As soon as I saw the array of giant beach balls that flank the main entrance to Cedar Point Shores, I knew that the outdoor water park was all about fun in the sun. Just opened on Memorial Day weekend, it’s a swimming new addition to Cedar Point amusement park, a favorite summertime destination that combines a beautifully breezy location on the tip of a Lake Erie peninsula with a phenomenal number – 70! – of rides and record-breaking roller coasters. Cedar Point’s 17 coasters include the first 200, 300, and 400-foot-high coasters, and its latest scream engine – the Valravn – is the world’s tallest, fastest, and longest dive coaster.
Since Cedar Point Shores is adjacent to both Cedar Point’s famous mile-long beach and its ground-breaking Magnum XL-200 hypercoaster (think 72 mph and a gripping pretzel-shaped turnaround), I like to think of the 18-acre water park as the only place on earth where you can splash, float, paddle, slide, or body surf while looking at a Great Lake and listening to people screaming in terror just a few yards away. Besides rafting on the Storm Surge ride or cascading through tunnels on the Lake Erie Nor’easter, guests at Cedar Point Shores get to experience four all-new attractions.
Lemmy’s Lagoon, a kid-friendly splashground, features the mythical Lake Erie Monster, and Lakeside Landing has pint-sized water slides. Portside Plunge appeals to thrill-seekers with its lofty inner tube slides, while Point Plummet offers adventurous, rapid-paced rides on six-story-high, aqua-drop body slides.
Point Plummet begins when riders get into individual pods with clear doors that remind me of space capsules.
After the doors close, riders even hear a countdown. Suddenly the floor beneath them gives way, and they practically free fall hundreds of feet before splash-landing in narrow pools of water.
Hint: Point Plummet’s fastest slide – 5 to 10 seconds per ride – is the blue one, because it has the most straightaways. If you want something slower, choose the yellow slide. It has a lot more turns, so the ride takes 15 to 20 seconds.
Cedar Point began as a bathing beach and picnic grounds in the 1870s, and in many ways, Cedar Point Shores is a modern version of those bygone days. Along with old-fashioned posters and signage that provide vintage eye candy, the colorful, coastal-style architecture of newly constructed buildings like the Crystal Rock Café channels the late 1800s.
And since people still love to eat during summer days at Cedar Point, the café specializes in fresh chicken tenders, tasty beef brisket, and gourmet salads. Cedar Point’s executive chef Phil Bucco has introduced an Asian salad made with edamame and crisp greens as well as a BLT salad concocted from chopped bacon, diced tomatoes, and romaine lettuce.
I’ve sampled them both, and they were refreshing, unique, and totally enjoyable . . . just like Cedar Point Shores.
Want more information about Cedar Point Shores and Cedar Point’s dining, lodging, and entertainment options? Go to Cedar Point or telephone 419-627-2350.