Holiday season is in full swing with the Christmas on the Potomac holiday attraction at the Gaylord National Resort.
Thrill and chill at Christmas on the Potomac at Gaylord Harbor to a circus, ice skating and ice tubing, and the holiday tale of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!”
In the Gaylord Hotel’s Golden Atrium enfolds what our friends at the Gaylord dub “the newest version of Cirque Dreams Unwrapped, a spellbinding production of seasonal dreams combining breathtaking choreography, music and showmanship from around the world.” The first act starts with a man balancing on boards on the tops of Christmas presents.
Thus begin the thrills in this circus of acrobats, but on a stage and amidst a backdrop swabbed in Christmas candies and peppermint swirls. A violinist dressed in a marching band uniform promenades while a man and a woman wrapped in candy-cane costumes are swinging themselves precariously through mid-air.
Then a flexible joker was twisting his body in limitless contortions. He chose an audience member to hold balloons while he held a large whip to crack at them. In the next act, a female trapeze artist rode a swing with a long-striped pink and blue scarf as the audience members sit on the edge of their seats while she performs flips and tricks in the air.
The final act had climbers, as if from the North Pole, to climb a pole while a circus performer balanced this pole on his head. One climber swung round the top of the pole at top speed. At a surprise moment, a light switch was thrown to light up Christmas trees all around the audience. Thrills to behold!
At the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center, where this Cirque takes place, there are many activities of a calmer bent, such as Christmas Village, with its Santa lap-sitting station for children as their photographs are taken. Not only children, but the whole family can accompany St. Nick for pictures as his chair is ended on both sides by cushioned benches.
Unlike the typical mall Kris Kringle, whole families can sit beside and stand around Santas and choose photo packages with multiple pictures. Visitors can also have pictures taken as they don large, warm coats for the Gaylord’s exhibit of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” in ice.
The Gaylord hotels described this correctly as “a colorful wonderland of sculptures, scenes, and slides all hand-carved by artisans” from Mainland China. In this impressive ice exhibition of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” we can relive the Christmas Dr. Seuss tale from our TV and storybook memories.
Visitors to this ice world received parkas, but no doubt, that was the chill part of the exhibition!
Yet the warm memories began.
Imagine being tucked into bed, waiting for Santa to drop off Christmas presents under your tree. All of a sudden, as you wait, you drift off to a dream world into a very chilly igloo with characters in ice from your childhood memories.
In this igloo, a sign read “North of Who-Ville.” As you follow the sign, various characters start to appear. The green Grinch was surrounded by little characters playing and making toys placed in wrapped presents. As you continue this journey into childhood nostalgia, differing ice scenes start to come to life in your imagination. In one part of the exhibition, the Grinch is dressed as Santa Claus on an ice sleigh with his dog, costumed as a rather unconvincing reindeer.
Another part of the exhibition showed the Grinch sneaking up and down of the chimney while little children are sleeping.
Though the Grinch takes Christmas presents from children, he is unable to steal the spirit of Christmas. Realizing that there is more than the materialistic side of Christmas, the Grinch is seen in ice with a large heart while celebrating and feasting in the next ice scene. Before you awake from this dream world in ice, ice figures (with the help of a recording) narrate the nativity story set up as a colossal crèche as you make your way out of the igloo.
Before entering the ice exhibit, it might be a good idea to reread or watch again the original “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” as we had to reach deep into our Dr. Seuss memories to recall it all! Or by all means, bring children to narrate the story for you.