Go BIG or Go Home
What Happens When A Small-Town Family Visits The "World's Largest"... Whatever!

A Hugh Mongous Update!

Mama always said, “don’t believe everything you read on the internet.” Actually, my mama said “don’t wear that safety pin as an earring.” I did it anyway (I was 13), and boy, was that a nasty infection. Anyway, last week I did some “online research” about the BIG roadside attractions we discovered on our Virginia Beach vacation.

And the info I dug up about Hugh Mongous, the giant gorilla? Wrong.

water park

Hugh is older than I thought!


I got the real scoop yesterday from the nice folks at Ocean Breeze Waterpark, who scanned and emailed me what was a yellowed backgrounder page, typewritten in the 80’s. From the looks of the font, I can tell their info is authentic!

So, for the record, Hugh Mongous is, in fact, the 45-foot tall, 11,000 lb. mascot standing in front of the Ocean Breeze Waterpark. He’s actually been here since 1977, when the park was called Jungle Falls Waterslides. The original sculpture was created in 1977 out of Styrofoam, wood, and urethane by sculptor Demetrios Mavroudis. The work was commissioned by the publisher of New Dominion Lifestyle magazine, and was hoisted to the top of the magazine’s office building in downtown Richmond, VA, as a promotion. He only lasted up there for two days until city officials declared it a violation of several codes. The water park purchased him for $5,000, and moved Hugh to his current home. He WAS damaged by fire in 1989 and restored.

I feel compelled to set the record straight, because we had a wonderful day at the Ocean Breeze Waterpark. THIS is why:

water park

And this is why:

water park


But, this…this made it ALL worthwhile.


Disclaimer: Ocean Breeze Waterpark hosted our visit.


  1. Tina E. said,
    August 9, 2011 @ 6:39 am

    There’s nothing like a lazy river. Looks like a blast!

  2. Jessica said,
    August 9, 2011 @ 2:28 pm

    I love that little pint sized lazy river. Perfect!