Autumn at OZ

Have I ever told you that I live in the coolest state in the country? Even though I love West Virginia, North Carolina is a definite upgrade. There is so much cool stuff to do here, like go to an abandoned Wizard of Oz theme park for a day.

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After The Color Run on Saturday morning, Mikey and I went to go shoot a wedding until 8 p.m. Since we like to cram our weekends with all sorts of things (we haven’t had a whole weekend to just sit around in months), we left Sunday morning to meet our friends at Beech Mountain in the far reaches of western North Carolina. Guys, it took four hours to get there.  We left at the ass crack of dawn.  You all should know that is not my time of day.  Even though my job requires it of me, I am still not good at it. It required lots of coffee (hers) and Monster (his), but eventually we made it. We met Jim and Traci in the parking lot, and after running back to various cars for forgotten things like tickets and scarves, we finally made it into the line for tickets. Then the line for the bathroom. Then the line for the ski lift.  Then the line to get into the park. This place was decidedly not made for all of the people that wanted to see it.  That’s a good thing, since it will stay lucrative enough to stay open in the future.

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Since Traci is afraid of heights, we thought the best course of action would be to take the ski lift. She said she lost feeling in her hands due to the grip on the bar.  That was my first time on a lift and my only real trouble was getting on and off the chair.  I’m just not that coordinated.

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Once we finally got into the park, it led us through the whole plot of the movie.  We walked into Dorothy’s house before the storm, which lead through a storm tunnel to the house after the storm.  It was one of those lopsided houses that messes with your equilibrium.  Quite awesome. Then we walked along the yellow brick road through all of the best parts (meeting all of the characters, being afraid of the wicked witch, etc). 
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My friends and I had a ball. We laughed about how Traci looked like the Unabomber (she did), I was constantly given condolences for the death of my sister in that tragic falling house accident, and we made ridiculously inappropriate jokes the whole way through.  Nope, no alcohol was involved, but we seriously thought about it. I’m pretty sure every family surrounding us thought we were wasted anyway. 10358550_368073183347298_2516771880384436241_nPhoto Oct 05, 2 49 36 PMPhoto Oct 06, 4 44 39 PM Photo Oct 05, 2 49 14 PM Photo Oct 05, 2 49 27 PM     What I liked: Having an awesome group to go with — that really made the trip. If they hadn’t been there, I would have had a way different experience. They had hot cider, which was a definite plus since it was so cold. The view was amazing and the ski lift was fun.  There was enough diversion while waiting for them to call your number for entrance to Dorothy’s house that we really didn’t notice being inconvenienced.  The actors were superb in spite of freezing. What I didn’t like: I wish they had done a creepy Halloween theme.  There is so much potential there that was wasted.  Maybe they could do a family weekend and then a messed up, horror-themed weekend.  At any rate, just one weekend of being open a year is not enough. It was super crowded. We also missed the petting zoo, which I was a little sad about. I also wish we had more time to explore Boone and the other surround towns and attractions.  Soon! Take away: This is a wonderful experience that everyone must try — especially the fans. I loved this trip, but I think this is a once off.  Maybe I will go back once I have little kids. I’m definitely recommending this to my sister and her kids.

Have you ever experienced the Land of Oz? What’s the weirdest day trip you’ve ever taken?

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