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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

In many areas of the country, the winter of 2013-2014 will go down as being one of the coldest and snowiest on record, according to Weather.com. At times, it seemed like the miserable weather was never going to end. But now that warmer weather is finally on the horizon, celebrate by booking your summer vacation in a place where your kids can splash away the days and forget all about that awful winter at a waterpark.

According to the World Waterpark Association (WWA), 85 million people visited waterparks in the summer of 2012. It’s not surprising that so many people are attracted to these large watery playgrounds. Today’s waterparks feature state-of-the-art rides that rival amusement parks for thrills, coupled with the refreshing qualities of a day at the beach. If you’ve been considering a waterpark vacation, but are just unsure of which to choose, check out the following destinations:

Orlando, Florida

While waterparks may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Orlando, this city is home to a number of the best on the East Coast, including Aquatica, CoCo, Wet ‘n Wild and Disney’s Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. Of course, when you’re not having fun at a waterpark in Orlando, you can always head over to Disney World or to Sea World.

giant slide at outdoor water park

Can’t Miss Attractions:

  • According to the Walt Disney World website, Blizzard Beach’s 120-foot-tall Summit Plummet is one of the fastest and tallest single-person waterslides in the world.
  • Do you love wave pools? Then head to Typhoon Lagoon’s Surf Pool, which is the largest outdoor wave pool in North America.

Wisconsin Dells

The scenic Wisconsin Dells area, according to the WWA, is home to the world’s largest concentration of waterparks, making it the “Waterpark Capital of the World.” The Dells was also home to the first indoor waterpark in the United States. Today, you can choose from a large number of family-friendly resorts that feature fantastic waterparks, many of which often offer special rates. In addition to its many waterparks, the Dells also offers many family attractions like go-kart tracks and mini-golf courses. Then there are the area’s many natural features, including its famous gorge and numerous lakes and rivers that are perfect for fishing and boating.

large crowd of people in wave pool at water park

Can’t Miss Attractions:

  • The ten-story-high Scorpion’s Tail waterslide at Noah’s Ark offers the first nearly vertical waterslide loop in the United States.
  • The Wilderness Hotel boasts eight indoor and outdoor waterparks on its 600 acres, making it the largest water park resort in the U.S.

Nashville Shores Lakeside Resort

Are you looking for a low-key waterpark for your next family vacation? Then consider Nashville Shores, which is set on 385 acres and is home to a waterpark, zip-lines and ropes courses. You can choose to book one of the resort’s comfortable and affordable cabins or bring your own RV.

Can’t Miss Attractions:

  • Lakeside Resort is where you can float down Tennessee’s widest lazy river.
  • Free lake cruises are provided by the resort.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents considering a waterpark visit.

Images courtesy of JZ85 and Royalbroil via Creative Commons license, some rights reserved.