New method of crowd control at Raven

When do you think we should schedule one last snowfall for this memorable and seemingly endless 2009/2010 winter season?

Quoth The Raven … Nevermore!

Crowd control

“No better bang for their buck!”

My family and I have been coming to the park every year since I
retired from the Navy and moved back to Indiana in late 2004. We
live up near Anderson, which makes for about a 4 hour drive to
Santa Claus and Lake Rudolph Campground where we stay every year.
And every year we come, we are so impressed with the park, and I
vow to write you and let you know how much my family loves coming
there and how we always look forward to our next trip and count the
days until we are packing up and heading south. Well finally, here
it is!
Your park blows every other theme park out of the water, no pun
intended. The quality and variety of the rides, the sincere
friendliness of every staff member, the cleanliness of the entire
park, the affordability of the food and gift shops… nothing tops
the entire package that Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari offers.
And it’s easy to take the quality and cleanliness and friendly
atmosphere for granted…until you go to another park.
We went to a certain unnamed water park in the Tampa area, and all
we did was grumble and gripe about how utterly pitiful the park was
compared to our favorite place! Filthy lazy rivers, shortage of tubes,
bad attitudes and total lack of customer service made us wish we were
back in the hills of southern Indiana and in the good hands of the
Which brings up another observation I’ve made: we always spend two
days at the parks, and I have yet to have one trip where I haven’t
seen either Pat and/or Will roaming around, greeting people, saying,
"Hi! Are you having fun? What can we do?" I think that alone says so
much about what the park means to you and your concern for your patrons.
That is something I have never seen at any other park. And I think that
helps contribute to the best advertising you can get: word of mouth.
Anytime I hear anyone talking about summer plans, I heartily recommend
your park to them and relay all of our great experiences and how there
is no better bargain for their buck.
I was so glad to hear that you had another record-breaking attendance
this past year, even with the bad economy. You richly deserve every
accolade and award and good word that is said about you and your park.
I wish you and yours continued success, a wonderful off-season as we
watch the Wildebeest come to life, and look forward to seeing you next year!
Thank you so much for all you do!
Darrell H.

Snowy Safari

We keep hearing from folks who think the water park would be loads of fun in the snow.

A Facebook Fan even recommended we host the next Winter Olympics.

This particular ride would certainly start off fun, but the new decelerators on Jungle Racer might have a chilling effect.

Jungle Racer in the snow

“Don’t track in any snow…”

The recent winter storm gave a whole new meaning to that oft-heard phrase:

"Honey, when you come back in, be sure that you don’t track in any snow…"

Snow on the tracks at The Legend

Special delivery

It’s nice to have The Gravity Group offices just three hours away, in Cincinnati.

So when Tony, our maintenance director, asked for sample bogies and a chassis to be delivered to The Voyage early, Chad hopped in the van Friday and headed our way.

Searching for a “hanging Chads” joke … sadly, none comes to mind. But that’s Gravity Group’s Chad on the far left and Holiday World’s Chad with the hood up.

Unloading the chassis

I’m told that’s a chassis they’re carrying. Basically, that’s the framework — or skeleton — of the train.

Bryan, Chad and chassis

Poor Bryan. I think Chad just told him he has to carry the chassis to the top of the 173-foot lift hill all by himself.

Just kidding, Bryan. That Chad’s a joker.

Chad and coaster maintenance

That’s Tony with Chad in the foreground, over in The Voyage’s transfer track area. Lots of snow in the background. (Mostly gone now, due to warmer temps and even a bit of rain over the weekend.)

If the chassis is the skeleton, then are these things the feet?

Timberliner bogies

Chad tells us these metatarsals (anyone else got a young-un studying up on naming all the bones in the body?) … er, feet, are actually called bogies.

Since golf has been in the news all too often lately, I checked the dictionary to make sure Chad’s nomenclature was accurate. Indeed, among the golf notations, a nickname for Humphrey Bogart, cartoon character, and a gross nasal reference, there it was. Back in mommy-mode, I’ll ask you to look it up if you want the full bogie explanation.

Wouldn’t want to plagiarize or anything

Bottom line, our coaster maintenance technicians are ready to make any minor adjustments to the existing Voyage setup to make sure the new Timberliner trains are a perfect fit.

Or, if you will, up to par.

Bigfoot in the park?

Since the sun finally came out on Thursday, I took a walk in the park.

Apparently someone … or should I say something … went for a walk before me.

What in the world do these footprints belong to?

This photo was take over by Udderly Blue Ice Cream in our 4th of July section.

Too bad I don’t carry a ruler in my pocket, because I would have liked to have measured these footprints. They were huge! Six, eight inches easily. And one right in front of the other.

So what kind of critter or extraterrestrial is roaming the park?

Footprints in the snow

Take a closer look at the above photo and you’ll see that the extra toe (on the right) seems to disappear after three steps. What does that mean?

Here’s a closer look.

(Sort of reminds me of that famous painting "The Scream." Sort of makes me want to scream.)


So does anyone recognize these huge prints? If so, post a comment please. Or I’m not heading out in the park again until spring!

Neither rain, nor snow …

Well, sometimes the weather does make it difficult.

We were invited to speak to the American Coaster Enthusiasts' annual "East Coaster" event over the weekend in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

As in mid-Atlantic states. As in blizzardpalooza.

Since they were already closing airports on Friday, we quickly made a video for the enthusiasts to show during the day on Saturday.

Our weather was warmer, but still messy.

In case you missed the event (or you just want to see what we sent), here's the video:

Holidog’s at the Super Bowl!

That’s right — Holidog hitched a ride with Eric, our admissions director, to sunny Miami.

Not sure the pup understands this whole football thing. Right before he and Eric left, I got the impression Holidog was expecting to visit the World’s Largest Dog Food Bowl.

Eric says security is very tight (and he forgot to bring Holidog’s shot records), but he’s hoping Holidog will be allowed in to cheer on the winning team.

Update: Holidog made it up to the front gate and was greeted with — free Pepsi! (Nice to know this free Pepsi thing is catching on.)

He and Eric will also be snacking on empanadas for lunch.

Another wonderful surprise — there are rides at the Super Bowl!

Update: What a game! And what a half-time show! Holidog happily howled along with Pete and Roger.

What’s your choice?

Eighty-something days from now, we'll open for our 64th season.

Job Fairs start this weekend as we begin hiring 2,100 seasonal Hosts & Hostesses.

The snowball has topped the crest and is starting its downhill race.

Just wondering, what are you looking forward to the most when you visit this season?


Home Alone?

When we started to plan our online shop, we talked about making it "fit" what we’re all about.

We’d use our owners, employees and their families as models for the HoliShop.

We’d have fun. But, honestly, this much fun, Will?

Will loves his Wildebeest shirt

All I can think of when I see this photo is that great scene in the movie Home Alone.

Not much chance of Will being alone this summer. He’ll be the first, but surely not the last, to tame that ‘beest.