Friday, March 21, 2014

The Dells 2014

A bit behind the curve, but this is an example of Facebook stealing my longer posts.  A bunch of these photos are from the back and forth I had with Kyle and Ming as my family traveled to Great Wolf Lodge at the Dells (and back) two weekends ago.  Eryn had a wonderful time.  She wanted to play the Magi Quest area that had been installed where Wiley's Woods playground used to be, and spent a whole day running around the hotel chasing the various quests with her wand.  Much more exciting than the one-store setup that used to be at the Mall of America.  She spent almost the full day waving her globe-ended wand and my wife and I just sat around reading.  Weird that she's getting to be old enough we're not always necessary.

She played so much in one day that she made the Top Runes This Month list on the hotel channel.  I know she upgraded to the more complicated package early on, so those are hard-earned runes.

This is my favorite picture from the weekend and perhaps the only one I have of her on the slides, or in the waterpark at all.  The last time I remember having her at Great Wolf she was so little she was sprinting away from the giant bucket of water every time the bell went off and she wouldn't go near a slide taller than two feet.  This time we rode them all, including the giant tornado-like structure.  When we went down, I ended up with my back to the drop, facing her.  Her eyes got huge when we took the plunge into the funnel.  It reminded me of when we went tubing at the ski slopes near home.

After much consideration, that phone must be there because there are older people who stay with their grandkids and may need bathroom aid?

I posted this picture over on Facebook to let my friends know I was trying to reach them.

The beaver that guards the entrance.  I'm convinced he's getting ready to whack someone rather than carrying a stick to his lodge.  The kids really seem to enjoy the animatronic presentation twice a day.  For me, it interrupted my reading in front of the fireplace.  Nearby are a couple of birds that look like part of the entryway display/decoration, but are set off by the Magi Quest wands.  There were a lot of kids who were really excited to figure out they could make them chirp.  Looking at this guy some more, he reminds me a lot of the gopher from Caddyshack.

We ate at Denny's - the older one that's not affiliated with the chain - and at the Moosejaw where you can have ribs and wings.  Eryn was incredibly embarrassed when Pooteewheet and I put on our antler hats.

She drove to The Dells, so she's about as tired as she looks.

Downstairs, they redid the gaming area.  This guy was part of the Metallica pinball machine.  Ride the Lightning!

Here's the machine art.

The important thing is to make sure you get all the band members.  I only got as far as Kirk :(

They also had one of the limited edition Wizard of Oz machines that I played at the MN State Fair.  A fun machine, but I swear I manage to let Toto Run Away - which involves losing a ball - two times out of three.

We stopped in Osseo, Wisconsin, on the way out and back and did some antiquing.  I thought Matthew might like to know they had a few machines for sale, although nothing that got me excited enough that I'd replace Luna's kennel location with a machine.

I could have picked up a few good law books.

My wife was disappointed this guy wasn't for sale.  But he was just there to guard the gift shop.

And this is the real reason we stopped.  The Norske Nook.  Sweet, sweet, pie.  We stopped on the way out to eat lunch and on the way back just to get pie.  I had three pieces including banana cream, raspberry, and Mounds coconut.  The coconut pie was weird because the next day it smelled like I was peeing baked coconut flakes.  Definitely a place we'll stop at again.

And if you don't stop for the pie, stop to buy a copy of 91 Ways to Serve Lefse for that special someone in your life, by Mr. Lefse!

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