Editor’s note: This article was adapted from a news release that was recently distributed to the media.
Answers in Genesis (AiG), operators of two of the nation’s leading faith-based attractions, is welcoming the sponsorship of two nationally recognized brands as its annual ChristmasTime program at the Ark Encounter starts today. Hobby Lobby and Pure Flix are sponsoring America’s largest Glice® rink at the life-size Ark. Almost the length of a football field, this synthetic ice-skating rink, made in Switzerland, is open at the popular Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky, for its annual ChristmasTime.
The logos of the on-demand video service Pure Flix and the retail chain Hobby Lobby now adorn the sides of the Glice rink next to the Ark (see left). With more than 800 stores, Hobby Lobby is the world’s largest privately owned arts-and-crafts retailer with 32,000 employees and operations in forty-seven states. Pure Flix recently uploaded hundreds of Answers in Genesis’ videos to its faith-and-family on-demand service.
The Ark Encounter’s Glice® Rink is made possible through the generous support of these organizations. The rink is set up for the Christmas holidays in front of the massive 510-foot-long Ark located south of Cincinnati.
Glice® is a synthetic ice that acts just like real ice, allowing Ark Encounter guests to skate regardless of the temperature. It does not rely on electricity or water. Since the Glice® rink uses synthetic ice, special Glice® skates are provided by the Ark Encounter. Visitors can skate for as long as they want during one continuous session for a special price of $5 through the end of December, which includes the rental of skates.
For children who are just learning to skate, special whale-themed skating props (left) are available at no extra cost.
The Glice® rink will remain open through ChristmasTime (November 23–December 30, 2018; closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day). During the Christmas season, guests will enjoy the gorgeous rainbow lights on the Ark as well as the festive lighting throughout the grounds.
Ken Ham, CEO/founder of Answers in Genesis, stated: “We invite families to skate at the Ark during the Christmas holidays at the largest Glice® rink in the United States. You might even see some of my family members gliding around the rink.”
Starting today, ChristmasTime at the Ark Encounter will offer guests the opportunity, just for the cost of parking ($10), to stroll the beautifully decorated grounds, visit the Ark’s zoo, view the massive Ark from the outside (and its stunning new colorful computer-controlled LED lighting), visit the large gift and fair-trade store, and rent Glice skates. In addition to the free activities, guests are offered a special admission of $32.99* after 5 p.m. (to 8 p.m.) that includes a large buffet dinner (at Emzara’s Buffet near the ship) and access to the inside of the iconic Noah’s Ark and its three floors of world-class exhibits.
ChristmasTime visitors can stay warm outside by sitting around firepits, sipping hot chocolate, and enjoying live music performed by carolers. At Ararat Ridge Zoo behind the Ark, a heated petting zoo (new this year) features many live animals on display. For a small cost, guests can experience a camel ride. In addition, one-of-a-kind gifts can be purchased at the fair-trade Village Market as well as the large gift shop under the Ark.
Beginning today as well, visitors can travel north of the Ark to Petersburg, Kentucky, and enjoy the 12th annual ChristmasTown, a free outdoor event at the Creation Museum. The museum’s botanical gardens (with newly widened trails) will be decked out with a breathtaking display of tens of thousands of multi-colored lights. The lights can be viewed from the heated deck of Noah’s Café when purchasing a special dinner of turkey, ham or roast beef.
Just as with the Ark Encounter, almost all the outdoor activities at the museum are free (parking is $5). For a reduced price of $14.99, guests can experience the museum’s stunning exhibits. New this year, and also included in the $14.99 museum admission, is a special children’s Fun Zone in the museum’s huge Legacy Hall auditorium, and the opportunity to experience a high-tech show in the brand-new 4D Special Effects Theater. Separate tickets can also be purchased to watch a moving Star of Bethlehem program inside the state-of-the-art planetarium.
At both attractions, the zip lines will be open on selected dates at a reduced price through December 30.
Answers in Genesis is an apologetics (i.e., Bible-defending) ministry based in northern Kentucky, near Cincinnati. AiG’s Ark Encounter is a one-of-a-kind historically themed attraction with a massive Noah’s Ark at the centerpiece, sometimes drawing 8,000 guests in a day. Built according to the biblical dimensions in Genesis chapter 6, the Ark is 510 feet in length, making it the largest freestanding, timber-frame structure in the world. The Creation Museum, located west of the Cincinnati Airport, has welcomed about 3.8 million visitors since opening in 2007.