Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Price of Oil and Vacations

Just about every year our family ventures down to southern Indiana to attend the Holiday World/Splashin' Safari amusement and water park in Santa Claus, Indiana. That's right. It's located in Santa Claus, Indiana. In fact, the park used to be called "Santa Claus Land". I know that some of you Big Doofus readers are familiar with this place. It's an awesome park that's very family friendly. They have world-class rides and the water park is first rate.

But instead of spending all of our money on park tickets and gas, we decided to stay close to home this year. I'm sure that the kids will not let us get away with this every year, but it was great in '08. We visited the Plainfield Aquatic Center only ten minutes from our house. Sure, it's no Splashin' Safari, but the pools were huge with three cool slides, diving boards, indoor basketball and games, etc. If we lived in the city limits of Plainfield, we would have saved a few more bucks. But everyone had a blast with the exception of my 14 year old boy (and that was his own choosing).

We left the park at 4:30 and headed to downtown Indy for dinner at The Old Spaghetti Factory. When I first moved to Indy in 1991 this was about the only restaurant destination downtown. That's all different now with downtown being so incredibly vibrant, but The Old Spaghetti Factory is a nice, affordable place to eat. We had a reservation for all 16 of us so we didn't even have to wait for our table--perfect. I walked out to the waiting area for a bit and got to hold my youngest nephew for a few minutes while his daddy visited the bathroom. That's where this picture was taken. He's a very mommy-attached boy, so you take ANY opportunity you can get to bond with him--and I think we did that a bit. He was either REALLY interested in me here or just cannot get over my weird beard or big nose.

We ended the evening with the 10:00 pm showing of WALL-E. Yes, that's a very late time to start a movie, but we all managed to stay awake through most of it. I'd seen it already and loved it the second time (and didn't feel guilty about dozing off for five to ten minutes in the middle). You should all go out and see this movie. It's great for so many reasons, but I'll spare getting into it as it was covered very well by Timothy Power in his "Sometimes I'm Actually Coherent" blog (one of my new favorites along with Arby's Archives).


Paula Werne, Holiday World PR said...

We missed you, Big Doofus!

Big Doofus said...

Wow! I thought that comment from "Paula Werne, Holiday World PR" was made up but the link is real. Looks like someone is using their Internet tools to see what we're saying about Holiday World...hmmm...let's see...

It sure would be great to get some free Holiday World tickets.


I'd love to have a year's supply of burritos from Q-Doba.

But seriously, thanks for the comment. We'll be back. We really do like the park.

Arby said...

Thank you for your kind words.

Toni said...

Love that Splash Island. We went a few weeks ago as well (and I had to battle with 2 women over their, uh hem, ownership of one of the gigundo umbrellas).

Just wanted to remind you guys about Indiana Beach's Homeschool week, if only for future reference. Tickets are only $9 per person and there are even some workshops planned if the kids want to attend. The park is totally empty and, while a very old/retro park, the rollercoasters are good.
(there's a waterpark there too, but additional fees for that).

We're going, and have for the past 2 years. The dates on the first link are incorrect (it's actually going to be August 25-29). Tickets must be ordered by Aug 11.



eally said...

Sounds like you guys had a great time...your nephew's a cutie!

Re: your comment on my blog name now that we are buying a house - I've been pondering that very question myself? lol

Rebekah said...

Sounds like some good family time. I want to go to Holiday world sometime. I wish that is where we had gone this past weekend.

We went camping at Jellystone in Monticello/ and to Indiana Beach Amusement park. I was disappointed in the water park there.

Maybe next year...

JAN said...

Sounds like a wonderful day! I've noticed that more and more people are opting to stay home during their vacation time and try and find fun things to do locally. I guess the new catch phrase for that is "Staycation".
I'm glad you guys enjoyed yours.:-)