Words by JJ West
The TALK of the
We went straight to the source to find out what all the buzz was about. RIDE IT:
The Polar Express Does your family love The Polar Express book and movie? Then you need to get them to Lake County to ride the The Polar Express Train Ride (orlandothepolarexpressride. com). Seriously — it is the Polar
TRY IT: PLANET OBSTACLE LOCAL OWNERS AND FORMER CIRQUE DU SOLEIL PERFORMERS ANDREI ROUBLEV AND YURI MAIOROV HAD A HAND IN DESIGNING AND BUILDING EACH OBSTACLE.
Planet Obstacle is made up of custom Ninja Courses (modeled after the popular TV show), high ropes element courses, trampoline dodgeball and trampoline basketball areas, a zip line and a bunch of other trampoline and slide elements. The really challenging elements offer versions for adults/teens, kids and little kids (ages 3 and up), so no one has to miss out on the fun.
Our favorite part — this place has course experts stationed throughout the obstacles. None of this “just one person to man the desk” nonsense! And if watching your little cherub conquer the Ninja Course for the umpteenth time is not your jam, you can grab an actual meal at the café, which is located close enough to keep an eye on the action while you enjoy your panini and coffee.
PLANET OBSTACLE // Hours: Wed. 1-8 p.m.; Thurs. & Fri. 3-8 p.m.; Sat: 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. // 1150 Emma Oaks Trail, #100, Lake Mary // 407-233-3750 // planetobstacle.com
An Out-of-this-World Present!
Bring Mother Nature into your conversations about space and time with Spiral Spectrum’s Cosmic Calendar, which is a beautiful year-at-a-glance illustration of planetary transits, moon phases and proximity, major meteor showers and daily chakra mantras. The calendar is designed by local artist and DeLand mom Julie Wilder. This product collection started as a way to teach her daughter about the cyclical nature of time. She's even created a great website that explains all the details: spiralspectrum.com.
8 PLAYGROUND NOVEMBER / DECEMBER 2017
Express — the actual train cars used to create the movie! The cars now live in Tavares, and beginning November 17, you and your family can wear your PJs, board the train, get your golden tickets punched, enjoy dancing waiters and experience a reading of the classic book by Chris Van Allsburg.