Many of my childhood summers were spent eating cotton candy, funnel cake, and on the Raging River. Sounds fun, doesn't it? What if I told you that you can do the same thing? That's right. Adventureland is real and still active to this day!
I grew up in the late '90s and early 2000s. And growing up, when my parents or grandparents said we were going to Adventureland, excitement filled the air. As soon as we arrived in Altoona, Iowa, we could see it from the highway. Its tallest roller coaster, known as the Tornado, the Spaceship, and the Ferris wheel all towered over the city.
Music played in our heads. For me, it was the Jurassic Park theme song, as we walked in with our season passes in hand ready to take on the park in all its glory. A lot about the park has changed since I was a kid – they took out the log ride, added a whole water park, and half the park burned down.
Construction began on the park in the spring of 1973. They were even assisted by the one and only Disney in the early stages of development. The park opened in the summer of 1974 and has been popular among locals and visitors ever since. Soon the park began to expand. In 1993, a western themed area was added, and in between 2006 and 2008, two more rides were added along with Adventure Bay.
But in 2010, tragedy struck the theme park. A fire broke out in the toy store on Main Street after its roof collapsed due to the weight of ice and snow. The fire was out of control and engulfed the corner portion of Main Street and destroyed the section of the bingo parlor, restaurant, toy store, and arcade.
In April of 2010, the park opened as planned. In 2011, Main Street was rebuilt and things were back to normal—at least that's what we all thought. Later that year, ANOTHER fire broke out. This time destroying the Rally Round corn dog stand. In 2013, the park announced they were adding yet another attraction: the Storm Chaser. But that's not all. In 2015 and 2017, they announced and open two more rides and attractions. To this day, the park continues to grow and expand.
Adventureland also has a hotel and a campground. Adventureland Inn is a 4.1-star hotel equipped with a bar & grill, arcade, pool, toddler play area, and trolley stop. It offers 185 smoke-free rooms along with poolside rooms and suites. But that's not all. Remember me saying they have a campground? Well, camping is just as luxurious as the hotel. The campground offers pull-thru sites, electric, sewer, water, tent camping, free Wi-Fi, dog run, pool, and playground. It is $35-$45 a night for full hookups and $20-$25 a night for non-electric tent sites.
I don't know about you, but I want to go so badly now! So, let's talk about theme park prices.
Children under 4 years of age are free.
Single Day passes, age 10-64, are $45. Any child 4-9 and anyone 65+ are $40.
Two Day passes, age 10-64, are $70. Ages 4-9 and 65+ are $65.
Season Passes Age 4 and older are $140 per person. Ages 3 and under are free.
Adventureland Card's range from $25-$100.
See you there!
Image credit: https://www.traveliowa.com/destination/adventureland-park/6870/