Idlewild reveals major improvements to its beloved Story Book Forest for upcoming season

By | March 28, 2024

LIGONIER, Pa. — Idlewild & SoakZone is gearing up for its 2024 season with a massive improvement project across the park’s beloved Story Book Forest. The Best Kids Park in the World is also unveiling an expanded operating schedule, thrilling special events and entertainment and much more for its 147th season.  

Story Book Forest, which features character scenes from fairy tales and nursery rhymes along a winding path through a real forest will delight guests with several improvements and returning elements this upcoming season, including:

  • The multi-year paving project has continued with a large portion of the path being paved creating better accessibility for strollers and wheelchairs and improving the overall guest   experience for everyone visiting Story Book Forest 
  • Rub-a-Dub-Dub Three Men in a Tub will splash back on the scene with the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker in a brand-new tub; 
  • Jack and the Beanstalk will sprout again in the lineup with the original characters along with a new beanstalk and pea pods;  
  • Restoration and improvements including a new roof for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs cottage and new wood siding on the Good Ship Lollipop; and  
  • The lake is getting refreshed to ensure it remains as picturesque as its surroundings, along with motion returning to the Windmill and waterwheels in the center.   

“The upcoming Idlewild season will be full of reasons to visit, with Story Book Forest’s multiple improvements and additions, brand-new concepts for our special events plus several other upgrades throughout the park,” said General Manager Tim Heger. “We take great pride in being Pittsburgh’s Best Amusement Park for Kids and Families and strive to elevate the fun and playfulness every year for our guests.” 

Story Book Forest is just one part of the improvements throughout The Best Kids Park in the World. Also new in 2024, Skooters is adding all-new bumper cars, more than doubling the ride’s capacity and offering more options for families to enjoy throughout their visit. Others include the continuation of a multi-year restoration project of the park’s Carousel in Olde Idlewild. The carousel horses, which date back to 1931, were stripped down to bare wood and carefully hand-painted to restore this timeless classic to its original beauty. The SoakZone Gift Shop is also being upgraded from top to bottom, offering guests an enhanced shopping experience. New floors, new wall units and beautiful displays to complement all-new park merchandise are in store for this coming season. 

The 2024 Idlewild season will feature new elements and enhanced entertainment for its popular event Kids Fest, plus the Halloween favorite, HALLOWBOO!. This fall event will have its longest run yet beginning on September 14 and running weekends through October 27. Idlewild will open its gates for the 2024 season on Saturday, May 18 with SoakZone opening on Saturday, May 25.