Thursday, June 14, 2007

Worlds of Fun

The next morning, the sleeping room where all the boys were, was a shambles. But by the time the rest of the chaperones arrived, the boys were packed and ready to go. Mrs. Cindy Williams brought all of their sleeping bags here, and then took them all home so that we did not have to schlep them all over the Midwest. Please take an opportunity to thank her for going above and beyond the call of duty of a Kantorei parent. We then were treated to a breakfast smorgasbord with pancakes, sausages, bacon and fruit. We then headed with our full bellies to Worlds of Fun.

Worlds of fun was started in 1973 by Lamar Hunt, the late owner of the Kansas City Chiefs, who was a land developer in Kansas City. Just south of the park is Subtropolis, an 1100 acre, 55 million sq ft man made limestone cave which is claimed to be the world's largest underground business complex. The park is loosely based on the Jules Verne book, around the world in 80 days. The main areas are divided into Africa, Europa, Scandinavia, the Orient and Americana. The park is now run by Cedar Fair, the same company which runs Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio the mecca for all roller coaster riders. The high points of the day were the suspended coaster, the Patriot which one group of boys rode 6 times in a row. The highest and steepest drop was on the Mamba which also was the fastest with a top speed of 73 mph. There were also several water rides such as the Viking Voyager and Fury of the Nile. Then there is the Monsoon. Now the interesting thing about the Monsoon is that there is an observation bridge which after the plunge, the boat goes under. Several of the boys and I went to get on the ride and Mrs. Ross stayed behind and thought they would watch from the bridge. Well as soon as the boat hit the bottom it sent a giant tidal wave of water which completely envelops the people on the bridge. I know many of you have heard the expression soaked to the bone, well you can only imagine what they looked like. Then when we got off the ride, the chaperones stood off to the side of the bridge as the boys waited for the next boat. Well, the secondary wave which sprays off at a 45 degree angle hit us full force even as we ran as fast as we could.
We met for lunch at the Tivoli Terrace where we had a buffet of fried chicken, barbecue sandwiches, fruit and chocolate chip cookies. We tried to warn all the boys to stay away from the rides on a full stomach, most listened, but a few learned a lesson that will stick with them for a long time. Surprisingly few boys took on the carnival type games, but one notable was Michael Dean who came back sporting a big pink Care Bear, you will have to ask him if it is for him or someone else.

We boarded the bus at 5 pm and made our way to Smokehouse BBQ. The boys ate their fill of Kansas City Style BBQ. Kansas City-style BBQ traces its roots back to Henry Perry who sold slow cooked BBQ for 25 cents a slab on newsprint beginning in 1908. The Memphis and KC style are similar slow cooked in deep pits, but the KC style emphasizes using as much sauce as possible. The restaurant took off during the heyday of jazz in the 20's and 30's. Perry's proteges, the Bryants took over that restaurant that still operates today. We were more than happy with our choices and headed to the La Quinta Inn for a long sleep following two happy, but tiring days.