Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Family Vacation 2013: Chicago Land, Pt. 4

50% chance of rain on my family's second day in Chicago Land, but I convinced Erin to try Santa's Village Azoosment Park once more. I'd let it go, I told her, if we got rained out again; I knew the forecast for my family's third (and last) day in the area was good, but I wasn't willing to give up our plans for that day.

As it turned out, we chose the perfect day to go to Santa's Village. Only a handful of people were willing to chance the forecast, and no kidding: end of June, and we saw, maybe, four other families? No lines whatsoever, and no rain: sweet!

The similarities between Santa's Village Azoosment Park and Santa's Land Family Theme Park & Zoo in Cherokee, North Carolina are multitudinous, as you can well imagine. I can't say which I prefer. The latter offers so, so! much more in terms of kitschy, tacky, vintage structures and stuff, which I love. At Santa's Village, there's little beyond concrete mushrooms, and I'm not so much into concrete mushrooms.

Eat Up and Affected

Santa explained twice why the mushrooms make sense, but I failed to grasp his words. Something about elves being descendents or relatives of different, small beings who love (live in?) mushrooms. Santa explained about everything. Which goes to my very favorite thing about Santa's Village: Santa himself.

Santa at Santa's Village can tell you about its mushrooms, North Pole, and artwork. He can tell you about every Santa who's ever worked there. He can show you his bells, keys, and (best of all) his map: explaining how he zips in and out of time zones so as to travel the world in one night. ("I kind of teared up," my Erin said, later, "when he was explaining how he does it; it was just so magical.")

Santa at Santa's Village can turn a Santa hater into a Santa hugger so gradually, so quietly, that she doesn't even realize what's happening. No one does. It's just like magic; it really is.

(Since returning home, I've learned: Santa from Santa's Village has a blogspot; check him out!)

Here are some additional photos from our day:




The North Pole at Santa's Village is frosty!

She was so very proud of herself for riding the pony; she really was saying: "I'm a cowgirl!"


Brandee's and Jim's Travel Tips

Jim and I are big fans of deal sites like Groupon and Living Social. Jim had purchased Groupons for Erin's and my trip to Santa's Village; we were able to take all the little kids for a total of $40 in admission.


  1. Hi Brandee,

    Santa in July? :) Did it feel weird? It looks like your family had a great time there together. :)

    Have a great week, Brandee.

    Jennifer Dougan

    1. Not really, but we visit Santa year-round; he owns a local copy shop! :)