Sunday, May 1, 2011

Day 1299 - Legoland

Yesterday, we took the kids to Legoland for the first time.  Since you can easily do a search of Legoland and find all of the reviews and minutiae of the theme park, I thought I would just quickly do an experiential summary of our day with blocks.

Lisa and I decided at the last minute to take this trip to Legoland since almost all of our weekends in May were booked.  I remember when I was a kid, and my parents would take me on surprise trips to all of the wonderful places in Sacramento like the Capitol, Sutter's Fort, the Capitol, farm land, and the Capitol.  So I thought it would be fun if we didn't tell Emma and Andrew where we were going.

The kids kept on asking us where we were going, but we told them it was going to be a surprise.  Unfortunately, there was a misunderstanding halfway through the trip because we had to drive through Anaheim.  As Emma and Andrew recognized some of the surroundings, they began to think that we were going to go to Disneyland.  I had to put that idea to rest, so I quickly told them, "Mickey Mouse died of leukemia."  After ten minutes of confused tears, they accepted they were not going to Disneyland.

When we finally arrived at Legoland, the kids were extremely excited.  As I glanced at the park map, all of the stuff for the younger kids were towards the left, and the stuff for the older kids were towards the right.  And smack in the center of the park -- the area I was looking forward to -- was MiniLand:  a collection of gigantic Lego recreations of cities across the USA and (drumroll) STAR WARS SCENES!!!  May the geek be with you!

We only went on a handful of rides, but the one thing they all had in common was short lines with long wait times.  I attribute this to the young age of the riders.  It's hard enough to wrangle three year olds at home, so imagine the difficulty of wrangling them at a theme park.  I saw many an empty ride vehicles pass my impatient eyes because of unfocused toddlers unable to quickly enter a moving seat.  I screamed at an inattentive parent, "If they can put monkeys in space, you can put that hairy kid of yours in that ride bucket!" 

What the kids really enjoyed were the many play areas.  There were air conditioned rooms where you could play with Legos, and many outdoor play areas with slides, swings, and colorful houses.  All I could think as I saw the wide smiles on the kids was, "I paid $300 for this when I could've taken them to a park?  F me!"

Something I must commend Legoland for were the healthier food choices at their dining areas.  There were plenty of generic theme park food like pizza and burgers, but there were also salad bars, fresh fruit cups, and other healthy alternatives.  Unfortunately, the chicken stir-fry I had for lunch stir-fried my stomach enough where the maintenance crew had to stir-clean a toilet.

At the end of the day, we took a leisurely stroll through MiniLand.  It was an open area where Las Vegas, Washington D.C., New York, Southern California, and New Orleans were recreated entirely out of Legos.  They were all wittily realized with style and visual gags.  But more important than US cities, the new addition were the recreations of Naboo, Geonosis, Kashyyk, Mustafar, Tatooine, Hoth, and Endor.  And if you don't know what those are, I will hide my geekiness by telling you they are individuals on the FBI's most wanted list.

Overall, we had a nice time at Legoland.  The kids were still a little young to take full advantage of everything the park had to offer, but it was a great way to spend seven hours.  I do think it's a little pricey when you compare it to other parks like Disneyland, but there are enough coupons and discounts out there to comfort your wallet.

The only bad experience we had at the park was when the kids freaked out at the Lego 3d movie.  But when we got home, they wanted to play with their Legos right away; I'd say that's a pretty big endorsement of the theme park.  Although Lisa and the kids got mad at me when I tried to recreate the 3d movie by throwing Legos at their face.  That alone was worth the admission of the park!

No comments: