June 15, 2010

Wisconsin: Waterslides, Fireworks, and Recapturing My Youth

My wonderful husband arranged a short little getaway for us last week, up to the Wisconsin Dells. Believe it or not, even though I am a native midwesterner, I have never been to the Dells before. We decided before we went that we had absolutely no interest in acting our age while we were gone, and therefore came up with a list of activities that would make any 10 year old drool. I will run down the list with you now, in order of childishness:

5) We visited a Tanger Outlet Mall. Surprisingly, this was probably the most adult thing we did the whole time we were gone. And, not surprisingly, the only thing we left with was kids' clothes. Yes, they have too much, I am aware of that....

4) We went mini golfing. I have always loved mini golf. It's so much better than real golf because it has fun decorations, and because it requires a much shorter attention span. The one we went to was called Pirate's Cove, which made it awesome by default. We played two rounds, and I was pretty much horrible at both however I did not loose my ball or send it down a waterfall so I consider it an overall success.

3) We went to Knuckleheads. Just the name itself really should've guaranteed this activity a top spot on the "Ridiculously Childish Activity-o-Meter". It was a cross between an arcade, a bowling alley, and an amusement park, and suffice to say that it looked as though a clown had thrown up all over it. We watched a 4.3 second 4D movie, played oodles of Skeeball and won some lead-paint ridden plastic Stegasaurus for Lainey to play with. We stopped long enough to have a bite to eat, and then headed back in for a couple rounds of not-so-cosmic bowling (as in, they were too lazy to dim the lights so we just got music). Despite what my husband says, I came out the winner at 2 games to 1.

2) We went to Noah's Ark. This place is the self-professed water park capital of the world, claiming to be the largest in the entire country. Considering that it's really the only water park I've ever been to, I cannot confirm nor deny this. However, I can say without a doubt that this slide:
made me want to simultaneously scream, vomit, and purchase life insurance. You climb 32984382 flights of stairs (which, given my fear of heights, was already asking too much) and then stand in a capsule as if you're going to be sent into space. Or buried alive. And then, just when you get comfortable in there, the floor drops out from underneath you and you go straight down. STRAIGHT DOWN. Five seconds later you land in a pool so hard that water gets shoved up your nose and your brain floats. Will I be going on that ever again? NO.

For the record, the rest of the park earned an A-. I say A- because I'm pretty sure the park was also paved in glass shards. I realize they did this to make it easier to "grip" with wet feet and to protect them from being sued by that chubby, balance-impaired guy in the speedo who bit the pavement. But the only way I could've saved myself from the pain was to purchase water socks, so needless to say - I suffered through it. (This park was also a pretty prime people-watching spot, too. Regular people-watching is fun, but put those people in bathing suits and WHOA NELLY!)

1) We bought fireworks. Fireworks - and I mean, GOOD fireworks - are illegal in Illinois, so we took it upon ourselves to seize this over-the-border opportunity. We stopped into a veritable firework warehouse and were immediately overwhelmed. How do you know what to get? We wandered up and down the aisles for a bit, taking in all the firecrackers, rockets, and smoke bombs until we realized that we had no idea what we were doing. There is no way to know what any of these things do, since 90% of the label is a gigantic FIRE HAZARD warning and the other 10% is nothing but fancy firework talk like "explodes into a plume of colored flowers" and "rains unicorn sprinkles". So, we just started grabbing things that looked pretty. I am especially excited to unveil one titled "Jumping Jelly Beans". With a name like that, it HAS to be good, right?

Things that didn't make the list, but were still noteworthy:

We went on the infamous Wisconsin Ducks boat tour. It was loud and smelled like diesel fuel, but the guy that sat next to me had the most awesome comb-over I've ever seen and our tour guide was pretty funny so it turned out ok. Want to see some pretty scenery?

We also bought some obligatory cheese, however that was more of a "Let's stop and pee and oh YUM! Cheese curds!" kind of thing. It is already long since gone, and now I'm a little sad that I didn't have the foresight to invest in more than one small little bag.

All in all, it was a great trip. The perfect way to recapture my youth a mere week before yet another birthday rolls around. I may be turning 28, but last week I barely made it past 13 - and it was glorious.

**Another thanks to my husband who made the whole trip possible. He really ironed out all the details AND managed to secure this hotel room:
Be jealous.


  1. Been to the Dells many time in my younger days, and did a lot of camping there. Brings back memories.

  2. As a Wisconsin-er myself, I think it's funny that people from outside the state call it "The" Wisconsin Dells! Around here, we just say Wisconsin Dells. I've been to/done everything you posted here and am happy you had a fun time.
    Now, if it wasn't for those annoying Chicago Bears, I may come to IL sometime. LOL! (My whole fam hails from IL-I was born there too : ) )
    Come back again! I'll take you to the real "must-see"--- Lambeau Field!!

  3. @ Smalls - I'm not a Bears fan, don't you worry. We actually made a trek up to Lambeau Field once for a Packers vs 49ers game (my hubby is a die-hard Niners fan). It was COLD. Ha. Where in IL are you from?


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