We are non-commercial, all volunteer and supported by our readers. Please help sustain the Dew by making a donation.
Holy Land Theme Park
O, come all ye faithful. The latest must-see Florida attraction to compete for your tourist dollars is The Holy Land Experience. It is comfortably situated in the Greater Orlando-Kissimmee theme park district chock-a-block with hotels and “family dining” style restaurants. Owned by mega-giant Christian broadcasting network TBN (the T is for Trinity), this biblical theme park features a recreation of the Garden of Eden, wax figures depicting the Resurrection, and a LIVE dramatization of the Crucifixion (performed daily at 4 p.m. sharp).
Hungry for manna? Steaming foot-long hotdogs are available at Simeon’s Corner café, while Chik-Fil-A appears on the menu of several other on-site dining areas.
If someone had told me this was the plot of a Carl Hiaassen book, I would have raced to the bookstore, no questions asked.
Make no mistake, there’s Judaeo in the Judaeo-Christian design of Holy Land Experience. At the Shofar Shop (Hebrew for the ram’s horn that will be blown on Judgment Day) you can buy faith-based souvenirs and trinkets including a silver Ten Commandments bracelet ($16.99 plus tax).
These chatchkes are made in China, in case you wondered. Wander through a Jerusalem Street Market.
Reflect on the meaning of it all while sitting on a bench or temple pew at one of seven areas created for, well, sitting and reflecting.
Here are some FAQs for those of you who have done Branson to death…
Q: Will there be smiting?
A: That is our MOST frequently asked question! Smiting and Public Shaming are held in the Leviticus Pavilion.
Q: Will they use nails in the crucifixion or will they use dowels, the way it was actually done in Jesus’ time?
A: Nails, I think. Or dowels. You were showing off your Biblical trivia knowledge, weren’t you?
Q: Are there actual rides, like camels and elephants?
A: Camels stink in the summer in Florida. I doubt they’ll want to mess with camels.
Q: Are they hiring?
A: This would be a swell summer job for kids from Bob Jones University or other wholesome teens who have no interest in sex and would not go wild as soon as they were on their own!
Q: But you plan to go, right?
A: Not unless I am generously paid to do an ironic travel piece.
Oh just go on, look it up for yourselves: HolyLandExperience.com
- Photos courtesy of The Holy Land Experience.
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
This evening I popped out to the corner store for milk. A woman was there with an older man. He was walking up and down the aisles as she trailed behind him – sighing and huffing and saying things like “Dammit, Dad! You dragged me out to get something with you and now you can’t remember what you need?” Her words seemed to fall like blows on his shoulders. He began picking up items in a random fashion and knocked over several cans of soup. I bent to retrieve them up and when I straightened I looked into his face. There it was: Read on →
During the 2015-2016 Regular Session of the General Assembly, our Georgia elected-officials are expected to vote on HB 17 – “the Hidden Predator Act.” “A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 3 of Title 9 and Article 2 of Chapter 5 of Title 49 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to limitations of actions and child abuse and deprivation records, respectively, so as to extend the statute of limitations for actions for childhood sexual abuse; to provide for a short title; to provide for limitations of liability for certain legal entities; to change provisions relating to tolling of limit Read on →
When I read Frank Bruni’s column recently in The New York Times about the value of a liberal arts education, I was pleased at how he had honored a professor at Chapel Hill whose Shakespeare classes had been the most transformative educational experiences of his life. She had read the column and had written him, the first contact they had had since the mid-1980s, to talk more about the state of higher education in this country today. As I squirmed over their exchange on how so many politicians want to value education according to what kind of high paying job it c Read on →
As taught in mainstream culture, American history propagates this nation as the womb of freedom, justice, and liberty. There are American creation myths as exemplified by the “Founding Fathers.” There are founding documents as revered as biblical texts for their promise of “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” That is why the argument that ‘black history is American history’ is naïve to the point of insipidity. For most of this nation’s history, blacks were not ‘Americans.’ First, we were owned, and then we were barred from exercising the rights of citizenship. That’s why our history puts the lie to American history’s mainstream Read on →