Making dreams come true with Firefly Travels in Chardon

Disneys Private220
If you’re considering a dream trip this year, now is the time to contact Firefly Travels to get started on planning. (Disney’s private island Castaway Cay Image © Disney)

By Mary Malik

Making someone’s dream come true is a special feeling. Kristen Keeney, owner of Firefly Travels in Chardon, knows that feeling very well. Kristen helps clients achieve their travel dreams by planning specialized vacations to Disney resorts, cruises, theme parks, or any desired location.

“We accommodate any destination request, but our experience in Disney vacations allows us to offer a unique adventure for your family,” says Kristen. “Sharing my love for Disney with families who may not otherwise be able to have that experience is a goal I had when starting this business. I created a fund to send a deserving family on a trip to Disney each year.”

This past December, Brandon Johnson was able to take the trip of his dreams. Brandon, 23, was born with spinal muscular atrophy type 1, a genetic neuromuscular disorder. He needs 24-hour home care and is confined to a wheelchair. Brandon’s dream is to travel, but his medical needs have always presented a challenge, until now.

“I came across Brandon’s story on Facebook and it touched my heart,” says Kristen. “I contacted his mom, Ronna, to offer this Disney trip and we all worked together to make it happen.”

Firefly Travels helped to make Brandon Johnson’s dream of travel a reality. Born with spinal muscular dystrophy, Brandon (seated front) and his family was able to fully enjoy his Disney trip thanks to careful planning by Kristen Keeney and her team

Brandon, his mother, Ronna, childhood friend, Kiera, and his brother-in-law, Ken, spent a magical nine days at Disney making dreams come true for all.

“When Kristen approached me, I doubted we could pull it off due to all of Brandon’s medical needs,” says Ronna. “A plane ride was something we never thought he could do, not to mention staying in a hotel and accommodating his needs. But Kristen, Disney, Southwest Airlines and the airport TSA staff were amazing and it all came together. I’ve never been happier than seeing Brandon enjoying himself like he did.”

Because of Kristen’s knowledge and experience with Disney, she knew how to make sure Brandon’s accommodations would fulfill all of his needs on the trip.

“Disney has a special needs and requests department dedicated to customers like Brandon,” says Kristen. “We worked with them so Brandon’s medical needs were met. He and his family relaxed and enjoyed the experience together.”

As an avid Star Wars fan with a lifelong interest in Japanese culture, Brandon was able to experience both of these passions on his Disney vacation.

“Brandon did so much more than we ever expected,” says Ronna. “He rode many of the rides, and we finished the trip with a fabulous dinner at Takumi-Tei an authentic Japanese restaurant at Epcot. Brandon loved every minute.”

Kristen Keeney, owner of Firefly Travels

And every minute was meticulously planned by Kristen, the people at Disney resorts and Brandon’s own family. His friend, Kiera, has been advocating for Brandon since he was a child and as Ronna puts it, “brings the fun no matter where we go.” His brother-in-law, Ken, a firefighter and paramedic, was the detail man throughout the trip, and Ronna concentrated on watching Brandon enjoy himself.

“It’s been a rough year for Brandon with many setbacks and disappointments,” says Ronna. “There wasn’t a detail that Kristen didn’t think about. We couldn’t be more grateful for this gift.”

No matter what your dream vacation desires may be, Kristen will help you make those dreams come true. And it’s never too early to start planning.

“I’m booking vacations into 2021,” says Kristen. “Cruises, all-inclusive resorts and, of course, Disney destinations. Every family has their own idea of a perfect vacation. Firefly Travels will make that happen for your family.”

For information, email, call 440-343-0612 or check the website