Carowinds set to open the 27-acre Carolina Harbor water park

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

From the press release:

The wait is over! Guests can splash, slide and soak up the Carolina sun at what has been recognized as one of the 10 Best Waterparks to Visit in 2016 by Fodor's Travel magazine, Carolina Harbor Waterpark at Carowinds. The park will debut to the public on Saturday, May 21 at 11 a.m.

There's something for everyone with 27-acres of fun – all while celebrating the culture of the Carolina coast. With the largest waterpark expansion in the park's history, Carowinds has doubled the size of the waterpark, and now has twice as many attractions. Carolina Harbor still features favorites from the previous waterpark, Boomerang Bay, with new coastal themes and color schemes.

Carolina Harbor Waterpark features more than 20 attractions for families and thrill seekers including the new flagship six-story tall waterslide complex, Blackbeard's Revenge; a two-acre family area which features popular coastal town names, Kiddy Hawk Cove and Myrtle Turtle Beach; in addition to Seaside Splashworks- a multi-level play structure with over 80 play elements and a giant 423-gallon tipping bucket that soaks everything in its path. And guests can catch some gnarly waves in our new 27,000 square foot wave pool, Surf Club Harbor. More than 2,000 new lounge and pool side chairs have been added, along with just over 30 new cabanas (60 total), including two party cabanas which can hold up to 16 people.

There's more! After a day of splashtastic fun, park goers can fill up on some good ol' Carolina cuisine at the all-new Harbor House restaurant. The eatery features two 2,400 square foot outdoor patios. Guests can also relax by the poolside with an adult beverage from the new Schooners Beach Bar.

It's also easier and more convenient for park goers just wanting to visit Carolina Harbor! We've added a new separately-gated waterpark entrance- all part of a best day ever experience! What makes it even better? Entry to the waterpark is included with the price of Carowinds admission!

Read the entire press release from Cedar Fair.

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Jeff's avatar

I'm kind of surprised that this didn't actually come before Fury 325, in terms of prioritization. The packaging and branding of this water park is pretty cool, and barring crappy weather, I imagine this is going to be huge. Really really fantastic. Great.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

still no reason to tear down Thunder Road.

Raven-Phile's avatar

Certainly a waterpark is not, but a termite infestation could always put a damper on the continued operation of a wooden coaster...

never seen the Termite issue in anything other than facebook rumour. Maybe I missed something.

Raven-Phile's avatar

They wouldn't have had GCI put all that work into it, among other things, right up to its demolition, they had had bought it to close it...erm, I mean, if they had planned on removing it so soon.

ApolloAndy's avatar

Or maybe they just decided that, outside of a few coaster enthusiasts, the total lack of draw from an old wooden roller coaster did not make up the maintenance costs.

Last edited by ApolloAndy,

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

Raven-Phile's avatar

Right, but they put all that money into it, mayb then they found a termite infestation and decided that it wasn't worth the cost to repair because it was a loooooooottt of wood that ended replaced.

Tekwardo's avatar

CreditWh0re said:
still no reason to tear down Thunder Road.

Carolina Harbor had nothing to do with Thunder Road. What you missed were candid conversations that park management had with local enthusiasts. Here are some facts. You can choose to believe Evil Cedar Fair got rid of the ride just to spite enthusiasts or not. But these are facts.

Carowinds went with GCI to do a five year refurb on TR starting in the 2010-2011 off season. This included retracking and rebuilding of the turnaround and lasted several off seasons, but was ultimately not finished.

During the 2013-2014 off season the park spent more money on TR to build a pathway underneath it as the were adding their two new slides for the year, which would have been the pathway to the other side of the planned waterpark expansion. Tar would have straddled the new and old waterpark sections just like KD.

During the 2014-2015 off season, the park was preparing to put out a bid for the ride to be completely repainted white like it had been when it opened. There was also a rumor that a new LED light package was being added like on Blue Streak, since the ride would go down the middle of the planned waterpark.

However, once GCI got to the last section to be refurbed, the station, lift approach, lift, and first drop, it was so damaged from termites that it was going to have to be completely demolished and rebuilt at an astronomical price after they'd already spent quite a bit on the prior refurbed sections.

The company choose to cut it as a loss.

It had nothing to do with adding the waterpark, which had already been designed around it.

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Raven-Phile's avatar

If they were planning in repainting it, what a real shame this happened. It looked so bad since without paint. It would have been back in near-full glory. (Full glory would have been sparkling white with car facade trains)

Did neglect allow termites to move in? Haven't heard of that before on a coaster. You would think they would inspect them and stop t before it got out of hand.

Last edited by super7*,

I wonder how you tent an out and back coaster?

Raven-Phile's avatar

That reminds me:

A termite walked into a bar and said "where's the bar tender?"

Shawn Meyer's avatar

Now that Carolina Harbor has been added, does anyone think it's possible that Cedar Fair rebuilds Thunder Road? I mean obviously it would be in a new location, but GCI could rebuild it and make it faster and more unique.

Jeff's avatar

Then it wouldn't be Thunder Road.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

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