Getting out of the house is often hampered by the fact that most houses are located inside a bigger and fancier house. Step outside of the house outside of your house with today's Groupon: for $10, you get a one-day unlimited rides pass to Miracle Strip at Pier Park in Panama City Beach (a $19.35 value). This Groupon expires June 30.
The newly opened Miracle Strip at Pier Park—a revitalized rendition of the original park—extracts giddy screams with its collection of recent and retro rides. Nostalgics can practice fixed-point equestrianism on the 1964 Allan Herschell carousel, or lecture tweens about gravity at the highest point atop the 1975 Big Eli ferris wheel. Miniature aviation enthusiasts can mount the 1952 Allan Herschell Red Baron Planes, which grant a pilot’s license and rolly suitcase after 10 rides. Or pay a visit to the 500 winged residents of the Butterfly Pavilion, an attraction included with the unlimited rides pass.
The original Miracle Strip closed up shop in 2004 and was reformed with a number of original rides in 2010. In addition to attractions, Miracle Strip guests can hide-and-seek around the lush landscaping and topiaries, or catch kisses from whale blowholes in the beach breezes that pass through during open hours, which take place from noon to 9 p.m. seven days a week.
Miracle Strip Amusement Park
Although true time travel is still a thing of science fiction, Teddy and Jenny Meeks have captured a similar sensation at Miracle Strip Amusement Park. Though the original, decades-old park closed in 2004, the couple brought it back to life In 2009 by purchasing the 1964 Allan Herschell Carousel that had previously been one of its most iconic attractions. The Meeks installed the ride in a 14 acre park beside Pier Park, and its 30 horses and two chariots were immediately swarmed with giddy riders—some children, and some adults who fondly remembered feeding the horses wooden apples at the carousel's former home. The spinning steeds so charmed the locals that Teddy and Jenny began a more comprehensive revival. They bought Miracle Strip's 1985 Balloon Race and 1952 Red Baron rides, and when they couldn't find the park's original 1975 Ferris wheel, they hunted for one of the same make and model.
The Big Eli wheel now awards its guests views over the Gulf of Mexico and several other classic rides, including a Tilt-a-Whirl. Flowers cloak hanging baskets adding to the venue's picturesque nostalgia.