From time to time, NJ Kids like to highlight one of the great places to visit here in New Jersey – and hopefully together we can get some new family fun ideas. Today: Sahara Sam's Oasis Indoor & Outdoor Water Park, an indoor and outdoor water park located in West Berlin. Read on to learn a little bit about this year round park and all the activities they offer that will keep the whole family active and having a watery fun time.
Suburban Mom: What is your name and title?
Chris Peters: My name is Chris Peters and I am the Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Sahara Sam’s.
SM: Tell me a little about Sahara Sam’s.
CP: Sahara Sam’s is an indoor and outdoor water park. We are open all year thanks to a retractable roof design. We can literally open and close the entire roof depending on the weather. Our attractions offer entertainment to children as young as two years old. We have slides, fountains, a lazy river, a surfing machine, kiddy areas…. Too many things to list! We recently expanded to offer a new outdoor water park in addition to a new dining court and café.
SM: Are there professional lifeguards on duty?
CP: Certainly. Safety is our priority. Additionally we believe that safety is a shared responsibility. Our staff is certified through the Ellis and Associate curriculum. We have EMT and lifeguard instructors on site as well and are a licensed facility to conduct out own staff training courses.
SM: If kids can’t swim, can they still enjoy Sahara Sam’s?
CP: Yes! Many of our areas are what we refer to as “zero depth” so for those that can’t swim, or perhaps are very young they can enjoy the park with shallow water, water games, or test their climbing skills on SAMAZON – the world’s tallest ropes course! Additionally we have a 3,000 sq. ft. arcade.
SM: Do you offer any classes on water safety?
CP: Other than lifeguard training, we don’t host public classes on site. However, Sahara Sam’s is the primary financial partner for the SAMBULANCE Safety Program Inc. The SAMBULANCE Squad visits hundreds of schools each year and hosts demonstrations on water safety to youth in the community. Since the program began just a few years ago, over 50,000 children have participated with the SAMBULANCE Safety Squad. You can read more information online at www.sambulance.org.
SM: Do you offer any special events for families or adults?
CP: One of our more popular family events is our New Year’s celebration. We provide the catering, games, and activities for families who love to celebrate as a group. For adults specifically, we occasionally host “Adult Swims” on Saturday evenings, which include late night music and cocktails for guests over 21. We keep a calendar of events online and will be updating all the Fall and Winter events soon.
SM: Do you offer events for groups – school groups, scout groups, parties, etc.?
CP: We are very popular with visits from camps – especially during the summer. In addition, we also host “exclusive” events where we open the water park only to select members or organizations. Sahara Sam’s seems to be a favorite for field trips, and scout groups when we host our overnight events. We like to refer to ourselves as “the birthday capital of the world” and have an entire department dedicated to making birthday parties unique and fun.
SM: Do you offer any events for Special Needs families?
CP: Sahara Sam’s works very closely with the special needs community. On specific evenings (typically Fridays) we host SEAS. SEAS stands for Special Events At Sam’s. They provide fun, judgment-free evenings for individuals with special needs to enjoy with their family and friends. SEAS events are offered to the community at a significantly reduced rate and are designed with the unique challenges of special needs individuals in mind. More information, including upcoming event dates, is located at www.saharasams.com/specialneeds/
SM: In an age where a lot of kids (and families) are sedentary, why is Sahara Sam’s a great alternative for getting everyone up and moving?
CP: We have a facility that offers children and families alike the ability to enjoy a tropical and active experience the entire year. I like to think that the “Hey, it’s nice outside, go play” train of thought can now be applied to every season with the Sahara Sam’s facilities. We offer programing, events, and attractions that are always evolving so the Sahara Sam’s experience stays fresh. By bringing this dynamic level of entertainment to families in conjunction with safe, affordable, and unlimited, annual pass options we really present a top notch product for kids who desire a rich level of activity.
By Jenny Tananbaum, NJ Kids Staff