"Let's bring home the lucite" was Will's annual joke as it got close to Golden Ticket Awards time.
He loved to win.
This evening, his daughters Lauren and Leah accepted the "Best Waterpark Ride" award for Wildebeest. Our first water coaster has won all four years since it opened.
Lauren called Wildebeest her dad's "final dream"; the two twentysomethings were charming as they talked about their dad, who passed away three years ago.
"I want to make a correction," quipped Leah. "People seem to think we named it 'Will-da-beast.' Uh … no. That was a coincidence."
Other well-deserved awards went to Dollywood, Cedar Point, Kings Island … and then it was our turn again.
The Cleanest Park Golden Ticket Award goes to … Holiday World & Splashin' Safari!
Matt headed up on stage to accept "the lucite" and on the way, picked up a piece of trash.
He thanked our amazing Hosts and Hostesses for their hard work keeping our parks so clean. Our Sweepers and Cleaning Crews definitely need to take a bow, but the award is shared with everyone here.
"This is the fourteenth year we've received this award," said Matt. "We'll be sure to be back for #15 next year."
All three of our wooden coasters made the Top 20 list, Splashin' Safari was again named the #2 water park, and we also came in second for Friendliest Park. It was a good night.
Here's a look at all the winners.
Parks from all over the world attended this ceremony and stories as varied as opening a new park to surviving Superstorm Sandy were shared.
The full list of categoires and winners is on the Golden Ticket Awards website.
Congratulations to all!