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650 Kids Learned How to Swim at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon

worlds largest swimming lesson central Florida kids disney world typhoon lagoon water park
Credit: Spectrum News/Ashley Carter

In a tradition created by the World Waterpark Association in 2010, Walt Disney World’s Typhoon Lagoon water park welcomed hundreds of kids for the World’s Largest Swimming Lesson. Hundreds of sites host such an event in an effort to help promote water safety and prevent drownings. This morning, before the Disney water park’s opening, 650 kids from Central Florida learned how to swim!

typhoon lagoon water park sign walt disney world florida water park

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World’s Director of External Affairs Tajiana Ancora-Brown offered this about the event:

They’re learning safety skills. They’re learning about all sorts of things that might inspire them to do more outdoor activities. Get to swimming. Play in the water.

The large Typhoon Lagoon surf pool served as their training area, though the wave simulator was certainly off while these newbies splashed in the water. Guests of Typhoon Lagoon’s World’s Largest Swimming Lesson were welcomed by Disney Ambassadors Ali Manion and Raveon Redding. Mickey Mouse himself even showed up to support the surf pool swimmers, wearing a blue Hawaiian button-up and teal board shorts.

disney ambassadors ali manion and raveon redding mickey mouse typhoon lagoon largest swimming lesson

Credit: Spectrum News/Ashley Carter

While I have no doubt that Mickey Mouse is somehow qualified to oversee the Disney Park waves, former Olympic swimmer and silver medalist Maritza Correia McClendon also graced the water! Of course, Disney lifeguards were on duty and teaching Guests as well. In the surf pool, kids from six nonprofit organizations sorted into groups to work on their skills and confidence in the water.

Here’s what Olympian McClendon shared,

For me this is a passion. Sixty-four percent of African American children don’t know how to swim and 40% of Hispanic don’t know how to swim. So my passion is to make sure that kids who look like me all across the country know how to swim.

worlds largest swimming lesson central Florida kids disney world typhoon lagoon water park

Credit: Spectrum News/Ashley Carter

Spectrum News 13 notes that McClendon was the first Black woman to make a U.S. Olympic swim team, which makes her presence even more powerful for participating communities.

Hopefully, those kids took the rest of the day off on every Typhoon Lagoon water slide and the lazy river for a job well done!

About Lana Porter

Lana has never lost a Disney Trivia night. Maybe it’s the hundreds of times she’s been to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, her love for Disney’s ’90’s era hand-animated musicals, or the fact that she’s often likened to cartoon characters, but Disney and its magic have a special place in her heart. Her favorite Disney experiences include the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival, eating Mickey Bars on the PeopleMover, and crying during the Magic Kingdom fireworks show. One day she hopes to be chosen as the rebel spy on Star Tours. When Lana isn’t Park Hopping, she’s at home reading books of all topics, watching her favs on Disney+, or snuggling her two cats, which she swears are not named after Disney characters. She loves surprising people with her knowledge of the Marvel Cinematic Universe but admits she is still catching up with Star Wars. She is happy to combine her excitement for writing with her love for Disney-style storytelling and share what she can with the world!