Try as they might, Wild Rivers officials say they won’t be ready next week to open the new water park’s gates to visitors as they hoped. But those looking for a cool-off won’t have to wait long.

Tickets are expected to go on sale soon for July 1 and beyond, said Wild Rivers owner Mike Riedel. He hopes the real opening date will be even a couple days before that.

But Riedel said he feels “confident” that by the first of the month, the park will be ready to make a splash.

Officials had been pushing “as hard as we can” to get the park open by an originally planned date of June 20, Riedel said, “but there’s still some things outstanding that we just got to get through.”

The Irvine Ranch Water District still needs to set up the water connection to the area of the Great Park in Irvine where Wild Rivers occupies and the stream has to go through testing, to be sure it’s “clean and safe,” he said.

Finishing touches remain in other areas of the park as well, such as the pools, which need to be sealed and painted, Riedel said. And some kitchen equipment still needs to be installed.

“We’re getting a ton of work done every single day, and we’ve got hundreds of people on site working through all this stuff,” Riedel said. “It’s just kind of like moving, it’s the final finish that takes a while to get done.”

Wild Rivers was a summertime destination for decades before it closed in 2011 to make way for housing. Since then, Riedel had been working to find a permanent home. Situated on 20 acres in Irvine’s Great Park, the new Wild Rivers will feature a number of slides and water coasters, a wave pool, lazy river and kids play area.

“We’re so excited to bring this park back,” Riedel said.

Season passes went on sale Nov. 1 and are already sold out. Daily tickets will start at $40 for juniors (anyone under 48 inches) and $65 for general admission, according to the park’s website. Parking, lockers, line-skipping perks and cabana rentals are added fees.

Related Articles

Local News |

During drought conditions, some wonder: Is it wise to open a water park?

Local News |

Wild Rivers water park in Irvine sets June 20 opening date