ORLANDO — In the ever-competitive world of theme parks, which are constantly on the lookout for new rides to attract visitors, SeaWorld Resort became the latest this weekend to let the crowds know they have something entirely different to offer.
Water slides? Baby, you don’t know water slides until you’ve climbed ….. Breakaway.
On Friday, Aquatica, SeaWorld’s water park, introduced Ihu’s Breakaway Falls as “the tallest, steepest and only multi-drop tower slide of its kind in Orlando.”
For guests looking for long drops — no, this is not your grandpa’s water slide, people — Breakaway Falls is offering four slide paths that gives swimmers the option of four different experiences.
Once you get to Aquatica, head over to Breakaway Falls, where riders will climb 126 steps to the top of the eight-story tower, which is nearly 80 feet tall. At the top, they step into one of three breakaway boxes.
As the door closes behind you, riders “cross their arms and give a thumbs up in preparation for their drop — they’ll never know when the floor beneath them will disappear!” SeaWorld noted in its release about the new thrill ride.
“Facing each other, riders watch as their fellow riders fall,” the release continues. “Adding to the anticipation is the sound of a heartbeat, which can be heard in the background while bracing for the drop. Once the floor disappears, riders drop 20-24 feet per second launching them into a spiraling speed slide culminating in a final splashdown.”
If that sounds like more thrills than you can handle, relax. Breakaway also has an open slide they can try — although there is a but ….
“But don’t be fooled,” SeaWorld notes. “This is not an ordinary slide; it’s the steepest of the four slides and many riders are calling it the most intense.”
Not surprisingly, SeaWorld officials are proudly calling this one of the hottest new rides to hit Central Florida.
“Ihu’s Breakaway Falls is the reason to visit Aquatica Orlando this summer,” said Bryan Nadeau, Aquatica Orlando’s vice president. “From the daring height, crazy drops, and intense speed, this thrilling new attraction brings a whole new level of excitement to an already amazing park.”
SeaWorld also released a “Fear the Falls … Fun Facts” sheet that points out that:
• Those who dare to brave Breakaway Falls will experience an almost vertical drop for nearly 40 feet, the steepest slide of its kind in Orlando.
* It is the longest water thrill slide of its kind featuring three “breakaway boxes” – orange, green, and blue — and one open slide – purple – offering four completely different slide paths.
• Drop more than three stories and slide for 420 feet, the longest of the four slides, on the orange slide.
• The green slide path has the shortest drop, but it’s still a 28-foot fall – that’s the same as four seven-foot tall basketball players!
• Fall from the blue slide if you’re looking for the steepest slide with a breakaway box.
• While the purple slide isn’t a true drop slide, it is by no means a “chicken slide”. In fact, this open-aired slide is the steepest of all four slides.
• Once the floor disappears, riders will drop 20-24 feet per second.
• Ihu’s Breakaway Falls is the only high-speed water thrill slide in the world with three breakaway boxes that face each other so riders can share the full experience.
SeaWorld predicts it will be a popular addition to Aquatica Orlando, which is already home to 42 slides, rivers and lagoons and 84,000 square feet of beaches, while also hosting private cabanas with a view of Roa’s Rapids at the new Roa’s Island River View Cabanas.
Single-day tickets to Aquatica start at $28. An Annual Pass starts at $96.
Aquatica is a part of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, best known for its 11 U.S. theme parks, attractions that hosted more than 24 million guests in 2012 and include SeaWorld, Busch Gardens and Sesame Place.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment is also a zoological organization, which maintains one of the largest animal collections in the world and has provided care for species in zoological facilities and in the conservation of wild populations.
It also operates programs to rescue, rehabilitate and return to the ocean marine animals that are ill or injured: SeaWorld has rescued more than 23,000 animals over the last four decades.
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