Vote of the week: Character dining at a theme park
Written by Robert Niles
When was the last time you had a character meal in a theme park?Tweet
And by "character meal," I don't mean one where you actually eat a character:
But one where you dine with the characters:
The upside of character dining is the chance to multi-task: You take care of a character meet-and-greet and a meal, at the same time! The downside is the expense: Character meals often cost more than non-character meals with the same food. You're paying for that character experience.
But many theme park visitors welcome the chance to pay a little extra to ensure some one-on-one time with the favorite characters without having to wait, often outside in the sun. That's why character meals often require advance reservations, and sometimes weeks in advance.
Not every character meal's a tough ticket, though. Several years ago, the kids and I walked over to the hotel at Knott's Berry Farm for dinner, and ended up being the only party with kids at a Snoopy character dinner. The kids were thrilled to have Snoopy all to themselves, but after about 10 minutes, we discovered that too much character time can get, well, awkward. Once Snoopy had mimed his way through all his gags, the encounter started to feel like a bad blind date. The kids had nothing left to say, and Snoopy, well, he's a giant theme park dog. There wasn't anything he could say. So after several moments of awkward silence, Snoopy mercifully called it a night and shuffled away.
I'd love to hear your stories and opinions about character dining in the theme parks. Please share your tips and advice, or just a funny, silly or crazy story, in the comments.
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Stories from a Theme Park Insider offers a warm and often-funny look at what it's like to work inside the world's most popular theme park. It's a great read for theme park fans!