Voyage cameo on GMA

Received this nice email this morning from Tina:

I was watching Good Morning America this morning. They did a segment on performing surgery under zero gravity. When they explained how the Vomit Comet worked they showed a picture of The Voyage going down one of the hills. Thought you would really enjoy the comparison between the Voyage and the Vomit Comet.

Nice to know the video we sent them back in the spring isn’t gathering dust.

Turkey carving

Okay, so we’re not building some huge coaster this year.

But that doesn’t mean there won’t be interesting construction photos to share.

Sort of looks like one of those creations from the recipe section of a woman’s magazine. You know the type: Quick and Easy Bread Recipe with Tips for Kneading and Shaping Your Favorite Farm Animal in 73 Easy Steps!

Indeed, this is the “what do you think” photo from the folks at Sellner Manufacturing. They’re creating our new Turkey Whirl for ’07.

Fear not: that’s not the car that will actually be used (pink is not your standard Thanksgiving color, last I checked). And that’s not the final version of the turkey head.

Remember, we’re still in the mock-up phase.

Watch Will Thursday on “Colbert”

Emily from The Colbert Report just called to confirm that the “Santa vs. Lincoln” segment is slated to air tomorrow evening.

As you may remember, this started out as a satellite interview on September. It didn’t air that night, as the-powers-that-be decided to send a crew out to shoot more interviews and footage of our area.

But there’s no putting it off any longer. The time has come. Tune in to Comedy Central at 10:30 pm CDT on Thursday

…and to think we’d never ever heard of the guy until a month ago.

Extreme secret

Today is September 25.

You know what that means, don’t you?

Just three months till Christmas!

Time for the keeping of secrets.

And stashing of surprises.

Speaking of which, we kept a big old secret for the last week back at the far end of the Snowy White Gravel Road.

Here’s a photo from halfway up the Jungle Racer tower.

That’s the side of Bahari on the right.

And to the left, that’s back-of-the-house.

A temporary parking lot for…

Trucks.

Quite a few trucks.

Why are they here … and why are they hidden?

Some sort of secret?

When we sneaked the trucks back there on September 17, it was easy to see what this was all about.

But before leaving the vehicles behind for the week, the drivers slapped on a little electrical tape to almost completely hide the answer to all those questions.

Any ideas?

Just about all of Southern Indiana has been in on the secret as we prepared to help out one very special family in St. Meinrad, a tiny town about 10 miles from here.

And early this morning, this young family awoke to the sound of a bus pulling up in front of their house, and an energetic fellow named Ty greeting them through his megaphone from their front yard.

“Good morning, Farina family!”

Yes, the big secret is ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition is here in Spencer County. They’re helping out a family that has done so much for Relay for Life.

And now that family is in need.

Today is the “Door Knock” day (although maybe it should be called the “Megaphone Day”).

The Farina family, Steve and Shawna plus three lovely children, are being whisked off for a week-long cruise.

Then their belongings will be packed up and stored for the week.

And watch out on Wednesday, when the “Braveheart” scene takes place. This house, plus a building next door, will be demolished and a wonderful new one built just for them by hundreds of generous and caring locals:

I felt like a criminal taking this photo last week. But I was a block away, under some trees, and no one saw me. I quickly skulked away.

As much as I’d like to present the day-to-day “inside scoop” about this, I do want to respect the confidentiality the producers ask for, after all it’s their lovely story to tell (a Sunday evening in November).

But there will be some information made public and we’ll pass that along as the week progresses.

A learning experience

Abraham Lincoln, it is said of his formative years in Indiana, learned by “littles.”

On Saturday, unfortunately, I learned by … um, biggles.

Lesson Learned: A digital camera (ours, anyway) requires a memory card in order to capture the fabulous photos of the Colbert Report crew that visited our county.

Sigh!

Here’s a photo from earlier in the week, which will just have to do. It was taken in Mrs. Koch’s office and sort of sets the tone for the segment.

The crew from The Colbert Report consisted of three persons.

Nicole is an associate field producer. She really enjoys her job with The Colbert Report and all the interesting (if obscure) places it takes her. She flew in from New York on Friday night and headed back the following evening.

What a life.

Nicole was joined by a freelance video/sound crew out of Louisville. After spending the morning in Lincoln City, they joined us for lunch (“Elf Burgers all around!”) and a walk around our Christmas section.

Never before have I seen a TV crew pay so much attention to a restroom building (the one next to the Holiday theater). But since there’s a graphic of Santa next to the Men’s Room entrance and a graphic of Mrs. Claus next to the Women’s Room entrance … it did make sense.
Except for the poor woman who nearly fainted when she walked out of the restroom and saw the TV camera aimed in her direction.

I took an exceptional photo of her shocked expression, but … well, you know …

Will was great sport, doing take after take: “Welcome to Holiday World! Welcome to Holiday World!”

Give us a little more, Will.

Okay, pull back some, Will.

Tone it down just a little bit more, Will.

Okay, now give it all you’ve got, Will.

The looks on the faces of the park visitors walking by was priceless.

I checked with Nicole a bit ago and she reported they’re working on the piece, and it isn’t slated to air yet, but she’ll let us know.

Meanwhile, we better keep this under our hats:

Meet Papa Bear.

He, along with his wife (Mama Bear) and their child, Baby Bear, used to hang out in Holiday World.

As you may know, Stephen Colbert isn’t fond of bears. In fact, he can’t bear them.

Tyler, from Effingham, Illinois, sent this photo, taken on July 10, 1989. That rascal was home from college for the weekend and sent in this picture (that’s Hilary, his sister, in the shot with him) wondering if indeed this was a photo from that long ago visit to the park.

Indeed, those three bears used to freely roam the hills here. Alas, it seems they’ve gone the way of the Banshee and Virginia Reel.

No wonder Colbert sent Nicole out here all by herself.

A very telling move on his part.

She was so gracious in her praise regarding the assistance provided by the park and our county’s visitors bureau.

“No one ever offers to help us on these shoots,” Nicole told us. “Usually we have to just sneak around.”

The plot thickens

They want to see for themselves.

Shoot their own footage.

Conduct more interviews.

Colbert is sending a crew.

Tomorrow.

I warned Wayne, our food services director, we might end up in Kringle’s.

I figure anyone on assignment for The Colbert Report, shooting footage about Santa Claus, will surely want to order an Elf Burger for lunch.

Or, if she’s not lactose intolerant, an Elf with Cheese.

Bumped, not scrapped

What a relief.

It seems the delay in the satellite taping yesterday (Will had a bad microphone at first and it took a while to get another hooked up to the sat truck) threw off the editing time.

So we’ve been bumped.

…but not scrapped.

Should air within a few weeks.

They’ll let us know.

And we’ll be sure to let you know.

Meanwhile, a new friend has appeared from out in the blogosphere:

Just thought I’d come out of the woodwork and send you my support on your upcoming “Colbert Report” segment. I have a Colbert-centric blog that has been covering your Holiblog antics and the PR stuff in the news about Koch’s appearance all week. …rest assured, my blog will stay vigilant in reporting your story until, well, it becomes a story.

Sort of a kumbaya moment.

Somehow it seems this story is far from over.

I’m putting Colbert “On Notice”

Great.

That shoots my credibility all to heck.

If you were among the tons of people who stayed up a little later last night to watch The Colbert Report, you may have noticed Will was nowhere to be seen.

Hmmm.

No naive assumptions had been made on this end. The direct question had been asked (twice, actually) and confirmed: Yes, this will air on Wednesday.

Ah, but stuff happens in the world of TV. I'll track down an answer today and will post whatever I find out as soon as I know something.

Meanwhile, there's a fun article in the Evansville Courier & Press this morning.

Love the photo.

The second I heard the crew ask if Will was "too shiny" I knew the newspaper's cameras would click like mad and Will would be pictured in the paper having makeup applied.

Oh, Will. Your kids will love this.

Jerry cracked me up, as he continually called Stephen Colbert "Steve." Somehow I don't think the on-air persona is cool with that.

There was an interview with "Assassination Vacation" author Sarah Vowell immediately after Will and Jerry's time, and that didn't air either. So maybe they decided there was just so much good stuff there, it was best to save for when they had more time.

We'll see.

But for now, Colbert is On Notice.

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: I can't believe all these emails we've received with advice and good wishes.

Me: And to think we'd never even heard of the guy until a month ago.

Will: It's almost a cult thing. Stephen Colbert has all these fervent followers.

Me: Hmmmm.

Will: And to think we'd never even heard of the guy until a month ago.

Me: He's hip. They're hip. Will … face it, we're not hip.