Monday, June 4, 2012

DARE Carnival review

We went to the carnival on Saturday night. There were some big changes....

We went at approximately 6p and the line was already long just to get in. The front "ticket" booths were just for the $3/pp donation to get in for people 4 years old and up. THEN, you had to go inside to buy tickets for the actual rides. I suggest going inside and going toward the back to the ticket counters back there. Everyone is in the front on a really long line. We went to the back and got tickets right away. The rides ranged from 3-5 tix per ride, the 5 being the more grown up rides. They do have some REALLY cool stuff for bigger kids/teens/adults. Stuff that's more Meadowlands Fair calibur- definitely bigger than what they used to have at this one.

They are using a different carnival company this year. I don't know who it is, but it's bigger. More rides. But also different rides. And different height requirements. It was hard last year because maybe E was 36 inches and many of the rides required 36 inches. But the measuring stick things were often askew or not perfectly level so some he made it and some he didn't. They really weren't strict about it though and most things he could go on with B. This time, A LOT of the rides have a 42 inch height requirement even to go on WITH a parent. So that sucked. He's 40" this year. And worse, their measuring sticks are built on to the gates around the rides and they don't hit the ground. I KNOW they aren't accurate that way because he was barely making some of the 36" height requirements with them. I understand that it's for safety obviously but then also make sure they're accurate. Had those rides been on grass, those sticks probably would've hit the grass and he probably would've been seen as TALLER than his 40". It's definitely not a perfect science. Try explaining an inaccurate measuring stick to a three year old who just wants to go on the same "dragon" ride he went on last year alone that he can't go on at all now, even with a parent. It makes no sense. Hello, meltdown.

There were some rides he could go on alone- some bouncing cars, carousel, a climbing maze thing, flying bees, bumper cars (with B), ferris wheel (with B), and maybe another ride or two. I don't remember the exact number of things with or without a parent but it was enough to occupy him for 2 hours.

They also have a Eudora Farms exotic animal petting zoo. Before anyone gets up in arms about animal cruelty, I really don't know what their story is concerning treatment of animals. I NEVER go in these animal things because it's just not for me, but E saw it & wanted to go in so I quickly googled them to see if there were complaints against them. I didn't find any in my quick search. I know from the circus that if you google Barnum & Bailey a ton of stuff comes up, with VIDEO. No one was protesting like with the circus so I just made a snap decision to go in there. They had a giraffe which I'd never seen up close like that, a small zebra, lemurs, goats, alpacas, parrots, and some other interesting animals. There were also camel rides. The petting zoo is free- you just have to buy the cups of food. They also have a mobile washing station to wash your hands.

They also had a lot of games- for all ages and some decent prizes.

The food was better this year than last. They have your standard gross carnival food- fried everything including kool-aid. But they also had a grill station where B got grilled chicken in a pita and I got grilled teriyaki pork on a stick. E had a hamburger. However- be warned, anything with cheese on it- cheesesteak, cheeseburger, etc is that goopy yellow cheese they pour on. It's not like a slice of American. I do not like that goopy cheese so a cheeseburger was out for me.

I don't know if they ever have bracelet night or whatever but 55 tix was $51. We didn't use them all but you can use the same tix the entire run of the carnival and we're going to go back. It tired E out and he loved every minute.

The last day is June 10. It's in the Garden State Plaza parking lot. You can see it from the Rt 4 side.

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