Thousands travel to the greatest local water parks every summer, intent to enjoy the new sun and splash of the season. This year particularly, record temperatures threaten much of the United States with uncomfortable and even life-threatening weather conditions. The Texas-Oklahoma plains region has been extremely hot this season, and residents are learning to adapt to life at their area water parks not only for fun, and not only to beat the heat, but to also live green and save energy. Already, local power grids have failed on our hottest day, leaving many cooped up in hot homes with food going bad in the refrigerator. To avoid this, many people are making the extra effort to find fun- and cool- activities away from the home during the hottest parts of the days.
For many, summertime water park coupons are a valuable resource regularly figured into the family budget. It is not uncommon for a business savvy family unit to utilize weather forecasting in order to determine prime times for heading out. Below, read about some of the great local water parks that also boast great deals.
5 Great DFW plains area water parks
- Six Flags Hurricane Harbor
Deep in the heart of the Dallas metroplex lies the time-tested and true first big water park many of us can remember, Six Flags Hurricane Harbor of Arlington, Texas.
Arlington fans always rely on Six Flags Over Texas and Hurricane Harbor for their summer fun. Hurricane Harbor ranks as North Texas’ largest water park. Approximately 25 water rides hold popularity at Hurricane Harbor in Arlington, with The Black Hole being a long-time favorite. Ride in the dark as you hurdle through the disorienting worm-hole. Currently, The Mega Wedgie, a “zero-gravity” four story high and 83 feet wide slide, propels riders at speeds up to 23 miles per hour.
Finally, brand new for 2012, Hurricane Harbor Water Park has the all-new Dive Bomber. Step in, count to three and DROP goes the floor, to send the guest on a seven story free fall into a 5 feet deep pool.
Worth mentioning: Six Flags Hurricane Harbor’s seasonal Girl Scouts Splash Bash, in August
“Calling all Girl Scouts of Texas Oklahoma Plains! End the Year of the Girl celebration with a fun filled day at Hurricane Harbor on Saturday, August 18.” -Hurricane Harbor, Arlington
Group rates are just $21 per head, but for our purposes today you may want to consider the season pass, which you can get for just $16.69 per month for 3 months.
1800 E Lamar Boulevard
Arlington, TX 76006
- Surf and Swim
Eastern DFW’s Rowlett well covers their end of the spectrum with Garland’s Surf and Swim.
Many of DFW’s cities have their own more intimate versions of the city water park. About half the price of the larger parks, and closer to home, the neighborhood commercial water park offers plenty of running water and a wading pool. At Surf and Swim, you’ll also find the Chill and Grill Café, offering such pool-side treats as burgers, fries, drinks and nachos. Admissions to Surf and Swim water park of Garland range from $7 to $3 with a “twilight special”. Season passes are not offered at this location, and this water park is popular. Call ahead to check availability of entry.
440 W. Oates Road, Garland, Texas 75043
On the western end, North Richland Hills Family Water Park touts as “Dallas-Fort Worth’s Family Water Park” and offers a wide variety of admissions and group rates.
NRH2O, as it’s properly referred to, will get you your typical $4 discount anytime you visit a Chic Filet or drink a Dr. Pepper cola. Just pick up a coupon or can, respectively and take it with you to the park.
Military? Just show your military ID and enjoy $5 off regular admissions. Like movies? “Dive-In Movie Night” is a great way to have fun at the water park. Check out this printable page of specific-day coupons which include this and more.
Noteworthy: NRH2O does a lot of helpful charity drive discounting. Namely, “Give Back Tuesdays” and an annual “School Supply Drive”.
9001 Boulevard 26, North Richland Hills, Texas 76180
- Hawaiian Falls
Hawaiian Falls offers locations all around the DFW metroplex, in Garland, The Colony, Mansfield, Roanoke, and even southbound at Waco. Each of the Hawaiian Falls parks is just a little bit different, featuring different new rides each season. Adult ticket prices are $24.99 for the 2012 season, with discounts for military and seniors.
- Turner Falls Park
Finally, looking northward from DFW across the plains to Davis, Oklahoma, you’ll find Turner Falls Park. Located in the Arbuckle Mountains, Turner Falls is a prime location for cooling off, especially considering it’s waters are fed from a natural spring.
It’s not unusual to find yourself driving just 2-3 hours northbound on Interstate Highway 35 toward Turner Falls for one of the best water park experiences available.
“The 1500-acre area around the falls has been compared to the Grand Canyon and the Black Hills, in that the terrain provides a geological view into the past.” -Turner Falls Park
While you may not find man-mad death-defying seven story free-falls or black holes, you will find an 8-9 story (77 feet) natural waterfall, and natural caves for exploration, along with a real rock castle and many other area attractions. Tent camping and cabins are available. Park admissions vary from $12 to free entry for under 5 years of age.
I-35 and Highway 77
Davis, Oklahoma 73030
So whether you’re headed out to the water parks for mostly fun or mostly good Green scruples, this guide to the best local water parks of DFW should serve you in most any direction you’re going. In addition to the exciting locations introduced here, never forget your most local community pools. Generally much smaller in scale, community pools are some of the best water park areas for cooling off and getting to know your neighbors at the same time.