Families enjoy Dreamnight at Taronga Zoo

By Emily Newton, 12 December 2018 , Comments

Last week, Northcott was delighted to offer 50 families with children with disability the chance to enjoy Dreamnight, a magical private event at Taronga Zoo.

Frances and her son Max, who regularly attends our Roselands Respite service, were one of the families Northcott was pleased to host at the special evening. We asked Frances about Max’s experience meeting the animals and watching the shows.

We had a FABULOUS time. Max really enjoyed himself. He was a little slow to get into the spirit to start as it was out of his routine but he got over that.

The dinosaur attractions were a lot of fun. It was like visiting Jurassic Park. We walked past the Tyrannosaurus Rex who was growling away. Max grabbed my arm and looked at the creature most warily. I had to tell him the T-Rex would have to go through me first before it could get to him. Those dinosaurs were a hit with everyone. 

The “stand out" for Max, however, was the seal show. Max was completely engaged and at one point stood up and cheered, clapping away in his own way that showed how excited and happy he was.

As there were other families there with children with disability, we could relax and not feel the need to explain his behaviour.

A family approached us at the cafe afterwards and said how lovely it was to see a child able to express his joy and how that joy was felt by all around him.

Max also loved the giraffes and koalas. We visited the farm animals and Max got to touch a shingleback lizard and look an emu in the eye, but the giraffes had to be his favourite. They are so graceful.

We watched chimpanzee feeding show. That was great. The keeper was telling us interesting facts about the members of the clan and pointed out the young chimps and babies. He answered all manner of questions in an engaging and polite way. It was a great way to get into the evening.

Late afternoon and dusk is the best time to see the zoo. It isn't so frantic and the pace is a little different.  At Dreamnight, you are around people who are not judging, but very accepting. You are with people who are having the same yet different experience to what you have. It was also wonderful to see other carers seeming to relax and enjoy themselves too, knowing they and their children were in a safe and happy environment.

We also appreciated the discount voucher for dinner. It also seemed the prices for meals were reduced for the event too. I was expecting to pay some high prices for the hot food and was pleasantly surprised to see that there were some subsidies made. The free parking was also very thoughtful too. Coming to the zoo can be very stressful at the best of times with the planning that's needed, so having other stresses reduced was very much appreciated. 

We all had a wonderful time and would recommend it to your customers.  Thank you for such a lovely night.

Northcott would like to thank Taronga Zoo for organising and hosting Dreamnight.

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