First off, apologies for the lack of a blog last week. It was mainly due to work, missed work because of a twisted ankle, and a 4-day vacation to Prince Edward Island (PEI for short). I went with my parents and boyfriend, who was experiencing it for the first time. If you wanna see his blogs detailing our trip, visit him here: richardsweeklyjournal.wordpress.com
Today, I’m going to talk about one of my favorite experiences of visiting PEI during my childhood: Going to Rainbow Valley, an outdoor amusement park that sadly shut down in 2005. It was taken over and turned into Shining Waters Family Fun Park, which has since moved to a different location.
When I was a little kid, Rainbow Valley was my version of Disney World, long before I ever got to visit the magic kingdom. It was all outdoors and had tons to do. Waterslides, paddle boats, carnival rides (like a rollercoaster and ferris wheel), silly shows, tasty canteen food and tons more. It had everything and for a little kid, it was the best place to go on the island.
We used to visit PEI nearly every summer back then and Rainbow Valley was always the highlight of each trip, no matter how many new things we checked out. I have fond memories of trying to steer a paddle boat with my mom and driving a plastic motor boat with my dad. There was a plastic owl manned by a woman you could talk to who would answer you back. There was a creepy cave full of Halloween-ish horrors that, having witnessed it again in Shining Waters this trip, is totally cheesy but still fun. I even remember the simple kid slides, with one being a little house based on Jack and the Beanstalk. I remember my sisters and I working up the courage to go on the biggest waterslide and wanting to go on it over and over once we did. The place was big (apparently 12 hectares) and it held so much fun that you could (and we did) spend most of the day there.
I miss it badly now that I’m older for a couple different reasons. The first being that, after enjoying some of the things brought over from the park to Shining Waters, I have major nostalgia for it and wish it was still around. The second is that since I’m older, the magic of these kinds of parks is lessened a little. Things that easily entertained me as a kid didn’t quite have that punch even during my last visit to Rainbow Valley. It’s a sad part of growing up, but I’ll never stop loving the place.
And while I’ll gladly go back to Disney and enjoy the fun it has to offer some day, the two parks are incomparable. They’re just two totally different parks both in environment and entertainment. Rainbow Valley might not have been the most flashy or extreme park around, but to me, it was my first real park experience. And as the saying goes, you never forget your first.