Growing up, Six Flags Over Texas was the highlight of my summer. As a kid, it was all about Looney Tunes U.S.A. (now Bugs Bunny Boomtown). As a teen, I loved the rides and meeting cute boys. However, I don’t remember what it was like to be in between a small child and a teenager. My six-year-old daughter stands at 46.5” tall. She is convinced that she is too big for Bugs Bunny Boomtown. Yet, she is still 1.5” too short to ride the large roller coasters. When I brought up going to Six Flags recently, she didn’t want to go at all. I was devastated, but I was also now on a mission to show her how much fun it can be. Here is my guide on how to enjoy Six Flags if you too have an in-betweener!
First, what exactly is an in-betweener?
I’m not referencing the British Netflix series. I’m talking about a kid who is in between two contrasting conditions. Being too old for playgrounds yet too small for solo bike rides, a child can feel like their life is over. Okay, that’s dramatic, but so is my daughter. In regard to Six Flags specifically, an in-betweener is an opinionated child who claims they are too big for the small rides and too small for the big rides. In my case, this is also code for, “Mom, I would rather play on my iPad than leave the house.” If you too have an in-betweener, you will benefit from my guide (that can also be applied to other family adventures).
Six Flags Over Texas: Guide for In-betweeners
Step 1: Download the Six Flags app.
Not only is it a great virtual map with showtimes, ride wait times, and more, but it also has a way to earn points that can be redeemed in the park. I took a picture of my app screen to show you. When you walk up to a ride, select the “Rides” orange button. Then, you check in. Geolocate is activated, so it will know if you’re not actually next to the ride. You can also check in and earn points for shows. Checking in became a game, and my daughter Aria was overly excited to try and earn as many points as possible during our visit. The app will also show you videos of rides, minimum height requirements, and any special events. It even lets you order food ahead to avoid the lines.
Step 2: Let your child be your guide.
When I let Aria take control, she felt a victory entering the park and going left instead of right (the direction to the kid area). She was determined to NOT enter the kid area that she has clearly mentally outgrown. So, turning left, we walked past the El Sombrero and the teacups (La Fiesta de las Tazas) and went straight to La Vibora (which I grew up knowing as the Bobsled). With a 42″ minimum height requirement, she considers this one of the bigger rides. The best rides for an in-betweener, according to Aria, are the Pandemonium, Justice League: Battle for Metropolis, and the Judge Roy Scream.
As a mom, I LOVE watching her drive the Chaparral Antique Cars. She grips the steering wheel so tight and puts all of her concentration into not hitting the track. We did do a lot of walking in circles since she led the way in order of her favorite rides rather than choosing rides that are close to each other. But watching her smile made it worth it. Not to mention, all that walking made me feel a little less guilty about the funnel cake. Double win!
Step 3: Take pictures.
I’m THAT mom who takes pictures of my child literally everywhere. I currently have 4,402 on my phone, and that doesn’t count all the ones I constantly delete to free up space. On this trip to Six Flags, I switched it up. I let Aria take most of the pictures. She got to pick where and when, and I had to pose while she directed me to smile, do silly faces, or be sassy. Feeling like the boss all day certainly added to her excitement for Six Flags.
Step 4: Bond in long lines.
When standing in the line, put down your device. Yes, you too, mom. My usual go-to in lines is to hand Aria my phone or to scroll through social media myself. Take this time to play Rock-Paper-Scissors, I Spy, or Simon Says. We certainly don’t do this enough. She fell in love with having my undivided attention.
Step 5: Consider a membership.
As we were leaving Six Flags, my in-betweener was already asking when we could return. My favorite time is Holiday in the Park with sledding and Santa, so we will definitely be back for that. Due to her having so much fun, I’m sure I’ll want to go back even sooner. I started calculating how much it would be to purchase individual tickets, a season pass, or the membership. The membership has different levels, so it’s all about finding out what is best for you. All levels of membership have every single benefit of a season pass PLUS more, and you just pay a low monthly fee. I chose the Platinum membership (approximately $10/month) to get unlimited soft drinks and one-time preferred parking (always free general admission parking). Find out more here: Six Flags Tickets & Passes.
2022 Note: Pass tiers and benefits have changed a bit since this post first published. See the link above for specifics.
I do want to say that I am in no way a rep for Six Flags. We just genuinely LOVED it that much. I think we both surprised ourselves with just how much fun it could be. Mission accomplished in turning her frown upside down. Perhaps she will now love Six Flags just as much as I did. The best part is that Six Flags didn’t change at all from that morning when she didn’t want to go until that evening when she started planning her next trip back. Her perspective did, and that made all the difference in the world.
Check out these posts for more information on potential theme park fun with your family: