Chris Steunenberg

Chris Steunenberg

Bodacious new bowls for water park fans

Three exhilarating new rides are under construction at Cultus Lake Water Park.

Three exhilarating new rides are under construction at Cultus Lake Water Park.

Thrill-seekers and slide aficionados are already abuzz in anticipation of the June 1 opening of the park with a new sky-high tower, blue-and-white bowls, and inline raft ride.

The Bazooka Bowls have twin slides leading to blue and white bowls, originally from Irvine, California, set to become the crowning glory at the water park, says owner Chris Steunenberg.

“It’s state of the art, and no one else in B.C. has them,” he tells the Progress, in an interview atop the newly built steel tower, rising high above the park.

The original name of the ride, Bazooka Bowls, is being maintained because of the well-established history, and stellar feedback from a range of Youtube posters offering reviews.

Riders climb the tower and get jettisoned down a covered tube before emerging into the bowl. Centrifugal force whips them around the bowl, until it slows slightly and they plunge down into a pool through the middle.

There’s a lot of positive reaction to it from former water park fans in the U.S.

“It was named one of the top 10 wildest water slides in the world,” he says.

“I thought it would be a perfect fit for our market place.”

They heard a water park in Irvine, California was shutting down to make way for a new redevelopment.

The Steunenbergs went ahead and bought the 10-year old Bazooka Bowls, tore them down, transported them and then galvanized the steel, and rebuilt the attraction at Cultus Lake.

Two of the three new rides are the Bowls, and the third is an inline raft ride with a 30-foot drop, that they’re thinking of calling the Boomerang.

The four-person raft takes riders through a curving course, with three figure eights, and a big drop. It’s got high banking corners that curve right in on the rider.

All together it’s been a multi-million investment, he says. The business has re-invested in the park every year for the past five years.

“We’ve shopped the best rides so a local family does not have to go to California to get this incredible experience. We’ve brought California right here.”

In B.C. the challenge is sometimes climate, since there is more rain and cooler days in a summer season than down south. It means a three-month window for park goers from June to Labour Day.

“But in the process of buying, reclaiming and reconditioning these rides, somehow we’ve been able to do it in a feasible manner. So our prices won’t be going up, and will stay exactly the same as last year.”

Already the hits on Facebook and the website are stacking up as people log on to find out more about the new rides.

They all want to know what’s in store.

So what makes the bowl ride so special?

“First, the physical dimensions and size of the bowls, even as people drive into Cultus, is exciting to see,” he says. “There’s the sheer drop, the slope and the speed of the black-hole slides that have you emerge inside the bowls. And then there’s the dropping sensation through the middle, into the unknown. That is really the highlight of the whole thing.”

They started construction in October. Miles of piping had to go into the ground, they’ve built the tower with galvanized steel, the inline raft course, and there’s a new hot tub going in adjacent the bowls.

“We’re very excited about the tourism potential of them and the interest from the local recreational market,” he says. “We’re ready to take this product forward. It’s the right time.”

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

Twitter.com/chwkjourno

Just Posted

Rachel is a six month old Labrador retriever cross who was found at large. She is seen here at the Chilliwack SPCA on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Find Me My Furever Home – Rachel at the Chilliwack SPCA

6-month-old puppy found at large, now at Chilliwack SPCA, needs special home

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Volunteers will gather at South Gate Shopping Centre on Fathers Day before fanning out to help clean up downtown Chilliwack. (Facebook photo)
Kindness Chain Chilliwack Association organizes Fathers Day cleanup

Volunteers will spend 90 minutes fanning out to gather trash in downtown Chilliwack

Folks look through some of the items for sale during the Voice of Hope giant garage sale at 7350 Barrow Rd. in Chilliwack on Saturday, June 19, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Giant garage sale today in Chilliwack supports Kenyan widows, orphans

Funds go to Chilliwack-based Voice of Hope charity to improve quality of life for impoverished Kenyans

Ben Holwerda of the Chilliwack Spartan Swim Club competes in a swim meet at the Landing Leisure Centre on Feb. 12, 2011. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack Landing Leisure Centre to close temporarily for scheduled maintenance

Pools, steam room, and sauna at Landing Leisure Centre closing for maintenance July 19 to Sep. 4

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Surrey Fire Service battled a dock fire along the Fraser River late Friday night (June 18). It was on Musqueam Drive, near Industrial Road, around 10:45 p.m. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
VIDEO: Fire engulfs pier on Surrey side of the Fraser River

Dock has reportedly been unused for a long time

People in Metro Vancouver can expect to experience a short wave of heat just in time for Father’s Day, according to Environment Canada. (Black Press Media files)
Short-lived heatwave headed for Metro Vancouver this weekend

Temperatures are expected to be up to 10 degrees higher than average Sunday and Monday

Most Read