Catching a lift

More signs of how close we are to opening.

The turkey house

Gobbler Getaway’s home is under roof and the walls are closing in quickly.

We took this photo to help show exactly where this interactive dark ride will be located:

The entire park is bustling with activity as we head into the final weeks of preparation.

Forty days (and forty nights) left till opening!

A hole other view

Jack from Anderson came on last weekend’s Voyage construction tour, too.

A group of us laughed about how last summer a lot of Guests would peek at The Future Home of The Voyage through the knotholes in the fence just past Raging Rapids.

So Jack snapped off an example of the view

Voyage photo taken through a knothole

Knot bad!
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More memories of our feathered friends

It’s amazing the memories that are stirred whenever we talk about the Educated Animals.

Here’s an email from last week:

I really appreciated the picture of the educated animals. I tried to tell my wife about them but could not do it justice. One of my greatest memories is of my mother putting money in the chicken who played baseball stand. Mom hates birds (don’t ask me) she is scared to death of them? The bird immediately went out to second base, did his/her daily constitutional and went right back to its change. The look on my mom’s face was priceless. Thanks for the memories. See ya this summer.

Keith B.
Vienna, Illinois

I couldn’t find a photo of the baseball-playing chicken, sorry to say.

Will Desmond the Drumming Duck do?

Holidog’s Voyage continues

He’s on the road again, our Holidog.

You may remember he arrived in the mail just prior to Christmas and then whisked off to Florida for the colder months.

Now he’s heading west.

And apparently he’s driving.

A dog’s got to eat, right? So our little tourist made a point of chowing down at the very first KFC. He wanted me to be sure to let everyone know he buried the bones out back.

With a full belly and his blue suede hat, the hound dog was off to Graceland.

Holidog isn’t the only staff member who gets to travel during the off season.

A number of us have business travel, too.

Will just got back from D.C., several directors have been to Florida.

I went to Chicago and Allentown, Pennsylvania, to speak at coaster enthusiast conferences. (Note to self: Try to convince the enthusiasts to meet in warm-weather states next February.)

But no one travels as much as Holidog.

Last fall, he spent time exploring Seattle and sniffing out the best coffee shops.

Next the little sew-and-sew visited the famous Space Needle.

Silly pup always keeps us in stitches.

Did all that rain make the turnaround grow?

Could be…

Let’s step back into the double-wide tunnel for another look.

This turnaround, of course, is where we will find the first two 90-degree banked curves.

Chris, who’s our Director of Security and Entertainment (he knows, he knows!), couldn’t resist getting a closer look.

And at this point, the camera is placed directly on the track for a pure point-of-view photo:

Many thanks to our hardworking crews.

Have a lovely weekend and the rest of Saint Patrick’s Day (my husband said the florist greeted him with, “Thank goodness you came in! You’re the only one in town to give flowers on Saint Patrick’s Day and I’ve already made up your bouquet.” Not too many of Irish decent around here…)

We’ll spring some more photos on you next week.

Signs of spring

Good grief, we had quite the “in like a lion” spring storm this afternoon.

A local radio station was counting down the end of a Tornado Warning with, “Two more minutes until the tornado gets here.”

Is that really necessary?

Happily, a bit of wind and a lot of rain were all we received.

When the rain was pounding on the rooftops, across the park’s two-way radios came Craig‘s voice, “Would someone let us know when it’s about to start raining so we can come inside and not get wet?”

And I always thought Goofy worked for some other park …

Meanwhile, Rick is creating literally hundreds of new signs.

This one is particularly pretty:

It was like Christmas in my office today — the “proof galleys” for our pictorial history book arrived.

Any “old timers” out there remember the Educated Animals?

Our book has a series of photos and stories about the educated animals. And when you see Will in the park this summer, ask him about them. Just don’t ask him to bring them back…

“We have been all over”

Dear Holiday World,

Last Summer in July, we made our first-ever visit to your park for our family vacation. In the past 15 years, we always picked an amusement park to visit for the summer for two days. We have been all over, from King’s Island to Cedar Point, Kentucky Kingdom, Kennywood and Six Flags over Chicago and we all agreed your park was the best for overall fun.

It may not be the biggest …

… but big is not always better

The total experience far surpassed all the others mentioned above, from value, fun and cleanliness. The water park is the best by far we have seen anywhere in the Midwest. You can spend the entire day there simply relaxing in a recliner enjoying the soft drinks and food stations.

We are already planning on making this a permanent part of our annual vacation plans. We are glad to see the addition of the new coaster and river ride and cannot wait for the days of summer to arrive and the trip to begin to Holiday World.

Thank you for taking the time to put the personal service back into the industry. The C. family will be back again and bringing friends along with us.

Darrin and Kelly C.
Thorntown, Indiana

Two months to go

Voyage station construction

Ha! I got to be the first one to say it! Construction is well underway as we move toward opening day in just two months.

Of course, I cheated by saying it a day early, but I guess that’s my prerogative.

First, we see the Pepsi Oasis building in our new Thanksgiving section.

Voyage Pepsi Oasis construction

And this smaller building next to the coaster station is the Voyage Photos & Gifts shop.

You can see the lift hill of The Voyage off in the distance

Voyage shop construction

The footprint for Gobbler Getaway is huge!

We’ll watch for some vertical growth very soon.

Gobbler Getaway construction

Work on The Voyage‘s station continues.

Voyage station construction

Thursday morning, the following notice came from Will via email:

” … the last bent for the Voyage was set within the past hour.

At this point, all bents have been erected.”

We’d do a company-wide dance of joy if we weren’t all so busy getting ready for the season.

And, lest we forget …

Construction continues in Splashin’ Safari, too, with our new Bahari River:

Bahari River construction

The water in Bahari River won’t be any deeper than at the Congo River. That means we’ll be in a deep canyon for this part of the ride.