The best getaways happen off-season……
By Nicole Jackson
Sometimes you just need a mini escape to recharge- just enough to get you through the rest of the month. With me returning to college, hubby getting a new job, and Seth turning two and transitioning into the toddler years- that “sometime” finally came about two weeks ago. We were given the chance to have an impromptu, mid-week getaway to our favorite Pocono destination- Woodloch Pines Resort. Capitalizing on its close proximity to the city, we came out of work mid-day Tuesday and drove a little under 2 ½ hrs to this little piece of paradise, making it just in time for dinner.
On our second visit to Woodloch, merely driving on the property gave me a relaxed and warm feeling. As I remembered, our arrival into the main building was greeted by a staff that seemed like they would not want to be anywhere else on earth but with their guests. Dinner of course did not disappoint, Seth was not fully eating solids when we had previously visited in the Spring, so he fully enjoyed his PB&J while the hubby and I enjoyed options from their seafood buffet. After dinner I was exhausted from getting up early and the drive, so I decided to stay in our spacious but cozy room while the boys went out and explored the Indoor Forest Playground and Game Room.
The next morning, we pleasantly woke up to birds chirping and the sounds of rustling leaves as chipmunks scurried around the grounds chasing each other like small children playing tag. The serenity of Woodloch’s property is beyond anything I can describe, you have to experience it for yourself to understand fully. We headed to breakfast and picked up the day’s itinerary of scheduled events and planned as much as anyone can with a 2 year old in tow. We strategized about how to spend our time and decided to try to hit the activities that we did not get a chance to do in our last visit to Woodloch.
We started our day with some mini bowling, which was great for Seth’s little toddler hands to be able to hold the ball and actually play for the first time. Shortly after, we headed across the road to the GoCarts, this was super exciting for us because Seth was old enough to be a passenger! He was in his glory at the chance to be Daddy’s co-pilot.
One of the best parts is that during off-season as you might assume, the resort is less crowded- which make the activities such a joy. No lines, no wait and we even had the track to ourselves, which allowed for a family race! Time surely flies when you are having fun because by then it was already time for lunch and Seth was ready for a nap (to be quite honest so was I!). Afterwards, we headed back to our room and the hubby and I sat out on the balcony to enjoy the beautiful foliage and gorgeous views while Seth napped. I was even able to sneak in a nap while the hubby headed out to explore on his own.
Before you know it, it was time for dinner so we all showered and dressed up for family style dinner and show. If you are a picky eater or have food allergies such as myself, Woodloch will take care of you. They were beyond accommodating and went out of their way to make sure I was satisfied and had options. We were lucky to have caught the themed show they currently have running “Broadway”- playing all your favorite musicals and highlights of the original shows. They had a comedy show right after but with our LO, it was time to turn in. After putting the baby to bed, my husband and I enjoyed a relaxing and cozy evening watching TV and having late night snacks in the fully equipped kitchen in our room.
On the third day, breakfast at the dining room was delicious and gave us the energy to get some more activities in before we hit the road to come home. First on our to do list was a family game of Family Feud. We had the best time with our group and met some great new friends. After losing at Family Feud we went to the bumper cars.
Last year I mentioned that they have two sides to the bumper cars, one side is traditional air bumper cars and the other side has mini electric cars for toddlers with padded walls. Seth was now old enough to enjoy, and boy did he. Another visit to the Woodloch Forest was a must and a quick game of basketball before heading to try out Archery before lunch.
Before we left, we enjoyed some time by the fire pit warming up before the ride home. There is so much to do at Woodloch that you need more than one visit to cover all activities. Even since our last visit, new activities have been added and there are more to come. There is now a Escape Room and a year-round ice skating rink in the works. The best part is you can choose to stay busy with the activities or just relax lake-side- it is all up to you. There are so many benefits to traveling off-season that I think we are going to make that our new thing. It is less crowded, prices are reduced, and there is always something to do!
As winter approaches, Woodloch will have plenty to do in the colder months-including ice skating, snowtubing, and more. There are even mid-week skiing packages available for families to take advantage of. Regardless of the season, Woodloch is packed with fun for the entire family- but peaceful enough to catch up on some much needed relaxation. I know I did.
For more information, visit www.woodloch.com.