When I came home from my first adventure at the I-X Indoor Amusement Park three years ago, I told my husband I was now a true Clevelander. This yearly springtime event just screams Cleveland. Each year at this time, Clevelanders are done with winter, but usually winter weather isn’t done with us. Only in Cleveland would they dream up an indoor amusement park to make you feel like you are at a fair or festival in the middle of summer.
But there are some aspects of the I-X Indoor Amusement Park that you won’t find at your local fairs. On the Beach Street Stage (I love this name and that the stage has a tropical paradise at the backdrop), you can enjoy a huge variety of entertainment options. We caught part of the Zuzu Acrobats from Mombasa, Kenya and Roberto the Magnificent and thought both were extremely entertaining.
Just to the right of the Beach Street Stage is the Sea Lion Splash show. We first saw this popular show last year, and were very glad to see they installed bleachers for the show this year. This show is very popular, so be sure to arrive early to secure a seat, especially for the later shows as the I-X Indoor Amusement Park crowds seem to continually increase throughout the day. The Sea Lion Splash show lasts approximately 25 minutes and is entertaining for all ages. After the show, there is an opportunity for photos with the sea lions. Photos start at $15 a piece.
When most people think of the I-X Indoor Amusement Park, they think of rides. You will definitely not be disappointed. There are rides for children of all ages ranging from simple merry-go-round type rides for younger children to the Crazy Mouse Rollercoaster for thrill-seekers. Many of the rides have a height requirement, and the ride operators are strict (which is a good thing). The 2016 ride height requirement can be found here.
The I-X Giant Ferris Wheel is not to be missed. Not only is it on Cleveland Scene’s Cleveland Bucket List it is a great way to get an overview of the attractions and figure out what attractions you don’t want to miss. I would suggest riding the ferris wheel early in the day, as line tends to lengthen as the day progresses.
Most of the rides are included in the price of admission. However, some require an additional fee such as the bungee trampoline and rock wall. Also the fun houses are an additional $2 each. I always find the additional fee for the fun houses annoying. Most fun houses are about 2 minutes of entertainment. If I were to allow my 4 kids into the fun houses, I would be out $8 for 2 minutes of fun. My kids know they have to wait until the Ohio State Fair where fun houses are included with the purchase of a ride wristband to enjoy these attractions.
There are also plenty of good eats. Although you won’t find all the crazy deep-fried candy bars that you see at county fairs, there are plenty of classics to choose from such as elephant ears, fried cheese, corn dogs, cotton candy, fries, and fresh squeezed lemonade.
If you go to the I-X Indoor Amusement Park, I highly suggest going as close to opening as possible. There tend to be more families and less crowds during the earlier hours. In the later afternoon and evening, may parents drop off their teens and it becomes quite crowded. Of course, if you can go during the week, it tends to be less crowded than on the weekends. Be sure to pick up the Family Fun Pack at Marc’s before you go. It includes 4 tickets and a parking pass for $79. Otherwise you can expect to pay $10 to park and $22.99 for general admission and $19.99 for children under 48′. Children 3 years and younger are free!