5 Things I Miss About AstroWorld

Categories: Random Ephemera

missingastro1.JPG
Johnychen via Wikipedia
In October it will be ten years since Six Flags AstroWorld packed up and left Houston without an amusement park. Next year will also be the year that the highly anticipated Grand Texas Theme Park will open up, promising to be even bigger and better than our dearly departed old rollercoaster haunt.

Still, as excited as I am for the new park next summer, this summer has me a little down in the dumps remembering all the fun times that I used to have at AstroWorld that I'll never get to share with my daughter. Oh sure, AstroWorld had its downsides. The food was bad and overpriced, it was usually dirty, and if you swallowed the Thunder River water by accident you were likely to produce a Thunder River of your own later.

But there were things you could do there you couldn't do anywhere else.

missingastro2.jpg
Postoak via Wikipedia
Season Passes
There are plenty of places you can go and ride rides and eat fatty foods and make your parents stand in hot lines in and around Houston. The Pleasure Pier, Kemah Boardwalk, and the Downtown Aquarium all offer these things in varying degrees, and the all-day, ride-as-much-as-you-like passes are often extremely reasonably priced.

There's no season pass, though. We got season passes every year when my brother and I were kids, and sometimes my father would drop us off on the way to work as many as three days in a row. For a $10 fee you could store a cooler (Until they did away with that), so we could bring all the non-ridiculously priced food we wanted and spend all day riding over and over again without parental supervision. All for a single, annual ticket. That was value entertainment, and it's gone.

Combination Amusement/Water Park
Splashtown is awesome. Don't get me wrong. I love going there, but I loved having the ability to go between AstroWorld and WaterWorld more. Get tired of the Texas Cyclone? Go hit the lazy river. When you get sick of that, head back over to XLR8.

Granted, sometimes getting between the parks involved a ridiculous hike that seemed like a weird plot to tire out swimmers before they got in the water, but the back gate near the Tidal Wave was pretty accessible if you wanted to do AstroWorld first. Plus, they were usually on the same season pass so you were getting not only value but variety. These days you have to pick one or the other.

This story continues on the next page.

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38 comments
Dominion
Dominion

Working on the River of No Return back in the day. 


Riding the Swamp Buggy. 


Riding any ride after dark. 


Midnight fireworks. 


The Wacky Shack before it became a ghost house. 


Senior Night.


<Sigh> So much childhood replaced by a big empty field.

Sarah Wiggins-Goff
Sarah Wiggins-Goff

Yeah, you are aware there's a new one in the works already, right? It's been all over Facebook, to the point that I thought no one could miss it, except a news outlet I guess...

Mel Gilmore
Mel Gilmore

Next year we will have an even better one.

Tyler Ray Henderson Sr.
Tyler Ray Henderson Sr.

Houston knew what they were doing they let astroworld go so condos can be built on the same spot,,its all about making it easier for people who live in the medical center,,,Houston is stupid,,New Caney is getting the new Astroworld an look at all the money that town is gonna make

Jacob Bocanegra
Jacob Bocanegra

no. its too many ghetto ppl ghetto-fying up the city. so in order to keep out riff raff,u have to make it expensive (see kemah,pleasure pier, sporting events,concerts)...so the average Houstonian can't afford to go...ppl claim hey miss Astroworld. how many time a yr did u go? once? that's not enough to keep it profitable...

Laurie Curtis
Laurie Curtis

Actually it's only been closed for 8 1/2 years.... but I miss going there every summer with friends. 3

txshaun1983
txshaun1983

I remember Taz's Texas Tornado always being closed from wind because it wasn't bolted to the ground, and sneaking into WaterWorld when it was still a separate ticket, we would jump down the bridge in the line to thunder river

sa123o
sa123o

1. The mini loaves of bread (Sunbeam/Mrs. Bairds?);

2. Listening to concerts from XLR8/Greased Lightning;

3. Watching that movie in the dome building where you lay on your back solely for the air conditioning (same for Alpine sleigh ride and the new wave dance club by Looping Starship);

4. Making those awful karaoke tapes of Debbie Gibson, New Kids, and George Michael songs; and

5. Riding Grease Lightning over and over and over.

My most favorite memory, though, was seeing Depeche Mode at Southern Star during the Music for the Masses tour.  Shit, I had some amazing childhood experiences thanks to those season passes.  I should thank my parents again.

Shondi McSpæżatron
Shondi McSpæżatron

The good: Selena concert at Southern Star Amphitheater, posing for the camera on the Viper, and Fright Nights. The bad: Walking around in damp jean shorts all day after riding the Tidal Wave.

Clint Okruhlik
Clint Okruhlik

Working on "island 2" on "Thunder River" when I was 17.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

The Season Passes were a big part of Astroworld's demise.  Far too many parents used it as a place to have their teenagers hangout all summer, and they began loitering everywhere around the park which made it far less of a family destination.  Having an Amusement Park in New Caney solves that problem.

jenbijou25
jenbijou25

Just looked up Grand Texas. It looks kind of boring compared to AstroWorld. Our kids will never know the joys of such a place. It really is sad.....


Robert Breaux
Robert Breaux

Going on a Tuesday and riding Greezed Lightnin' and Dungeon Drop back to back to back

Brian M
Brian M

(And the 10 years between)

Brian M
Brian M

Sky Screamer and my wussy behavior the first ride, contrasted with my "let's ride this all day" attitude the last day I was at the park

Brian M
Brian M

Making out on the tramway

36 Sixty
36 Sixty

Fright Nights!!! There was such a creepy vibe there during October. Loved it!

amusquiz
amusquiz

October 2005 was when it closed, so wouldn't this October mark the 9th year?

Amanda Musquiz
Amanda Musquiz

Didn't Astroworld close in October of 2005? Which would make this October the 9 year mark?

Sandra Baker
Sandra Baker

worked at Shipley's Do-Nuts for a summer. Developed a crush on a boy that later ended up squirting ketchup on my white uniform. Crush ended.

Dave Marrero
Dave Marrero

I miss the Southern Star Amphitheater and the concerts it had, as well as the old "Videocity" dance hall... Ah, memories... The Greezed Litenin' ride, Tidalwave, Bamboo Shoot, and Thunder River; and, lest I forget: The Texas Cyclone!

Mikey Seals
Mikey Seals

1. Greased Lightning 2. Greased Lightning 3. Greased Lightning 4. Greased Lightning 5. Greased Lightning

Optimo Ram
Optimo Ram

Messing around with girls in the gondola

Amanda Sims
Amanda Sims

11th grade Physics field trip! Best field trip EVER.

Samantha Guzman
Samantha Guzman

I just miss having an amusement park near and dear to us. I loved Astroworld and there is no doubt in my mind that my family would always have had season passes.

ahnlu
ahnlu

How about the great gust of cold air you would get on a hot summer day while riding the Alpine Sleigh ride?

(remember the rumor that someone killed a worker dressed as the Abominable Snowman in the ride??)  

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

@jenbijou25 They're getting that old Astroworld carousel, though. That's something

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