Zoe Nelson has a wish.
The five-year-old Alaskan native is in love with dinosaurs and wants to learn more about them. When she was diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition, Make-A-Wish Foundation teamed up with Zoe and her family to grant her T-Rex-sized wish.
“She is all about dinosaurs,” said Wish Manager Karen Burgardt of Make-A-Wish Foundation of North Texas. “She wanted to come to Texas where the dinosaurs once roamed and check it out.”
Make-A-Wish Foundation is a non-profit organization that grants wishes of children ages two-and-a-half to 18 suffering from life-threatening medical conditions. The organization was established in 1980 when the first wish was granted to Chris Greicius, who wished to become a police officer. Since its inception, Make-a-Wish has granted wishes to more than 174,000 children across the globe.
“They (children) can dream up whatever they want,” Burgardt said. “Each child is unique and different, therefore, each wish is unique and different.
“This child (Zoe) just happens to have a passion for dinosaurs and Glen Rose (has that).”
Zoe and her parents began their trip from Alaska to Texas on Thursday where they stayed in Dallas overnight.
On Friday, Zoe visited the Museum of Nature and Science, which has a Texas Dinosaur exhibit.
“The head paleontologist (met) with her and they (made) their own fossils,” Burgardt said.
After a full-day adventure, which included a fossil dig and receiving a poster on Alaskan dinosaurs, Zoe and her family headed to Glen Rose where more dinosaur adventures awaited.
Zoe’s visit, which will run through Thursday, will include visits to Granbury Live, Rough Creek Lodge, Dinosaur World, Dinosaur Valley State Park and Fossil Rim Wildlife Center.
“The seemingly endless treatments and hospital stays weigh heavily on our families and it becomes nearly impossible for our wish children to just play and enjoy their life,” Burgardt said. “Our mission is to replace those difficult moments and memories with ones of joy and fun. I know that Glen Rose can provide this for Zoe and her family!”