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The history of water parks

A cool splash of fun? Or a menacing hellhole of wet terror?

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People Play At Water Park In Wuhan VCG/VCG via Getty Images

Water parks are one of those things that are more fun in theory than they are in practice. At least, that was the conclusion I managed to draw on this week’s episode of The History of Fun, where I tried desperately to find the positives in these soggy amusement parks.

Did I succeed? It’s up to you, dear listener, to decide for yourself. But as my Brother in History Christopher T. Plante warns at the top of the episode, things get a little ... graphic. So if you’re at all squeamish about blood and guts and gore — y’know, the usual water park stuff — then you may want to spend the week listening to some of our previous episodes instead. Perhaps revisit the much more peaceful Tokyo Disney Sea if you’re not ready to handle America’s wettest, wildest “fun” death trap.”

OK, it’s possible I’m being a little dramatic about this episode, especially if you’re super into abandoned buildings, tragic downfalls and victories against inhumane capitalist machines. But don’t say I didn’t warn you about all that other stuff!

Special thanks to everyone who participated in our segment, Reader Only Memories, wherein we share listener stories about the topic at hand. Here is the full thread of responses:

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New to The History of Fun? Every Monday, Russ Frushtick, Allegra Frank and Chris Plante explore the hidden backstories behind the things we love to do. Ever wonder where dodgeball came from? Or the origins of the creepy Chuck E. Cheese robots? Or how about why Beanie Babies exploded and then vanished into the sands of time? We’ll seek to answer those questions and have some fun along the way! Subscribe and join us — we’d love to have you.