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Hadley's Penguin Experience

Six year old Hadley loves penguins so much that she has her own collection of stuffed penguins at home. So when it came time for her to think about what she would want for her wish experience, she knew right away that she wanted to meet penguins in real life!

Six-year-old Hadley was diagnosed at only 3 months old with biliary atresia, a blockage in the tubes that carry liquid bile from the liver to the gallbladder.  This is condition may potentially lead to liver damage and cirrhosis, which must be treated with surgeries.  Despite her condition, Hadley continues to be a fun-loving little girl. She loves the color pink, reading princess books and doing gymnastics. But more than anything else, Hadley loves penguins! Her room is filled with all types of penguins that she has been collecting since the age of 2.  Knowing about her love of penguins, it came as no surprise when Hadley wished to kiss and cuddle with a penguin as her wish experience.  For her wish, Hadley traveled to the Florida Aquarium for a penguin experience she would never forget!  On her penguin experience, she got to blow kisses to the penguins, pet their backs, and blow bubbles with them as well.  While in Florida, Hadley and her family also got to enjoy a relaxing afternoon at the beach, a thrilling African safari, a day of rides at Busch Gardens, and a visit to Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. This trip was a great wish experience not only for Hadley, but her family as well. After their adventures, Hadley’s mother shared with us, “Make-A-Wish is an amazing organization! We are doing everything we can to raise money for Make-A-Wish because of the life changing awesomeness that Make-A-Wish has given Hadley! Thank you, thank you, thank you for making Hadley feel special for a good reason!  For six days she was able to forget about her liver disease!”
  • Hadley's enjoyed fun rides at the park!

  • Hadley's and her family shared an amazing experience

  • Hadley's enjoyed all of the fun activities

  • Hadley had a chance to ride the Merry-Go-Round!

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley even wore her favorite earrings - which were penguins, of course!

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

  • Hadley's wish to meet penguins

Thank you, thank you, thank you for making Hadley feel special for a good reason! ”

— Hadley's mom

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If you received a wish from Make-A-Wish, or helped to grant a kid's wish, or just have a great story to tell about a Make-A-Wish experience, we would love to hear from you!  Tell us how it impacted you and feel free to share any related photos or artwork. 

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