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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

ICE, Space and Rocket Museum

Day 5

Before leaving the hotel we toured ICE, and extensive ice village created by 40 craftsmen from China. Apparently, every year these men construct a renowned ice village in China.  The folks at Opryland decided to bring their expertise to Opryland, and the result is, according to Opryland, "an interactive world of colorful ice sculptures and incredible 20-feet tall ice slides carved entirely from TWO MILLION pounds of ice."  It really was amazing.  This year they focused on a "Shrek" theme.  Not my favorite characters.  But, the ice was impressive.  They geared us up with these light blue parkas.  Can you see from Jacob's face, below, how thrilled he was with the whole idea?

 This dragon made of ice was really impressive!

 If there was any redeeming quality, it was the magnificent Nativity scene at the end.  We were told that a crew of 40 men work for over a month to create this incredible ice world.
 Below, left, an angel and, right, close up of Joseph, Mary and the baby Jesus.  

After the ice tour we drove a few more hours back to Hunstville, Alabama home of Nuclear Power.  We met up with Kirk Dorius and Kirk Sorensen who had just flown in from Boston, MA where they had presented on the benefits of Thorium Energy.  They gave us a tour of the famous Space and Rocket Center.  It was a very impressive operation.

 The exhibits were well done.  Ethan, Nataleigh, and Jacob all enjoyed themselves.  Even David, seen below, left, on an interactive snowboard exhibit, had a great time.

David took Ethan on a ride that propelled them way up in the air.  Crazy.

The girls: Claire, Kaija, and Nataleigh preferred the more tame, little kids version of the same ride.

The highlight, however, was Kirk Sorensen's tour.  With his work at NASA he was very well versed in all the rockets, how they were made, and the stories behind each.  We really had a great time.

Later that night we were invited to join the Dorius family for dinner.

The Dorius' were so good to us.  After dinner David and Kirk spent much of the evening looking through past Davis High videos and remembering classmates.  We saw footage of orchestra concerts, High School Madrigal Lover's Feast, and graduation. Watching the videos of David reminded me of the importance of good friends.
Anne, Calvin, and Claire played their violin's for us.  Nataleigh played, too.  It was a terrific evening.

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