Belle Isle giant slide reopens this weekend

Belle Isle's Giant Slide officially reopens Friday after an extended hiatus while officials made the ride safer. 

What's become the defining addition to the Southeast Michigan lexicon and a culturally significant moment for end-of-summer fun, the giant slide was closed over concerns of its speed. Videos of riders taking a bouncing journey down have dominated conversation all week.

The Department of Natural Resources believes it has resolved its speed issues and is prepared for the next weekend of sliders. The updated schedule when the slide will be open through Labor Day weekend. 

It'll operate Friday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. over the next two weekends. The DNR also plans to reopen the slide in 2023 with extended hours of Wednesday to Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

It costs a dollar to ride and sliders must be 4 feet tall. 

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After its closure, the DNR applied a wax to the slide and sprayed water to slow down the riding of the 40-foot tall structure. Before getting on the slide, it may be helpful watching a DNR official show you how to ride down the slide safely.

How do you ride the Bell Isle Slide?

This slide has been here for 55 years, how do you ride it safely? Simple: follow directions.

In a video posted to the park's Facebook page, a Department of Natural Resources (DNR) employee explains step-by-step how to go down the slide.

Once you get your bag from the employee, sit down inside your bag at the start line and wait for others who are riding at the same time as you to get in position. While you're waiting, gather the excess bag in your lap. 

Doing this gives you something to hang on to, which is helpful because you're about to be told lean forward. Scoot yourself towards the downslope when the employee tells you it's time. Hold on to that excess bag, and keep leaning forward the whole way down.

In the video, the employee rides smoothly to the bottom without bouncing.