It started with having to get up at 5 am yesterday. I do NOT like getting up that early on a weekend unless I'm getting paid for it. Just sayin... Besides getting a shower and getting the kid up and dressed, I had to try and straighten up the house enough to keep the folks from yelling about the mess. I swear their house looks like no one lives in it most of the time. I prefer the "lived in" look. Ok, so I'm messy. Whatever. The folks showed up a little after 6 am and we were off. We headed towards Madison and then turned south through Janesville. From there we headed towards Lake Geneva and finally our destination. Gurnee Illinois.
I have no freakin clue why the hell we needed to drive up to Madison and back down in order to get to some place that is no farther north than where we started out.
Anyways, thanks to Dad missing one exit and stopping for breakfast, we arrived at Great America at about 11 am. All during the month of October, they are celebrating FearFest in honor of Halloween. So right off the bat, the kid was nervous.
When we entered the park, everything was done up for Halloween. Nick was not liking all the headstones and "dead bodies" all over the place. There were performers in front of the carousel dressed up as zombies and singing some creepy songs. They didn't get too close to us, so he was pretty good.
Our first stop was the motion simulator. Normally it is set up as the space shuttle and you get to experience a space flight. In honor of Halloween, it is set up as Elvira's haunted house. When we first went in, Nick had to flirt with the lady sitting next to us. It made me smile that it didn't faze him one bit that she was black and he just chatted with her. I say this because my folks are bit prejudiced and I so do not want my son following their lead. They aren't openly rude, but they tend to go out of their way to not have direct contact. Anyways, the ride was real cool. I swear it felt like a real roller coaster ride. I had to keep reminding myself that we never actually moved anywhere. hehe Nick claimed afterward that it was scary, but he seemed fine during the ride.
I did manage to talk Nick into going on a couple of the smaller rides. We went on a scrambler first. Halfway through he told me he changed his mind about going on a roller coaster later and then got real quiet. After we got off he was fine though and we headed off to the Whizzer. It’s the smallest of the regular roller coasters. He did really great and I think he enjoyed most of it. I had enough reaction to it to realize that I wasn’t going to be going on the larger rides any time soon. lol
We played a lot of the smaller games that you can win tickets off of. Nick managed to get a small haul of junk toys. My wonderful father talked him into getting a harmonica. The man is a pain. hehehe
The food of course was outrageously priced. When we finally got around to eating lunch, I paid $13.50 for a slice of pizza, some bread sticks and a large Coke. Granted it was a huge piece of pizza but still. They take a small square pan pizza and cut it from corner to corner in fourths. So basically, you end up with a very wide short piece of pizza. I bought the bread sticks for the kid but he of course wouldn’t touch them. I swear I dunno how the kid didn’t pass out from hunger yesterday.
Nick went on all the rides in Camp Cartoon Network. He even went on the mini roller coaster all by himself.
That’s my munchkin in the gray shirt. He looks a lil scared if ya ask me. hehe Forgive the poor quality of the picture. It’s the one that the park snaps of you and is really the only picture we got of him. Mom forgot the camera in the car. Doh!!
The only ride in the campground that scared him was the 10 foot high ferris wheel. lmao The cars were enclosed and there was no danger, but when it stopped with him at the top he started crying a little bit.
Next we spent quite a bit of time in Bugs Bunny National Park. It is full of things for smaller children to do. He spent half an hour in the nature trail. It’s just like the play equipment at the McDonald’s playland. I dang near had to drag him out of there. hehe They had this one lodge that was a total madhouse. Imagine like 50 kids with air guns and air cannons shooting foam balls all over a 3 floor barn. I lost Nick the moment we walked in the door. After about a half hour, I had to drag him out of there so we could go find my folks. They had wandered off to a smoking area and weren’t able to find us when they got back because we were in the lodge getting pummeled. hehe
Next we came on some park employees dressed as evil clowns. Nick just flipped. Mom had gone out and got her camera and tried to get pictures, but later realized that she was hitting the power button and not the one you use to take the pictures. hehe One of the guys was a complete jerk and kept coming after Nick even though he had to realize the kid was terrified. I wasn’t too happy and it reinforced my dislike of clowns. I just don’t like em.
It took us 3 tries to get on the train that runs around the park. It was worth the trouble though. They had a mini show included. The train was highjacked by wild west zombies. Nick was a little freaked out by the actors getting so close to him but afterwards was real excited about the whole show.
Later we went back to playing some of the games. At one point we were at some of the crane games outside and Dad managed to get his quarters stuck in the machine. While we were all hunched over trying to get them out, I got a very pleasant surprise. An absolutely gorgeous Hispanic gentleman came up and gave me 2 Finding Nemo toys to give to the kid. If my folks hadn’t been along with, I would have tried to strike a conversation with him. As it was though, I just thanked him profusely and made the kid thank him too.
It was about this time that we decided it was time to head home because it was getting to be about 7 pm. On the way back to the front of the park we encountered the trolley coming through with a load of zombies aboard. The trolley stopped and right there the zombies performed a few songs. Nick did not like that they were so darn close. We left when one of the guys got up and started singing Bad To The Bone. Lemmie tell you, he was no George Thorogood. hehe
We ended up heading home a different way than we came up. We went through Rockford and then Galena. It was much more direct than the trip there. I don’t think Dad enjoyed the ride through Rockford much. We saw at least 2 people pulled over by the cops and one real nasty car accident.
I was going to post about the trip when we got home, but it was nearly midnight. Needless to say, I was pooped. We took most of the stuff out of the car and just dropped it all in the living room. Then I crawled into bed and passed out.
All in all, we had a great day. Nick is being quite lovey today. I’m thinking next summer we are going to have to visit when they have the water rides running. I think he will get a kick out of that. :O)
There was some knitting done on my green socks on the way to the park in the morning. But frankly, there was no way I was going to be doing a short row heel in the dark on the way home. I'll post pictures once I get the heel done.