There are many reasons to love living in the DC metro area. One of which is that there are many opportunities to celebrate the season, especially with nearly a dozen places to experience light shows. Of the several light shows I have encountered, Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland sets itself apart from the rest of the group.
In its third year, the light show has become an annual favorite. Housed at Adventure Park USA, the drive takes you through a journey of over 10,000 LED lights synchronized to your car radio. That’s right, watch the lights dance to nearly a dozen tunes such as “Carol of the Bells”, “Joy to the World”, and my family’s favorite, “Dance of the Reed Flutes”. While not necessary, it was a curious touch to see a Winnebago with a screen projecting Santa sipping cocoa.
My husband wanted to go back for a second time saying it was his favorite light show. My daughter could not stop giggling and bopping to the beat of the music. It was worth the admission price to see this magical production. Cars and minivans are $25 with vans at $50. The event is open daily from 6 to 9:30pm.
The one mile drive can take anywhere from 15 minutes onwards with the option of pulling over to enjoy more of the show. We spent a half hour in awe of the colors and designs seeing snowflakes, a horse drawn carriage and an American flag in the display. After the drive, continue the fun inside Adventure Park’s main building.
The small amusement park is open year round with both indoor and outdoor activities. While the outside attractions close during the winter, venture inside the Stampede Arcade to find a variety of games and rides including Skee-ball, laser tag, and ropes course. The moon bounce and rock wall were closed the night we were there. Ages 3 and younger can climb and crawl through Prospector Playground.
Kids can turn in tickets to get nominal prizes. Costs vary for individual activities ranging from $1 to $6. Remember that booklet you received at the entrance gate? Inside are coupons for great deals in arcade credits along with a free hot chocolate from the Chuckwagon Cafe. Standard park food of a mediocre nature is also available here. I will say though, the homemade fudge looked divine. Around the corner are clean restrooms with changing area.
Santa is available for free visits and photographers are on hand to capture that special moment. Package prices are reasonable from $14.99 to $19.99 and add-ons include photo key rings and light up picture frames. The country Santa was original and surrounded by nutcrackers in his winter cottage. The inside area is nicely decorated with hanging ornaments, a decorated carriage, and a nativity scene. If you didn’t see enough of the drive thru show, step outside the pavilion to get your fix.
- Adventure Park USA is hosting a Santa Breakfast on December 8. There is a separate fee for this event.
- From November 19 to December 16, 2012, bring in a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots. With a toy donation, you can receive $5 off light show admission Monday to Thursday.
- Note: GPS will not accept the address for Adventure Park USA. Simply enter New Market, MD. You will see the lights from a distance and soon turn onto West Baldwin Road.
Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland is going on now until January 3, 2013. We plan on a return visit next summer to ride the teacups and the rollercoaster. My family thoroughly enjoyed this event and your family will too!
Photo courtesy of Adventure Park USA