December 10, 2011
After writing all about where to see Christmas lights last week, I really wanted to go see some myself. So on Saturday I gathered up the family and we went over to the Jubitz Winter Wonderland at the Portland International Race Track.
The first stop was Jubitz truck stop where we could save $5 by buying a fast track pass instead of waiting and paying for admission at the race track. As if that wasn’t enough incentive to buy the pass for $11 at Jubitz, the pass also came with a huge cup that I could fill with my choice of hot or cold beverages (I filled it with Cocoa).
Since you are paying per car at the Race Track, the more people you can fit in your vehicle, the cheaper each admission. We had 5 people in our car including Alex, so that meant we just paid $2.20 each. That makes this light show one of the cheapest light shows in the area. On the other hand if there had just been one person in the car, it would be one of the most expensive.
When we got to the racetrack, we got to wait in the “Fast Track” lane. It was still pretty slow, as the place was packed, and when we left, the place was even busier. That’s not surprising since we went on Saturday night. We did not mind waiting in the car a bit, and I took the opportunity to use the bathroom while we waited. The bathroom is near the entrance, so if you need to go, use it while your car is in line before you enter the track as once you get into the light show there really isn’t another opportunity.
We were given a CD of Holiday music and a goodie bag at the entrance. We listened to part of the CD, but it was scratched, so we did not get to listen to the whole thing. Instead we tuned our radio to a channel that was playing Christmas tunes. The Goodie bag included a bunch of cute little gifts, coupons, and movie passes for the Jubitz’s Portlander theater. Those tickets by the way are worth $3 each, so since you get 4 of them, that’s a $12 value, which is more than we paid for admission. If you have never been to the Portlander theater, it is a lovely little theater. I actually watch movies regularly. It is located in a truck stop, but Jubitz is one of the top truck stops in the country, so that is not a bad thing. The Portlander will be playing an extra family film on the weekends along with their regularly scheduled films for the next couple months to make sure there is a family show available for those who get the family movie passes at the Winter Wonderland.
We drove through the lights at a slow pace necessitated by the traffic, but you really wouldn’t want to go fast since the whole point of going is to look at the lights. The lights were spectacular. I had my car window open most of the drive and snapped lots of pictures. Alex loved all of the lights, especially Santa and Snoopy and the reindeer. There was a great display of the 12 days of Christmas with some comic takes on some of the days such as calling birds with a telephone. There was also a kid’s art contest which we voted on, and I turned our ballet in at the exit (along with our scratched CD). It is hard to pick between kids’ artwork, especially since you can’t see them all at the same time, but I took a stab at it anyway.
Since you view the light show from the car, it’s not a very active activity like jumping around at Inflatable Kingdom’s Open Play. That actually worked out for us Saturday evening since Alex was so tired he fell asleep on the drive over to the light show. We woke him up when we got there, but there were moments as we were driving when he almost fell asleep.
After we finished looking at the lights, we swung by Sherri’s and bought a pie. My mother in law told us it was a tradition with her grandmother that they went and got pie after the light show at the race track and that’s a tradition I sure did not want to break. Nothing like a nice piece of pie to put a sweet end on an evening!
The Jubitz Winter Wonderland runs in the evenings through December 25.