Web Posted: 01/18/2006 12:00 AM CST
Travis E. Poling
Express-News Business Writer
Six Flags Fiesta Texas is remaking its popular water park with three new rides and another children's play area.
The multimillion-dollar expansion is expected to open to park-goers May 6, although the theme park launches its spring season in early March.
The Whirlpool ride uses centrifugal force to swirl riders in a two-person tube around a 40-foot-diameter bowl before a drop through a corkscrew chute.
The Big Bender drops 50 feet through a series of dips, tunnels and twists passing in and out of darkness.
And the Hill Country Racer is a six-lane speed slide for races down a straightaway series of dips.
All three rides, manufactured by ProSlide Technologies of Ottawa, Canada, are present in some form at other Six Flags Inc. parks.
For children, Fiesta Texas will roll out Splashwater Springs, featuring a pirate ship, a beached-boat slide and water-squirting palm trees. The play elements of the area for small children will be manufactured by NBGS International, the New Braunfels-based sister company of Schlitterbahn Waterparks.
"We think right now we have enough coasters," said Martin Bozer, general manager of Six Flags Fiesta Texas. "What we need now is more family entertainment."
Bozer said the additions, which include a redesigned entry plaza to the water park portion of the theme park and a store called Beach Bum Surf Co., are part of a "renewed emphasis" on the family-friendly experience.
In the past decade, many parks that once relied largely on shows went through a stage of adding more extreme rides such as roller coasters to keep teenagers and young adults coming back for more. Sea World San Antonio and Fiesta Texas were among those spending heavily on thrill rides.
Sydne Purvis, spokeswoman for the theme park, said past additions to the water park area "have been very successful."
In 1999, Fiesta Texas added the Texas Treehouse kids' water play area and the Texas-shaped Lone Star Lagoon. In 2004, the extreme tubing area Tornado was added.
The cost of the latest makeover was not disclosed, but park manager Bozer said it was a multimillion-dollar addition. The Armadillo Beach moniker for the water park will change but will be announced later this year.
The Armadillo Beach moniker for the water park will change but will be announced later this year.
Actually, it sounds like it WILL be changed...
bill, wants to get back to San Antonio...
P.S. for Schlitterbahn...you can NOT beat them at THEIR game, but I think SFFT does a wonderful job of playing their OWN game...
Jeffrey: Why did Fiesta Texas get a water park then? San Antonio is one hot (litterally) town, and the stone walls only make it hotter, on a summer day you need a way to cool off and a water park (as well as shows in AC) is a perfect way to do it. Exceling at both these concepts keep people in the park who would otherwise go shopping in the early afternoon and return to the park around 4.
Well, one thing Fiesta Texas will have over Schlitterbahn is a Proslide bowl slide, and they also don't have a racing slide complex to the best of my knowledge.
P.S. Fiesta Texas is the best of all the six Flags I've been to (I've not been to SFNE...and I think that is the only one I have not been to) by far! The main attribute is that it looks and feels nothing like Six Flags! :-) I would recommend San Antonio for any park enthusiast as you can also catch the under-rated Steel Eel and a Batman clone at SeaWorld...combined with Schlitterbahn! Three great parks with totally unique atmospheres and experiences! Combined this with the San Antonio Riverwalk...and you've got yourself one hell of nice weeks vacation!
Honestly, the four days I have spent there approximatly 90% of my time has been spent in the old park and I wouldnt want it anyother way.
Looks like park reps are already spouting the new company line, LOL! ;)
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