Kids & Family

Mom Drives Accessibility At Kennywood Park

Mom's mission to make her local amusement park more accessible takes a lesson from Dollywood

Do you ever meet people who just blow you away with their spirit, their drive, their tenacity? That's what happened when I met Suzanne Holt, her husband Steven, and their amazing son, Tristan.

For their family, autism is part of daily life. At age 4, Tristan isn't like most kids his age. He's non-verbal and uses a tablet to communicate. One of their special places is Kennywood Park in West Mifflin, PA.

Their love of amusement parks and passion for family put Suzanne on a mission that will soon benefit more than just the Holt family. Here's their story:

"I was struggling finding places to change him, often times we have to go out to the car to change him in the back of our vehicle." - Suzanne Holt

Kennywood is taking a lesson from another amusement park, Dollywood in Gatlinburg, TN. That park is leading the nation in innovative accessibility for its guests with special needs. Not only do they have adult-sized changing tables (as pictured below), but they also have a special calming room.

Tristan, Age 4, on an adult-sized changing table at Dollywood in Gatlinburg, TN

Kennywood had already been working on a Certified Autism Center Designation and recently announced completion of the process. You'll find the details in our recent story: Kennywood Earns Certified Autism Center Designation

Construction crews have assembled the park's new adult-sized changing table. It's about to make its public debut once construction in the area wraps up in the next few weeks.

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