Editor's Note: This story was updated April 22, 2022, to reflect the park's reopening.
Texas just got a new amusement park, and it’s the first one in the state dedicated to heavy construction equipment.
Called Dig World, the 3.5-acre park opened March 17 in Katy. However, after its opening, it closed for the rest of the weekend. The park reopened April 2 and be open each weekend, it says.
The park is designed for fun but also carries an educational theme of introducing kids to the construction industry. Texas A&M University’s Department of Construction Science is a partner in the park.
"The Texas A&M Department of Construction Science is excited to partner with Dig World to create an educational partnership, where future generations can experience and learn about the dynamic construction industry," said Dr. Patrick Suermann, professor and department head.
The park offers children opportunities to operate full-size Caterpillar compact excavators, skid steers and UTVs.
The equipment comes from the Mustang Cat dealership. "We look forward to partnering with Dig World as they showcase our heavy equipment in a hands-on experience for the entire family," says Mustang Cat President and Chief Operating Officer Sam Tucker.
The Dig World website shows these full-size machine operating experiences:
- A 236D3 skid steer around a winding track.
- A 303.5 mini excavator for digging dirt.
- A 306 mini excavator for fishing objects out of “mini ponds.”
- A 302 mini excavator for knocking down pins.
- There is also a UTV course on a safety-guided track.
According to the company, machine operation is restricted by height. All children taller than 48 inches may operate all attractions by themselves. Children taller than 42 inches can operate most of the equipment by themselves. Children between 32 and 48 inches tall may ride and operate machinery with an adult. Children shorter than 32 inches may participate all other attractions in the park except for the machinery.
Other attractions include a gem mining station, a playground, and a turf field with games such as cornhole and TowerBall. Events can also be booked at the park, such as birthday parties and field trips.
The park operates on two-hour time reservations, with online ticket purchases for a time slot for $25 each. Children under 32 inches tall get in free. Tickets and reservations can be made at www.digworldtx.com. Operating hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Dig World’s founder, Jacob Robinson, says there are plans to build 10 Dig World parks throughout the U.S. over the next few years.
"We wanted to build something that kids and families could enjoy, creating the best and most unique consumer experience in” Texas, Robinson says.
Though new to Texas, Diggerland USA in West Berlin, New Jersey, carries the distinction of being the country’s first construction equipment amusement park.