Always looking for new ways of entertaining the kids (or more specifically Oscar; Leo is entertained simply by smiling at him), Kristy suggested I take him along to the Pine Rivers Show to watch the fireworks. He’s been asking about them quite incessantly recently, but I cannot fathom why.
So, along we trudged last Friday night after dinner. The website suggested parking was best on Lawnton Pocket Road, and I was quite surprised how easily we found a park – in my head, I had thought the entire road would be jam packed. Maybe its because we arrived so late, but we got a spot right near the front so our walk to the gate wasn’t far at all.
Now for my only complaint about the show. We arrived at about 7:15 PM; the fireworks were scheduled for 8 PM, and I think the show closed at 9 PM. So, even though we were only going to be there for a couple of hours at most, the entry fee was still full price ($15). Merv at the gate (may not be his real name) insisted that I fill in my name and contact details on my ticket, and then put it into the barrel so I could be in the draw to win $1,000! This seemed like a good idea, so I asked, “Where’s the barrel to put my ticket in?”. “Oh, I dunno, somewhere inside” he replied. We didn’t find the barrel.
Once inside, we made straight for showbag ally. Oscar was keen on a Dora the Explorer bag, but at $26, that was not going to happen. Thankfully, his second choice was a $6 Freddo the Frog bag, which was comparatively good value, as it came with about 20 Freddos and a pen. So, with “Pick up a showbag” ticked off the list, we made a bee-line for the main arena where the fireworks were going to be on. We got there in time to see the pre-fireworks show – a freestyle motorbike stunt crew doing jumps and flips and what not. It was really entertaining, and at only 1/2 an hour long, it was short enough to hold Oscar’s (and my) attention for the whole time. Oscar is generally not a huge fan of anything noisy but he was surprisingly unfazed by the whole thing.
Not so much for the fireworks, though. These were being released only 100 metres or so from where we were sitting, and since we were inside a closed-in grandstand, the noise really echoed when they burst. But, we were there to see the fireworks, so we sat through the whole show – and he was actually pretty delighted with them once he clamped his hands over his ears.
By far though, the highlight of Oscar’s night was the “catch a frog in the net” game that he played on our way out. He attacked those floating frogs so fast that he’d already caught two (of three) before I had my wallet back into my pocket. So, by the time I pulled phone out to snap a quick photo, he’d already caught his three frogs and the game was over.
After each frog was caught, the carny turned it over to announce how many points it was worth. “Ok, a four!” for the first one; “a six!” after the second, and “two points!” after the third. “Well done!” he said, “you scored exactly 10 points!”. (Huh? Really?) “You can choose anything off this rack as a prize!”. Sure, I could have questioned the accuracy of his maths, but when Oscar saw that a friendly looking, one metre (or so) long stuffed snake was an option, he was sold. The guy handed the snake to Oscar who immediately fell in love, and spoke to him like it was a long lost pet. “Hello, Freddie!”.
He was one happy little camper.