Happy Birthday to us… Part 2!

75th Dedication Plaque

We (I) recently discovered from IAAPA historian Jim Futrell (shameless plug listen to our interview with him here) that Santa Claus Land kind of has two opening days, so we get to celebrate 75 years twice!  Just kidding, we’re an amusement park–everyone knows we celebrate our birthdays EVERY day of our birthday year, and some…

Read More »

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…

Read More »

Podcast: Promises Kept

Leah - Golden Ticket Award

I won’t ruin the surprise, but a promise made long ago (and repeatedly) was finally kept this morning … The Golden Ticket Awards were held last weekend in Connecticut. Leah was pleased as punch to accept the #1 Water Park Ride award (Wildebeest‘s eighth win in as many years). ^ Bonus points if you can…

Read More »

On this date in 1955

Reagan, Santa, L.J. Koch

Ronald Reagan at Santa Claus Land? We have proof! From the Holiday World archives: Actor (and future president) Ronald Reagan visited @SantaClausLand on this day in 1955. #HW70 pic.twitter.com/hDsNk9mbgt — Holiday World (@HolidayWorld) March 29, 2016 The Gipper is pictured above with our founder, Louis J. Koch, and Santa Jim. The trio toured the park (which was…

Read More »

Happy birthday to us!

Sixty-seven years ago today, Louis J. Koch opened a little park he called Santa Claus Land. All these years later and his idea for a place for families to enjoy time together continues to thrive. In fact, this week USA Today named our Splashin’ Safari the Best Water Park in the Nation. How about that!…

Read More »

Happy birthday to … us!

Happy birthday! It was 59 years ago today that Louis J. Koch opened the world’s first theme park, Santa Claus Land. Fifty-nine years later, LJK’s grandson Will keeps up the family tradition along with his mom and two of his daughters. Plus, there are hundreds of us who feel as if we’re part of the…

Read More »

Remembering Reagan

It was back in March of 1955. A movie star by the name of Ronnie Reagan was crossing the country, promoting his new TV show. He made an appearance at the General Electric plant in nearby Tell City. Someone there suggested that he check out Santa Claus Land, located in a neighboring county. Back then,…

Read More »

A story from the 1940s

1956 Bill Koch with parents

Mrs. Koch just called and told me this little story; she asked me to add it to our HoliBlog: On Sunday, there was a knock at her door. It was an elderly gentleman, who asked if she knew the whereabouts of L.J. Koch, Jr., an old friend. She explained that he had passed away; he…

Read More »