Written by: Thy Vo

Last Friday was a special day at Garden Grove’s Great Wolf Lodge — nearly 2,000 residents were given free access to the massive indoor resort and water park, which normally charges hundreds of dollars for a night’s stay and access to its waterslides.

The event was the brainchild of Garden Grove Councilman Steve Jones.

“I’ve had an idea in the back of my head…that I would like to talk them into opening up the water park to Garden Grove residents […] to showcase this amazing new addition to our city and encourage them to establish a spirit of community involvement,” Jones said.

All the aquatic fun and community spirit also amounted to a massive contribution from Great Wolf to Jones’ campaign for mayor.

Earlier in the evening Great Wolf hosted a campaign fundraiser for Jones, who is running unopposed, and then opened the water park after regular business hours to residents, who registered for the event through his campaign website.

The resort, which opened earlier this year, has been a controversial addition to Garden Grove, drawing praise from city leaders who say it will be a crucial economic engine; and criticism from those who question whether the development – which received $70 million in city subsidies – will benefit the residents who helped pay for it.

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