Sliding through the Belly of the Beast

You’ve probably ridden on an airplane before….but have you slid down a water slide through the belly of one? At Evergreen Wings and Waves Water Park, you have the choice of four different water slides, all starting in the belly of an authentic retired Boeing 747. Not sure what a Boeing 747 is? Let me give you a little history.

The Boeing 747 currently sitting on the roof of the Evergreen Wings and Waves water park has had an interesting and turbulent history. Though the original design had been for the aircraft to be used as a military cargo plane, the commercial career of the Boeing 747 started when Pam Am Airlines started looking for a plane that was safe and reliable, and was twice the size of their normal commercial planes. After flying in three individual airlines, including Evergreen Airlines, the Boeing was bought by the company who would eventually build the water park. Before the park itself was even finished, the Boeing was lifted from the ground to the roof using construction cranes and recovery slings. Only after the retired plane was safely settled on the roof of the building was the rest of the water park finished.

Fulfilling its reputation as one of Oregon’s biggest water parks, Evergreen Wings and Waves is equipped with several awesome attractions you won’t be able to wait to try out.

Splashdown Harbor, is a wave pool, set in front of a 20-foot screen. It’s the perfect place to watch movies while floating gently around the pool. Just make sure to watch out for when they turn on the wave machine!

Aqua Play is perfect for younger kids, and is a great way to make sure your kids have fun and are exhausted by the end. (Hey, I have two little sisters.)  It’s a multi-level playground complete with slides, plenty of running room, and a helicopter-lifted bucket (unfortunately this helicopter is not real) that will soak you if you’re unlucky enough to be standing beneath it. Advice for anyone not wearing a swimsuit, watch where you’re standing!

For older kids, the options are four brightly colored slides that shoot out of the belly of the Boeing 747, slide down through the ceiling, then twist and turn all the way down to the ground. As the Wings & Waves website says about the Sonic Boom, “….Gives riders the impression of soaring through the park in an open cockpit while offering commanding views and unique glimpses of the Evergreen 747.” However, one useful thing to know: All four slides have a height requirement. The requirement for Sonic Boom, Tail Spin, and Nose Dive is 42 inches, but the requirement for Mach 1 is 48 inches.

Last but not least, the vortex pool and leisure pool. Neither have age limits, so anyone and everyone is allowed to climb in. The vortex pool is designed so you feel as if you are swirling around in a whirlpool. The leisure pool is a large pool, equipped with a basketball hoop and balls, and is the perfect place to hang out after a couple rounds of slides and shoot some hoops. The leisure pool is also right by the ceiling-to-floor length windows, so you can enjoy the warm sun while relaxing.

Note about the hot tub: Because the hot tub is set at 102 degrees, little ones are allowed to jump in, but only if its okay with the parents!

Up on the second level, the Milky Way Cafe offers a variety of food from nachos to pizza to sandwiches. The cafe opens one hour after the water park and closes one hour before. The cafe seating overlooks the entire water park, and is a great place to relax and keep an eye on your kids at the same time.

Being an indoor water park, Evergreen Wings & Waves is open year round. However, I would check the hours before I go; the hours might be different in the summer versus the winter. (Just a suggestion: I wouldn’t go in winter; Oregon can be brutally cold during the winter.)

Also, if you are either a history or aviation lover, you will love the building next door. The Evergreen Air & Space Museum is an incredible place to learn more about the aircraft used during both World Wars, and so many other fascinating periods of history. Start at Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first plane, and make your way through history. Don’t forget to check out the Spruce Goose, also known as the Hughes Flying Boat, a plane made entirely out of wood!

I hope this post was interesting and that it provided you with new ideas for fun family outings! Don’t forget to check out the awesome Air and Space Museum next door!

I acquired my information from:

https://www.evergreenmuseum.org/

https://wingsandwaveswaterpark.com/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_747

Evergreen Wings & Waves location:

460 Northeast Captain Michael King Smith Way McMinnville, OR 97128


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