Wet ‘n’ Wild Las Vegas
May – June 2013
New waterpark promises to help Southern Nevadans and tourists beat the heat.
BY CAMBRIA ROTH
Las Vegas is traditionally known as an adult destination. But when Las Vegan Ted Stringer heard about the new waterpark, Wet ‘n’ Wild, opening in late May in southwest Las Vegas, he knew it would fit right in. Stringer received the most votes for his contribution of “Red Rock Bay” in Wet ‘n’ Wild Las Vegas’ Wave Pool Naming Contest.
“When I looked at the location of the waterpark in proximity to Red Rock Canyon [National Conservation Area], the name Red Rock Bay just seemed to roll off the tongue,” Stringer says. “I think it is fantastic that the location is away from the Strip.”
The new waterpark, scheduled to open Memorial Day Weekend, has been highly anticipated by residents. A Facebook page called “Bring back Wet ‘n’ Wild to Las Vegas” had more than 56,000 likes as of March, the park’s official Facebook page had more than 36,000 likes, and the company has had many requests for a large-scale waterpark in Las Vegas.
“Las Vegas is a perfect location for a world-class waterpark attraction, and the climate certainly is ideal and provides the opportunity for a longer operating season beyond that of a traditional waterpark,” says Director of Marketing Trevor Wilson. “We feel the park will be a great family destination that the community has been missing and will cater to inbound visitors who are looking for family-friendly recreational activities. Southern Nevada has almost 2 million residents and 39 million visitors each year, and there hasn’t been a waterpark in Las Vegas for some time.”
The previous Wet ‘n Wild was located on the Las Vegas Strip for 20 years. It closed, much to the dismay of many locals, in 2004 due to plans for a new casino-resort that was never built. “Our family has joined the YMCA, but there aren’t enough public pools for kids during the summer, so I think this will be very well received,” Stringer says.
The new $50-million waterpark will feature more than 25 thrilling slides and attractions for adrenaline junkies. One of those slides is the Rattler water slide, the first of its kind. The three-person
Rattler takes riders through 360 feet of twists and turns and features two “rattles” that shake riders and deliver sensational oscillations as they descend into a pool below.
A fan favorite at Wet ‘n’ Wild Phoenix is the Constrictor slide, which was voted a Top 5 water slide by the Travel Channel’s Extreme Water Parks program. On this slide, riders make their way into the belly of a snake, and then take on the tightest and highest turns in the world at speeds up to 18 mph.
The Hoover Half Pipe, named for nearby Hoover Dam, is unique to Nevada and provides a whitewater rafting experience with an unexpected drop of 57 feet. As riders go vertical, they are shot up the side of the Hoover wall.
For park visitors who want a more relaxing experience, the Colorado Cooler lazy river provides a 1,000-foot winding waterway. The Red Rock Bay wave pool allows guests to take a break from rides and lounge on the makeshift beach or body surf in the waves.
Stringer and his daughter are most excited to ride Desert Racers, which they have tried at other parks. “You get on a mat and race down a speedway to see who can get to the bottom fastest,” Stringer says. “My wife, on the other hand, is most excited to get on a tube and go for a relaxing ride.”
Not only will the waterpark contribute to the growing family-friendly atmosphere in Las Vegas, but it will also provide hundreds of summer jobs for youth in the community. The waterpark could potentially welcome 650,000 people annually and employ more than 300 seasonal workers.