Saturday, July 21, 2018

Announcement Date Set for Canada's Wonderland's New For 2019 Coaster

Speculation about the details of the roller coaster Canada's Wonderland is building for 2019 has been intense since the park opened this year with a brand new tunnel (with coaster track installed!) already in place for the project.

As the summer has progressed many new clues have been discovered about the ride, but the park has remained fairly quiet on the subject.  But now, according to the above tweet from the park's VP of Marketing & Sales, all will be revealed on August 15th.  That leaves us with just over three weeks until we get all the details on the project!

© Canada's Wonderland
The announcement date reveal is also on the park's website homepage as well, allowing us a closer look.  Not much else to be found here, other than it's clearly the surface of a rock with the text carved into it.
The teasing for the new coaster, expected to be one of the largest built next year, has spread to other Cedar Fair parks.  Above is a tweet showing a poster that has been displayed at Cedar Point, which by all accounts appears to be giving clues for Canada's Wonderland's new ride.

According to the graphic, the Cedar Creek Mining Company is moving up North with some new operations, and several of the chain's coaster's are featured by name.  The bottom has some curious numbers, including 17, a connection to Canada's Wonderland as the new ride will be their 17th coaster.  There is also 3,215 ft - track length? - 137 MCBR - height of the mid-course brakes? - and 3,501' - ehhh track length again?  A bit puzzling but pretty awesome to see the folks at Cedar Fair sending out clues for other parks like this!

Also, this coming week will be very quiet on NPN as we will be taking a much needed vacation.  Keep tabs on us on Twitter to see where we are headed!

Thursday, July 19, 2018

New Steelers Themed Area + Massive "Steel Curtain" Roller Coaster Opening at Kennywood in 2019

© Kennywood
Today was Kennywood's highly anticipated announcement of the amusement park's 2019 plans, and not only did the park reveal a massive new steel roller coaster, but also a brand new section of the park themed to the Pittsburgh Steelers football franchise.

Kennywood and the Steelers have teamed up to create a one-of-a-kind area that is "unprecedented in both the sports and amusement worlds."  Known as Steelers Country, the area will bring to life the feeling of game day, complete with "exclusive merchandise, skill games and food locations including a themed tailgating experience."

© Kennywood
“Being the first park to collaborate with a professional sports franchise on not only a themed area, but also a pulse-pounding, high-flying roller coaster is a great honor that fits in with Kennywood’s longstanding tradition of innovation,” said Kennywood General Manager Jerome Gibas. “For that franchise to be our hometown Steelers, the most successful team in America’s most popular sport, it’s a sure touchdown!”

© Kennywood
Steelers Country will reside on the land that was formerly home to the park's log flume, Log Jammer, and make full use of the space.  It will be the perfect location for Steelers fans, featuring several different activities, games and more - including the Steelers Experience, seen above.  This area is described as a "one-of-a-kind indoor, multi-level training facility that puts you on the field and in the center of the action."

© Kennywood
The Steelers Experience will feature interactive attractions such as the Terrible Tower, seen above, a 40 yard dash and a competitive 2-minute drill.  Other activities include perfecting touchdown dances, and following live games on the area's giant video screen.  Steelers Country will also feature plenty of new Steelers themed midway games, along with the End Zone Cafe, an indoor restaurant, and the Tailgate Patio which mimics the experience of tailgating at the Steelers stadium.

© Kennywood
Anchoring the new area is a massive, unique and in many ways unprecedented roller coaster named The Steel Curtain... which refers to the Steelers directly in its name.  Designed by S&S Worldwide, Steel Curtain will stand 220 feet tall, making it the tallest roller coaster in Pennsylvania.

© Kennywood
The coaster will feature bright yellow supports with black track, Steelers colors, naturally.  Just take a look at this art featuring the entire ride layout and let it sink in... we haven't seen many rides quite this unique or massive go up in the United States in recent years.

After the 220 foot tall lift hill, which is at a steep 50 degrees, there is a small dip before a corkscrew element that takes place 197 feet in the air - a world record for highest inversion.  The trains then continue to roll and face back toward the lift and drop the rest of the way toward the ground.

© Kennywood
The trains hit the top speed of 75 miles per hour and take a high banked curve to the left before climbing into this element, which is like a cobra roll but only gigantic and keeps trains more horizontal to the ground mid-element than a traditional cobra roll.

Flying back across the layout the trains swoops up and into an elevated pair of corkscrews, or also kind of a high-exit Immelmann and dive loop put together - think of the first element on a Vekoma SLC as an example.

© Kennywood
Next the train leaves the Steelers Country area and does a large air-time hill over the park's midway, then climbs up into a twist-and-dive element located directly over the park's central lagoon.  The trains cross back over the midway via a 180 degree stall element tucked under the air-time hill.

© Kennywood
After another air-time hill, there is an extended corkscrew that leads into a downward into a ground hugging helix, with one more cutback/stall element left before a hop up onto the final brakes.

Steel Curtain will feature 9 inversions, which is the most on any coaster in the United States, and the 2 minute long ride will cover 4,000 feet of track.  The trains will feature 24 riders at a time.

I'm fairly sure that my descriptions still leave a lot of the imagination as to Steel Curtain's layout, so thankfully the park released this point of view animation to clear up any lingering questions you have.

© Kennywood
Congratulations to Kennywood on announcing such a massive project, this coaster alone would be a massive investment for the park, let alone a new themed area too!  I can't wait to see this coaster go up!  Be sure to check out Kennywood's page for the expansion here for more photos and information.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

SeaWorld Orlando Shares New Images of Infinity Falls' Lift Theming Progress

© SeaWorld Orlando
SeaWorld Orlando has sent out new photos of the dramatic lift theming that has been installed on Infinity Falls, which is set to open this summer at the theme park.  As construction of the ride nears completion, the park installed the tallest piece of the 67 foot structure which surrounds the ride's vertical lift hill.

Rafters on Infinity Falls will head up the lift, which will also contain a roaring waterfall, and then plunge down a 40 foot drop.  SeaWorld Orlando says that the ride's lift is capable of bringing the rafts to the top of the drop in just 5 seconds.

© SeaWorld Orlando
The dramatic blue and gray tower design hides the mechanics of the ride's lift and is described as "blending modern architecture with ancient ruins."  Weighing in at 41 tons, the tower was made of 10 segments that were carefully lifted into place over the course of five nights (with work only occurring after the park had closed for the day).

Infinity Falls will "bring the thrill of white-water rafting into a new experience the family can enjoy together. Aboard the rides 8-passenger circular rafts, riders will embark on an adventure through a lush rainforest environment inspired by some of the world’s most incredible freshwater ecosystems. The new attraction will feature dynamic drops and turns, interactive water elements, and allow visitors to experience the feel of exhilarating rapids."

No opening date of Infinity Falls has been released just yet, but the park is clearly near the end of the ride's construction, with theming and landscaping already in place.

Until the ride opens, here is a new time lapse video of the tower's completion:

Monday, July 16, 2018

Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord Opens Splashwater Island Play Area

© Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord
One of the most recent water parks to join the Six Flags family, Hurricane Harbor Concord has opened a massive new water play structure named Splashwater Island.  Serving the market around Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, the water park embarked on its largest expansion in more than a decade with the addition of Splashwater Island.

The new attraction officially opened on July 6th, with families eager to explore the giant structure's many interactive features.

© Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord
The new attraction is tropically themed, as seen in the various thematic elements present in the photo above.  The structure has giant fish, gulls, surf boards and even faux palm trees lining the various towers.  The theming matches the new decor that has been added to the park as part of its transformation in to Hurricane Harbor.

“As a world-renowned leader in thrills and innovation, Six Flags has taken this park to the next level with the new Splashwater Island,” said Park President, Don McCoy. “Our guest experience is greatly enhanced by all the new improvements, brightly painted waterslides, and fun, whimsical theming we’ve added all around the park.”

© Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord
One of the most popular features of Splashwater Island is a giant tipping bucket that is perched on the top of attraction.  Once filled it slowly tips, dumping an immense amount of water onto the ground below, seen in the above publicity photo.  The various levels of Splashwater Island feature more than 100 different interactive water play features, including sprayers, net climbs, spouting geysers, fountains, jets and waterfalls.  Located on various parts of the attraction are a total of nine open air and enclosed water slides, which together offer 600 feet of sliding fun.

For more on the new attraction at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord, click here.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Granny's Cooking Up a Big Secret Recipe for Carowinds' 2019 Attraction

The Carowinds 2019 teasers are continuing to be shared by the theme park not only on construction fences, but also on social media as well.  The park is keeping up with curious fans who want to know more about their big 2019 project, which still remains (officially) a mystery.  The latest teaser is part of a weekly reveal that appears to be giving more information on the ride, which is very heavily believed to be a new roller coaster.

© Carowinds
This is the information released on the first week.  Before we look at that though, take notice of the words used in the Tweet above - roll, launch, maneuvers - all elements found on a roller coaster.  Also, "packs a bite!" could fit in with the rumored snake theme.

The first two items on Granny's Secret Recipe are a cooking time of 2 minutes and 24 seconds, which seems like a pretty obvious ride time.  Then we also have serves 16 people, which I take to mean that the coaster's trains will each have 16 people.  Not a lot of roller coasters have trains that seat 16 people as that is a bit lower than average, unless there are many trains on the course at one time.  Time Traveler at Silver Dollar City is one recent example, and Icon at Blackpool Pleasure Beach is another.

One other sign that the park posted on their construction wall can be seen above, which contains several amusing items.  For one, the logo background is the same that was used on both Mean Streak at Cedar Point and Detonator at Worlds of Fun.  But the funniest part is the use of Centurion, which was used by the park as the fake name for Fury 325 right up until the day of the official announcement.  Very clever, Carowinds!

Saturday, July 14, 2018

CraZanity - World's Tallest Pendulum Ride - Now Open at Six Flags Magic Mountain

Standing an amazing 170 feet tall, which is taller than the majority of roller coasters out there, Six Flags Magic Mountain's new thrill ride, CraZanity, is now open to visitors.  A ride of this magnitude is sure to draw thrill seekers to the park, which also offers a plethora of roller coasters as well.

© Six Flags Magic Mountain
“Six Flags is known world-wide for the biggest and best thrills bar none and the record-breaking CraZanity ride delivers a crazy, high adrenaline experience very different from anything else we have in our unparalleled thrill ride arsenal,” said Park President, Neal Thurman.

CraZanity is a pendulum style ride, where 40 riders sit along a giant ring-shaped gondola at the base of the ride - facing outward with their feet dangling.  The gondola then starts to swing left and right as it spins, gaining momentum and reaching higher and higher.  Eventually the ride is swinging up to 170 feet in the air at 75 miles per hour!

© Six Flags Magic Mountain
CraZanity also features a brilliant light package for when the sun goes down, seen above.  It is the main focus of a renovated Boardwalk themed area within Six Flags Magic Mountain.  The area also includes all new shopping, games and dining along with refreshed attractions such as the popular bumper cars.