February 01, 2003
Meetings & Conventions: Short Cuts February 2003 Current Issue
February 2003
Short Cuts:Making a Splash

image Water play is not just for the dog days of summer. At indoor water parks, patrons don their bathing suits in any season. In the midst of a Minneapolis winter, visitors can opt for weather-appropriate ice-skating or hit the water slides at the Depot ( The theme park, which opened in July 2001 in a restored 1899 train station, has a locomotive-inspired decor throughout and 67,000 square feet of meeting space. Three adjacent hotels include the 227-room Courtyard by Marriott.

The Kalahari Resort & Convention Center ( in Wisconsin Dells, Wis., doubled the size of its water park this past December to 120,000 square feet to keep pace with increased demand. The complex, which caters to groups of up to 1,600 people, also features the 2,000-seat Casablanca Convention Center and 45,000 square feet of meeting space. “Some associations report that they have seen a 20 percent increase in attendance because attendees’ families want to come along and enjoy the resort,” says Kevin Shanley, director of sales.

The H2Oasis Indoor Waterpark ( in Anchorage, Alaska, which opened last month, features a water slide called the Master Blaster Coaster, a “lazy river,” a wave pool and a sunken pirate ship. A large mezzanine caters to special events. Best of all, the water temperature is a guaranteed 84 degrees Fahrenheit.


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