By Lisa Hagen
Updated for 2019
Growing up in Iowa City, I was always excited as a child for our annual trek to Adventureland. We would get there when the doors opened and stay until they closed for the evening. I knew it was a costly trip for my parents to take four children and we definitely wanted to get our money’s worth.
We moved to Des Moines in 2010 when my son was four. I don’t think we even went to Adventureland that first summer but we went once or twice in 2011. It was a little hard at five for him to not be tall enough to go on many of the rides but there always seemed to be plenty to keep him busy and it was fun to see him progress as he grew into the big kid rides.
We figured for a family of three it cost us about $120 plus $10 parking every time we went. We began purchasing the early bird family pass in 2012. The cost is $140 per person and parking is included with your season pass. It comes to a breakeven of about 3 visits per summer for the season pass to pay off versus the pay as you go method.
We love having the season pass. Since we first began going, Adventure Bay opened and is part of the season pass. It offers a wave pool, water slides and a play area for small swimmers. I enjoy it as much as the kids.
Many of our Des Moines friends also have passes, so it is great to be able to take another friend or two with us and not have the burden of additional cost.
It is so fun to be able to go to the park on days that look like it might rain or chilly days when we know the park will be less crowded and sometimes we just stay a couple hours. Other times we get there when the gates open and stay until they kick us out. I love coming home with a bunch of exhausted kiddos that are a little sun drenched and tired from running all day without an iPad or a cell phone in sight.
Adventureland offers a great value on the season pass and they are already open for business. Make sure to purchase your season pass before May 31 as prices go up. I haven’t seen it but a new roller coaster, The Monster, will open in June! Enjoy!
Adventureland Season Pass Details
Cost: 2019 Season Pass is $140 (before May 31st) or 150.00 per person (4 years+) after May 31, 2019.
Compare That To: Adult (10 years+) daily admission is $45.00, children (4 to 9 years) are $40.00 and parking is $10.00.
The Biggest Perks: FREE parking for season pass holders; $7.00 off Regular, Child or Senior Single Day Admission Tickets (Limit 2 per pass holder); discounts on tattoos and games; $20.00 off Standard Cabana rental; 10% off retail merchandise, Lazy River Tube Rental; $10.00 off a room at The Adventureland Inn and 10% off any site rental at The Adventureland Campground.
305 34th Ave NW
Altoona, IA 50009
Does your family have an Adventureland Season Pass? Tell us what you think the best benefits of it are in the comments below!
Lisa is an urbandale transplant from Iowa City, Chicago and Kansas City. She is in pharmaceutical sales and loves everything about Des Moines, from the big city events and offerings to the small town Iowa upbringing for her family.