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U.S. National Whitewater Center


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Considering there’s already a trail in mind for that area that would connect the silver line to the USNWC. The idea of that trail is in the CharlotteMoves study.

I’ve never met a bigger narcissist than Jeff Wise. He loves talking about himself and believes he’s god’s gift to the Charlotte outdoor community. And he rules that place with an iron fist to its detr

I was out at USNWC this morning and it was beautiful.  It is one of my favorite places anywhere for a run.  It was very busy this morning, so I hope they fully recover from last year's difficulties.

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It should be interesting to note that Charlotte has had two other waterparks in its recent past.  Though amusement oriented instead of sports oriented, these two waterparks were quite busy from the mid 80's into the 90s. 

The first was the water park located at Heritage USA (PTL) in Fort Mill it closed after the fall of Jim & Tammy Bakker.    One of the more well known stunts there was when Jerry Falwell went down the water slide in full clothing on national TV.  The second was Ocean Island at Carowinds,  while part of Carowinds, it operated independantly of the park and you could go there without buying a fully ticket.  One if its features was a 500,000 wave pool that simulated swimming at the beach.  Sadly a girl was killed there in an accident when a stray bullet from a nearby gun firing range missed the target and flew into the crowd at the pool. 

Both of these parks are no longer in operation.

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Don't forget about the one on Eastway. That's was just the waterslide so does that count?

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Don't forget about the one on Eastway.  That's was just the waterslide so does that count?

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If you are referring to the waterslide that used to be at Eastway and N. Tryon, then I think it qualifies. Don't forget there was also a very similar waterslide park on S. Blvd at the same time. I believe that you can still see that one if you look closely as there are trees on it now.

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". Tryon, then I think it qualifies. Don't forget there was also a very similar waterslide park on S. Blvd at the same time. I believe that you can still see that one if you look closely as there are trees on it now."

Where was this?

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Well, its hard to describe. The building of 485 down there and the re-routing of 521 has messed up my memory of exactly where it is located. Its been a while since I looked for it. But if you drive south on 521, (and don't go on the new one thru ballentyne) you will find it on the right side of the road somewhere in the vicinity of Pineville.

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we need a pic of that!

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Indeed! I wish I had taken photos of both in the 1970s when they were operating. Both were small mountain like things with the slides built into them and modeled after the one in Myrtle Beach where they first showed up.

Imagine arriving at the intersection of Eastway and Tryon and all of a sudden there is a big waterslide park there. Complete with a beach setting, wading pools, etc. The site now has a Carlos Pizza, an auto parts place and a couple of other 5th generation restaurants there now.

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This is putting the cart before the horse, but anybody have any insider info on this place? Do they plan on brining competitions here? Traditionally, the US Olympic whitewater trials have been on the Ocoee River in the mountains.

Anybody else heard anything about possible development around this site or transportation links to it?

Has Gaston County started on their bike trails and pedestrian bridge on the opposite side of the river to complement it?

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No insider info, but I think its a given that there will be competitions with USA Canoe & Kayak headquartered here. If you look at their website, it has a list of all the scheduled events for 2005. The USNWC should be able to host a share of those in future years. With the last couple of Olympics useing artifical courses it makes sense to have the Olympic Trials on one too. Just my thoughts.

BTW, haven't heard anything new on the Gaston County side.

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BTW, haven't heard anything new on the Gaston County side.

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Theres nothing new to report. Mount Holly and Gaston are just getting started planning everything for our side of the river. Hopefully we will be able to get grants for most of this, especially the pedestrian bridge.

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  • 3 weeks later...

River site targeted for mart

This site is 1 1/2 miles from the whitwater park and is near the proposed pedestrian bridge crossing the Catawba. Private developers and the owners of the merchandise mart have proposed a new riverfront complex on county-owned land along the Catawba River, to be anchored by a $20 million exhibition center to replace the mart's Independence Boulevard location. So perhaps this can be tied into the park and add some restaurants and a hotel?

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  • 1 month later...

Just a bump for their updated website.

U.S. National Whitewater Center

This is going to be a great add for the City & Metro.

Now that I know where it is supposed to be, I'll have to take some photos next time I am on this part of the river. Its just above the redneck/gypsy boat landing on Hwy 74.

Side Note: Look at all the parkland around Mountain Island Lake. Amazing given that it is so close to an area as populated as CLT.

park_location.jpg

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I couldn't agree more! This will be awesome and hopefully increase our tourist numbers. And this is also another thing residents can do for fun around the area without having to travel 3 hours to some of the mountain rivers, though those are great fun too.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Another article about construction of the USNWC, but it did offer some projections:

Based on internal projections, the center will turn a profit if it draws 100,000 rafters annually. An estimated 177,000 rafters are anticipated during the first year, and the center plans to charge $20 per rafter. At the conclusion of each run, a conveyor belt will ferry rafters back to the start without leaving their boats.

The center plans to host major competitions and recruit Olympic trials, but its main emphasis is on recreational rafting.

Based on comparable attractions, Wise believes the whitewater center will exceed the conservative projections. A whitewater center on the Ocoee River drew 287,000 users last year, while a water-themed amusement park in Greensboro attracted 558,000 during summer 2004.

Charlotte Business Journal: Project running the rapids

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This will prove to be HUGE in the evolution of Metro Charlotte. It will be a great alternative of something to do when I have friends or family in town. Im glad we landed this project.

I think it will be a big draw for a whole new demographic to be attracted to the area. Much like Denver appeals to the more "granola" crowd, maybe this will do the same for Charlotte. Any thoughts on that?

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As far as I can tell, this is the first event to be announced that will be held at the whitewater center. The 2007 Junior Wildwater World Championships will take place July 8-14, 2007. The sprint races will be held at the Charlotte Whitewater Center, while the classic races will be held on the Saluda River in Columbia, SC.

http://www.usawildwater.com/news/2005/0508...uniorWorlds.htm

This is the shedule that has been developed so far for the championships.

http://www.usawildwater.com/news/2005/0508...uniorWorlds.htm

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