheelchair at an accessible waterpark

Cory arrived early to make sure he would be able to get one of the air-powered wheelchairs Morgan’s offers to guests. “The air powered wheelchair is really the first of its kind and is powered by several oxygen tanks under the seat,” shares Corey. “The chair can go for 2-3 hours without needing charged and is driven with a joystick, making it possible for wheelchair users to roll themselves around the park.” The chair comes with a gel cushion, and arm and foot rests. And users can also request extras like chest straps, lateral supports, and foot straps at no additional cost.

Cory was able to transfer from his power chair into the park’s air-powered chair in a fully accessible changing room.

"The changing room was spacious, had an adult changing table, a ceiling hoist, and a pull-under sink. I was thoroughly impressed by the accessibility in the changing room. It’s not often that I see a ceiling hoist… especially at a park."

Now it was time for Cory to explore!

Morgan’s Inspiration Island has 5 separate water play areas. Here are some of the fun features Cory experienced:

  • One water play area squirts guests with warm water. “Some people with disabilities are sensitive to cold water, so Rainbow Reef would be perfect for them.”
  • Another play area includes an accessible pirate ship with a ramp that leads users to the top of a couple slides. Users must transfer out of their chairs in order to go down the slides, and Cory got to see many children enjoying this great feature!
  • Yet another play area features a bucket that fills with water and dumps on guests every few minutes.
  • There is also an accessible boat ride and an outdoor lunch area.
accessible waterpark

It’s easy to see how Cory had a blast at Morgan’s Inspiration Island. But the visit was meaningful in another way as well.

“I never thought I would say this about a water park, but Morgan’s Inspiration Island was somewhat of an emotional experience for me. This was something that I never thought I would get to do, so being there was surreal. It was truly remarkable to see the younger kids enjoying it so much and I’m happy that the world is more accessible and welcoming to them now than it was for me 20 years ago.”

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