Yesterday I took all three kids to the park and we were there from 4 to a little after 9. What a long day that was with me being the only one with the two toddlers most of the time.
We were able to find close parking since some folks had left already which was nice, but I had problems with our stroller right away, I couldn’t really turn it so that made things tough until I figured out the front wheel brakes were on. (I didn’t even know we had front wheel brakes!)
I finally got a picture of the new tram lines they are using. These are very helpful and make getting a tram to the parking lot a lot easier - especially for folks with strollers. There are only certain places you can put a stroller and some people used to try to take them on where you weren’t allowed to. The stroller section of the tram line is now clearly marked so you get to the right place. There are lines for people to wait in now too which keeps the mob scene to a minimum. One thing of interest is now they only have one tram in at a time. They used to bring in two if it was busy, but not now. I’m guessing things move faster with the new line system so the wait is probably the same.
The plan was to take the two little ones to the zoo first while the oldest did her thing. Well, the little ones wanted to ride and not visit the zoo so my plans were scrapped. They rode the Bizzy Bees, the Tiny Timbers, Convoy, the mini Pirat and the small swings before heading to ZOOAMERICA.
Once we got to the zoo we ran into Ranger Scratch. The little ones were afraid of him for some reason and he played along that he was hurt and disappointed that they wouldn’t shake his hand, but I’m sure Ranger Scratch will recover.
We all shared a Pepsi ICEE before heading back into the park.
We did the Dry Gultch Railroad next. I’m very happy to see that they did some improvements to the scenery here. New paint and some updates make it seem like less of a dying attraction. Every park needs a train ride in my opinion and this one is not too bad. If you ride this and are afraid of snakes, be sure to sit on the side of the car that is closest to the station. There is a bit of theming (with some spraying water finally again) that is snake related on the side of the cars that is farthest from the station.
Somewhere in there was a ride on the Carrousel and the mini-himalaya. Then I took the little ones for some dinner – around 7pm – while Sheridan left to meet up with her friend Sparky who works at the park and was getting off her shift.
The kids and I ate Boardwalk Fries and a Chicken BLT wrap from Gourmet Grille. I believe this is the same wrap sold at the Mixed Grill in Pioneer Frontier but the size of this wrap was nearly double anything I ever got there. There actually was enough food in this wrap to feed myself and the two children with me having to really work to eat the last part of it. A filling meal that kept us from needing ice cream later. I had stopped at the vending machines next to the Flying Falcon to pick up a bottle of chocolate milk for the kids ($2). This is the way to go if your kids want chocolate milk since what you get at the eateries that have milk is a milk box and it has about a third of the amount of milk in it and costs nearly as much.
A word here about Boardwalk Fries. Boardwalk Fries uses peanut oil so it can be a source of allergy problems for some people. Our son has a very mild allergy to peanuts and we have always given him these fries with no problem, but others with a more severe allergy may not be so lucky.
After dinner we went to the arcade and playing some 21 ball – not sure what it is really called but you roll balls down a ramp that has holes in it and try to reach 21 so you win. Alyn and Sterling both won this but really it is just a low key game to keep them busy for awhile.
Not too crowded, lines were short and the weather was gorgeous. Maybe was a little too long as people started to get cranky near the end of the night (namely me when our son wedged himself inside the caboose of the little train and I couldn’t get him out!)
The kids and I ate for under $20 on this trip which included: water in refillable cup (free), soda refill, chocolate milk, Pepsi ICEE, regular boardwalk fries and a chicken BLT wrap. It was plenty of food for us for a nearly six hour trip over dinner. Some people would balk at the price but if you took your kids to a fast food joint you’d spend that much easy, and this food was better.