Stick a fork in it

… ’cause this turkey is well done!

That’s Mike, our Maintenance & Safety Director and his wife, Kathy, all snuggled up in one of Turkey Whirl’s feathered friends. The bird was on display at the huge IAAPA Convention in Atlanta a few weeks ago.

I was only there for one day, and never found that particular booth. But while I was visiting our friends at the ACE booth, a man with a wildly determined look on his face hurried past us without looking up.

Will!

Our chorus of greetings snapped Will out of his deep concentration. He grinned sheepishly and stepped over to the booth to explain his rush.

“I heard that the guy who provided the ape costume that was used in the famous fake Bigfoot film is here!

“…and I just want to shake his hand.”

Who knew?

Alas, poor Will stopped by the costume booth a number of times during the convention but never did get to meet the Sasquatch provocateur.

Can we help but wonder if, perhaps, the whole thing was a hoax?

Bakuli heads skyward

If you’ve been scratching your head trying to figure out exactly where Bakuli is going, this should help.

First of all, our busy little HoliBeavers have been hard at work constructing a temporary bridge over Bahari River.

That’s because the bowl portion of Bakuli will be located in the central, island area of Bahari River.

The start tower is to the north of the river.

And back in the center of Bahari River, the pieces of Bakuli are being assembled…

…one confusing shape at a time.

…and for this we give thanks

Last week, on Tuesday and Wednesday, some lucky full-timers got an early Thanksgiving treat.

Following seven weeks of track work on The Voyage (with a grand total of 1,120 feet of track replaced) it was time to test out the workmanship.

And what a surprise…when they got back to the station, they all asked for seconds.

T.U.F.

T.U.F.?

The Ultimate Freebie, of course.

And it's not us

Paul from Park World magazine emailed me the following snippet from an upcoming article over the weekend:

..but the park also gives plenty back to its guests.

Children and families can benefit from free camera hire, free milk, free sunscreen and, new this year, free cod liver oil.

"We want to do something different from other parks, so there's also a health angle to most of our giveaways," details Hakon. "A visit to Konge Parken is not necessarily about cotton candy."

Free cod liver oil.

The park is in Norway … perhaps cod liver oil is their national health drink?

Will's eyes grew quite wide when I reported this industry news in today's staff meeting. A few directors gasped and Vanessa exclaimed: "I've had that — it's awful!"

Since our budgets are locked in for 2007, I guess we can't even discuss it as a possibility for next year.

Pity.

Construction cam

It is always with a bit of hesitation that I post a link to our webcam.

That is, of course, because the view might soon change. Then someone clicking the link later on will see something other that what the post is about, leading to: "What, is she nuts?"

But now that the leaves are mostly off the trees and the footers for Bakuli are going in, there are some interesting goings-on down yonder.

Got glue?

Bakuli is here.

All bazillion pieces.


Good thing we don’t have too many employees this time of year, as the parking lot is covered with huge purple, green and yellow pieces.

This one in particular … don’t you think it looks like a cartoon character’s mouth … or beak … or bill?


And this one … come on.

It looks like it was left out in the sun or something.

Maybe too close to the heater?


We’ll keep an eye on this piece once our crews start assembling this monster.

A sweet new contender in the poll

Did you notice the new drink on the block …er, Oasis, this summer?

Apparently a lot of folks did, as Orange Gatorade was the #4 most-consumed Free Unlimited Soft Drink here at the park in '06.

In case you've ever wondered, the top three have always been:

1. Pepsi
2. Mt. Dew
3. Dr Pepper

Although Pink Lemonade and Root Beer have always tied for 4th place in the past, the two were bumped to sharing #5 this season.

Orange Gatorade took over the #4 spot.

And if that's not enough to quench your thirst for all things trivial, please note that the missing period following the "Dr" in Dr Pepper is indeed correct. A quick check of their website, however, does not explain the omission.

It does, however, assure the customer that Dr Pepper does not include prune juice.

This is not a political statement

This is not a political statement

 

Yes, this is election day. (Please be sure to vote if you’re 18 or older.)

It’s a total coincidence that we have new Turkey Whirl photos to show this morning.

Yes, some candidates may squeak through on a wing and a prayer today.

Others will be neck and neck until the final precinct checks in tonight.

A few lucky candidates feel confident they have a leg up on the other party.

And no matter what the outcome, we’re all pretty thankful to live in a Democracy, right?

This pretty bird will make an appearance next week at the annual trade show for theme parks.

IAAPA’s big convention is in Atlanta again this year. Remember this post and photo from last November? That’s when we got our first look at one of the trains for The Voyage.

After the convention, the entire flock is expected to arrive here in Santa Claus before the end of the year.

Attitude adjustment

A few months ago, we poked fun at some of the remarkable headlines we’ve seen over the years.

This particular one is remarkable for its incredible lack of creativity or even basic descriptiveness.

It came in with a batch of newspaper clips that arrived in this week’s mail.

The article was the same in all the clips, an Associated Press report about our expansion plans for 2007.

Now, the headline writer does have space considerations. That’s understandable. If the story is just one or two columns wide, the headline will be shorter than for a four- or five-column-wide article.

Here are some reasonable headlines from the stack:

Holiday World announces new adventures for ’07
Holiday World plans expansion
Holiday World plans to build giant water slide
Holiday World to add seven-story water slide

and then there’s…

Bakuli will bowl you over at Holiday World in 2007!
Big slide coming
Seven-story slide slated for Holiday World in ’07

But what journalism professor wouldn’t clutch his or her heart after reading this doozy:

Park making adjustments

Adjustments?

Why didn’t we think of that?

Quick! Someone call the Times!

The Trib!

The Star!

Just think of all the headlines that would jump off the page with that word in the mix!

Tom and Katie take adjustment out in public
St. Louis Cards finish series with adjustment
Dow Jones adjusts
Adjustment in NBC Nightly News anchor chair

Can you stand it? The possibilities are endless.

No, I won’t reveal which paper came up with that beaut. Wouldn’t want to be responsible, after all, for the headline writer’s…adjustment.

The importance of being earnest

What a nice email.

And you know, even if the email hadn’t been all the great — who cares! — those little bubbies in the photos are too cute to pass up!

Apparently it was during a business trip that Allen B. of Columbus, Ohio, discovered us:

My colleagues and I were recently in Evansville for over six weeks, installing exhibits at the new Children’s Museum downtown. Many of us are theme park junkies, so we’d planned a weekend visit to Holiday World. Given the notice the park has received for cleanliness, friendliness, and coaster cool-ness, our expectations were already very high.

It is hard to express how thoroughly we were blown away by Holiday World. The Voyage is awesome, as are Raven and Legend. Every staff member we ran into was pleasant.

The place was a tremendous value.

Perhaps most importantly, Holiday World had heart. Unlike the corporate chains that most of us are familiar with, your park possesses a real earnestness. It is evident that you guys know who your guests are, and who you are.

Anyway, after that first visit, once was not going to be enough. We were back two weeks later, a bunch of big kids ready to play.

A week ago, my family and I made the trip to Evansville. A trip to Holiday World on the last day of the season was a must!

My two year old, Henry…


…and his almost-three year old cousin, Mason…


…absolutely adored the park. As small guys, there’s still some trepidation when it comes to getting on rides. The kid-sized attractions that Holiday World offers were perfect for them. After a couple of turns on the carousel, they were off to spin on the rockets, bounce around on the bumper boats, and set sail on a canoe.

I’d hoped to spend a couple of hours on some big-kid rides myself. In the end, I was having such a good time with these guys I abandoned that plan (with the exception of one spin on Voyage–after a five hour drive, I thought I’d earned it).


Thanks for making such a special place for kids of all sizes! Best wishes in 2007 (we’ll be back!).

That new children’s museum in Evansville? I wonder if Allen realized he was helping to set up a museum named for Louis J. Koch, the gentleman who founded this park 60 years ago.