The Wonder of Wonderland

Amusement parks are amusing to say the least; the expectations, the thrills, the not-knowing how the day will unfold. Canada’s Wonderland just north of Toronto is filled with wonders to explore and memories to be made.

This is me, after such a day at the amusement park with my family.


Kidding. This is actually a photo from the Canada’s Wonderland website promoting their no scares-spared annual Halloween Haunt.

If you enjoy having the bejesus scared out of you, check it out! There are all kinds of creepy things lying in wait including zombies and “psychotic clowns.”

But, if you’re a ‘fraidy cat, STAAAAAY AWAAAAY (read in a spooky voice…but not too spooky. I want to be able to sleep tonight).

Though you needn’t stay away from Wonderland completely. The haunt is only in effect at night on weekends in October. During the day, the park runs in its usual family friendly way so we you don’t need to be afraid.

This is what I actually looked like after a recent trip to Wonderland with the family.

See? Not scary at all. Except maybe for the weird way I’m sticking my hip out. And, how my husband’s hand is sort of hovering over our son’s chest like a gruesome claw.

Oh and this was a bit scary too. Not the T-Rex so much…

….but the bug-like sunglasses. Now THOSE are some scary specs guys. Seriously, who dresses you people?

This was our first visit to an amusement park as a family. My son and I are both huge coaster enthusiasts…huge as in, we’re big into them and we like ’em big. The Leviathon? Bring it on! My daughter has always stayed home with daddy while her brother and I got our Behemoth on. Until THIS summer — the summer which we have named, “The Summer of Wheeeeeeeeeeeee!”

Though our girl is physically able to enjoy many of the rides at the park; it’s waiting in line to get on the rides that poses the problem. Parents of children with ADHD, Autism, and other medical and developmental challenges know what I’m talking about.

If due to a mental or physical impairment your child is unable to wait in a line up, you may be eligible for a special Boarding Pass.  Here’s how it works:

  • Visit Guest Services to request a Boarding Pass (not to be confused with a “Fast Lane” pass). You’ll be asked several questions including why it’s difficult for your child to wait in line, their diagnosis and how many people will be riding along. This information is kept on file so the interview process doesn’t have to be repeated each visit.
  • Choose a ride for which your child meets the height requirement. Enter via the exit line and show an attendant your boarding pass. They will write a time on the pass (usually within 30 minutes) noting when your family should come back to ride (via the exit line again).
  • This allows you to do other things in lieu of standing in line e.g. have a snack, play a game, walk around. When you arrive back at your scheduled time, you can get right on and ride. No waiting! You may only only secure your next “time” once the previous ride has been completed. i.e. you can only book one ride at a time. Also, you and your family may also bypass the line in order to ride with the pass holder.

This worked brilliantly for us. First we rode the kiddie rides as a family (the “kiddie” Ghoster Coaster proved to be just about enough coaster for my big, strapping, chicken man husband…true story).

Then we watched as brother and sister rode together.

And we cheered our girl on as she rode solo.


Then after lunch and a musical show, my son and I left daddy and his girl to more fun while we…hit the coasters!

What an amazing family day. We had so much fun, we’ve already got our Season’s Passes (on sale now!) for next year!


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