Thursday, May 19, 2011

Focus on the Family

We have always loved Focus on the Family, especially Jim Dobson. His book "Raising Boys" helped shape my parenting style and philosophy. We have consulted their books and websites for issues ranging from ADHD, adoption, dyslexia and attachment disorder. We love the Plugged-in page and consult often when choosing movies and games for my family. We even have the Plugged-in app for the iPhone. Their pastoral ministry has often helped us through tough times. And of course our kids (and dad and mom) have loved the Adventures in Odyssey radio programs. We have mostly listened to them as sets while driving on long trips. We have also gobbled up many of their audio dramas such as the Narnia series and Screwtape letters.

So it was a great thrill to visit the Focus on the Family headquarters in Colorado Springs. I am pleases to say they really do have something for the whole family here.We started off by taking a guided tour of the headquarters building. This was very interesting and our guides were very kind and asked lots of questions about us the participants.

Then we went over to the welcome center and explored the world of Odyssey! Actually we started off launching the kids down the biggest slide they have ever been on, a three-story slide that requires the use of elbow socks and potato sacks! The boys loved this and went down the slide multiple times. Once again the attendants helping them with their gear and safety checks were exceptional! At the bottom of the slide is a wonder world for kids. The WW2 plane from the Last Chance Detectives awaits to be explored along with an indoor playset. A real-live Whit's End is ready to serve up some ice-cream and of course their fan favorite Wodfamchocsod!

Traveling through some canyon tunnels you can stop by a large theater room and watch Adventures in Odyssey under the stars or move unto another room full of kids activities. Here the kids can dress up, put on a play or puppet show and watch the Lionel Train travel around the top of the room. Families can also sign up to record their own Adventures in Odyssey show. Down another hall is a recreation of main street Odyssey with different rooms for toddlers, birthday parties and other activities.

Then there is the bookstore upstairs, one of the seven wonders of Colorado. We could have spent a thousand dollars here easily, but we had to restrain ourselves. We did find a great deal on a series we have been reading with the kids called Passages and a couple more audio adventures for road travel. There is a lot more to see here at the headquarters! Be sure to stop by the next time you are anywhere near Colorado Springs.

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