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A legally blind girl gets a big surprise at Legoland New York

by Samantha Davis-Friedman

11-year-old Arianna Rivera received the surprise of a lifetime at Legoland New York Resort: a medical device called eSight 4 that helped her see clearly for the first time.

Legoland New York Resort - eSight
Photos courtesy of Legoland New York Resort

Rivera, who is legally blind due to keratoconus (an eye condition that causes distorted vision), visited the newly opened 150-acre theme park in Goshen, N.Y. with her parents and two brothers, where they received a VIP experience to enjoy the rides, attractions, and colorful Lego models.

“I can’t stop looking at everything!” Rivera said as she and her family experienced the park’s seven themed lands and attractions, including the exclusive Lego Factory Adventure ride that transforms guests into Minifigures and Miniland, where guests can explore animated, interactive cities made of Lego bricks. In addition to priority access for all rides, Rivera and her family were treated to a private session with a Legoland New York Master Model Builder, as well as lunch at Smokey’s Brick-B-Que.

Legoland New York Resort Miniland - eSight

For Rivera’s family, the day of fun comes after a challenging time. Her father, NYPD Officer Joshua Rivera, was hospitalized with COVID-19 in March 2020, and they also lost family members during the pandemic. So today’s surprise marks the beginning of a new chapter for the family.

“At Merlin Entertainments, we strive to create unforgettable memories for every child, so we are thrilled to host Arianna and her family today,” said Legoland New York Resort Divisional Director Stephanie Johnson. “To see Arianna enjoying our theme park for the first time fills all of us with joy, and we hope to welcome her and her family again and again.”

Legoland New York Resort - eSight

eSight’s head-mounted device uses a combination of a cutting-edge camera and software algorithms to allow Ariana to see with 20/20 vision from seven feet away for the first time in her life. Plus, eSight 4 has cloud-based software to ensure that Rivera’s medical device stays up to date.

“This day at Legoland New York Resort is just the beginning of a new adventure for Arianna as she learns how to use her eSight 4 for even more activities,” said eSight Clinical Account Manager Sam Peluso. “It’s a major win when we get the chance to improve the quality of life for anyone, [but] especially a child.”

Legoland New York Resort - eSight

eSight is used by thousands of individuals worldwide to enhance vision through a combination of proprietary hardware and software. The device’s patented bioptic tilt allows users to maintain their peripheral vision and stay mobile while using the devices for reading at work and school.

Rivera, who dreams of becoming a voice actor and artist, now has a new world of possibilities thanks to the gift of eSight.

Click here to learn more about eSight and click here for information about Legoland New York Resort.

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