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An Ode to Cinnamon Bread

People talking everywhere, screams and howls are in the air--these are the sounds of summer. No matter how many times you've visited a theme park, you know the feeling when you walk in: The anticipation of the thrills ahead, the joy on the face of your child or significant other, and the dread of having to shell out $15 for dry, tasteless breaded...something.

What if I told you that this is not the best that theme parks can offer? Unreal, says the skeptic. Unlikely, says the businessman. Heresy, says Cardinal Ximinez, whom we thought died over five hundred years ago but somehow is still around to contribute to this blog.

But it's true.

We are living through a renaissance of theme park food. No longer are parks content to treat their customers as a captive audience, whose lack of options is to be exploited. More and more parks are beginning to see food as part of the guest experience, and even part of the theme itself. Perhaps the flagship for this movement is Universal Studios' Butterbeer. What Harry Potter experience would be complete without the creamy goodness? So you make like Fry and tell them to shut up and take your money. What park wouldn't want to get into that game?

They're just after your money, says the cynic.

Too late, cynic, you should have shown up in paragraph two.

And yes, let's not forget these are businesses that are wanting you to spend money with them. But they are in the entertainment business, and food as entertainment is a very big business indeed. And the tardy cynic from paragraph five would fail to see past the business model to the very heart of the exchange:

You're buying happiness.

Theme parks allow you to get away from the problems of everyday life and be in a place where all your needs are met and you can do what your heart desires. Unless your heart desires vandalism. Don't do that. But if you're like us and your heart's desire is just to feel safe and cared for and to take on the challenges of the world and emerge victorious--well, those are the feels that a theme park is selling. That is the happiness you can buy. Sometimes it's in the form of a roller coaster, sometimes in a song and dance--and sometimes, it takes the form of cinnamon bread.

Oh, what's cinnamon bread, you say? Come along with us and you'll find out. It's a wonderful journey.

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