The staff at Six Flags Great America eagerly greeted Friday's grand opening of Buccaneer Battle, the amusement park's brand new water ride attraction.
In contrast to real pirate-related threats of late, the new Buccaneer Battle is a ride designed entirely in the name of fun. The lighthearted water-raft ride sends boats of eight riders through a dubious, obstacle-filled course. The boats are equipped with water cannons that allow the passengers to protect themselves from other boats and even randomly placed pirates.
For those who have always wondered how Six Flags manages to put new rides together during Gurnee's frigid off-season, or in pirate lingo, when it's cold enough to make one's timbers shiver, Great America's Web site is giving guests a chance to see the behind the scenes construction of the new attraction.
The Web site also gives guests a chance to generate a random pirate name (for reference sake, we checked to see what NBC5 Reporter Phil Roger's pirate name might be and one search turned up a result of Spinning Peter Ropeburn.)
The attraction follows Six Flags new rides of recent years like 2008's The Dark Knight, which was opened in conjunction with the Warner Brothers Pictures film of the same name.
The brand new Buccaneer Battle is set to entertain families even more than its more ominously themed predecessor. Great America's Web site classifies Buccaneer Battle ride as a family oriented ride, as opposed to The Dark Knight coaster, which it lists as a thrill ride (because it's thrilling to waste 2 hours in line for what is essentially the Tea Cup ride ... but we digress). Young passengers of Buccaneer Battle must be at least 36 inches tall to ride with an adult or 48 inches in height to ride alone, according to Great America's Web site.
Buccaneer Battle is set to open its doors May 15 but Six Flags Great America has been back in action since early April. To help entice customers, the park's Web site is offering a number of special deals, including an online opportunity to purchase general admissions tickets at children's admissions prices (a discount that would reduce the $54.99 price to $34.99). Season ticket passes for the park start at $69.99.