Elitch Gardens Theme Park & Island Kingdom Water Park

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Elitch Gardens & Island Kingdom

Postby Sunny on Sun Jul 27, 2008 2:29 am

Elitch Gardens Amusement Park and Island Kingdom Water Park

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Elitch Gardens Theme Park has remained a beloved part of Denver's rich history for 118 years providing something for the whole family. NEW! The Summer Concert Series takes the stage Saturday nights this summer. Includes acts like Smash Mouth and Billy Ray Cyrus. NEW! Challenge your family to a frightfully fun shootout in the new interactive family ride, Ghost Blasters! Guest will make their way through a haunted mansion using a Boo-Blaster to extinguish ghosts along the way.
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Elitch Gardens Theme Park & Island Kingdom Water Park

Postby AMJNBJ on Sun Jul 27, 2008 8:28 pm

What to do on a 95 degree day in Colorado? Head off to Elitch Gardens Amusement Park! Slathered in sunblock, we hit the park at opening time of 10 a.m. We had a bag packed with our bathing suits, flip flops and towels knowing Elitch's has a water park as well as the amusement park. It was our first visit to the park and I must admit I was a bit hesitant to go on a Saturday with three kids, ages 9, 8 and 4. But Raven from the TV show "That's So Raven" was playing a free concert and the kids were eager to see a live TV and singing star. Who am I to deny my kids their first rock concert?

The kids (ok, ME) were excited to have short lines for most of the kid rides throughout the park. I was pleasantly surprised there were plenty of rides for my 4 year old as well as the older two kids. There was even a play area that the kids can climb and shoot soft balls at each other to blow off some steam when they do wait in line. Well worth the initial cost of a souviner cup - we refilled our cup all day for only $1. After about 4 hours of riding, my flowers were starting to wilt, so we got our hand stamped for re-entry, retrieved our swimsuits from the car and headed to the water park.

We changed and headed for the pool. Unfortunately, it was time for a pool check and the lifeguards emptied everyone from the pool. A quick splash and we headed over to the kid section. They had a ship and slide areas that the kids could play and get wet and I wasn't freaking that the water was too deep, or that I couldn't keep an eye on them. We didn't try the bigger slides or the lazy river since the lines were a bit longer and I was afraid I wouldn't be able to keep track of all three kiddos. The kids didn't mind and everyone cooled off and then relaxed awhile on some loungers before we hit the rides again.

The concert was included in our park admission and usually starts at 7:30. Wristbands are provided at 10 am to allow admission into the arena - but it doesn't guarantee a seat. We headed over about 45 min early -- and there were a TON of people!! I thought we'd never get inside -- but again I was pleasantly surprised the crowd control was orderly and we got inside in no time after flashing our wristbands. Seating is first come, first serve but there is also standing room in front of the stage area. We found some seats up in the bleachers and awaited the show. Radio Disney warmed everyone up - even though Raven was delayed by 40 minutes due to a flight problem in Dallas. No problem, lots of cotton candy and sodas available to snack on while we waited and sang High School Musical songs. Raven and her crew danced and sang and the kids thought it was great! After the show -- off to hit a few more rides including the ferris wheel to see everything lit up. They had to kick us out of the park at 10 p.m.

Although I was a bit worn after a full 12 hour day -- the kids were already planning their next trip to Elitch Gardens before passing out on our ride home! I call that a successful summer day!
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Re: Elitch Gardens Amusement and Water Park

Postby Lindley on Tue Jul 29, 2008 2:05 pm

Having grown up in Colorado, I have many fond memories of trips to Elitch's, so I was greatly looking forward to my long-awaited return to the park with my husband, 3-year-old son and 6-year-old niece. Arriving right at 10 am on another blazing hot Colorado day allowed us a great opportunity to hit all the fun kiddie rides at Startoon Studios with no lines and a decent amount of shade. We also appreciated the handy park map, which outlined which rides we could all ride together and which ones my son would have to skip until his next growth spurt. We grabbed a convenient lunch in the indoor, air-conditioned food court and then made our way over to the water park to cool off.

The pools were packed to the brim, but my husband and I were both fascinated by watching all the lifeguards and their techniques for communicating with each other and constantly scanning the water and blowing whistles to keep the crowd safe. The line moved really quickly for the Castaway Creek and we spent about an hour in the wave and kids' pools. My husband and I both marvelled about how nice it was to have young kids who were not interested in the roller coasters or thrill rides yet because we were able to do everything we all wanted to do without waiting in line for more than 10 minutes at a time. Next trip, we look forward to checking out all the free shows and entertainment. Seems like a family would definitely get their money's worth by investing in a Season Pass at Elitch's!
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Elitch Gardens is Great Family Fun!

Postby J&D's Mom on Fri Aug 08, 2008 8:56 pm

Our family loves Elitch Gardens. As a matter of fact, my 9 yr old son's main birthday present the last few years has been a season pass which more than pays for itself. This year since our little one is 2 and more coordinated and active, we bought the entire family a season pass (kids under 3 are free).

We jump on the light rail and head to the amusement park at least one a month from April thru October. In fact, my husband took a vacation day and we headed to Elitch Gardens today to have a little family fun before our oldest starts back to school on Monday. StarToon Studios has plenty to keep the little one interested even though he isn't quite tall enough to ride some of the kiddie rides. He loves the boat and airplane rides! And the foam factory and soft play area keep him busy for hours while the 2 daredevils in the family (my husband and oldest son) head off to the roller coasters and other rides. Then we usually meet up after lunch and ride the Big Wheel and Teacups as a family.

There are a variety of spinning, swinging , twisting, turning and otherwise hair-raising rides at the park suitable to the meekest rider to the biggest daredevil. My oldest son's favorite rides are the Twister II (wooden roller coaster) and the Boomerang.

In addition to the rides and games, Elitch Gardens also has a variety of shows going on throughout the park to amuse and entertain their guests. We got to see the Hot Diggity Dog show in the arena today. My youngest loved seeing the high flying frisbee dogs. And we also watch the acrobactic antics of the Harlem Hi-Flyers in a courtyard area. Very cool show if you get a chance to see it.

Since we go to the park fairly often, we find it well worth the money to get an Elitch's souvenir cup (about $8) at the beginning of the season which is good for $1 refills for the rest of the season. Also with the season passes, you get a coupon book for discounted tickets for friends and other specials at the concessions which make the season pass a great deal!

I can't wait for October when we'll take the boys back for FrightFest. We love Elitch Gardens and will most definitely be getting season passes for the entire family again next year.
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Re: Elitch Gardens Amusement and Water Park

Postby Bluebuffalo on Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:59 pm

We had season passes to Elitch Gardens ten years ago when my daughters were in high school. While my son was in elementary school we decided that Lakeside was a better value. However, now that he is older, we again purchased passes for the summer. I wondered how the park had changed, given that it is no longer operated by Six Flags. I have to say, that we were not disappointed. While the benefit of being able to visit any Six Flags park with our season pass ( We only did that once) is gone, overall I think that Elitches has become more family friendly under the new ownership. At $10.00, parking is expensive, but we purchased a $40.00 parking pass that paid for itself before July was over. A refillable drink cup is $8.00, but it only costs a dollar to refill. If you are a family that doesn’t mind sharing straws, this is a great deal, compared to other places. I visited for just several hours one evening last week with my 7 year old granddaughter. We spent a total of about $30.00 on cold drinks and reasonably priced souvenirs for her and her brother. She rode all the rides in Kiddieland and met many kids who were there courtesy of Denver Public Library’s Summer Reading program (yeah!). In addition to the overall lower cost of a visit to Elitch Gardens, I noticed that the ride operators were friendly and efficient. The same goes for the concession workers. Although the rides closed at 9 PM, a change from the midnight closing of previous years, we attended a show featuring fire dancers that started at 9:15. It was loud and exciting and we loved it. We haven’t attended any concerts yet, but hope to enjoy the entertainment when we don’t have small children with us. We too can hardly wait for Frightfest.
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Re: Elitch Gardens Amusement and Water Park

Postby Lindley on Thu Aug 14, 2008 3:07 pm

Be sure to see ALL that Elitch's has to offer!!

We made a return trip to the ol' park- this time we had Nickelodeon on our minds. After enjoying a few of the rides, we headed over to check out the activities of the Kids Festival (featuring a meet and greet with Dora the Explorer herself!). My son is more of a die-hard Diego fan so we didn't wade through the throngs of REALLY excited, camera-wielding kiddos to say "hola" but we did join in on the fun for the Nickelodeon Games show. The Elitch Arena, a great venue that I never knew existed, hosts a variety of daily shows as well as a number of special events (including the Summer Concert Series and last weekend's Kids Festival). The enthusiastic folks from Nickelodeon put on a great show, packed with audience participation. Many kids and adults had the opportunity to come up on stage to participate in various games, including Nickelodeon trivia, a Spongebob sponge throw and of course, the patented Nickelodeon slime!

Elitch's shows are included in the price of admission, so these events are a great way to sit down, relax and enjoy a snack and some entertainment. Just another example of how Elitch's has really become a complete entertainment experience, with something new to enjoy every time you go!
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Re: Elitch Gardens Amusement and Water Park

Postby TRH on Sat Sep 06, 2008 9:01 pm

This is the first time I've been to the new Elitches!!

Considering it has been nearly 16 years since my last trip to Elitches, I was greatly looking forward to being able to visit! For me, though a Colorado Native, this was a new experience!

Our Adventure included my husband, my 17 year old daughter, her best friend, and my two year old son. We were all very excited for our day! I was most surprised by the aesthetic changes that were very pleasing, upon entry being greeted with a "village" of sorts that offered foods and shopping for all.
We set the teenage girls loose and took our son on the Gondola, the kiddie train, the little tykes boats and a very cute movie stage truck train. He was enthralled with the sites and sounds! We were able to further entertain the three of us by playing games, one of which our little guy was able to win all by himself! He was so pleased when he was awarded the very cute bear that he cuddled the remainder of the day! He found the fishing game so fun, he didn't even care that there were prizes, he just wanted to play again!

We filled our tummies with chicken strips and fries, water and cotton candy. When we met the girls at the end of the day, we topped everything off with a beautiful funnel cake topped with hot apples, powdered sugar, and whipped topping. YUM!

I look forward to my son being tall enough for the BIG rides, then we can all venture again together looking forward to the Twister and the Half Pipe! :lol:
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Re: Elitch Gardens Theme Park & Island Kingdom Water Park

Postby family4 on Mon Sep 15, 2008 8:43 pm

Our family of six had a really fun day at Six Flags Elitch Gardens. It
was a beautiful September evening with hardly any lines. The longest
line we waited in was for the ferris wheel which was worth it after
getting to the top and seeing the view of downtown at sunset.

With four young kids we spent much time in the Looney Tunes children's
area. My 8 and 6 year old daughters found the roller coaster extremely
entertaining and rode is nonstop. My 2 year old enjoyed the swings and
the train best. The staff in the children's area was courteous and
seemed to be conscious of nervous, first-time riders. Adults are allowed
to ride on many of the kiddie rides which also helped my unsure toddler.

My 9 year old son loved Shipwreck Falls (sure to drench anyone who rides
it), the old roller coaster, and the Sea Dragon the best. It helped us
to have two adults present so one could hang out with the younger ones
in Looney Tunes and one could accompany our older son to more "grown up"

It took a long time to ride what seemed to be just a few rides. But I
think that was due to the fact that we couldn't agree on which direction
to go or what plan of action to take. And a number of times we weren't
at our designated meeting place when we agreed to be due to
unforeseeable circumstances. It would have helped to have had a cell
phone in order to communicate.

Food and drink does tend to be expensive. You are not allowed to bring
in your own so it is a good idea to bring a picnic that can be eaten on
the picnic tables in the parking lot. The games are pricey also. But
my husband insisted on trying to win a stuffed animal for one of our
kids. Well, after blowing about $20 he finally managed to walk off with
a three inch bald eagle stuffed animal that was leaking stuffing.

At 8 p.m. when the park closed we were still not quite ready to leave.
One more hour might have satisfied us perfectly. In September and
October the hours of operation are quite varied so be sure to check their website before going.
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Re: Elitch Gardens Theme Park & Island Kingdom Water Park

Postby JuneBug on Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:26 pm

Not to see Elitch’s is not to see Denver

A quote that is seen around the park and is one of my favorites. And in many ways, it is true. Right in the middle of all the action of downtown, lodo and the like, Elitchs is surrounded by beauty. Face west and see the incredible Rocky Mountains, look over your shoulder to other great venues for fun: The Children’s Museum, Invesco Field at Mile High, Coors Field, and the amazing downtown skyline—to name a few. But possibly more relevant: Elitch Gardens has been a part of Denver for over a Century!

Some of us remember it’s former location, which was fun, had fabulous gardens and The (infamous) Twister, the first real roller coaster I ever road. But the park was land-locked and needed space to grow into the multi-faceted park it is today.

History aside, my daughter (9) and I had a blast. We hadn’t been to the park in a couple of years and my daughter was now tall enough to ride pretty much all the rides. When we arrived around 11 am, we went straight for the tea cups. Now why would any grown woman in her right mind go straight for the tea cups? Well, when that pre-teen bundle of joy pointed and said, “Mom, let’s go on the tea cups,” there was simply nothing else to be done. So, we did and the dizzies :? took over an hour to seep out of my brain. We moved on to several other rides with a bit less spin.

When I had been to the park in years past, I always brought a lunch. I forgot this year. So we ate at Panda Express, deciding to share (which was plenty of food) and didn’t break the bank. I purchased a refillable cup ($1 refills), and we made use of it the rest of the day.

After lunch, my sweet, somewhat timid daughter said, “Can we ride the Mind Eraser?” I love coasters, so I promptly replied, “Sure…” but I still can’t believe she went through with it. Being the last full weekday of the summer season, the line was not long and it took hardly any time at all to arrive at our destination…we got in, sat down, bucked up and hung on! (chikachika, chikachika, chikachika…)

I had forgotten how much thrashing of the head happens on the ride. Yikes! I was fairly worried for my daughter. When the ride ended, she was crying.

“Mom! I lost my retainer!”

Wow! That was not what I had expected to hear. She was more worried about that fact than scared about the ride. In fact, the tears went on for a while. We reported our incident to customer service and they said a “sweep” under the Eraser would happen in about an hour. We returned later. Still no retainer!!

Eventually my daughter did say she would ride the “Retainer Eraser,” again (Do you like our new pet name for it? So did the orthodontist.)

What I learned:
**Even though I enjoyed the lunch, I will probably pack one next time and take a quick trip to the car for a break and food.
**I would purchase the drink again. Hey, if you go more than once during a single season, you can keep bringing it. Eventually, it’s worth the initial investment.
**Do not wear a retainer on this ride. While you are at it, I’m sure sunglasses, flip flops and hats are out too!!!

So, visiting from out of town? Been here all your life? See Denver! Experience Elitch Gardens!

PS: Although we love the water park at Elitchs, my daughter and I did not have as much time as we wanted so we focused on the amusement park side.
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Re: Elitch Gardens & Island Kingdom Water Park...SUMMER '09

Postby ceece on Wed Jul 29, 2009 8:59 pm

We had a BLAST at Elitch's this year! After a full day at the park, my husband and I were exhausted, but I am pretty sure my 4 and 8 year olds could've kept going! :lol:

We started out at the Amusement Park, getting there at 10AM when it opened. The lines were pretty short...so nice when you are waiting with young kids! There were plenty of rides that the whole family could go on together, which was a definite plus. After a while, we split up...my 4 year old loved the children's area, and had no desire to leave. This made it easy for my 8 year old to ride the "big" rides for a while!

On our way out to the parking lot to eat our picnic lunch (there are lots of shady spots to eat...bring a few chairs or a blanket to sit on), we were drawn in to the Survivor Live! show. Not only was it a welcome relief from the heat, but my kids were thrilled to see their dad onstage as one of four contestants! Unfortunately, the tribe spoke, and my husband was the first survivor to get his torch snuffed. ;)

After lunch, we decided to try the Island Kingdom Water Park, something we have never done. It was really crowded, but the lines seemed to be continuously moving. The Commotion Ocean wave pool was a big hit with the whole family, as was Hook's Lagoon, the water play area. We hit all the rides except for the tube slides ( a little too scary this time around), and were impressed with all. Island Kingdom is perfect for the afternoon when it gets hot!

A few things to remember when you head to Elitch Gardens:
Lockers at Island Kingdom are rented on a daily basis ($15), but you do get $10 back in Elitch dollars. Temporary lockers are not available. Leave what you can in the car!
You cannot wear a swimsuit on the majority of the rides in Elitch Gardens. Be sure to bring clothes to change into or wear over your suit!
Outside food is not allowed, but there are plenty of shady spots to picnic in the parking lot. Just be sure to get your hand stamped before you leave the park and hang on to your ticket stub...you will need both to re-enter.
Check the website for park hours before you head out...hours change depending on the day and time of year!

The fun your family will have at Elitch Gardens and Island Kingdom are well worth the price of admission. Get more details at http://www.elitchgardens.com/home.aspx.
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