Magical mystery tour

The off-season is incredibly busy around here.

Lots of planning meetings. Preparing for next year.

Some of us even discover the top of our desks again.

Five of our folks got to go on a field trip this week to learn about a possible new product for the park.

That’s Foods Director Jason in the middle. He’s growing his annual off-season beard, so he had to wear extra protection.

From left, here are the glamorously-attired Jordan, Phil, Jason, Sarah, and Jodie.

Foods Director Jason and crew

We can’t tell you yet what product they were considering (and consuming), but it won’t be much longer…

Frost warning calls for summer memories

Well, where’d that come from?

We spent all summer (and much of fall) exclaiming over the extreme temps.

The mercury is heading in the other direction tonight. Just as we posted winter-time photos in August to help us cool off, we’ll evoke summer memories in the coming chilly months.

A nice lady from Owensboro emailed us today and praised these boys of summer.

As a season pass holder, she enjoyed seeing them perform quite often.

This clips shows some crazy guitar playing plus an adorable tiny dancer right near the end.

Hope it warms the cockles of your heart — and the rest of you, too!

“Ultimate Water Ride” airs tonight

The TV show with the unfortunate acronym, World's Toughest Fixes, will present an hour-long behind-the-scenes look at Holiday World & Splashin' Safari tonight.

Seems like every time I post a reminder on our Facebook page someone posts, "Why?! What happened?!"

It's all good.

World's Toughest Fixes isn't just about "problems," they also showcase new construction.

And we just happened to be building a 'beest:

Wildebeest construction in 2009

World's Toughest Fixes is a host-driven show. Host Sean Riley digs in and helps with the project at hand.

And the lucky fellow got to return in  May and enjoy the fruits of his labor.

Santa and Sean Riley tame the 'beest!

The show will also get up-close-and-personal with roller coaster maintenance.

Could you imagine?

Riley joins the Coaster Cats

But, again, the reward is sweet.

Riley joins our Coaster Cats in a ride on The Voyage.

The Voyage at Holiday World

The episode premieres this evening (Thursday, October 21) on National Geographic Channel at 7 pm CDT (8 pm EDT) and plays again three hours later.

For those who don't get NatGeo at home, we'll cross our fingers that the network folks post the episode on YouTube or Hulu. We'll sure let you know if they do!

A three-day FOAM party

Okay, I admit to have not heard of this sort of thing before.

And I daresay neither did Mrs. Koch when she came up with the acronym FOAM. That stands for "Family Owned And Managed" parks.

Ten family-owned park owners get together every year and just have a blast.

We’re hosting the annual FOAM meeting this week, with friends from:

• Quassy Amusement Park in Middlebury, Connecticut
• Waldameer Park in Erie, Pennsylvania
• Seabreeze Amusement Park in Rochester, New York
• Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee
• Joyland Amusement Park in Lubbock, Texas
• Wonderland Park in Amarillo, Texas
• Cliff’s Amusement Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico
• Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, California

Here’s a look at one of the ultra-serious business meetings:

Sleigh us with your clever name

As long as I’ve been here (nearly two decades), we’ve never had a contest to name a ride.

Until now.

The cute (and colorful!) ride we’re adding to Rudolph’s Reindeer Ranch seemed like the right time to try one out.

Alrighty then. Please take a look and then read on for a few rules plus the deadline.

New ride for Holiday World in 2011

To begin with … our working name is Santa’s Sleigh Ride. It’s sort of grown on us, so you’ve got your work cut out for you to be exceptionally clever! (And yes, we reserve the right to use our name, so please don’t get mad if that’s how this ends up. And please don’t suggest it, either…)

  1. All entries must be sent to this email address no later than 10 am CDT on Friday, October 15, 2010.
  2. More than one entry is allowed, but please don’t go overboard.
  3. To enter, you must be 18 years or older. (A parent may enter on behalf of a child.)
  4. The winner will be announced next week. The prize is four one-day tickets for the 2011 season. Judges’ decision is final. Only one winner will be chosen, since we only need one name.
  5. Employees of Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari and their immediate family members are not eligible to win, so please don’t enter.
  6. If we receive more than one entry suggesting the same name (and choose that name), the entry received first (as time-stamped on the entry email) will win.
  7. Need more info about the ride? There’s a webpage for that.

Good luck!

Another season comes to a close

Will Koch just loved Beatles music.

And any pun involving Beatles lyrics–well, that was a home run. So for this, our 64th season, the tune "When I'm 64" was hummed more than once.

This weekend John Lennon would have turned 70. And today, Will would have come on the 2-way at closing and thanked everyone for all their hard work in creating another record season for the park.

Both gentlemen have left behind tremendous legacies.

I think every last one of us has dedicated this season to our dear friend Will. And no one moreso than the Beachcombers, who performed Beatles music all summer long in Splashin' Safari, knowing how much Will enjoyed every performance he attended.

Hope this brings a smile to your face:

“First time – wonderful experience!”

I took my 2 kids and my sister there. It was the first time we had ever been, and both the kids remarked how friendly everyone was at the park . They said the friendliness was better than at Disney and they can’t wait to go back to visit your park!
We had such an awesome time.
The lady that ran the sea horses and then the fishes later, was awesome with the kids!!! She’s a keeper!
My children loved the food, the desserts and of course, all the rides!
Thank you for making our first time there such a wonderful experience!!!!!
Keep up the good work!
Melissa B.
Nashville, Tennessee

An honor for Will

The World Waterpark Association is meeting for its annual convention these next few days.

This morning, Lori Koch had the bittersweet honor of receiving an award as her late husband, Will, was inducted into the WWA Hall of Fame.

We’re so proud of all Will accomplished; we miss him every day.

The hibernation process

So what is the process of putting Splashin’ Safari to bed for the winter?

Our water park director takes us on a video tour of the not-so-sleepy site.