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Water, water everywhere and not a drop to splash.
Months of preparation, of planning of anticipation are nearly at an end for Sevier County waterpark enthusiasts.
Only a few minor flourishes remain. Some landscaping here or there and there will be nothing left to do, except wait, which is, of course, the hardest part.
Soaky Mountain Waterpark – a majestically named 50-acre outdoor attraction in Sevierville – was supposed to open in May to great fanfare. Part of the Wilderness Resorts and Waterparks family, Soaky Mountain was to be a glorious blue jewel in the crown of Sevier County summer 2020.
Though Tennessee has begun the process of easing some restrictions on businesses, there’s no indication when tourist attractions and theme parks that draw large crowds will be able to safely reopen.
“We are so excited to show off our new amazing family destination,” said Dave Andrews, general manager of Soaky Mountain Water Park. “However, due to Governor (Bill) Lee’s Safer at Home orders and national health directives limiting the size of groups that can congregate we are undetermined when we will be able to open for the 2020 season.”
Because of the unprecedented pandemic which has indefinitely delayed the park’s opening, Andrews and his team recently announced that season passes purchased before June 15, 2020 will be valid not only for the inaugural 2020 but also for the 2021 season.
Passes can be purchased on the waterpark’s website at SoakyMountainWaterpark.com for $99.
“This is an incredible value for people living near the waterpark who plan to visit it several times in a season,” said Andrews. “And it just seems like the right thing to do for our neighbors.”
Once given the all clear, the park will bring something of a Sevier County tradition back. For decades, summers meant playing at the old Ogle’s Waterpark in Pigeon Forge. Since Ogle’s closed years ago, there hasn’t been anything quite like it.
Sure Wilderness at the Smokies is awesome, and there are certainly advantages to being an indoor waterpark, but there’s something about being outside in the summer sun that can’t be replicated inside.
It’s Beach Boys in East Tennessee. It’s the great American Summer.
And Soaky Mountain will be state of the art, featuring a massive, 35,000 square foot wave pool capable of generating waves up to 6 feet high; a winding wave river spanning an area of 24,000 square feet; and The Hive, a heavily-themed and exciting kids’ play-and-spray feature with multiple slides for both the tame and the daring.
There will also be a kid-friendly activity pool with smaller versions of the other towering slides found throughout the park; an adventure pool with a water obstacle course; a flat-water cabana pool for relaxing poolside; a double FlowRider for the surfer in all of us; and four large slide complexes that will provide thrills and excitement all day long.
Planned slides include a one-of-a-kind water coaster; a family ride tower with two five-person raft rides; a tubing tower with five flumes all featuring unique and thrilling one or two-person tubing experiences; two high-intensity body slides; and a four-lane, head-first mat racing challenge to satisfy everyone’s racing desires.
When guests need to take a break from the park’s many exciting attractions and fill those empty stomachs – food trucks, snack options and even specialty cocktails will also be available throughout the park.
For those who wish to relax in style, Soaky Mountain will have a variety of luxury cabanas available, some of which will include a private pool and a dedicated wait staff.
Once allowed to open the park will be open seven days a week through August, with additional select days through mid-September.
Disclaimer: While we do our best to bring you the most up-to-date information, attractions or prices mentioned in this article may vary by season and are subject to change. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any mentioned business, and have not been reviewed or endorsed these entities. Contact us at [email protected] for questions or comments.