An indoor waterpark with several big waterslides, a wave pool, leisure pool, play structure, and H20Musuem
A couple of tips:
- Make sure you take some sandals to walk around in. While they aren’t allowed on the slides, kids were slipping and tumbling on the surface (our guy fell twice while walking…it was a little bit slick).
- We visited on a Friday afternoon and summer hours had not started yet. Make sure to check the website for times as they vary. It was not busy at all and we hardly waited for any of the slides. We were told it can get pretty busy on the weekends.
- Make use of the life jackets there. They are free for use and are handy in the wave and vortex pools.
It was dark and stormy, so we decided to hop in the car and head for a bit of summer. As we pulled into the parking lot at the Wings and Waves building on the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum Campus, the clouds cleared, letting the sun through, and our souls rejoiced. I was there with my two boys (ages 4 and 40 – OK, the 40-year-old is my husband, but he plays as hard as the kids!).
We checked in at the bi-plane front desk (complete with wing walker). I was a little surprised with the pricing. For folks who stand 42” tall or more, it is $30, folks under 42” are $25, and they offer a non-swimmer pass for $10. It has been a while since we have been to a water park, and there isn’t anything else like it in our area, so it was hard to compare, but we felt it was on the high side.
They offer lockers to store your non-swim stuff at $8/$9/$10 for small/medium/large, which seemed on par. The nice thing about these lockers - they are all electronic, and there is a person in the room that opens your locker for you. No keys to lose while swimming!
The changing rooms/bathrooms are clean, bright and new. I was impressed that there were actual hairdryers available and they had a water extraction machine to dry out your suits at the end of your day. They also offer family change rooms for folks who might need them.
Each of the big slides (which start in the 747!!), are color coded. Height requirements vary on these rides; some are for single riders, others for partners, and three require inner tubes.
With our guy, we grabbed a 2-person inner tube and climbed the 111 steps to the top. We weren’t really sure where to start!! The blue slide (Tail Spin) is really fun, but it is very dark for most of the ride, with only a few windows of light. The yellow slide, Sonic Boom, starts off as a fully enclosed slide and then opens up. Our clear favorite was the green slide (Nose Dive). This is a little different than the other slides, as you shoot out of the tunnel and are dumped into a bowl where you spin around until you finally go down “the drain” and shoot out to the bottom. This was the only slide with a wait (around 5 minutes for us). Mach 1, the orange slide, was far more fun for my husband than for me. He was able to go much faster down the slide. For some reason, I just couldn’t get my speed up, and ended up crawling along. One note, they do not allow swim shirts to be worn on Mach 1, so if you can’t take your shirt off, you will be turned away.
After a couple of hours, it was time to refuel. We popped into the Milky Way Café. While the hot dogs were good, we found very few healthy options to eat, which was disappointing. It offered your average American food: hamburgers, hot dogs, pretzels, French Fries, etc.
We gave our food time to settle by visiting the H2OMuseum on the upper level. You learn, hands-on, why life needs water. There are also other learning stations outside of the Museum.
After our rest, we headed straight for the play structure. This is where the under 42” crowd hangs. Smokey the Bear welcomes you and there are all sorts of things that teach kids about fire safety. Most of the kids were busy putting out fires with the water shooters, shooting down slides, and pulling ropes, just before the giant bucket the soaks the place. There are also other small slides in the same area for the toddlers.
We ended with the wave and leisure pools. At first our guy was a little nervous about it all. The waves were big and they hit hard. Once he figured it out, he didn’t want to leave. In the leisure pool, they also have a couple of basketball hoops, if you want to have a pick-up game. We gave him one last swim in this area, since we all wanted to check out the vortex pool. It will be hard for the short set, if they aren’t good swimmers, as it is 3’8 deep, but it is pretty amazing how quickly you spin around. Grabbing one of the life jackets and letting the kids float around was pretty fun.
Lastly, as you have probably walked up more than 2000 stairs by the end of your visit, there is a hot tub to relax your muscles in.
We had a great time and will go back for special occasions or if we have visitors in town, mainly due to price. The place feels really clean and safe, the staff and life guards are all really friendly and on the ball, and you can tell people really like working there (plus, I double checked by asking them, and they really do!).