No, Myrna and I didn’t ride Rollin’ Thunder … or any of the other thrill rides at OWA Thursday evening. We were perfectly content to keep our feet on the ground.
When we received an invitation to the OWA media event, I could hardly wait to go. From the press conference last November when we sat under a huge tent in an empty field until last Thursday, the excitement has been building. And OWA did not disappoint.
The Park is the only venue open now – the area with the rides. The roller coaster (Rollin’ Thunder) separates the two areas – thrill rides on one side, kids’ rides on the other. OWA’s Downtown District has been constructed but is not yet occupied. When restaurants and retailers move it, the place will be bustling for sure.
During opening ceremonies Thursday night, a plethora of dignitaries was on stage including members of the Poarch Tribal Council and Creek Indian Enterprises Development Authority (CIEDA), Foley Mayor John Koniar, and Alabama Senator Greg Albritton.
Following their remarks and the official opening of The Park, folks scattered – many making a beeline for Rollin’ Thunder. The rest of us were happy to stroll and look around.
Now, understand, it was hot as blue blazes out there. After all, it is July. But organizers made it pleasant with free soft drinks and bottled water.
The night was topped off with a spectacular fireworks show at 10 p.m.
The evening was called a media event, and media did get the choice spots at the opening ceremonies, but many other groups were invited as well. In fact, Atmore was well represented with Chamber board members, bankers, educators, elected officials and many others.
All in all, it was quite an evening. Thanks, Poarch Creek and CIEDA. We had a great time.