Plunge into family fun without going for broke

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Travel agents said families should consider water parks when planning a vacation getaway.

Travel agents said families should consider water parks when planning a vacation getaway.

“It’s the summer time, and everyone enjoys water. But if you cannot travel to a hot, sunny vacation spot like the Bahamas then I recommend a water park,” said Shannon Wells, a travel agent for a north suburban agency. “Plus they are inexpensive and serve the needs of the entire family, especially children.”

Hurricane Harbor at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee is a fairly new and fairly popular water park in Illinois, according to Wells.

“There are fountains, chutes, pools and an island filled with squirt gun fun. At this park, your entire family will be allowed to go on the same rides all at once,” she said.

Hurricane Harbor is an outdoor water park so it is closed during the winter months. Tickets can be purchased as low as $39, and admission is free when you purchase a ticket to go to the theme park Great America located next door.

Amy Detmer, an account executive with a Chicago marketing and advertising firm, said there are both indoor and outdoor water parks spread through Illinois.

“I would say there’s about 50 water parks in Illinois,” Detmer explained. “Some water parks are indoor and include a hotel for overnight stay. At outdoor water parks, hotel accommodations are always part of their vacation packages.”

CoCo Key Water Resorts in Arlington Heights is an indoor water park and until Sept. 6 will be offering a vacation package for $169 per night. It includes four admission passes to the water park, two $5 game passes and two admission passes to the water park.

CoCo Key Water Resorts range from 50,000 square feet to 65,000 square feet in size. CoCo Key also offers a real Key West water adventure.

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