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South Library: Toddler Storytime
Mon Dec 11 @09:15AM - 10:20AM
Mitchell Library: Toddler Playdate
Mon Dec 11 @10:00AM - 12:00PM
Miss Sam's Storytime at Barnes and Noble
Mon Dec 11 @11:00AM - 12:00PM
Pokemon at Space Cadets
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Kids Night at Chick-fil-A Louetta Crossing
Mon Dec 11 @06:00PM - 08:00PM
Editor's Review: The Woodlands Resort - A Phenomenal Summer Staycation!
Written by Karen Logan   

WOW! I had no idea I would LOVE my overnight stay at The Woodalnds Resort and Conference Center as much as I did! Oh boy! I mean, I’ve always known it’s a nice resort from what I’ve seen of photos plus from my occasional business stops to the front / lobby area. And I’d always heard (and have even promoted on WoodlandsMommy.com) that the crowning glory of the resort is the pool area, but let’s face it, we live in the land of milk and honey. In The Woodlands, lushly landscaped properties, upscale amenities, and gorgeous swimming holes (including a lazy river at Rob Fleming) abound!  Would it really be worth my while to drive a couple of minutes to the resort for more of the same? 


Let me tell you – I was SUPER impressed with my family’s stay at the resort, so much so that before we settled down for the night, I was already checking my calendar for an available date to return. It was definitely not more of the SAME, so if you’ve thought similarly, I’m here to tell you the real deal. Whether it’s a couple of hours or a couple of minutes from your humble abode, The Woodlands Resort & Conference Center is a real AWESOME summertime retreat!

 

I visited the resort with my entire family of 6, and we spent most of our time at the Aquascape which is  where I will focus my review,  but it’s definitely worth noting the pristine guest room accommodations. Our very clean and well-appointed room for 4 was plenty spacious with two queen beds, a desk & chair, occasional chair with ottoman, dresser, TV, and still plenty of room for a naughty toddler to bounce around and do handstands! (Note: The maximum amount of guests for our room was 4 – or 5 with a toddler / roll-away bed).  Plush bath towels, complimentary bottles of water, mini fridges, Keurig coffeemakers, and fine toiletries are pretty standard at most hotels, but the favorite feature of our room was the view from the window. I loved the huge windows and was thrilled to pull back the curtains to our beautiful water fountain view. I would’ve been perfectly relaxed just sitting in bed and enjoying the scenery, but the Waterscape that I’d heard so much about was calling my name! (Well, really it was calling my kids’ names, so you know how that goes).

 
 
 
 
 

 

The Forest Oasis Waterscape is absolute paradise! We passed several lovely sitting / conversation areas on our trot down to the area from our room, and I found myself wishing it were just me and my husband exploring the property and sitting amongst the beautiful nature to talk about our dreams and aspirations – you know, the stuff we did before kids. Here's a photo of an adult lounge area where you can order cocktails, see a movie, and converse with others (or just sit and read a book):

 

At any rate, we get to the Waterscape and it’s simply amazing. This part of the resort pulls double duty to ensure guests are really transformed into a paradise-like retreat. What initially stood out for me is that the entire Waterscape area is cradled by gorgeously tall, lush trees. Not just your typical tropical-island palm trees (though these were in existence as well), but the types of trees you’ll see in a beautiful forest.

 

So we get to the water, and it really is this “swimming hole” / oasis feel that begs you to quit your day job and spend the rest of your life right there. The water was a very comfortable temperature – not too warm, and certainly not too cold to jump right in. Note – the resort website says the pools are unheated, but I would’ve bet good money that the pools were in fact. Our first stop – the large recreation pool with  a stunning, 30-foot tower outfitted with a double-helix water slide, waterfall, and underwater marine mural. We spent most of our time at this pool. There are plenty of lounge seats with umbrellas and cocktail tables for pool-side dining, and this pool is where we later enjoyed our Dive-In Movie (“Shark Tale” – began at around 8:00pm) and complimentary popcorn. The design of this zero-entry pool with brick backdrop and ovular  shape gives it the feel of a natural water hole. I’ve learned that on some days, this pool is the location of treasure hunts and other fun activities organized by the resort. My tweenager was impressed with the music that you could only hear from under water.

 
 
 
 

Next up was the 1005-foot lazy river. There are no lifeguards on duty throughout the Waterscape, so it’s important to keep your eyes on your little ones at all times. It’s impossible to do that from the sidelines on this lazy river that weaves through the forest canopy without a walking path alongside it, so my husband took the girls and they went around over and over (AND OVER) again on their tubes. He did mention a few beer bottles along the river path, but nothing alarming. Other than that, every other spot in the Waterscape – from the bathrooms to the lounge chairs to the pools – were immaculate!

 

As we journeyed through the Waterscape area, I was pleased to see the tidy Cool Water Café with umbrella-shaded dining. The menu consists of favorite pool-side foods such as salads, wraps, burgers, buffalo wings, and shakes, I also noted the complimentary, large iced water dispensers with disposable cups which allowed pool guests to refresh themselves at any time (swell idea!). A DJ booth and Dance Stage were the perfect backdrop for any dance parties / contests that take place at intervals throughout the weekend, but, unfortunately, my family missed out on most of this action.

 

If the lazy river and large recreation pool weren’t enough, the Waterscape boasts a third large pool. This lagoon-style, relaxation pool was available for all ages, but seemed to attract mostly adults.

For the younger tikes, there’s a smaller, zero-entry wading pool that my 3-year-old just loved. If I recall correctly, the water reached her just at waist-level and was perfect for our interaction with other tots, babies, and parents.  Adjacent to this pool is Puffy’s Sprayground with waterspouts and pop fountains!

 

And of course, it wouldn’t be a resort if there weren’t a hot tub!

When you think of visiting a resort pool in the middle of summer, you might think chaos and crowdedness (I certainly did). I was pleasantly surprised that the Forest Oasis Waterscape was none of the above. Though many families were enjoying the resort on this fine Friday evening, there was plenty of space to spread out. In fact, my family had the lazy river and some other places around the pools to ourselves for a few minutes here and there. Lounge seating abounds, so it’s easy to find a spot for your family to stay together and camp-out for the entire day.

We knew that s’mores were on the agenda during the weekends, and we could hardly wait for the clock to strike 7:00pm! We gathered around a campfire to roast marshmallows and enjoy the limitless supply of build-your-own s’mores. This activity always makes me uncomfortable. Folks of all ages roasting marshmallows on open fire, then walking those smoking pitchforks through the small crowd and over to the table to get the chocolate and graham crackers.  I feel like it’s an accident waiting to happen, but there were no such incidents, and all is well that ends well, and the treats were dee-licious, so that’s that.

 
 

After smore’s, it was back to our swimming while we awaited the dive-in movie, Shark Tale. We always appreciate a movie that’s full of laughs and family-friendly. The complimentary bags of buttered popcorn were served to guests as they waded in the pool.

The website for The Woodlands Resort mentions weekend activities such as face painting, karaoke, balloon artistry, ping pong, and magic shows as part of its summer seasonal activity schedule. We weren’t at the pool area during this time, but I hope to be back before Labor Day to experience all the glory.

Comfy beds, a quiet room, and check-out time at 11:00. The resort boasts a luxurious spa, 36 holes of championship golf, and several dining options including Robard's Steakhouse. Other resort amenities include complimentary Wi-Fi, valet and self parking.

Visit the resort this summer! You’ll be so glad you did! 

 
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