Many of our earliest, most vivid memories come from family vacations taken when we were five to 10 years old. New Braunfels, Texas, has a unique perspective on this – many of the city’s summer visitors follow a longtime family tradition. In 1966, Bob and Billye Henry bought a small resort and added a few water slides for their guests. Little did they know that over the next 40 years, the made-up word they chose to pay homage to the cultural heritage of New Braunfels would be synonymous with “the hottest, coolest time in Texas.”
Schlitterbahn, combining the German words for slippery and road, joined the Texas Hill Country’s favorite rivers and lakes to make New Braunfels the vacation destination for generations of Texans. They came as young children with their families, grew up swimming and playing in the rivers and on Schlitterbahn’s slides. They came back with their friends as teenagers and college students and brought their own young families back when they married. By the 1990s, Schlitterbahn had grown to acres and miles of tubing rivers and waterslides and had become “The World’s Best Waterpark,” winning Amusement Today’s Golden Ticket Award every year since the award was started in 1997.
In addition, Schlitterbahn has developed new and innovative waterparks, rides, and technologies with firsts like the Boogie Bahn inland surf rides (known world wide as the Flowrider), Master Blaster uphill water slides, tidal wave rivers, and transportainment-based and convertible waterparks.
“Schlitterbahn’s anniversary is more than a celebration of all we’ve done over the last 40 years,” said Terri Adams, COO and one of the original members of the Schlitterbahn staff family over the years. “It’s also a celebration of all the good memories that are still ahead.”
Cooling off in New Braunfels
Everyone knows the opportunity to play in the water is a must for summer vacations. When it comes to fun in the water, Schlitterbahn leads the way. Today Schlitterbahn has 51 attractions over 70 acres in New Braunfels. With guest amenities including free parking, free life jackets and tubes and the option to bring in coolers full of food and drink for free, it’s still the hottest, coolest time in Texas!
To celebrate its 40th Anniversary, the Schlitterbahn Waterparks in Texas provided more than 1400 tickets to hundreds of foster families.
“Since we specialize in creating great family memories, we felt it was the perfect way to give back during our 40th anniversary season,” said Gary Henry, CEO of Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts. “Foster Family Splash Day let us bring families together who normally would not have an opportunity to visit our parks. And we have a second goal as well: we want to increase awareness about the need for foster families in our community.”
In addition, there will be an Alumni Staff Reunion on the first day of summer for those who have worked at the park over the years and lots of fun give-aways for guests through the summer.
New Braunfels is the place for fun in the water. Add the glorious Guadalupe River and the Comal River, Canyon Lake and lots of other great boating and fishing lakes in the area, plus great supporting attractions like a 70-acre action sports paradise – Texas Ski Ranch! When it comes to wakeboarding and cable parks, TSR is consistently ranked as one of the top facilities in the world. In addition to wakeboarding and skiing, you can snowboard, skateboard and stand up paddleboard.
But, there’s a lot more fun to be had in New Braunfels!
Enjoying family adventures
Over the years, lots of great supporting attractions have sprung up around water recreation in New Braunfels so there’s always something fun to do wet or dry!
Exploring unknown territory and experiencing something unusual and exciting builds long-term family memories and can create a life-time hobby or interest. Family vacations that focus on age appropriate adventures strengthen family ties and can build self-esteem and confidence. Check out a sample of these opportunities in New Braunfels:
- Young families – For families with young children, adventures that provide learning experiences and fun for everyone are most important. New Braunfels offers Natural Bridge Caverns, the Wildlife Ranch, and Animal World & Snake Farm Zoo. All fun learning experiences for the whole family.
- Teens and older families – Older children are anxious to experience “grown up” fun. Shared family experiences make lasting memories whether it’s a live music concert or an outdoor challenge. Check out opportunities like the live music concerts at Gruene Hall and Brauntex Performing Arts Theater. Or, find an outdoor challenge like the Casa Movie Hero Run on June 8 at the Stars & Stripes Drive In!
Don’t leave your vacation time on the table – check out PlayInNewBraunfels to plan this year’s summer vacation – make it the “hottest, coolest time” you’ve ever had!
SOURCE Greater New Braunfels Convention & Visitors Bureau
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