21 December 2015

Celebration in the Oaks 2015

That blur behind me is Jane & Shawn on a giraffe
We normally go to Zoo Lights at the Baton Rouge Zoo to get our fill of Christmas lights, and we still will probably try to hit them up (if this rain ever stops), but this year we thought we'd try something a little crazier and drive to New Orleans City Park for Celebration in the Oaks.

It's about an hour and a half drive, and the park opens for the lights at 6. We left at 4:30 and stopped in Gonzales on the way to eat supper (Cracker Barrel 4 Life ... even when it lets us down we can't quit it!). We were at the park by 7, and because we went on a Thursday were able to find parking without too much trouble. It WAS crowded, but that was to be expected and kind of added to the festive atmosphere. The weather was cool but not cold -- probably mid-50s. So our coats and hats were welcome but we weren't frigid.

I didn't take pictures of the lights really, since I wasn't thinking blog post but was thinking "what photos will I want to see later," and those all include Jane! I did get a funny selfie of me as Jane and Shawn flew past on the carousel -- I couldn't believe how fast that thing went!

We also did the train ride, which was worth the $15 for the three of us. We could see more of the lights, especially the Cajun Christmas scene with Santa in a sleigh with alligators instead of reindeer. That made me laugh.

The park was too big for us to see everything, although we didn't leave until after 9. We still had a drive home ahead of us (and Jane's NORMAL bedtime is closer to 7/7:30 when we arrived!), and I was dragging as the effects of a cold hit me full force and I had no voice left as we hit the exit.

Jane said her favorite was the waving Santa, a huge light display near where we parked. I liked the Cajun Christmas and also the section that was timed to light up alongside music. The park equipment was fun -- a slide and some play houses -- although a little dark to really be playing, much to Jane's disappointment. There were plenty of other rides too, so we may have to go back to the park in the spring or fall when it's a better temperature and less crowded to do some of those things. Although some looked too intense for Jane so we might want to wait a couple years on that too.

One thing that tickled me, and made me think only in Louisiana, is that alongside the hot chocolate and coffee they were selling Bud Light tall boys and you saw plenty of people walking around with them. LOL at open carry laws in other states. Good grief.

Overall it was a great family outing, although I think the better bet would be to go down earlier, get a hotel room and spend the night so we could walk around for a full three hours (6-9) and see more. We didn't even hit the gift shop! (That tells you how sick I really was.)

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