THE HISTORY OF BIRCH BAY
Birch Bay Waterslides were built in 1986 by a group of Whatcom County businessmen looking to draw tourist dollars to the area and to recreate some recreational facilities at Birch Bay; as well as attract even more Canadians to the area.
The original slides consisted of the four main large slides; originally built as "body slides”, the landing pool and hot tub as well as the small kiddies area. The original slide design and supply came from what is now "Whitewater West" out of Richmond, B.C.; one of the world’s premier water park builders.
The "Black Tower Slides", including a thrilling 60 foot drop slide and the "Black Hole"; large enclosed slide, and the beach entrance pool were added in the late 1990’s. They have been a huge hit with visitors.
The addition of the big thrill rides reinvigorated the business for some years. A developer in the Pacific North West area purchased the slides in late 2005 and did a major rejuvenation of the park before opening in 2006. They have continued to make improvements each year, including resurfacing and recoating the four main slides in 2010 returning them to a "body slide" surface as originally intended and installed. As of late 2011 the park came under new ownership and plans to continue with improvements and expansion.
The Birch Bay Waterslides remain the single largest tourist attraction in Birch Bay and likely all of North Whatcom county (except for the Northwest Washington Fair), drawing more than 60,000+ paid visitors each year.
Birch Bay Waterslides has always looked positively toward the future. Birch Bay Waterslides enjoys a strategic resort location along the I-5 corridor between Vancouver, B.C. (40 miles to the north) and Seattle (100 miles to the south). There are now plans to enhance and expand operations by covering a portion of the slides to make them a year-round facility and by adding indoor interactive attractions with dumping bucket and five additional slides.
60,000+ visitors per year presently utilize the Birch Bay Waterslides as they are now. We are very appreciative of this patronage and hope to serve returning guests as well as many new visitors as we expand facilities and move to year-round operations.
The Birch Bay Waterslides management recognizes the impact of tourism in the Puget Sound area and around the world. Tourism is now the World’s largest industry. World wide it is responsible for 1 in 13 workers or nearly 220 million people. Birch Bay Waterslides, LLC employs between 55 – 80 people annually. That number will grow as we expand operations.
Every tourism dollar is a new dollar injected into the local economy. It creates a multiplier effect. More tourists bring more dollars and the opportunity to grow and expand. Our growth will benefit not only Whatcom County but Washington State in general at a time when the economy is at a low point. And there is no question that tourism provides the opportunity to interact with other people and cultures and brings new ideas into the community.
Birch Bay Waterslides is dedicated to ensuring that the environment, heritage and inherent character of the area are preserved.