For those of you that don’t know about the Yule Slide, the museum builds a two-lane slide on top of the grand staircase in the Sunburst Atrium every year for the holiday season. Families line up to race from the second floor down to the first floor to see who can make it to the bottom first. Some folks on staff have also been known to make a trip or two down the slide when the museum is closed. After all, we have to try it out to make sure it is in proper working order!
Speaking of work…it takes a lot of work to put that slide together. The slide comes in eight sections and exhibit production and facilities staff usually need at least a few days to put it together and polish it up, though they’ve been known to do it in less than 24 hours.
Here are a few quick facts about the Yule Slide:
- Rumor has it the inside track is faster.
- Thousands of people go down the slide every holiday season.
- It takes two full-time staff to run the slide every day. One at the top to hand out the slide mats and tell people to “go!” and one at the bottom to collect the slide mats and name the race winners.
- Museum workers have been putting the slide up and taking it down every holiday season since about 1994 when we first built the Yule Slide as part of what was then the new Jolly Days exhibit.
- It is 47 feet long.
- The slide is stored in a warehouse along with the rest of the Jolly Days exhibit elements. A shipping company delivers it to the museum and we start setting it up right after Halloween so it's ready to open the day after Thanksgiving.
- In 2008, the Yule Slide was brought out of storage and turned into the Ohana Slide for the museum’s “Vacation Nation” spring break event.
The Yule Slide officially opens when Santa makes his exciting grand entrance Friday, Nov. 25, during Santa’s Big Arrival. The slide will be open from 10 a.m.–4:45 p.m. daily (except closed Mondays) through Jan. 1, 2023.