Galveston's Pleasure Pier open for business

May 25, 2012 8:32:02 PM PDT
The unofficial start to the summer kicked off with some fun in the sun and on the new Pleasure Pier in Galveston.

The brand new pier opened at around 10am Friday and quickly started to draw a crowd.

"I wanted to come here and be the first in line but I never dreamed we would be," said pier visitor Diane Bryan.

"I'm with my 92-year-old mother and we're making history," added visitor Marsha Stevens.

Inside, workers are still putting in finishing touches. But there are still plenty of snacks and games, and you can't miss the rides.

Thirteen of the pier's 16 rides are open, so there's something for everyone, from merry go rounds to big roller coasters that go 60 feet in the air.

The pier is opening just in time for Memorial Day weekend. AAA estimates 2.8 million Texans will travel at least 50 miles this weekend. That's slightly up from last year, possibly because gas prices are down nearly 25 cents.

"People are going to want to come see this and there is a lot of new stuff to see," said visitor Isaac Purvis. "It's really big so people will want to check it out."

But some say they're hoping the holiday doesn't being too many crowds.

"I never travel on Memorial Day," said Stevens. "I usually make it a policy not to because of traffic and all, but this is a historic event right now."

Not everything on the pier is open yet. This is a soft opening, so they're offering a discounted price of $21.99 for adults and $16.99 for kids for an unlimited day of rides.

EXCLUSIVE SNEAK PEEK HOURS & SPECIAL PRICING:

    Friday, May 25 - Sunday, May 27
    10 a.m. to midnight

    Monday, May 28
    10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

    Tuesday, May 29 - Thursday, May 31
    Noon to 9 p.m.

    Friday, June 1 - Saturday, June 2
    10 a.m. to midnight

    Sunday, June 3
    10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

    Monday, June 4 - Thursday, June 7
    Noon to 11 p.m.

All Day Ride Pass

  • $21.99** for adults (48" and up)
  • $16.99** for children (under 48")
  • Good for all rides all day and Pier access

Pier Pass (Walk-on)

  • $10* for adults (48" and up)
  • $8* for children (under 48")
  • Pass required for admittance to pier; ride tickets sold separately at booths/kiosks (good for day of purchase only)

Individual Ride Tickets

  • Starting at $4.00* per ticket
  • Must purchase a walk-on pass to gain access to the pier

* Plus tax
** All day come and go unlimited ride access

THRILLS
Thirteen of the 16 rides will open Memorial Day Weekend during the sneak peek, including:

Pirate's Plunge Log Flume promises to thrill and chill you on warm days when your flume splashes 22 feet and 40 feet into cool, fresh water.

Carousel gives a beautiful, cheery greeting to guests as they enter the Pier's Midway. In fact, this classic double-decker temptation to ride has horses, chariots or sea creatures galloping right in the Midway, so why not start here?

Revolution Up, down AND around. How fast? Try less than seven seconds a revolution! And did we mention it revolves you out OVER THE WATER?

Rock N' Roll has a retro glitter style that would make Elvis blush. Climb in your car and ride backwards, forwards and around to the music. Cool.

Cyclone coaster loops 60 feet into the air to rotate passengers forward and backward, while the horizon does flip-flops.

Sea Dragon is a swinger with an ocean view. First it swings its 10 rows of riders up, up, up 50 feet over the Pier, then takes them down and back up, over the water.

Gulf Glider is a colorful classic swing carousel, with single and double seats that swing while you rotate and tilt.

Pier Pileup Bumper Cars let you channel those Interstate 45 aggressions into a million laughs in antique and classic bash-'em vehicles. This is actually two rides: One for kids, with smaller cars, another for adults. Similar to most of the rides at family-focused Pleasure Pier, parents and their children can ride together in the big cars.

Texas Tea Cups is another Midway classic, fun for adults and kids, especially together. The cups twirl. The riders giggle.

Big Wheelin' knows little kids like big trucks. Smaller kids can ride with an adult, bigger kids on their own in this safely circling convoy.

Frog Hopper gets its name from, well, hopping. It takes a load of kids up, and then - wait for it - drops them, not too far, but when they don't expect it. And then, whoa, drops them again. They like it. They laugh.

Sky Shooter at rest looks like a huge blue and orange spider napping. Then it wakes and goes wild, spinning its 10 captive vehicles while taking them up and down, round and round, even out over the ocean. Wanna fly higher? Push a button and you do. Whew!

PREMIUM PARKING

  • Peak Season $10 / 3 hours ($2 every hour for a maximum of $16 for the day)
  • Parking lot opens at 8am until 2am (next morning); cars will be towed at 3am if lot not vacated
  • Lost tickets $16
  • Do NOT leave ticket in vehicle.
  • Only occupy ONE space. Vehicles parked inappropriately are subject to being towed at owner's expense.
  • Pricing subject to change/seasonal.
  • Please leave items secure within your vehicle.
  • $10 validation for diners spending $25 or more at Bubba Gump and Fish Tales restaurants during specific time periods. Ask your server for details.
  • No tailgaiting, grilling or picnics.
  • Bus, tractor trailer & RV parking is not allowed in premium lot.
  • Vehicles may not be left overnight.
  • Unauthorized or abandoned vehicles will be towed at owner's expense.

For additional information and hours of operations for the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier, visit www.pleasurepier.com or call 855-789-7437.


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