ATRA World News 2012
What was up in the World of Thrill Rides & Amusement Parks
December 25, 2012
Santa's Village AZoosment Park To Add Another Roller Coaster In 2013!
Santa's Village AZoosment Park in Dundee, Illinois is adding another roller coaster for the 2013 season! It is the Zyclon / Galaxie Coaster from Fun Spot Amusement Park in Angola, Indiana, which closed in 2008. This is very exciting news because Santa's Village also closed in 2008 and re-opened in 2011. The new AZoosment Park operates on six acres of the former Santa's Village property -- starting with the original entrance and going north from there. The old Santa's Village address was 899 Dundee Avenue. The south side of the former park is now home to "Paintball Explosion". The Park has also purchased other rides from Fun Spot including the Sea Dragon. Please support this small park when in the Chicago area!
December 20, 2012
Hersheypark's Roller Soaker To Be Replaced With Sprayground In 2013!
Forget about any thought of riding the Roller Soaker at Hersheypark next summer. The park is removing the popular interactive water coaster in the Boardwalk section to make way for a 5,000-square-foot sprayground Many riders also complained of long waits to ride the Roller Soaker on hot days.
December 19, 2012
Michigan's Adventure Will Add Flying Scooters For 2013!
Michigan's Adventure Amusement Park has announced plans to add a timeless classic to its thrilling collection of rides and attractions. A flying scooter attraction will be added to Michigan's largest amusement park and waterpark in 2013. The flying scooter attraction is a classic, interactive flying ride which appeals to all ages. It is one of the most popular flat rides in the amusement and theme park industry dating back to the 1940's.
December 12, 2012
Coney Island Operators Seek Restoration Specialists After Hurricane Sandy!
As storm-battered Coney Island rebuilds after Sandy, the operators of its famed amusements face a specific challenge: how to refurbish beloved but antiquated rides and games without stripping the novelties of their character. Since most contractors or fix-it crews don't have experience with carousel parts and bumper cars, park owners are reaching out to a unique cadre of experts and professional tinkerers to painstakingly repair old relics and fan favorites.
December 2, 2012
Coney Island Parachute Jump Getting LED Light System!
Coney Island's landmark Parachute Jump is finally getting its "bling." The city's Economic Development Corp. has tapped the seaside neighborhood's biggest amusement operator to fulfill Borough President Marty Markowitz's vision of overhauling the 262-foot-tall structure's lackluster lighting system with more "bling" so it could become Brooklyn's "Eiffel Tower." The Parachute Jump is a former ride from the 1939 World's Fair in Queens that was relocated to Coney Island in 1941. It ceased operations in 1968 and was declared a city landmark in 1989. It is part of a revamped Steeplechase Plaza that the city is hoping to create.
November 13, 2012
Mt. Olympus Resorts Announces Hades 360 For Summer 2013!
Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park announces plans to unveil its newest addition and structural landmark as the famous underground wooden coaster Hades will transform to become the world first all wooden roller coaster with an upside down roll coming spring 2013. Hades 360 will be a unique technological marvel integrating the underground uniqueness of Hades and adding a 360 degree upside down loop and a 135 degree over-banked turn. Plus Hades 360 will also be equipped with a new state of the art roller coaster train, giving riders the feel of riding on a steel coaster. Utilizing this state-of-the-art train by Gravity Group, Hades 360 will be the world's longest underground and have world's only upside down roll on an all wooden roller coaster.
November 3, 2012
Destruction On The New Jersey Shore And Amusement Piers Caused By Hurricane Sandy!
The well-known seaside town and historic boardwalk of Seaside Heights - made famous the world over by MTV's Jersey Shore - has been almost totally wiped out by Hurricane Sandy. The waterfront rides on Casino Pier are gone. A roller coaster bobs lazily in the waves. Sand, leaves and debris choke roads previously lined with houses that now rest on their sides.
Read more and see photos from The Daily Mail (London, England)
November 1, 2012
Knott's Berry Farm Announces New Family Roller Coaster And Two More Rides for 2013!
In their continued efforts to re-invest in their property and enhance guest experience, Knott's Berry Farm will debut new family attractions to the theme park's Boardwalk section during the summer of 2013. This multi-million dollar development will include three attractions designed for families. The area will further enhance the feeling of strolling down a colorful California Boardwalk fun zone filled with amusements, games, and fun food offerings.
October 26, 2012
Quassy Amusement Park To Double Water Park's Size For 2013!
Quassy Amusement Park announced Thursday plans to double the size of its water park by next year, adding three new slides and an a children's splash pad area. The expansion of the water park, which opened in 2003, is part of the park's $5-million improvement plan, which began in 2010.
October 24, 2012
Lake Winnepesaukah Announces Water Park Expansion For 2013!
Lake Winnepesaukah Amusement Park announced Wednesday that they look to add a 5-acre water park addition to its venue by next summer. The new multi-million dollar expansion is expected to feature a lazy river, wave lagoon, flume body slides, enclosed tube slides, and a splash park for toddlers. The expansion, which is slated to begin this winter with the hopes of being open by Memorial Day, will take place on the west side of the park near the famous Cannonball Roller coaster.
But wait... there's more...
Holiday World Invests $6.5 Million In New Project for 2013!
Following one of the hottest summers on record, Holiday World & Splashin' Safari are creating more ways for families to stay cool in 2013. The investment of $6.5 million provides everything from a new water-slide complex to misters throughout both parks. They are also adding four new in-the-dark water slides in a complex called RhinoBlaster." The longest slide is 350 feet and includes a half-pipe element - similar to the Zinga water ride. Splashin' Safari will gain a second ride, as the Pilgrims Plunge shoot-the-chute ride becomes part of the water park and is renamed Giraffica. In Holiday World, a classic teacup ride - Kitty's Tea Party - will be added to Holidog's FunTown, plus a larger high-dive pool, stage and seating area will replace the current theater.
October 16, 2012
Dania Beach Hurricane Is Closed For Good!
The tallest wooden roller coaster in Florida, visible to anyone driving up or down Interstate 95 in southern Broward County, is closed for good. For more than a decade, the coaster thrilled tourists and South Floridians at the laser-tag and go-kart theme park Boomers. But the coaster's wood and steel parts are still worth millions, so the owners of the Dania Beach Hurricane are looking for a non-profit willing to take on dissembling the 3,200-foot-long, 100-foot-tall roller coaster to sell it for salvage parts.
October 13, 2012
Idlewild Park To Add Lazy River In 2013!
Idlewild & Soak Zone will add a "Lazy River" attraction to its water park in time for the 2013 season. The new "endless" lazy river will be 15 feet wide and 603 feet long -- or the length of two football fields. In addition, about 6,000 square feet of new beach area featuring cabanas and chaise lounge chairs will provide relaxation areas.
October 11, 2012
From Conneaut Lake Park's Facebook page: "TRAIN!!!! After a big investment of time and money by Adams Amusements, we are so excited to announce that our train will run this weekend! Thank you, Lenny and crew, for the great work in getting our beautiful 1964 Allan Herschell Iron Horse train running again. Rides open Fri 2-7, Sat 12-7, Sun 12-7...$15 rideband includes Blue Streak (AND TRAIN). Remember, Tumble Bug is closed for the season, and Devil's Den is not open during the day because it's part of the Ghost Lake evening haunts. Chugga chugga!"
Follow the park's progress on their Facebook page.
But wait... there's more...
New Concert Venue And Water Park Proposed For Rye Playland!
A small water park would be added to the land-marked amusement park north of New York City under a newly announced proposal. Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino said Thursday he has chosen a new operator for county-owned Playland. He says the operator, Sustainable Playland Inc., would also add ball fields, a field house and a "Great Lawn" for concerts and graduations. The park's historic rides would remain, including the wooden "Dragon" roller coaster, a carousel and Kiddyland rides.
Read more from 7online.com (WABC-TV)
October 9, 2012
X-Coaster Will Be Retiring From Magic Springs Theme Park!
Magic Springs Water and Theme Park announced today that X-Coaster will be retiring at the end of the 2012 season and that plans are underway for a major new water park addition in 2013. By visiting the park's annual Halloween event, Magic Screams, guests can take their last flight on X-Coaster and enjoy all the spooktacular fun with family and friends.
September 28, 2012
Maggie Valley Ponders Identity With Ghost Town In The Sky!
As Maggie Valley business owners and leaders look toward the town's future, it is unclear how large a role town leaders realistically expect the amusement park Ghost Town in the Sky to play. During the 1970s and 80s, Ghost Town was a boom, bringing tens of thousands of tourists to the valley, but the next decade brought a decline in both attendance and the maintenance of the park. It eventually closed in 2002, briefly reopened under new ownership, only to shut down again.
But wait... there's more...
NYC Mayor Announces Plans For World's Tallest Ferris Wheel On Staten Island!
New York may not have the world's tallest skyscraper, but it wants the world's biggest Ferris Wheel. The Bloomberg administration announced Thursday morning it had struck a deal with an investor group named New York Wheel, LLC to build a 625-foot observation wheel on Staten Island that would hoist tourists and visitors to offer views of a distant Manhattan vista.
September 25, 2012
Son Of Beast Removal Begins At Kings Island!
Crews this week began dismantling the wooden roller coaster at Kings Island to make room for future park expansion. Son of Beast was heralded as the world's tallest, fastest and only looping wooden roller coaster when it opened in 2000. The track climbs to a 218-foot peak, followed by a 214-foot drop; its trains would reach speeds of 78 mph. But its history was troubled from the start. A string of accidents, closings, repairs, five lawsuits, settlements and one trial would ultimately shutter the ride.
September 23, 2012
Waldameer To Expand Park With Motel, Wave Pool, And Lakefront Hideaway With Incline Railway!
Waldameer Park & Water World, which introduces a new attraction nearly every year, is adding something just as big this fall: more than 7 acres of land and buildings, including the Inn at Presque Isle, at Peninsula Drive and West Sixth Street. The acquisition, to be final Oct. 2, will enlarge Waldameer to 52 acres, put park owner Paul Nelson in the hotel business and help launch an ambitious 10-year plan for the 116-year-old amusement park in Millcreek Township. The plan, to cost more than $20 million, will feature a large wave pool, to open most likely in 2014, and the development, most likely five years later, of a secluded wooded area involving about 5 acres that Nelson's family owns at the foot of a slope that overlooks Lake Erie. The highlight of that long-awaited project, Nelson said, will be an incline railway to carry picnickers from the main park to the lakefront hideaway.
September 21, 2012
Conneaut Lake Park Wins Fastsigns® 2012 MetamorphoSIGN Contest!
Another miracle for Conneaut Lake Park! FASTSIGNS® International, Inc., the franchiser of the more than 535 FASTSIGNS® centers, announced the winners of the 2012 MetamorphoSIGN contest. The online contest gives businesses and organizations a chance to enter and win a free visual communications makeover. Conneaut Lake Park, in Conneaut, Pa., received the most votes within the brick and mortar category and will receive a makeover of up to $10,000. And thanks to the Erie Fastsigns® store, the prize has been doubled to $20,000 in new signage!
Read more from the Rock Hill HeraldOnline
September 10, 2012
Waldameer Park Will Add Music Express For 2013!
Two days after Waldameer Park & Water World ended its 2012 season, workers began disassembling one of its signature rides. The venerable Scrambler is being moved closer to the park's train station to make way for a new $1.5 million mega-ride. The caterpillar-style Music Express will rattle up to 60 passengers at a time beginning in spring. It should help the lakefront park continue to ride high after what looks to be its third consecutive record season.
September 3, 2012
Conneaut Lake Park Extends Its Season!
For two years, Lenny Adams had the best seat in the house when it came to seeing Conneaut Lake Park. He spent those two years atop the Blue Streak, working with Structural Technologies Inc., a father-and-son company which was hired to restore the famous 74-year-old wooden rollercoaster. He saw Conneaut Lake Park's potential and he knew just what kind of work and dedication it would take to help get the park back to its glory days. And in his first year overseeing the operation of the rides, games and concession areas at the park as Adams Amusements, Adams feels he and the park are headed in the right direction.
August 30, 2012
Six Flags Announces A Full Lineup For 2013 With New Coasters, Rides, Shows, And More!
2012 was a unprecedented year for Six Flags when they rolled out more attractions, coasters, and shows for 2012 than any other year in the amusement park chain's history. This year, they aren't letting up with a huge early morning announcement that lined up the entire 2013 season for every Six Flags park in the world. While the amount of coasters has been scaled back, the amount of fun and thrills seem to be amped up to Six Flags.
August 29, 2012
California's Great America Announces Gold Striker Wood Roller Coaster!
California's Great America has announced Gold Striker, a new wooden roller coaster by Great Coasters International. It features 3,197 feet of track and will reach a speed of 53.7 mph. The coaster will also feature a Sky Tower wrap-around unlike the Space Spiral at Cedar Point, which is being removed for a new B&M steel coaster.
August 27, 2012
Santa Cruz: Boardwalk Announces New Roller Coaster, 'Undertow!'
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk's new ride is called "Undertow" and it is a rotating roller coaster being constructed in Germany, Boardwalk folks announced with some fanfare Monday. The $5.5 million thriller will be on-track by next summer and replaces the 20-year-old Hurricane coaster that is being shipped to a park in New Mexico next week.
August 25, 2012
Old Wooden Roller Coasters Endure, Even With New Steel Rides!
With the summer theme park season winding down, many park operators are turning their attention to the future, laying the groundwork for new thrill rides that promise to climb higher, drop faster and stimulate even more adrenaline. Not Lakemont Park in Altoona, Pa., or dozens of other smaller parks around the country where century-old roller coasters give riders "thrills" of another sort entirely.
Read more and see video from NBC News
August 21, 2012
Six Flags Great Adventure Announces End To Drive-Through Safari!
After Sept. 30, private cars will no longer be allowed through the wildlife preserve at Six Flags Great Adventure, park officials said Monday, ending an experience that was part nature expedition, part road trip and hated by animal rights activists almost as much as it was enjoyed by animal gawkers. The park will close after that date, a month sooner than it would normally shut down for the season.
August 16, 2012
Santa's Village Lives On Near Chicago!
After Santa's Village closed in May 2006, Phil Wenz helped organize the auction of the assets. He kept an office on the premises and served as administrator of the property, which quickly maneuvered to rejoin the wild prairie, plants growing around and into those assets - rides, vehicles, the vaguely Seussian buildings - that hadn't been sold. Now there is, once again, a park bearing the "Santa's Village" name operating on the property, like some ridiculous thing you whisper into Santa's ear that somehow turns up under the Christmas tree.
August 15, 2012
Knott's Berry Farm To Close Perilous Plunge!
Perilous Plunge at Knott's Berry Farm is about to make its last splash. Knott's management said Monday that the ride will shut down for good following Labor Day. About a year after it opened, restraints failed to keep an obese woman in her seat, resulting in her falling to her death.
August 13, 2012
Fun Spot Ready To Break Ground On Roller Coasters In Orlando!
The Orlando attraction known for go karts and no admission fee is ready to expand three-times its current size. Fun Spot Action Park is on its way to becoming Fun Spot America. By Labor Day, Fun Spot expects to break ground on two major roller coasters, including a GCI named White Lightning, a host of new rides and a new entrance building.
But wait... there's more...
Cedar Point Announces Gatekeeper, A B&M Wing Roller Coaster, For 2013!
Cedar Point amusement and Cedar Point /resort, known around the globe as the leader in innovative coaster thrills and "The Best Amusement Park in the World," announced plans today to build a new world-record-breaking coaster for the park's 2013 season. Named GateKeeper, this new winged roller coaster will take guests on a ride unlike anything else at the famed park. Set to debut in May, the mammoth ride will be the longest winged roller coaster in the world and will boast the longest drop of any winged coaster on the planet!
August 10, 2012
Silver Dollar City Announces Outlaw Run For 2013!
The Rocky Mountain Construction Group, from Hayden, Idaho, will build Silver Dollar City's new Outlaw Run wooden roller coaster. It will have a half-mile of track and an 81-degree drop, will be the second fastest wood coaster in the world, and will be the world's only wood coaster to twist upside down!
Visit the official Outlaw Run site
August 4, 2012
Six Flags Over Texas Retiring Flashback And Texas Chute Out!
Six Flags Over Texas is inviting guests to join in and say farewell to Texas Chute Out and Flashback over the Labor Day weekend.
Texas Chute Out opened at the park in 1976 and was modeled after the old parachute drop at Coney Island. More than 29 million riders have traveled up and down the ride's 200-foot structure. One of the most popular modes of travel on this ride was the basket, which allowed guests to stand in a basket to take in the picturesque skyline. The baskets were removed in 1994 and replaced with the standard chairs. This iconic attraction has been a long time favorite of guests young and old since its opening.
Its neighboring ride, Flashback, opened in 1989. The boomerang-styled coaster was one of the first built in the United States. The corkscrew spiraled layout flips riders upside down a total of six times-three times forward and three times backwards at speeds up to 50 mph. It has thrilled over 17 million park-goers for more than three decades.
Labor Day weekend, park guests are invited to come out and enjoy these rides one last time and join in for the final farewell on Monday, September 3.
Read the press release at NewsPlusNotes amusement park blog
July 27, 2012
Kings Island To Remove Son of Beast Ride From Amusement Park!
Kings Island officials announced this afternoon that the Son of Beast ride will be removed from the amusement park in order to make room for further expansion. The park will begin to dismantle the ride later this summer.
July 26, 2012
The Beach Water Park Will Open Next Year Under New Operator!
A new operator will take over The Beach Waterpark and plans to re-open the facility next year under a revised name: The Beach at Adventure Landing. Ralph Vilardo Jr., the new general manager at The Beach, said Adventure Holdings LLC will spend at least $1 million on upgrades, including four new slides, a new children's area and a new wave pool. Adventure Holdings LLC said it has signed a long-term lease with an option to purchase the park, but did not disclose additional details.
July 16, 2012
Former Visionland Amusement Park Reinvented As Splash Adventure Waterpark!
Some may remember when the park first opened in 1998 as Visionland, a $65 million project that featured a Celebration City theme park, Steel Waters water park, a children's area called Marvel City and a shopping/dining area known as Main Street. Since that time, the park has tried to reinvent itself many times, including this year, when General Attractions bought it and announced in April the old amusement park would be closed, leaving only the water rides. The park has kept its Main Street row of shops, eats and amusements and the water park will continue to expand, according to officials. The remaining rides, including Rampage, will be sold to other companies and parks because officials said visitors wanted more water attractions.
July 12, 2012
Lincoln Park's Comet Roller Coaster Demolished Today In Dartmouth, Evoking Memories Of Thrills Past!
The Comet roller coaster, which provoked whoops of delight, hollers, and screams from its riders from the 1940s to the 1980s, was demolished today as its fans stood by, remembering the bygone thrills of the former Lincoln Park amusement park. The 3,000-foot-long wooden coaster was designed by Edward Leis and Vernon Keenan of the National Amusement Device Co. and built in 1947 for $80,000. The ride climbed to 65 feet and had a top speed of 55 miles per hour.
But wait... there's more...
Ghost Town In The Sky's Limited Opening Offers A Taste Of Historic Amusement Park's New Era!
Ghost Town in the Sky opened last Wednesday - sort of. The once-popular amusement park in Maggie Valley opened its chairlift and a new zipline just in time for the July 4 holiday and is offering rides on both attractions. Few other parts of the amusement park are currently operating besides the chairlift and zipline. The new owner is working to get a few rides open, and expects to fully open next year.
July 9, 2012
Six Flags Fiesta Texas To Remove The Rattler!
Get out to Six Flags Fiesta Texas to experience the classic wooden coaster through nearly a mile of high-speed turns, looping twists and breathtaking drops as The Ratter prepares for last riders on Sunday, August 5! The Rattler opened at Fiesta Texas when the park opened in 1992, heralding it then as the only coaster at the park and delighting guests with the distinctive John Pierce designed, wooden coaster experience. Visit this Crackaxle Canyon icon one last time as we bid farewell to perhaps the most recognized Fiesta Texas landmark.
June 29, 2012
Storybook Land Is Making Summer Fun!
Storybook Land is a family-owned amusement park outside Atlantic City that is meant for children up to 10 years old. At other parks you get Kingda Ka and Top Thrill Dragster, roller coasters at Six Flags in Jackson, N.J., and Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, that send riders rocketing faster than 100 miles per hour and plunging 400 feet. At Storybook Land you get Bubbles the roller coaster, a happy sea serpent that sails at 18 m.p.h. over a 15-foot drop. Such pint-size thrills have given Storybook Land a niche as larger corporate-owned theme parks have chased ever faster, taller and louder adventures.
June 17, 2012
Zoomers To Finally Open Near Fort Myers Afters Years Of Dormancy!
For years, the structure of a roller coaster sat idle alongside Summerlin Road like the skeletal remains of a dinosaur, while the sign proclaimed a family fun park that seemingly would never open. But on Friday, June 15, Zoomers opened to the public, offering bumper boats, a Tilt-a-Whirl, go-karts, mini golf, children's midway games, a family roller coaster - and much more.
But wait... there's more...
Koch Family Withdraws From Kentucky Kingdom Project!
Following nine months of planning to reopen Louisville's shuttered amusement park, Bluegrass Boardwalk, Inc. today withdrew from the project. Koch says she and her partners were financially prepared to meet the challenge of reopening the abandoned park, however the many layers of governmental regulations and stipulations ultimately caused them to withdraw. Koch says she and her partners believe reopening the Louisville park is still a worthwhile project and they wish the future operator well.
May 31, 2012
Cedar Point To Remove Disaster Transport & Space Spiral For New B&M Wing Coaster!
Space Spiral and Disaster Transport will be removed for a Bolliger & Mabillard Wing Coaster to open in 2013 at Cedar Point. The Sandusky Register, citing a February 15 memo from Cedar Fair CEO Matt Ouimet to the company's board of directors, says the coaster will have the "longest drop, run the fastest and be the longest ride" in the park, and make a "Front Gate Statement - a roller coaster that flies overhead, rolls and flies back—highly visible above guests entering the park." The new ride will feature a 170-foot tall lift hill and span an area from the main gate, over a portion of the exiting parking lot, over to the area currently occupied by Disaster Transport and Space Spiral.
May 22, 2012
Deja Vu To Goliath: Moving A Roller Coaster!
Goliath, the latest roller coaster ride at Six Flags in Agawam, has been undergoing hundreds of tests to prepare for its official opening on Friday. Built early last decade for a California park, its relocation and reassembly have presented a series of engineering challenges to rival the glory days of the space program. Known as Déjà Vu at Six Flags Magic Mountain in California, Goliath can generate a force equivalent to 4.3 G's, more than four times the force of gravity, along its 1,200 feet of track.
May 15, 2012
Historic Greezed Lightnin' Moving To Cliff's Amusement Park!
The historic 1978-built Schwarzkopf shuttle loop Greezed Lightnin' is about to cross state lines for the first time in its history. Joyland Park, Lubbock, Texas, acquired the ride when AstroWorld in Houston closed in 2005. The ride has been in storage in Lubbock ever since. A high water table under the family-owned park made the ride cost prohibitive to re-erect. When the park found no one interested in purchasing the ride, family-owned Cliff's Amusement Park in Albuquerque, N.M. stepped up to help out a fellow park owner.
May 10, 2012
The Comet Roller Coaster At Old Lincoln Park Site Coming Down!
The Dartmouth Building Department confirmed Thursday that a building permit has been issued to demolish what remains of The Comet roller coaster at the old Lincoln Park site. The roller coaster stopped running in 1987 and has remained idle ever since.
But wait... there's more...
Six Flags Great America Opens X-Flight Roller Coaster!
X Flight - intended to make passengers feel like they're dangling from the wings of an airplane - is the first major coaster introduced at Six Flags Great America since the 2003 opening of Superman: Ultimate Flight. The only similar ride nationwide is the Wild Eagle, designed by the same manufacturer, which opened at Dollywood Theme Park in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., in March.
May 2, 2012
Cedar Point Announces Removal Of WildCat!
Cedar Point announced today that it has decided to remove the WildCat roller coaster prior to the start of the season. The park says it was nearing the end of its useful life, and it needs the room for expansion of Celebration Plaza. Fans have reported that the ride was recently testing.
April 19, 2012
Speed Roller Coaster Moving From One End Of The Las Vegas Strip To The Other!
Breslin Builders is starting the process of removing the existing Speed: The Ride roller coaster from the closed Sahara Hotel and Casino. With the removal permit issued by Clark County Building Department, they are now working to remove the pieces carefully to allow the coaster to eventually be relocated on the south end of the strip across from Mandalay Bay.
April 5, 2012
Alabama Adventure Becoming Water Park Only Splash Adventure!
The new owner of Alabama Adventure plans to re-open the facility as Splash Adventure, expanding the water park portion of the venue and selling off the rides that made up the amusement park. General Attractions bought the park in January and is investing $1.5 million to add four new attractions and spruce up the park in time for a May 12 opening under the new name and aquatic focus. The amusement park rides -- including the landmark Rampage wooden roller coaster -- will be sold off to other park owners and that property used for special events and future growth.
April 2, 2012
Zoomers Family Amusement Park Near Ft. Myers May Open After Ten Years!
A decade after plans were first announced, Zoomers Family Amusement Park south of Fort Myers is back on track to open as early as this summer. The dormant project, which has become a familiar reminder of hard economic times for those who pass the intersection of Summerlin Road and San Carlos Boulevard, is tentatively scheduled to open in late May or early June, General Manager Randi Jong said.
March 25, 2012
Six Flags Announces Changes To Its Mr. Freeze Roller Coasters!
Six Flags said it is reversing trains on its Mr. Freeze roller coasters at Six Flags Over Texas and St. Louis. Now, riders will travel backwards through a 190-foot tunnel, into a 180-degree inversion before climbing more than 200 feet in the air, where they will be suspended before repeating the ride face-forward.
March 9, 2012
The Beach Waterpark Announces Closure For 2012!
After nearly three decades, The Beach Waterpark in Mason OH is putting its operations on hold for 2012. Company officials announced today the popular amusement would not open this upcoming season, citing low attendance, the poor economy and competition as the reasons for the shutdown. Splash Moraine near Dayton announced its closure in October 2009. Kings Island, located less than 2 miles from The Beach, is investing $10 million to double the size of its Boomerang Bay water park, renaming it Soak City.
March 6, 2012
Jolly Roger Amusement Park Adding East Coast's Only Looping Waterslide!
Jolly Roger Amusement Park's Splash Mountain Waterpark is adding a new attraction this year, the Aqua Loop, the only looping water slide on the east coast. The Aqua Loop will be the tallest water slide of Jolly Roger's current offerings.
March 2, 2012
Coney Island Cyclone Trains Will Not Be Replaced!
Riding the Coney Island Cyclone will remain as thrilling as ever - officials are dropping plans to replace the world-famous roller coaster's rickety old cars. Zamperla USA, the operator of Luna Park, has been tapped by the city Parks Department to continue operating the 85-year-old thrill ride for the next 15 years, officials confirmed yesterday. And Zamperla says it's planning to satisfy a huge concern of adventure junkies worldwide by refurbishing the cars to their former glory. The Italian-owned amusement company will also make other ride upgrades.
February 23, 2012
Kentucky Kingdom To Reopen As Bluegrass Boardwalk In 2013, Operated By Koch Family!
The Kentucky State Fair Board unanimously approved the long-term lease with Bluegrass Boardwalk, Inc. Thursday afternoon. The decision will allow the newly formed company to operate a theme park at the old Kentucky Kingdom site. The new ownership group is composed of members of the Koch family, which owns and operates Holiday World in Santa Claus, Ind. The group plans to open the park, which will be named Bluegrass Boardwalk Park on the 57 acre site beginning in May of next year. Kentucky Kingdom closed when it was abandoned by Six Flags in 2009 after the company declared bankruptcy.
February 21, 2012
Former Miracle Strip Continues Rebirth With Sea Dragon Ride!
The expansion of the amusement park continues with the opening of the Sea Dragon, a replica of the original ride that has been repainted and retooled for a new generation. The first ride at Pier Park, a painted pony carousel that operated at the original Miracle Strip, began galloping in circles once again in April 2009 after its rehabilitation. The new attraction is just the latest installment in efforts by Teddy Meeks and his wide, Jennie, to transplant many of the rides that once thrilled beach goers at the old Miracle Strip Amusement Park before it closed in 2004.
February 17, 2012
California's Great America Revives Plans For Wooden Roller Coaster!
After a decade of difficulty and uncertainty, California's Great America has dusted off plans for an oft-delayed wooden roller coaster in hopes of reversing the Santa Clara amusement park's declining fortunes. Scheduled to debut in 2013, the Great Coasters International wooden coaster would send riders whirling into a one-of-a-kind twist around the Star Tower observation deck near the park's entrance. Originally scheduled to open in 2009, the 108-foot-tall cloverleaf- shaped coaster was repeatedly delayed over noise concerns, a contentious football stadium proposal and the pending sale of the Bay Area amusement park. California's Great America has removed three coasters in the past decade, a period when the park added no new coasters.
February 16, 2012
Atlantic City Steel Pier Renovation, A Blending Of Old And New!
ATLANTIC CITY - Steel Pier, one of the Boardwalk's most storied landmarks, will become a year-round attraction as part of a $100 million makeover that will create new amusement rides and attractions. This summer will see the return of the legendary diving horse act, one of the pier's centerpieces in years past. A horse will plunge into a 12-foot tank of water from a platform 30 or 40 feet up while spectators watch from an amphitheater at the ocean end of the pier. About $20 million in pier improvements planned for this year include new amusement rides, arcade games, food and beverage outlets and party areas. In addition, new lighting, signs and a fresh paint job will spruce up Steel Pier's main entryway. Those upgrades will be followed in the next three years by a more extensive overhaul, done in three phases, that will turn the now-seasonal pier into a year-round entertainment complex.
This just in...
Atlantic City Steel Pier Drops Plan For Diving Horse's Return!
The Diving Horse has finally been put out to pasture for good. The owner of Atlantic City's Steel Pier says he's dropping a plan to bring back the legendary attraction, which featured a horse and a rider plunging into a 12-foot-deep water tank from a platform 40 feet in the air, after animal-welfare activists lodged fierce criticism. The act ran on the pier from the 1920s to the 1970s.
February 2, 2012
Ghost Town In The Sky May Soon Have New Owner!
After years of false starts, Ghost Town in the Sky may spring back to life after all. Alaska Presley is going through the steps needed to buy the beleaguered amusement park, and she has big dreams of returning it to its former glory - and beyond.
January 31, 2012
Blue Diamond Roller Coaster Being Relocated To Daytona Beach!
Delaware's eye-catching 1,700-foot steel roller coaster, a defining feature of the sprawling former Blue Diamond Park near New Castle for the past several years, is being dismantled this week, packed up and hauled off to Florida. The amusement ride is expected to rise again by summer at the Daytona Beach Boardwalk at Daytona Lagoon.
January 30, 2012
Historic Galveston Amusement Pier To Rise Again!
Tilman Fertitta, who built a fortune with a showman's flair, is resurrecting one of Galveston's most iconic tourist attractions - the Pleasure Pier. The $60 million project will put a roller coaster and Ferris wheel over the Gulf of Mexico and is expected to encourage visitors to extend their trips to the island.
Read more from The Houston Chronicle - includes current and historic photos
January 17, 2012
Holiday World Owners May Seek Rights To Operate Kentucky Kingdom!
The owners of Holiday World & Splashin' Safari in Southern Indiana said Monday they may seek rights to operate Kentucky Kingdom, the Kentucky Exposition Center amusement park that has been idle for more than two years. Kentucky Kingdom has remained closed since the former operator, Six Flags, announced two years ago that it was abandoning the park amid a bankruptcy filing.
January 16, 2012
Fun Spot Chooses Contractors To Build $20 Million Expansion In Orlando!
The amusement park will be renamed Fun Spot America, with thematic elements drawn from various aspects of American culture. The 15-acre expansion is to include four water rides, a wooden roller coaster, a steel family-style roller coaster, a new go-kart track, a new SkyCoaster, and numerous other rides.
January 11, 2012
Kings Island "Ghost Hunters" Episode To Air On SyFy Channel!
Kings Island spokesman Don Helbig says Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson spent the week of Nov. 14 at Kings Island investigating sightings of a "little girl in a blue dress" reported over the years by visitors, employees and security. Helbig said he heard about the "little girl in the blue dress" when he was a season pass holder in the 1980s, and invited "Ghost Hunters" here to look into the reports. The "Roller Ghoster" episode airs on NBC's SyFy Channel at 9 a.m. Sunday.
A Tour of Parks Lost Since 2000
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