If you're in the KC metro, I highly recommend the Enchanted Forest at George Owens Nature Park! At only $3/person, it's one of the most inexpensive adventures we have found. You should be prepared for a long wait, though - this event is popular. This year, Andrew went directly after work and waited alone in the line. I brought the kids and met him (and my sister-in-law and niece) closer to the start time. This was a brilliant plan, as we only had to wait with the kids in line for about twenty minutes!
There is some entertainment provided for those waiting - character interaction and an Independence firetruck and ambulance. Lincoln was enthralled with the emergency vehicles last year - and it was no great surprise that they were, again, his favorite part.
It was a pretty chilly evening, so we were happy to be the first public group to go down the trail. The kids are all still pretty young, but they enjoyed the experience even if they didn't fully understand.
This little one was just along for the ride. Between body heat and her puffy coat, she was nice and snug. She almost fell asleep, but (of course) fought hard and managed to stay awake the whole time.
There are always a variety of characters to see - this year, they included Winnie the Pooh (and friends), Ariel and Dory, Batman and Robin, the Old Woman in the Shoe, Three Blind Mice, Alice in Wonderland, and more. Lincoln was pretty intrigued!
After seeing all of the short vignettes, we hopped on a trailer for a hayride around the lake - where we could see a pirate ship with some swashbuckling characters aboard.
It's a tradition to go to Krispy Kreme for amazing, delicious donuts after we visit the Forest. Unfortunately, both kids were screaming like banshees by the time we got them in the van, so I headed straight home with them. Andrew brought donuts home for us, instead. I'm not willing to admit the short amount of time it took us to consume the whole amazing lot of them.
This is one thing that will be on our fall bucket list every year. We love it!
When asked about the experience the next day, Lincoln insisted that Batman was actually Superman. And when he says Superman? It sounds like he is saying "Diaperman." Funniest thing ever.