Breakers, OV Aquatic Center serve as summer oases

2014-06-26T00:00:00Z Breakers, OV Aquatic Center serve as summer oasesBy Phil Villarreal Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Backyard and public pools may be the most convenient places to cool off, but people looking to go big have options as well.

Marana’s Breakers Waterpark offers an amusement park-style experience, while Oro Valley Aquatic Center blends fun with utility.

Here’s a look at what to expect at each:

Breakers Waterpark

The attraction, at 8555 W. Tangerine Road, boasts a 1.3 million-gallon pool and 10 water slides.

“Generally, and is always the case, the wave pool is the most popular attraction,” general manager Steve Miklosi said. “On these warm days, hands down, it’s always the wave pool, just by nature.”

Miklosi said an in-house DJ who spins tunes on weekends has proved popular. A Queensryche concert earlier this year was successful, Miklosi said, and the park may pursue other similar events in the future.

Relaxing in a pool filled with children may give some pause, but Miklosi stressed that the facility is clean and well-maintained.

“There’s a vacuum process, and every hour we monitor and we take pool readings,” he said. “That way, we constantly stay on top of the water situation, the chemistry and what have you.”

For discounts, buy tickets at breakerswaterpark.com online.

Oro Valley Aquatic Center

The world-class facility, at 23 W. Calle Concordia, often hosts swimming competitions, but it’s also a place to kick back and let loose.

Oro Valley Parks and Recreation Director Kristy Diaz-Trahan said the facility is proving popular with families looking to escape the heat.

“They’re excited about the facility itself. It’s just fantastic, and we have some great incientives,” she said. Those include $5 Friday evenings, when entire families can use the facility after 5 p.m. for one $5 admission, and $155 summer passes that allow Oro Valley resident families of up to six people unlimited entry. Non-resident family passes are $180.

The facility, which includes an Olympic pool and recreational pools, offers programs including summer camps, swimming lessons and scuba, aerobics and Red Cross certification classes. But there is plenty of incentive to put the learning on hold and just enjoy yourself.

“We’re still very new and state-of-the-art,” Diaz-Trahan said. “In terms of kids, the big drivers are the diving boards, the swirly slide and the splash pad. Plenty of moms and dads are doing cannonballs off high dives as well.”

Contact reporter Phil Villarreal at pvillarreal@azstarnet.com or 573-4130.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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