Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sesame Place - Day Two

We had our breakfast with Elmo scheduled for our second morning. Well, Husband and Son did, I planned to sit out in the car. It didn't make sense to me to pay two adult tickets (around $20) just to watch my son be too excited and distracted to eat breakfast.

The boys had a great time. The characters walked around the tables and spent time with the kids. As part of the package a picture with Elmo is given. The picture wasn't great but, my husband made up for it by getting some other cute shots. Husband recommends the breakfast to families with pre-schoolers. It is a fun and cute experience. Grandma will probably want to go when she comes to visit.

We ended up running into friends from my son's school so we spent most of the day with them.

There are wet rides and dry rides. Most of the park is taken up by the water rides. Slides, sprinklers, wading pools and, my favorite, the lazy river.

There are very few rides small children can ride without having an adult with them. The plus: you spend more time with your child. The minus: you have to go on rides you might not like.

It is a decently run park. The younger employees, like in any summer job, run from decent to apathetic.

The best think I saw from the employees was the missing child alerts. An announcement would come over the park speakers announcing that a child had been found and was in the 'Lost Child' room. Pretty standard. I saw the employees help a child to get to that room. It's done fast and friendly. Most of the employees are near park phones and will call a manager. One girl closed her game stand to help a little boy. They must get some training because she was quick and calmed the child before taking his hand and leading him to 'Lost Child'.

The parade is cute and worth seeing. It was a rock-themed parade so they didn't do all Sesame Street songs. I would have preferred all songs from the Street.

The food is kinda crappy. Well, the quality was okay, it was the selection that sucked. Mostly toddler food. Chicken fingers, fries, pizza, hotdogs were available for kid meals. There were a few adult choices. Emphasis on few. The food itself was good and were decent portions. There are some adorable Elmo cupcakes that have a good flavor. The prices are a bit high for a normal lunch but comparable to any amusement park. We had a season pass (gotten through some special deal) and they give 30% food and souvenirs in the park. We saved a lot of money.

Sesame Place - Day One

We got to our hotel, checked in an unloaded. Since it was early afternoon, we decided to head over and check out the park. When we got there, we noticed a lot of people leaving and the gates to enter the park, closed. A thunderstorm had been sighted and they were closing the park. Son was a bit sad but he knew he had a lot planned for tomorrow.

We got our passes from the window, and a picture of Son in front of the closed gates and then went off in search of entertainment. Entertainment was found in the form of Target.

A few things to know about Jersey: They are mean to their drivers. To make a left turn, the driver must first make a right, then try to get back to the road and then go across an intersection. It makes about the same amount of sense in writing as it does in driving. In brief, driving in Jersey was annoying. the GPS was only slightly helpful.

Our hotel was in Jersey and the park is in PA. Next time, we're staying in the same state as the park.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Sesame Place - The Adventure Begins

So, after the glowing review from another mom, we decided to take our face to Sesame Place for a little 'school is over' vacation.

Since we are Marriott members, we tried looking for deals through the Marriott site. Nuthin'. Occasionally, their site ties into local attractions and will offer decent deals. Not this time.

Husband and I decided to look at the deals through the Sesame Place site. At first glance, the deals looked good. Husband did some research and found out that the lower-priced hotels were in a crappy area and were run-down. People complained of car break-ins and dilapidated rooms. My husband comes from a long line of paranoid people so, we decided to look a bit further from the park.

Husband found a deal at the Hyatt, Princeton. (Odd aside, their website layout is identical to Marriott's site) Yes, Jersey (shudder). The hotel is 15 miles away and doesn't have a shuttle. We're going for piece of mind not convenience.

We will be doing Breakfast with Elmo on our first day in the park. Well, Husband and Son will. It seemed a bit silly for two of us adults to pay the $17 fee. My favorite was Oscar and I don't think he would throw a good breakfast party.

You've caught me, I'm not one of those mothers who feel the need to be present at every childhood event.

We booked through the Sesame site. While they confirmed immediately, we didn't get the hotel confirmation until a few days later. That made Husband nervous.

The tickets for Sesame Place and the Elmo breakfast are meant to be printed out, which we did. Husband had me check them multiple times.

Wilderness Blogging

We went camping in Rocky Gap this past weekend. Ah, camping with a 4 year old.

Husband had found a tent and some sleeping bags on sale so we had some equipment. Camping would be a lot more fun if it didn't require so much equipment to be comfortable! Friends of ours camp regularly so they allowed us to share their good stuff.

Our friends have a lot of nifty equipment to make camping more comfortable. They have a camp stove and love to do a little gourmet cooking. We ate well when it was their turn to cook.

For lunch on our last day, I brought hot dogs, chicken sausages and beans. I wanted to give the boys something to cook over the fire. I found marshmallow forks in the Dollar Spot at Target because it isn't always easy to find a perfect stick. Okay, I bought them because they were a dollar and I thought they were cute. We put the stick through the middle of the hot dogs and split the ends so they would spider out when they cooked. It was a version of octo-dogs. I think the boys had more fun cooking than eating. The night before, Son got tired of eating s'mores and offered to cook marshmallows for everyone. A grate was provided over the fire pit so I put the cans on the grate over the fire to cook. I felt so chuck-wagony!

I froze the hot dogs and sausages so they were thawed by the time lunch came around on the second/last day. They helped to keep the other stuff cold and were ready to go when we needed them.

I like camping in short bursts. I don't know if I would like it for a week or more. One or two nights seem to be my limit. I like my house. I like my bed. I like a clean and private bathroom. I like my electronics! Nice to visit but, I wouldn't want to live there.