Staff Photo: Brendan Sullivan Jameson Chatfield, 7, of Decatur sprints through the suspended wet rope tunnel at Geyser Towers, the newest attraction at Stone Mountain Park in Stone Mountain on Thursday. The Geyser Towers are a series of suspended rope bridges and net tunnels with water enthused elements which opens to the public on Saturday, March 31.
IF YOU GO
What: Geyser Towers grand opening
When: 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday
Where: Stone Mountain Park, 1000 Robert E. Lee Drive, Stone Mountain
Cost: As part of the one-day Adventure Pass for $22 to $28, plus $10 vehicle entry fee
For more information: Visit stonemountainpark.com
STONE MOUNTAIN -- Saturday marks the official first day of spring break and coincidently it marks the day Stone Mountain Park opens its newest attraction, Geyser Towers, to the public.
Construction of the towers started in October 2011, but they weren't built to be an "aquatic attraction" -- more for a cool down from Georgia's infamous humidity and blistering sun in the summer.
"It gives that opportunity to cool off from that Atlanta sun if you want to," said Paul Creasy, Snow Mountain engineer. "The water elements are made in such a way that if you want to get wet, you can, but you can also stay dry. Water elements happen intermittently throughout the day, but they are on a schedule."
The three-tower structure has several water elements to spray participants sporadically as they run through the netted enclosure that was designed to keep everyone safe inside.
"Everything is ready for kids. They can't do anything wrong," Creasy said. "Kids will be kids and this is intended for them to have fun."
The structure is sturdy enough to hold 157 people at a time on two-levels with cargo net bridges, tunnels and climbs, each leading to a different tower and level.
And the cooling creation isn't just for the kids -- adults are allowed to play, too. Adults who have had to work up a sweat throughout the day are permitted to climb throughout the towers to chill out.
"We're all about getting families active in the outdoors and bring that engaging place where you can bond with your family," said Stone Mountain's marketing manager Laura Ramos.
As part of Stone Mountain Park's ongoing commitment to be good water stewards, all of the water used for Geyser Towers is being recycled through the lake, recycling roughly 50 gallons a minute.
"The water is utilized from the lake water," Creasy said. "We take the water from the Stone Mountain Lake, take it to the water treatment plant, get to (presentable) standards -- when it comes here, it is recirculated to the lake."
One thing is sure -- the towers will be a popular attraction and additional to the park's variety of activities.
"I think what I'm thrilled the most about is that it is the perfect compliment to what we already have, like Sky Hike and Camp Highland," Ramos said. "It fills in the gap for kids who might not be ready to tackle Sky Hike, but maybe too old to the low ropes at Camp Highland. It's the sweet spot."
There are some requirements to the free play: all participants must wear close toed shoes, guests between 32- and 40-inches tall must be accompanied by a chaperone age 16 or older, and children under 32-inches are only allowed to play in the wading pool.
Besides Geyser Towers, Stone Mountain Park will have the petting zoo, Sky Hike, Yogi Bear 4-D Adventure and more opened for spring break.
The Geyser Towers at Stone Mountain Park
The Geyser Towers open to the public in time for the warmer weather.