By CINDY LADAGE
SANTA CLAUS, Ind. — Carved out of southern Indiana farmland is huge entertainment park Holiday World, which brings visitors from all over to this Christmas-themed town – and they need a place to stay.
At Lake Rudolph Campground & RV Resort, since 1958 the Koch family has found a way to keep the beauty of the Indiana hills and creatively use the land by building a place to stay adjacent to what was then known as Santa Claus Land.
Laura Barker, PR/Web media coordinator at the campground, said the Koch family opened Lake Rudolph Campsites behind their home, creating a campground around a seven-acre lake with a beach and swimming area. Since then, they have renovated and expanded with a few changes.
For a while they operated as a membership-only campground, and then the Koch family home and office were destroyed. They have since built a new office and have added the popular Rudolph cabins, expanding opportunities for families to stay in southern Indiana and visit Holiday World – or just to kick back and enjoy the amenities of Lake Rudolph.
Barker said five new water slides have been added in a complex called Santa’s Splash Down Water Park, opening this summer. The rainy weather, which has kept farmers out of the fields, also delayed completing the slides.
“Lake Rudolph will also be adding 22 additional Rudolph’s Christmas Cabins, one of which will be handicapped-accessible,” she said.
There are several stay-over options, with RV rentals and nearly 230 full hookup RV and tent sites, including more than 100 paved sites. “We now have 500 sites, and that puts us in the mega-park category,” Barker noted.
This is a big place; one option is to get around by golf cart. “We have 2,000 golf carts. The majority are electric and they are the best way to get around on our 168 acres,” she said.
Families often plan a day or two at Holiday World, then allow time to spend at the resort where they can swim, paddle-boat, fish, play in the game room or just enjoy the grounds and nature.
The campground also offers daily events.
“We have an extended activity schedule,” Barker said. “We have family movies, Wiffle ball, making tie-dye T-shirts and more.”
Some activates are free, and others cost a nominal fee. While summer is peak season, the campgrounds also offer special happenings other times of the year, such as at Halloween and, of course, at Christmas – when there is even a driving tour of lights telling the story of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”
Located at 78 North Holiday Blvd., Santa Claus, IN 47579, for more information, log onto www.lakerudolph.com or call 877-478-3657 or 877-937-7839.