With their opening day this Saturday, May 25, crews at Birch Bay Waterslides are rapidly completing a long list of to-dos.
Fresh paint, arcade games and an expanded gift shop are the first order of business, but the biggest change is the new 90-seat pizza restaurant and arcade. Waterslides manager Iain Buchanan said Birch Bay Pizza will be in operation when the park opens this weekend, but the restaurant’s grand opening is scheduled for June 22.
“We’ll be serving pizza out the front door like we have in the past until we have our grand opening next month,” Buchanan
said. “The restaurant will open onto the park, so people can have a place to go if it starts to rain, and they can eat in the restaurant while their kids play in the park.”
Buchanan said he plans to install TVs and provide beer and wine for adults, along with an arcade area.
“It should appeal to the whole family,” he said.
Another big change at the waterslides this year is a new policy allowing people to bring their own food.
“We’re introducing it for our 30-year anniversary, and we’re hoping to continue it after this year,” Buchanan said. “We want to make the place more family-friendly and affordable.”
To keep glass containers and alcohol out of the park, coolers will not be allowed, but Buchanan said he’s hopeful the policy will allow more families to enjoy the park without breaking the bank.
“With the economy on the upturn, we feel like people want to get out and have fun, and we want to be a part of that,” he said.
Affordable fun is the goal at Birch Bay Waterslides this weekend. On Saturday the park will sell season passes for $35 off full price.
On Sunday, Birch Bay Waterslides will host an ’80s throwback day, with tickets sold for $7.50 (the price of admission in 1983). There will also be raffles and giveaways, with day passes, t-shirts and some funky ’80s surprises on the docket.
“We’re hoping to repeat the ’80s theme on a grander scale later in the year,” Buchanan said.
A range of arcade games, from pinball to Dance Dance Revolution are located in the gift shop, and will be moved into the restaurant when it opens this summer.
Buchanan said, “All the slides will be open this weekend, and they’re looking good. We’ve done some repainting and recoating. The pools, hot tub area and the exterior walls are all nice bright colors.”
According to their website, Birch Bay Waterslides attracts more than 60,000 visitors to Birch Bay every season. Whitewater West, a water park supplier and builder based out of Richmond, B.C., designed and supplied the original slides in 1986. In the ’90s, a 60-foot drop slide and the Black Hole were added.
The park will be open weekends from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. through June 22, when the park will be open every day through September 3. For prices and more information, visit birchbaywaterslides.net. See page 2 for a special coupon.