Confessions of a screaming grandma

Staff rides Thunderbird roller coaster

Ever since we announced Thunderbird last July, I’ve been asked over and over: So. Are you gonna ride? And my answer has not wavered: “I honestly don’t know.” As excited as I’ve been about Thunderbird ever since I was invited into the “cone of silence” 18 months ago, the thought of riding it was, frankly,…

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A few final hints …

I woke up this morning nervous. It was kind of a combination of day-of-final-exams anxiety and Christmas morning excitement. Announcement Day is [almost] here, and we can [almost] stop talking in hushed tones everywhere we go. Almost. But I know that one more day for us means one more day of agony for the Holiday…

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The World through Leah’s lens

I’ll never forget how much my siblings and I used to pester my father about what was coming. I wish I could calculate just how many times we asked him, “C’mon, can you at least give us a hint?” He’d say something incredibly vague that gave absolutely nothing away like, “It’s big.” (Well, duh, everything…

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Have a holly Jolley Christmas …

When you work in a town named Santa Claus, you never know who might stop by … but some days we're all just amazed. We've been asked so many times if anyone famous has ever visited us that we've started a "famous visitors" tag here on the HoliBlog plus a "Famous Visitors" board on Pinterest….

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One phone, two phone, red phone, blue phone

During the season when the phone rings at home, I always assume it’s "work" calling. Even though it usually isn’t. In fact, in my 16 years here, I’ve caught myself almost answering the phone at home with, "Holiday World, this is Paula…" That didn’t happen last night, but still this conversation seemed to be natural…

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As promised: Voyage Extreme Brownies recipe

It should come as no surprise. When I tweeted from home last night that I was making a batch of "Voyage Extreme Brownies" and asked if anyone wanted the recipe, the response was as fast and furious as the ride itself. So here it is: Voyage Extreme Brownies (every bit as extreme as The Voyage!)…

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Face it

Received a lovely compliment the other day during a podcast recording. The editor of an industry magazine said something kind about how on-top-of the latest social-media technology we are. I choked down a laugh-snort combination and tried to be gracious in saying thank you and protesting that my personal knowledge is of the enough-to-be-dangerous category….

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An A+ for Hannah

Hannah is a sweetie. I met her a few seasons ago when she visited the park with her family. Her dad is a journalist from Cincinnati. Hannah is finishing up 4th grade ("Just like Bart Simpson," her dad told me). Her proud papa emailed me a theme paper (remember those?) for which Hannah received 25…

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Holiday World heist

What a nice email (including the subject line, above) from a new friend from across the pond: Good Evening/Afternoon Paula! It is Friday night over here and after a hard day's work I am relaxing at home as I am traveling 2 hours at 7am in the morning to get to Alton Towers for a…

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I, Yappa…

…being of sound mind and … No, that’s not it. When you get involved in this industry, it doesn’t take long to hear about “I, Yappa.” Or actually, IAAPA. The International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions. You know, I-APPA. Or, as some say, I-double-A-P-A. It’s our mighty trade organization. And they just happen to…

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A conversation

Will: I can't believe how many people watch The Colbert Report. Me: And to think we'd never even heard of the guy until a month ago. Will: (My daughter) Leah says her History teacher talks about him in class. Me: And to think we'd never even heard of the guy until a month ago. Will:…

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Golden memories

Hosting the Golden Ticket Awards was a blast. It was well over a year ago that we started bugging Amusement Today publisher Gary Slade that we wanted to host the Golden Ticket Awards again. Turns out he already had us in mind. (Surely it had nothing to do with him wanting to ride this new…

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