Meals - For Later?

by Mike | July 15, 2017 | 4 Minute Read

The All-Season Meal Plan entitles you to two meals per day, spaced four hours apart. This clever park hack helps you better take advantage of that deal.

If you have a meal plan, arrive in time to have an early dinner at 5 or 6. Then, before you leave, get a to-go order to enjoy for lunch the next day. You can get a meal every 4 hours. I just had a yummy Subway sandwich for dinner tonight that I got last night @ ~ 9PM before I went home. Just get your food into the fridge ASAP. Bon appétit!

Barbee S.
Monroe, OH

Thanks to Barbee for sharing that Park Hack! Remember, you can always submit a tip to share with the other readers using our Share-a-Hack form.

When we first got on the meal plan, the meals were only required to be spaced two hours apart. That made it really easy to snag a Hoagy from the International Street LaRosa’s on the way out. I had a couple nice lunches the following day by doing that. I even improved that technique by learning to separate the cold, wet items like the tomato and pickle, and later the cheese, from the sandwich so that the bun didn’t get too wet overnight.

Even though the two meals per day is within the rules of the All-Season Meal Plan, the park’s management spotted this and over time has modified the options to make it less appealing or more difficult. Now there are no more Hoagies at LaRosa’s, which makes me sad at the loss of one meal option that I really enjoyed. They also spread the use of the meal plan to four hours apart.

To do it right, you need to arrive for dinner early enough that you can get your second meal before the park closes. This isn’t hard if you’re in the park for lunch or if you go on nights when the park is open until midnight. But the food service begins to shut down an hour before the park closes. You may be able to get pizza up until closing time, but for the majority of options, you want to hit that second meal by 9pm on a night that the park closes at 10. So to do this you need to have your first meal before 5pm. That’s hard for families who come over after a parent gets home from work.

What do you choose?

There aren’t many options that will keep well. Sure, if you want to bring an insulated carrier, you might be able to get a pizza meal home in a condition you’d consider eating. But left on a plate, with maybe a napkin for shelter, the pizza is often cold by the time you get to it even when you’re in the park.

I haven’t seen it, but I suppose you could bring chinese food containers, or tupperware into the Festhaus and separate your Panda for later consumption.

The best option I can think of is Subway. Those sandwiches are packed for travel. You might want to consider fewer high-moisture toppings and go easy on the dressings to protect the condition of your bun. But maybe you can handle a bun that has soaked in some of that yummy flavor. The chips will also keep well. You just have to hit that restaurant while it is still operating. I think this, the Subway on Coney Mall, is one place that closes very early compared to the main dining areas of the park.

You might also have good luck stashing a chicken nugget to chicken strip meal home. Fries may take some planning. They make foil-lined pouches that might keep the food nice for later. A few minutes on a cookie sheet in the oven, or even on a skillet to crisp them back up, might get pretty close to the real thing.

These are definitely hacks. The way they designed the meal plan, the park clearly intends you to enjoy a lunch and a dinner during a long day visit. You get two meals and the times that you call lunch or dinner, is up to you!

I used to have the fun benefit of a day job very close to the park. I went over to the park for my lunch hour to use one of the meals, then often would return later with the family. Sadly that position, and lunch hours spent at the park, came to an end.

>> Have we missed any? Do you have any clever ways to better take advantage of that second meal of the day?

Photo credit: This cool photo of the fountain at night is from 2009 when it was more colorful. Cincinnati: Kings Island by Eli Duke - CC BY-SA 2.0