Dolly Parton visited her home park today to show off the new addition, Barnstormer. Dressed in the latest from “Frederick’s of Dollywood,” she reminisced back to earlier days when her mother’s people were farmers. The new area is themed after the Owens Farm. Back in the day area farms with large pastures hosted impromptu air shows where biplanes would land, perform stunts, and give rides.
Dolly sang some songs and publicly thanked her Uncle Bill Owens, who first took her around to singing events with him.
Dolly also took some questions from the media. When asked whether she was prouder of the success of Dollywood giving an economic boost to the region or her Imagination Library providing free book to young children, Dolly replied, “I'm proud of everything we can do to help people. We have raised lots of money for good causes. We recently shipped our 30 millionth book through the Imagination Library. You can never provide too many books to children.”
Riders on Barnstormer reach speeds of 45 mph, comparable to the old biplanes swinging back and forth through a partially destroyed barn, as barnstormer once flew their planes through barns during those impromptu air shows. Riders must be 48 inches tall and Barnstormer handles 32 per ride cycle.
On the downswing, the riders feel about 4 gs before rising back above the 81 foot high centerline of the ride. So how do they power this contraption? For that information we turned the maintenance department. They gave us a peek at the power system.
Two 300 horsepower air compressors provide all the energy needed using clean pure air pumped up to 95 PSI. They told us the system uses more high volume instead of high pressure. A modulation valve slows the electric motors speed as the pressure rises allowing the whole system to be more energy efficient. They also talked about how pleased they were with how well designed and built the system is. The ride package is by S & S Power Systems. A nice feature is the air dryer which keeps the compressors running at maximum efficiency keeping the new ride as green as possible.
But the only way to experience the thrill is to ride it for yourself. Dolly says “I’m not getting on it no matter what you say. If it is a great ride I will just have to take your word for it. I won’t ride it because I lose stuff.” In conclusion, all we can say is don’t be a Dolly, be a daredevil instead. See you in line.