Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloween Spooktacular - Part One

The end of this past week was unusual for us. Last Sunday morning, the father of Daddy's best friend died after a long illness. The viewing and funeral for Grant Sheppard were originally scheduled for Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon. Last minute changes on Wednesday moved things to Thursday night and Friday afternoon. So we left town shortly after getting the boys out of school on Thursday and headed back home for the viewing. It was held at Bell Shoals Baptist Church in Brandon. We were able to spend some time with the Sheppard family and Daddy saw several of his friends from high school that he had not seen in quite a while.

After the viewing was over about 8:00pm, we headed over to Orlando. Mommy had made reservations a couple of weeks back for a cheap hotel off of Travelocity so that we could take the boys to SeaWorld on Friday since there was no school. SeaWorld is currently doing their Halloween Spooktacular - which involves Trick or Treating around the park, a special "Countdown to Halloween" show with Count von Count and Elmo, as well as a special Sesame Street character breakfast. We stayed at the Rosen Plaza Hotel (for $40!) and got up early on Friday morning to head into the park for breakfast at the Seafire Inn. The food at the breakfast was wonderful - it was a buffet and there was cereal, muffins, pastry, fruit, yogurt, eggs, sausage, ham, bacon, potatoes, and french toast sticks with syrup plus drinks! The characters did a dance on stage together and then most walked around to all of the different tables to say Hi! Elmo and Count von Count stayed on the stage so you could go up and meet them for an official photo op if you wanted. Parker loved having his picture taken with all of the characters while Wesley was thrilled by the characters until they got close to him.

Next, we headed over to Wild Arctic. The beluga whales were active, the walrus was hiding, and while the polar bear was asleep, at least he was out where we could see him. That green thing next to him is a plastic alligator!

Outside Wild Arctic was this cool stage. Later on in the day there was a costumed DJ here inviting kids to dance and play.

Some of the cool fish pumpkin decorations found throughout the park.

Next up on the boys' wish list was to play in Shamu's Happy Harbor. Here's Parker climbing in the nets. We also did the Shamu Express coaster as well as Ocean Commotion while we were here.

Some of the cool characters going around dancing and playing music in the park.

Riding the carousel.

After the carousel ride, Daddy took off to head back to Seffner for the funeral. It turned out to be a two-hour funeral plus the trip to graveside afterwards. Fortunately, Daddy was able to stay around for everything plus spend some time with his best friend Mike and his family before heading back to us at Sea World, arriving shortly before the park closed.

Meanwhile Mommy and the boys stayed in the park and started the trick or treating. The park provided special treat bags, as well as a treasure map to follow and find the candy stations along with games and other cool treats. There were also all kinds of interesting characters along the path.
Back by the old Clydesdale pavilion, a crested caracara bird was out on display with it handler. Parker thought the bird was neat because it was making all kinds of noises. And the handler had a trading card for each of the boys with a picture of the bird and some information about it for their treat bags.

One of the trick or treat stations. There were about 15 throughout the park. Each one featured a different kind of candy and you got 1-2 pieces of it in your bag.

From there we were able to catch the very first Shamu show of the day. And we were introduced to the newest member of the Shamu family - a baby born just 3 weeks ago who was out swimming around with her mama. Because of the new addition, they deviated from the normal show routine and did a bunch of different manuevers and talking to us about the whales. It was a good show. We sat in the Soak Zone but managed not to get wet!

No comments: