Knotts Berry Farm is keeping it merry this holiday season with a long list of festive attractions.
But for police and fire personnel, as well as retired and active military personnel, the amusement park is even merrier because these folks can enjoy free admission!
Add to this, the Toys for Tots Drive at Knotts that begins on December 1st, and it’s obvious that Knotts Berry Farm is doing its part to stamp out the Scrooge in all of us.
Well, almost all of us.
When it comes to Robb Tracy, Knotts actually prefers to promote his sinister side.
That’s because for the past fifteen years, Tracy has been part of Knotts’ live holiday entertainment; this will be his thirteenth year portraying (as author Charles Dickens would describe him) that “grasping, clutching, covetous old sinner” Ebenezer Scrooge.
It’s a role that Tracy the actor has come to love, despite the fact that performing in Knotts’ Birdcage Theatre sometimes means he has to compete with the noises from a nearby roller coaster.
Yet, year after year, Tracy takes his work most seriously. Realizing that some people in the audience may not be regular theatergoers, he is intent on giving them a memorable, positive experience and a thoroughly professional performance.
“This may be the only live theater, they ever see,” Tracy said.
In preparation for his month-long run at the Birdcage Theatre, each year, Tracy re-reads Dickens’ 1843 novella “A Christmas Carol”.
He says portraying Scrooge, “never gets old. There are always new things to discover and understand about the character.” Then too, with several new cast members joining the production this year, Tracy has had additional opportunities to explore his iconic role.
Once on stage, his experience is obvious, and a big plus. He is the embodiment of misanthropy, seeming to effortlessly unleash the emotions that leave more than a few audience members teary-eyed. It’s a story that Tracy loves to tell.
“It’s about a bad guy who is transformed,” Tracy said. “He is only punished by his own attitude. And once he changes that, he’s redeemed.”
Still, performance of “A Christmas Carol”, packed with its far-reaching message, is only a small part of all that Knotts has to offer.
What with Snoopy performing on ice with an ensemble of top-notch skaters, plus Christmas carolers, Bluegrass musicians, Native American dancers, Wild West stuntmen, and a holiday parade with the Peanuts Gang, the live entertainment line-up is fully satisfying, as is the delicious food and scrumptious goodies sold throughout the park.
Wait, though! No mention’s even been made of the numerous rides at Knotts. There’s the Camp Snoopy area with rides geared for youngsters; there are also more than two dozen rides for everyone else, including eight roller coasters, four thrill rides, and eleven family rides, amongst others. Be forewarned, however, it might be wiser to get on those radical rides, such as Rip Tide and Supreme Scream, before indulging in those tasty food items.
By the end of the day, the Knotts experience is transforming: visitors will probably be tired, and they’ll probably have no doubt that the holidays are here.
However–as in Scrooge’s situation–our own attitudes will have a lot to do with what we ultimately get out of that long and lasting experience.
Fire and Police Recognition Days & Military Tribute Days
(Effective now through January 31, 2013 and January 6, 2013, respectively.)
FREE admission to the park will be offered to any active fire and police personnel and one guest; FREE admission to the park will be offered to any U.S. veteran, retired and active military personnel and their spouse (or one guest).
To take advantage of this special (and generous) offer simply go to the admission gate with your photo I.D. and your valid proof of fire, police or military service. (Call (714) 220-5200 for additional information.)
(Additional tickets, up to a maximum of six (as needed), may also be purchased for $25.00 each.)
Toys for Tots
(Effective dates: December 1, 2012 through December 16, 2012)
For Free Admission: In support of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Drive, guests to Knotts Berry Farm can purchase a $25.00 gift (or a higher priced gift) from one of several merchandise locations in Knott’s Marketplace and then bring it to Knott’s Main Gate for free admission.
For Discounted Admission: Another option is that guests who wish to bring their own new, unwrapped gift valued at $25 or more, will be given a voucher to purchase a regular Knott’s Merry Farm admission for only $25.00.
Online Option: Click here to donate to Toys for Tots online, your donation will purchase a gift for the Toys for Tots Drive and provide you with a ticket to Knott’s as a thank you.
(Knotts Berry Farm is located at 8039 Beach Boulevard, Buena Park, CA 90620. Click here for directions. Parking is $15. For additional information call: (714) 220-5200)