Located near Hoosier National Park, Patoka Lake Marina & Lodging teems with the area's wildlife, including ospreys, loons, herons, and the elusive bald eagle. Climb aboard the marina's new 60-foot Patoka Voyager for a two-hour tour of the picturesque lake and relax as a guide takes you along the scenic shoreline, detailing Patoka Lake's history and singing children’s lullabies. There's a cash bar available, as well as indoor or outdoor seating. Though not included in today's Groupon, the Patoka Grill stands there ready to fuel up tour-goers before or after the trip. Those who prefer the thrill of catching their own dinner can cast their lines in the lake for bass, bluegill, catfish, and walleye.
The Christmas enthusiasts at Santa's Candy Castle entertain children and their parents with an interactive computer lab directly connected to the North Pole, an old-fashioned candy shop, and a holiday-themed exterior that resembles a gingerbread house. One access card (a $10 value) to the North Pole Network—a group of six computers directly connected to the North Pole and its inhabitants—grants children a straight communication shot to one of six elves. Computer tables and chairs lowered to the level of a grown man's kneecap support the candy-filled bodies of youngsters while they plunk away at colorful, oversized keys on durable keyboards made to withstand even the weightiest Christmas wish list. Once connected to the network, children ask an elf if they've made it onto Santa Claus's good list. All of the children, good or bad, receive a good list certificate emblazoned with an official gold seal, endorsements from the elf and Santa Claus, the child's name, and a discarded nose light bulb from a famous reindeer.
Designed by renowned course architect Edmund Ault in 1967, Christmas Lake Golf Course is a verdant haven carved out of rolling hills and lush valleys. Before tee time, shoulders and their owners can test out their oscillating aptitude by taking the included buckets of balls for a swing-honing ride on the driving range. Next, dynamic clubbing duos take to the links, perfecting their announcer stage whispers among the zoysia-grass tees and bent-grass greens as they comment on one another’s divot-repairing skills. Enjoy a speedy commute across the flat front nine or the hillier back nine aboard a motorized cart that carries heavy bags and ensures quick getaways from argyle-clad, fairway-dwelling hobgoblins. Postgame, weary wedge wielders can trek to the Club House for celebratory libations and victuals (costs not included in today’s Groupon).
The speedsters at French Lick/West Baden Indoor Karting organize action-packed go-kart races on a 1,250-foot indoor road course. The European-made Sodi Karts can ramp up to 40 mph; junior carts, which seat ages 8–13, max out at 20 mph, but they make up for the lower speed by causing everything else to move in slow motion. The Arrive & Drive heat race ($12 for adults, $10 for juniors) thrusts contestants into an eight-minute contest against as many as nine other drivers, all competing to win the favor of the timing system and power slide their way to the top of the list of fastest laps. Karters who opt for the membership crash into the world of karting with style, enjoying perks that include a free race, a helmet head sock, quantity discounted races, plus another free race during the week of their birthday.
Founded in 1961, the Indiana Railway Museum guides rail-hopping wayfarers on a historic tour along 10 miles of scenic railroad between French Lick and Cuzco. During the 1.75-hour round trip, passengers will visit wooden and limestone train stations from the early 1900s and look out onto historic pieces of rail equipment, such as steam locomotives and Theodore Roosevelt's experimental bourbon-powered bullet train. Throughout the journey, the French Lick Scenic Railway will pass through Hoosier National Forest and the 2,200-foot Burton tunnel before traveling along beauteous lakes and impressive limestone cuts created during John Henry's showdown against the 4G iHammer.