Looking for new summer adventures close to home?
OWA, an amazing amusement park/entertainment center/food and shopping complex awaits just about three hours from the Northshore. You may already know about OWA in Foley, Alabama, but this season’s new attractions take the experience to new heights.
Kristin Hellmich, Director of Marketing and PR for the nearby resort explains, “We’ve had phenomenal growth since our 2017 opening. We’re excited about our many new additions and have several special events for this summer. For Mother’s Day weekend, we’re thrilled to host the Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival. And on Memorial Day weekend, we’re kicking off summer with a fireworks show and much more.”
On Thursday, May 6, from 6-8 pm, the Balloon Glow Kickoff Event previews the weekend’s festivities. The festival runs Friday through Sunday, May 7-9 with more than 40 floating works of art soaring through the skies at dawn and dusk each day — wind and weather permitting. The Memorial Day Summer Kickoff, starting May 29, will include live music at OWA’s Island Amphitheater and a variety of activities including kids’ crafts and games for the entire family.
OWA is owned by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, and the name is inspired from the Muscogee Creek language meaning “big water.” OWA also promises big fun with over 520 acres of entertainment. OWA offers 24 rides and attractions including a breathtaking roller coaster, 44,000 square feet of retail, dining and entertainment space, a 90,000-square-foot indoor events center and a 14-acre lake at the heart of it all. “Rolling Thunder is our roller coaster for thrill seekers,” explains Hellmich. “Mystic Mansion is our indoor dark ride – a perfect way to cool down. And we’ve recently added the Wacky Water splash pad – a kids’ favorite. We bring in high-caliber entertainment and spectacular special events to make sure we offer excitement for everyone.“
Downtown OWA is a free-access resort with shopping, food and two live entertainment venues. LEGENDS in Concert celebrates Las Vegas with tributes to Elvis, Sinatra, Lady Gaga and Cher through May in a 420-seat venue. “The tribute characters regularly change, so if you’ve seen the spring show, the new summer lineup is coming soon,” says Hellmich. “And don’t miss Brandon Styles. His theater is the ultimate performance space to view awe-inspiring shows. They’re 60 minutes of high-energy entertainment from impressions to comedy, magic and more.”
Along with many enticing shopping opportunities, OWA, owned by the only federally recognized Native American tribe in Alabama, is particularly proud to welcome Native Treasures which features works of tribal artisans including beading and carving. It’s a rare opportunity to enjoy handmade, authentic and inspired products from tribes all over the United States.
Touting OWA’s wide range of craveable food, Hellmich touches on new additions. “Paula Dean’s Family Kitchen is a crowd favorite where tables share entrees and appetizers family style. Coco’s Italian Ice is a great dairy free option for a sweet treat. And, Alabama’s top sports bar, The Groovy Goat, is now open. Another new option is the Sassy Bass Amazin’ Grill, offering great seafood dishes.”
When asked about OWA’s impressive growth, Hellmich replies, “Despite facing last year’s challenges, people just want to get out and have fun. OWA creates the environment to make much-needed family memories. People want to experience the exciting momentum that’s going on here.”
Happy guests agree that OWA is worth repeat visits, “It’s perfect for all ages. Plenty to do with little ones and still fun for grown-ups.” “We took our boys for the first time and had a great time! They keep asking when we are going back.” “My family of seven had an absolute blast today. Staff was very cheerful. We’ll definitely return.”
Whether first time visitors or frequent repeats, Hellmich invites and encourages their Louisiana neighbors to visit OWA and discover all the fun and adventure that is waiting just a short drive away.
The Park at OWA is located at 1501 South OWA Boulevard in Foley, Alabama. For more information, please call 251-923-2111 or browse the website: visitowa.com.