You don’t have to go far to end up in the wild west! Located a little over an hour from the Bronx, Wild West City is celebrating it’s 61st year of bringing western heritage and fun to generations of families. So on a beautiful Sunday morning, we jumped in the car and headed to the wild wild west to see what it was all about.
Wild West City consists of a main street- where 22 live-action shows take place throughout the day. There are also stagecoach tours, pony rides, a train ride, mini golf, a barnyard zoo, and panning for gold. Admission is $17.75 for adults and $15.25 for children.
This is where I noticed most of the negative reviews came in- admission does not cover the stagecoach ride, pony rides, train ride, or mini golf). So, if you factor in ALL of those activities at $4 each, admission looks more like $25.75 (taking out the pony ride and mini golf for parents) for adults and $31.25 for children. So really, it’s comparable to a day at the Bronx Zoo.
When we arrived, we noticed families gathering for the next show on Main Street. Most of the children had their own toy guns, so we headed into the town’s gift shop so the girls could pick out a gun to use for the day. While there were some seriously cool guns in the $20-$30 price range, we found a cheaper set with both a shotgun and a pistol for ten bucks- two for the price of one. If you don’t wish to purchase guns from the gift shop, be sure to bring your own.
While many parents no longer allow their children to play with toy guns for obvious reasons, it was such an experience to let the kids run free and have fun. There was certainly magic in their eyes, it was as if we were inside of their imagination.
Stagecoach Hold Up
Each stagecoach ride experiences a hold up , but once a day one of the rides become part of a big show where children are sworn in as deputies. So be sure not to miss this one! Children are given a deputy badge and help capture the robbers. As a mom to a five year old and a tween, it was so sweet to see my 11 year old enjoying herself and playing along with her little sister.
Immediately after the stagecoach robbery show, the kids all ran down to hop on the next train ride- so be sure to have your tickets ready. The train ride is a fun little ride through the woods where families are yet again held up and asked to hand over all of their valuables.
We then stopped over at the pony rides where Gia was able to be a cowgirl. While she’s been riding ponies since she was a toddler, she recently went through a phase of being scared to get on. It was awesome to see her get over her fear and ride again!
Many of the buildings on Main Street are accurate reproductions of life in the 1880s. We also headed down the hill where there is a church and school house. The woman acting as the teacher was very knowledgeable about US history and we spent some time talking about the former presidents. She even taught my oldest a song to help her remember the order of the presidents. It was nice to see many of the actors were truly passionate about making this fun experience an educational one as well.
Mining for Gold and Mini Golf
The girls also enjoyed panning for gold and a game of miniature golf before heading home. It had been an awesome day of cowboys, bullwhips, gunfights, and more. We had plans to visit their grandma while in New Jersey, or I’m sure they would have begged us to stay until the closing ceremony- which many families do.
You know those stories your grandparents tell of places that they visited as a kid and no longer exist? Wild West City is your chance to experience just that. Most family owned theme parks like this no longer exist, and it was exciting to be a part of it. If you’re looking for a state of the art facility or the latest upgrades, Wild West City is not for you. But if you’re a family who can unplug together, live in the moment, and release your inner child no matter how old you are- then you’re going to love this place. As we left the parking lot, my five year old exclaimed, “Best day ever!” Here’s to hoping Wild West City lasts another 61 years. For more information, visit www.wildwestcity.com
Know Before You Go
- Parking is free
- Coolers are allowed inside- so save money by packing a lunch and bringing plenty of water bottles. There is a picnic area for families to enjoy
- Bring a toy gun if you don’t want to purchase one in the gift shop
- Let the kids dress up in their favorite wild west outfit- bandana, boots, and anything denim works!
- If you want to make it an overnight trip, Wild West City has a great list of area lodging- including camping! Some have even partnered up on fun deals with WWC, so give them a call to learn more
- Bring quarters- there are quite a few little rides for smaller children that we’re sure they will ask to go on.
- Let your inner kid out! Have fun, and let the kid’s imaginations run wild!
We received tickets to facilitate this post. As always, all opinions are our own.