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“Oddest Amusement Park in the Midwest, but we really enjoyed it” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Indiana Beach Amusement Resort

Indiana Beach Amusement Resort
5224 East Indiana Beach Road, On Lake Shafer, Monticello, IN 47960
574-583-4141
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Ranked #5 of 10 things to do in Monticello
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Owner description: Today, Indiana Beach is home to six roller coasters. Of them, three are wooden roller coasters, including the world-famous Cornball Express, voted the #1 Wooden Coaster in the world by Theme Park Critic in 2002! In addition, Indiana Beach is home to Indiana's 1st custom steel coaster, Steel Hawg. Through all its new attractions, new slogans, and new guests, Indiana Beach never forgot its place as a classic facility filled with classic attractions. Whether it’s getting’ their fannies riding on a coaster, relaxing in the summer sun, or dancing & dining with family & friends, generations have enjoyed all that Indiana Beach has to offer including 0ver 100 accommodations. With plans for tomorrow blossoming every day, exciting changes every season, and a continued commitment to quality, there are no limits in sight for Indiana Beach’s future. From a cornfield that a horse and cart turned into a beach swimming area to the largest amusement & vacation playground in the state of Indiana, from its humble beginnings as Ideal Beach to its undying popularity in the hearts of guests of all ages and generations, Indiana Beach has come to represent that there truly is “more than corn in Indiana...”
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Chicago, IL
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
147 helpful votes 147 helpful votes
“Oddest Amusement Park in the Midwest, but we really enjoyed it”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2011

This was our family's first visit. This is one of the oddest amusement parks in the Midwest. The amusement park on Lake Shaffr is located in the middle of nowhere Indiana. You'll drive past a lot of farms to get here. The premium parking is only $10. The first weird thing you'll see are the run-down bungalow cottages all around. There must be a zoning law that prohibits tall standing structures (like a hotel) because all of the vacation rentals are tiny single story units. The second weird thing you'll see is the Steel Hawg roller coaster which is basically in the parking lot next to a cottage separated by a tiny fence. It appears space is limited, so they just made due with what they had and built the coaster in that spot. It's a great roller coaster with twists & turns. Thrill seekers will enjoy it, we did. The staff is friendly as you enter the park. Security asked to check my bag (standard routine) but I barely opened the zipper and he said "You're good, thanks!". He never actually checked anything which I found funny. The entire park is old, but somewhat charming. There's an arcade with lots of games. The Skyroom restaurant (upstairs) is a blast from the past with paneling, autographed photos of dead celebrities and painted swordfish. There's a big window that overlooks the lake. The food was fantastic and service was great. Adult entree $15+, kids $5. There's also an adults only bar upstairs with a live band on some nights. The next weird thing is the chair-lift ride. It's basically the same thing you'll find at a ski lodge. I thought it was weird only because most amusement parks have gotten rid of these It's a nice ride across the boardwalk and a sneak preview of what rides are open. The Giant Wheel is fun for the whole family, but the ride operator was a young kid that kept having problems with the brakes. We (and the family next to us) were stuck on this ride for nearly 20 minutes. It was humorous. The 2 big wooden Roller Coasters (Hoosier Hurricane & Cornball express) are a blast. They are built on top of each other and appear to be falling apart. That's the thrill of riding them. You think they're going to break at any moment and I swear there are wooden slats missing on the coaster. We were up for the challenge and have plenty of life insurance. There's a KIDDIE LAND section (ages 2 to 6) that my little ones enjoyed immensely. Plenty of rides to keep them happy. It was too cold to enjoy the water sprinklers, beach or raft rides but they looked fun. We ran out of time and never got inside the haunted house. Fireworks at 10pm on certain nights. Overall, this place was enjoyed by my family. Keep in mind we have a bucket list of amusement parks to visit across the U.S. I wouldn't call this place fancy or even clean. There's rust everywhere and abandoned construction, but times are tough for carnival parks. I wouldn't say this place was unsafe, we felt fine. My kids left with big smiles on their faces - even the teenager. I got plenty of "thank yous" from them on the ride home.

Visited June 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
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3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Trashy, Dirty, Out dated and pricey!!! Very Disappointed Children.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2011

Indiana Beach is advertised as a fun, clean amusement park with exciting rides, games and water park. Yeah, there were rides, games and a water park, but the upkeep and cleanliness was so poor, the kids were begging to go home. The employees were sloppy dressed and never smiled or greeted you at entrance OR exit. So many games were "not working" or ripped you off. Do NOT waste your time. Want an EXCELLENT park? Do yourself and kids a little favor and drive a little further south to Holiday World. It's Unbeatable.

Visited June 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, Indiana
1 review
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Very dissappointing........goodbye memories !!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2011

Went to Indiana Beach for the 3 day Memorial Day weekend 2011; had tickets 4 adult ( combo) and waited in line 1 hour just to be told we had the wrong tickets...after refusing to let us exchange them, I bought 4 ride only tickets since the lady said the beach was Closed ( no reason given). My wife said she wasnt going to ride ANY rides hence she was told she DID NOT need a ticket. I asked for my $$ back on her ticket and was told NO sternly. We heard the beach was indeed open so I went to "Guest relations" to get waterpark tickets and was told I had to buy combo tickets ( again !! )When we got to the beach area we asked and were told they were testing the ph level all weekend; hence didnt need waterpark tickets after all. After all this money spent we were so disgusted we just left.....not a bad way to spend more $$$ than you should have!! The employees were rude and obnoxious. Since Morgan RV Resorts have taken over this amusement park lost its charm. Half the rides were not operating I guess thats how you operate on a 3 day holiday weekend!

Visited May 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington, Kentucky
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Not Disneyworld, but a whole lot cheaper and less crowded”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2011

We spent one the of the first Saturdays in May 2011 at the park and we had a great time. Not all of the rides were open, which was dissappointing and I think that should have been mentioned when we arrived, but since we had discounted tickets and we didn't get too worked up about it. The place was not very crowded and we got to ride everything we wanted to without waiting in line more than a few minutes. All the rides we went on were a lot of fun, we especially liked the roller coasters and the ferris wheel which was very relaxing. A lot of rides swung you out over the lake and that was a neat sensation. Our kids rode the sky coaster several times, a pendulem like bungie jump. It cost an extra $10. but the kids thought it was well worth it. We read here on TA that the tacos were the best people ever had and they were right! We all got one and then went back for more.
We had a great funnel cake too. The kids played some games and we went home with an armful of stuffed animals which made them happy an proud of themselves.

This is an older park that has a lot of wear and tear. But you know, that's what I liked about it, its age and history. It gave it a certain charm that you won't find at the "corporate" positively perfect amusement parks. We could park for free, it costs $22.00 to ride unlimited rides(with discounted tickets we got at the cottage we rented) and you could get a fabulous taco for $2.00. Can you get anything for $2.00 at Disney world?

Visited May 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lafayette, Indiana
1 review
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Amazing, Despite What People Say”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2011

Sometimes, I think that you can't truly appreciate Indiana Beach, unless you are open minded. People tend to go in expecting an elaborate amusement park worth hundreds, but it's not. Thing is, though, I'd pick a trip to Indiana Beach over a trip to Disney World any-day.

The major thing that really gets me, is that people say that it's rundown and dirty. Really? The restrooms are better than that of a supermarket. The only rundown thing about the park is that some paint is chipped, and some light bulbs are out. I'd rather it be like that than having bright paint and flashy lights. It gives the park a sense of reality.

The staff is wonderful. They are always willing to help, and they are all over the place.

When it comes to rides, it's awesome. I've seen that a lot of people just go and look at the rides and think "Eh." and don't go on them. DO NOT DO THAT. The rides always deliver.

I've heard that a lot of people are concerned with the safety of Indiana Beach, and let me say, don't be. Sense Indiana Beach opened, which was in 1927, if I do recall, under the name of Ideal Beach at the time... Anyway, there has not been ONE injury due to rides and equipment. Plus, of all the times I've been there, (over 50 times) I've NEVER seen a ride broken down. Wheres, Six Flags is CONSTANTLY causing injuries.

The mistake people tend to make is going on holiday weekends. I wouldn't go there on a holiday weekend if you paid me. Obviously, the crowd in huge, and the overall experience isn't as good because of huge amounts of people. In fact, the absolute best time to go would be during the week. It's always much less crowded, and you have virtually no lines to wait in.

If you go to Indiana Beach, get the second pass of the day. It's always better because it's cooler, and Indiana Beach increases in looks tenfold at night. Really, when all of the lights come on on the coasters and the Gondola Wheel, it's truly breathtaking.

Oh, and before you leave, be sure to have a taco! Those are seriously the best tacos on earth!

So please, PLEASE don't listen to what other people say. Indiana Beach is one of the most amazing places on earth, if you give it a chance.

Visited July 2010
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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