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Santa's Village AzooSement Park, East Dundee, IL

Santa was not home during our visit to Santa's Village but we did get to roam around his house.

Santa's Village AzooSement Park, East Dundee, IL

My family lives near Santa's Village so Bond and I took it upon us to bring my niece Allison, my brother Kevin, his wife Ingrid and their children Zoey, Logan and Amber who is sitting here next to Santa.

Santa's Village AzooSement Park, East Dundee, IL

One thing that I had to relive from my childhood visits to Santa's Village was to touch the "North Pole".

Santa's Village AzooSement Park, East Dundee, IL

I was a little bit let down though as the North Pole used to be all ice.  There was "authentic North Pole ice" that you could touch back in the day.  I was all "let's touch the ice" but there was no ice, just a metal pole. 

Getting into a little history for you all.  The original Three Worlds of Santa's Village changed hands a few times but stayed a nice family theme park.  In the late 1990's attendance had been declining and with a huge investment in the Typhoon looping coaster that opened late and turned out to be a disaster due to roughness and unreliability took its toll on the park.  In 2006 Santa's Village closed for what many; myself included, thought for the last time.

The story of Santa's Village had not reached its conclusion.  An ex-Santa's Village employee Jason Sierpen after his experiences at the park started a traveling petting zoo.  After Chicago's Kiddieland closed he purchased several rides from that park and the wheels to bring Santa's Village back were set in motion.

Santa's Village AzooSement Park, East Dundee, IL

After a few years the Polar Dome Ice Arena and Coney Island portion of the park were leased to a paintball company for use as paintball fields and in 2009 Sierpen leased what remained of the park, mostly buildings and started bringing Santa's Village back to life.



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Paul B. Drabek