Traditionally, theme parks were part of summer vacations, closing down in the off season. But for parks situated in parts of the country with a favorable climate, they stay open all year, which allows them opportunities to expand the fun beyond rollercoasters and water slides to holiday light festivals and other Christmas entertainments.
So far, two of the parks I've been tracking have e-mailed me about holiday happenings. The first was Dollywood, which sent me an e-mail about holiday vacation planning way back in October. The e-mail was for Dollywood Vacations, which could plan my family's stay at a luxury cabin. I think the hero image is very warm and enticing. I think it presents the right amount of information about the vacation packages and promotes the Smoky Mountain Christmas Festival as well.
The next e-mail, not surprisingly, came in early November, promoting the Smoky Mountain Christmas Festival. Along with other holiday activities happening at Dollywood, it included a free meal offer when purchasing a ticket online, the award winning shows, and the fact that this will be the last year for the Babes in Toyland show. One element I did find jarring was an ad for Humana dental care. Apparently they are a partner of Dollywood's but it felt out of place to me.
The other park sending messages about Christmas activities was Busch Gardens Williamsburg. They sent a message on November 10th promoting their Christmas Town Celebration. Like Dollywood, they also promote vacation packages, as well as shows. In addition, they promote their marketplace where visitors can buy holiday gifts, and their dining options. I really like the design of this e-mail. It's very clear where the options are for more information, and I like the social links at the bottom left.
Liz Lynch, communications editor, e-Dialog