The hunt for clues is on

Teaser 03 - Mark Your Spot SQUARE

If you’re a Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari super-fan, you’ll remember what today is.  It’s the five year anniversary of our announcement of Thunderbird. I can’t believe it’s been five years.   It seems appropriate to reflect today on the fun we had over those 66 Days at Sea, and our upcoming announcement.  That might…

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Founder’s Day

Ronald Reagan. Louis J. Koch, Santa Jim Yellig

Today is the birthdate of Louis J. Koch. Let’s declare it to be Founder’s Day! Did you know that Holiday World started out as a retirement project? It was back in 1946. Our original name was Santa Claus Land. Louis J. Koch was an Evansville industrialist (he was one of the sons in the George…

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That “Harper Valley PTA” Girl!

Jeannie C. Riley ad

What in the world do Jeannie C. Riley and the song Harper Valley PTA have to do with Holiday World? The Grammy Award winner’s connection is with Santa Claus Land, actually; she performed her hit Harper Valley PTA in concert here on Sunday, June 11, 1978. That’s 41 years ago! This ad is from our archives Something else in that…

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Splashin’ Safari surprised us all!

It’s Splashin’ Safari’s birthday! Our water park opened on May 29, 1993. It was much smaller back then. In fact, our news release announced it would be a five-year project, costing $3 million. Boy, were we wrong! Here’s an article from The Herald, from back on October 30, 1992: What? SplashWater Safari? Yes, that was…

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The day CBS News came to town

48 Hours' correspondant Richard Schlesinger and park president Will Koch

What fun it is to revisit our past – with oh so many wonderful stories to tell from our 73 years! This includes a visit from CBS News! Here’s a share of a video our ACE friend Sean posted on YouTube. (ACE = American Coaster Enthusiasts. Yes, that’s a thing.) For the backstory about the day…

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#ThrowbackThursday: Ski Show

Human Pyramid

Did you know we used to have a water-ski show? It was a long time ago. Sixty years, actually. It was called the Willie Bartley Water Ski Show and was performed on Lake Rudolph. This was back when Lake Rudolph was called Rudolph Lake. And it was smaller then than it is now. I kid…

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#FlashbackFriday: 1955 Chrysler Commercial

Chrysler commercial

It’s #FlashbackFriday again and we found an amazing piece of Santa Claus Land history to share with you. This is the “Chrysler TV Caravan,” with a commercial touting their 1955 “hundred-million-dollar gift” – a new Chrysler! Don’t miss Santa Jim waving at the end. (He’s one of our 4th generation owners’ great-grandfathers.) Of course, this is…

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#FlashbackFriday to 1984

Santa Claus Land logo

Does anyone scrapbook the old-fashioned way any more? It used to be such a thing that the noun became a verb. Nowadays, the digital form of scrapbooking is so handy, with the ability to share old photos with virtually anyone worldwide. Throughout our 73-year history, there’s always been someone taking photos. They’re tucked away in…

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Today in Holiday World history

This is quite a day in our history. May 19, 1990:   #ThrowbackThursday to May 19, 1990 … and the premiere of Raging Rapids! #YouWillGetWet pic.twitter.com/FlIas0o8sc — Holiday World (@HolidayWorld) May 19, 2016 May 19, 1995: On this date in 1995, @48Hours‘ Richard Schlesinger came to visit! @aceonlineorg @SchlesCBS #HeDidntRideRaven pic.twitter.com/vJrygnuFs0 — Holiday World (@HolidayWorld)…

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Podcast: The one with the fast-talking New Yorker

Every time we sit down to record a new episode, it is with the determination to keep the length at less than an hour. And every time, we fail. Stephen came up with a good idea – he pulled out a portion of one of our longer discussions and will create a mini-episode for next…

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“Carry the church around the village”

When Nathan started posting photos of the town's 132-year-old church moving to its new home one-half mile away on the Santa Claus Museum's Facebook page, Sabine from Germany commented, "… in German we have a saying: 'carry the church around the village.'" Indeed, Mrs. Koch's dream to carry the past into the future took flight…

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