When a park sits dormant, vacant, for years, it's a miracle if it EVER gets refurbished again. Well, I'll be witnessing a miracle of sorts today, when I visit Santa's Village Azoosment Park in Elgin, IL. To add to the miraculous? They've bought two of Kiddieland's rides, saving them from the scrap metal heap.
It used to be Santa's Village, and I remember all sorts of North Polian buildings and rides, and the Jolly Old Elf himself. But now it's, well, we'll see what it's all about in a short few hours. It's an "azoosment park" so animals have been included, which is smart because everyone enjoys visiting gentle farm animals, but especially kids. Give kids a petting zoo and they're happy for hours.
What's really ironic is that it was brought to my attention that two years ago this week, Kiddieland closed. That was the beginning of my Road Trip. And what will I be doing to commemorate the end of said trip? Visiting a retooled park that was one of my childhood haunts, that's rescued some of the vintage rides from our beloved Kiddieland, allowing a whole new generation of kids to enjoy them.
It's poetic, it's an eloquent full circle moment. I dig when stuff like that happens.