Taking sides

Another post about food. Hmmmm…must be lunchtime. And nearly Thanksgiving time.

Our Food & Beverage Director is performing his annual tweaks to our menus, as we look toward the 2010 season.

The question has come up about the "sides" we offer with our Pizza Family Meal Deal.

A certain pizza lover (who also loves cookies) is a fan of pairing pizza with fries.

He couldn't imagine separating the two.

Why, that would be like Santa without Rudolph, Lucy without Desi, Kirk without Spock, Homer without Marge…

Meanwhile, Jason wants to introduce bread sticks as a side. The above-mentioned pizza lover is willing to try this pairing, but just isn't sure it's a match made in heaven.

Sounds like a poll in the making. What's your pick?

Meanwhile, we're currently ranked in the Top 10 in the "Indiana's Top 50 Blogs" poll. Santa would like you to please vote for our HoliBlog. Thanks!

 

“The old days”

I was going through some old keepsakes, and I found where I went to "Santa Claus Land" in 1958. I have all the brochures, postcards and maps. It’s so amazing to see the difference there is now. And, my ticket stub shows I only paid 50 cents to get in.

What a fun memory then, and now.
 
Kayan R.
Owensboro, Kentucky
 

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!)

3 sticks of butter, melted (none of that fake nasty magarine stuff, please)

3 c. sugar

1 T. vanilla (use real vanilla, don't cheap out and use colored water)

5 eggs

2 c. all-purpose flour

1 c. cocoa

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt, optional

Heat over to 350 degrees. Butter 9" x 13" pan. In large bowl, stir together butter, sugar and vanilla. Taste. Add eggs, stir well until blended. Taste. Stir in flour, cocoa, powder and salt. Blend well. Taste. Spread remaining batter evenly in pan and bake 50-55 minutes, or until brownies begin to pull away from the sides of the pan. Makes about 36 brownies. (Be sure to cut at a 90-degree angle!)
 

Cousins reunited after 30 years

We receive a nice email occasionally from a coaster-enthusiast friend named Mike. It's always great to hear from him.

His latest missive brought tears to our eyes.

Here's Mike's story:

When I was about age 6, my biological family and I were separated by the decision to give me up for adoption.

I had four cousins and a younger half-sister I never saw again for nearly 30 years until this year.

Thanks to the powers of the Internet, Facebook, and lot of luck from Above, I was reunited with all of them!

I got the chance to see my sister in NYC during a taping of the Rachael Ray Show (which aired nationwide October 13).


^ Rachael Ray, Mike's sister and cousin, plus his wife, Tammy.

But the icing on the cake was the fact that 2 of my cousins, Ryan and his sister Renee' were only a few short hours north of our favorite park, Holiday World! So, the decision was made to make a whole day of it there, and it was WONDERFUL!


^ What was old… that's Mike in the front row, far left. Next to him are cousins Renee' and Kristie; back row, cousins Eric and Ryan (in the white shirt).


^ …is new again! Cousins Mike, Renee' and Ryan reunite this month at Holiday World.

Thanks Holiday World, for being THE perfect place for me to reunite with my family, AND giving us a chance to reconnect and make up for lost time!

Sincerely,     Mike, and my cousins Ryan and his sister Renee' 

“The food was delicious!”

I wanted to thank you and your staff for a great gluten-free meal for my great niece at Holiday World the last weekend of the season! 

I was amazed how delicious the food was-tasted like Thanksgiving dinner at Mom’s house!!   Sure didn’t taste like what I consider “amusement park food”!  Those turkey legs were yummy and I would love to know how to season my green beans like those at Holiday World-and I loved the sweet potatoes!

I truly appreciate the special attention paid to getting Brooklyn hot, gluten-free food-you and your staff went the extra mile.  Thank you again for your kindness and attention-you can bet I have really been singing your praises to everyone that will listen up here in Terre Haute!!
 
Thanks again-we will definitely return next summer-I can’t wait for my great niece to experience Splashin’ Safari!!!
 
Sincerely,
Deanna P.

 

Smile pretty, Avery Lee!

As the mom of three boys, I learned long ago to gather ye rosebuds while ye may.

Those rosebuds are precious, be they squishy hugs, sloppy kisses, whispered I-love-yous, or silly photos.

And some of those photos that capture the true, rascally essence of a child will be treasured far more than the, well, picture-perfect ones.

Meet Avery Lee:

This tiny tot is from Louisville and is now nearly four years old.

Her mom told us Avery Lee loves to make silly faces. So her photo in front of our Santa statue is just that.

And that silly face earned Avery Lee a place among our Facebook Fan Page Photo Contest winners. She and her mom just won two tickets to come back for another visit next year.

Do you have some special photos from a past visit to Holiday World & Splashin' Safari? Become a Fan on our Facebook page and upload them. (You must be at least 13 years old and not a park employee or relative of one.) Who knows? You just might win two tickets.

…and the chance to make a silly face while you're having your photo taken at the Santa statue.

“My soul literally flies with joy”

I visited the park this past weekend, October 10 and 11, 2009. I have visited every year from northern Ohio, USA, for about five years now.

You do know your three wooden coasters are truly out of this world? "The Voyage" is my #1Favorite Coaster I have ever ridden — and I have ridden A LOT of coasters. I long for "The Voyage" all year! That ride is breathtaking, no matter how many times I ride it! I dare say my soul literally flies with joy while I’m riding. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Tonight I searched the Internet trying to figure out a song I’ve heard only at Holiday World in Thanksgiving Land and I found the song. I first noticed the song last year I believe and I heard it again last weekend and smiled — don’t you dare ever remove "Hold Tight" by The Andrews Sisters from your play list! That song cooks!

Be Well,

Mark K.

P.S. I love your coasters — did I already say that? Truly, the last two months have been very challenging for me in several ways and last weekend at your park was pure happiness and joy, hour after hour. I appreciate all of you who in any way contribute to the park’s operation.

 

Brenden hits the big 4-8

I wanted to thank everyone at Holiday World for a great day on Saturday, October 10th.

My family and I came down from Indianapolis for one last visit in 2009. We had a great day, made even better by the fact that the youngest of our coaster enthusiast family crossed the magic 48-inch mark.

Brenden crossed the mark back in July at his five-year checkup. Once the nurse said his height, his eyes lit up and he said, "Now I can ride the big coasters at Holiday World!"

Our first stop of the day was at The Raven. After the ride attendant checked his height and gave him a high-five, we were off. The giggling and laughing started on the first drop. By the time we got to the lake turn, Brenden had his hands up. I had my arm around him to make him feel a little safer, but I still couldn't believe it when he had his hands up.

Here is a picture of Brenden giving his opinion of The Raven.

I asked him if he wanted to go ride the "Holidog coaster." He said "No, I'm too big for that now." (Although, he did ride it later in the day.)

We rode all the other rides that he is now tall enough for: The Legend, HallowSwings, Liberty Launch and The Voyage. He also rode Turkey Whirl with his sister, which was a relief to the stomachs of both me and my wife.

Overall, he rode The Raven, The Legend, HallowSwings and Liberty Launch two times each, and The Voyage once. It was just too cold to try Pilgrims Plunge.

He loved all the coasters, although he says The Voyage was his favorite (Like father, like son.)

Now that the whole family can ride the coasters, we are looking forward to many more trips next season.

Rob B.
Plainfield, Indiana

“I don’t care what it is, as long as it’s deep-fried”

 

This afternoon, our staff got to sample all sorts of foods (many deep-fried) that vendors are hoping we'll add to the parks' menus in 2010.

The vendors set up booths in Plymouth Rock Cafe and opened the doors at lunchtime; enthusiastic munching and lobbying quickly ensued.

What better time to shoot a video?

Before viewing this amateur video, please note: We are a theme park, not an acting studio. We're not a film-editing studio, either.

Well then. Do you now have low expectations? Please lower them a bit more before watching. As our 2009 TV commercials clearly stated: We're a dorky bunch.

Not to worry, healthy soups and salads were part of the Food Fair, too.
 

Bye-bye, Holidog

We are fast approaching what is probably the huggiest weekend of the year.

It's closing weekend . The last two days of the season.

And Brendan is going to make this one last.

This sweet little fellow's aunt entered this photo in our Facebook Fan Page Photo Contest. They win two one-day tickets for 2010.

Looking good for this weekend. A bit chilly (around 60), but sunny skies. And the leaves are starting to change colors. Just lovely…

And one final reminder that the lowest prices for 2010 Season Passes are offered through this Sunday, October 11, at midnight. After that, the discount isn't quite as deep.

Wildebeest awaits…