Like most families in the NASCAR community, a rare off weekend means precious time spent with loved ones. Heading out to celebrate the days leading up to Father’s Day was no different for Ryan, Krissie, Brooklyn and Ashlyn Newman.
They boarded a plane after the race at Michigan International Speedway and went on vacation. For the first time in a very long while, it was time well spent with just the four of them.
The vacation destination of choice? Where else but the Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort located in the Ozark Mountains of Missouri and owned by Johnny Morris, founder and CEO of Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s.
“This trip was really meaningful. There were so many fun things as a family for us to do,” said Newman.
“The girls got to drive bumper cars and go-karts for the first time. They went tubing for the first time at Table Rock Lake. This trip was filled with a lot of firsts. The most special part for me was seeing them get to catch their first trout at Dogwood Canyon National Park. Ashlyn was the first to reel one in,” smiled the proud father.
For six whole days, the Newman family embarked on all kind of adventures.
A major highlight of the trip was a visit to Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium in Springfield, Missouri.
It’s been voted America’s Best Aquarium and Best New Attraction, and features a wide variety of exhibits including wildlife galleries and a state-of-the-art 4D dioramas that completely surrounds visitors within the sights and sounds of the planets more extreme wildlife habits.
A favorite of the Newman girls was the aquarium. It features 1.5 million gallons of freshwater and saltwater habitats comprising of 35,000 live fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds representing more than 800 species.
“They really loved the chance of seeing all the fish and everything the aquarium offers. Hands down, their favorite part was getting to pet the stingrays. They actually got to touch them,” according to Newman.
— Ryan Newman (@RyanJNewman) June 12, 2018
The outing that’s getting the attention of race fans on social media was Newman’s visit to Lambert’s Café where it is known to have its employees toss bread at the patrons, but it wasn’t the waiters doing the tossing.
“I definitely made some fans and there were some people that recognized me which I always find interesting. The next thing I know, I was being volunteered,” laughed the winner of the 2017 Camping World 500 at Phoenix Raceway.
— Ryan Newman (@RyanJNewman) June 16, 2018