Wonders of Wildlife and Dogwood Canyon Nature Park become Certified Autism Centers on World Autism Awareness Day

Designation reflects enhanced efforts to serve individuals with autism and other sensory needs

In honor of World Autism Day on April 2, 2019, The International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) has designated Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium and Dogwood Canyon Nature Park as Certified Autism Centers (CAC). The designation is awarded to organizations who have completed professional training and review processes with the goal to better serve individuals with autism and other sensory needs.

“Johnny Morris and our entire Conservation Attractions team is dedicated to helping connect people of all ages and abilities to the outdoors,” said Bryan Nadeau, Vice President of Johnny Morris’ Conservation Attractions. “By partnering with IBCCES, Wonders of Wildlife and Dogwood Canyon Nature Park are taking steps to ensure that all families have an opportunity to have fun and get involved in conservation and the outdoors.”

The certification process includes thorough training that helps team members learn to recognize, welcome and accommodate guests with autism spectrum disorder and other sensory needs. Under the direction of IBCCES, both attractions will continue their commitment to welcome all families with ongoing staff training and special activity adaptions that visitors of all abilities, ages and areas of interest will be able to enjoy.

For almost 20 years, IBCCES has been the industry leader in autism training for licensed healthcare professionals and educators around the globe. IBCCES recognized that many families with children with special needs have limited options and created programs specifically for the hospitality and travel industry.

About Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium
Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium consists of an all-new 1.5-million-gallon Aquarium Adventure showcasing 35,000 live fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and birds, and immersive Wildlife Galleries that bring visitors eye-to-eye with the greatest collection of record-setting game animals ever assembled. Created by noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris, the 350,000-square-foot experience celebrates those who hunt, fish, and act as stewards of the land and water. Located next to Bass Pro Shops National Headquarters in Springfield, Missouri the campus is a centerpiece of America’s Conservation Capital in Missouri’s Ozark Mountains. Wonders of Wildlife has been voted “America’s Best New Attraction” and “America’s Best Aquarium” by the readers of USA TODAY. For more information, visit www.wondersofwildlife.org.

About Dogwood Canyon Nature Park
Dogwood Canyon Nature Park is a 10,000-acre slice of alluring Ozarks paradise located in Lampe, Missouri. The vision of Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris, the not-for-profit park serves as an outdoor playground dedicated to connecting families with nature while conserving the rich history and natural beauty of the Ozarks. The park offers hiking, biking, Segway tours, wildlife tours, horseback riding, and trout fishing set against a backdrop of towering bluffs, waterfalls, spring-fed creek beds, and wildlife such as American bison, Rocky Mountain elk and white-tailed deer. The park also features a fully restored working gristmill, museum, restaurant, and conservation education center that connects to a treehouse built by Animal Planet’s Treehouse Masters. For more information, visit www.dogwoodcanyon.org.

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This is a digital magazine for individuals, families and travel professionals that highlights industry leading organizations who have gone above and beyond to certify their destinations and make them more accessible for guests with autism and other cognitive disorders.