Wednesday, October 31, 2007

More Voodoo Parts Arrive

Myrtlebeachbum (Ron) took some photos of some new Voodoo parts that have arrived in Dorney Park's parking lot from Ohio.

Click here to go to see all the photos on his Flickr account.

Some Hard Rock Park Updates

© Janet Blackmon Morgan / The Sun News

Last week Hard Rock Park lifted their Statue of Liberty status into place at their new Hard Rock Arena. She's 20 feet tall and will be holding a Zippo lighter in her hand.

The park also announced today that their big secret dark ride will be called Nights in White Satin: The Trip, themed to the music of the Moody Blues. Little other info was released so I've yet to form an opinion on this one.

Tomorrow we'll know more when the park's new website goes live. There's supposed to be tons of detail, it should be cool!

P.S. - Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Valleyfair!'s Wild Thing Press Folder

I decided that since I have them all, it'd be nice of me to post the three press kits from the announcements of the late 90s Cedar Fair hyper coasters. Yes, that would be Wild Thing, Steel Force, and Mamba.

Starting with the first Morgan ride, here's Valleyfair!'s Wild Thing - the unedited press release with associated images.

Valleyfair Announces Capital Expansion For the 1996 Season

Shakopee, MN - Valleyfair Family Amusement Park announced today that it will build a $9.5 million roller coaster to open in May of 1996. The coaster is the main focus of a $10.0 million capital expansion planned for the park next year.

The new steel roller coaster, Wild Thing, will be the largest project the park has ever undertaken, representing a capital expenditure of 1-1/2 times the original investment to build the park 20 years ago.

Designed by Morgan Manufacturing of California, Wild Thing will offer guests one of the longest and wildest rides in the world. With a track stretching over one mile in length, Wild Thing will reach speeds up to 74 mph during its three minute ride.

"Wild Thing offers everything you could want in a roller coaster. It's non-stop excitement with its unpredictable layout, tunnels, excellent pacing, high speeds, hills and steep drops," stated Randy Geisler, associate editor of At-The-Park magazine and past president of ACE (American Coaster Enthusiasts). "There's something happening every inch of this ride!"

The world-class roller coaster promises to deliver thrill after thrill throughout the entire ride. Located on the south side of the park, the track will be 5460 feet long. The coaster will go out along a straight line with a series of hills, the first one towering over 200 feet in the air. It banks into two seeping "S" curves traveling over the go-kart track at Challenge Park to near the main park entrance, before completing a 360 degree spiral. The return stretch features a number of smaller hills with covered tunnels. The ride also features a "weightless" zone at the crest of the second hill which is the longest low gravity section of any coaster in the world. Three trains, carrying 36 passengers each, give the coaster a ride capacity of 1700 guests per hour.

The term "hyper" coaster has been used by At-The-Park magazine editor, Allen Ambrosini, to describe coasters of this magnitude. Wild Thing joins an elite club, in which only four other coasters in the world are members.

According to Walt Wittmer, Valleyfair's general manager, "This world-class attraction reflects our commitment to our guests to provide the finest, most exciting rides available. It also reinforces Valleyfair's image as a major player in the theme park entertainment industry.

Valleyfair is owned and operated by Cedar Fair, L.P. which also owns Cedar point in Sandusky, Ohio, Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom in Allentwon, Pennsylvania, and Worlds of Fun & Oceans of Fun in Kansas City, Missouri.

Great America's Firefall

Reader RJ was kind enough to send us this picture of California's Great America's new Top Spin, Firefall.

As you can see, it's Geauga Lake's former Top Spin, Texas Tornado. At least that new paint job they gave it won't go to waste...

Thanks RJ!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Behemoth = Impressive

© Sportacus

User Sportacus at CWMania has some recent pictures of Behemoth at Canada's Wonderland - and it's looking quite impressive.

I'm still loving the Talon paint job, and talk about changing a park's skyline. It's like back in the Wild Thing/Steel Force/Mamba days. Cool!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

DCA's Superstar Limo + Monsters Inc.

With such massive expansion plans now public, let's look back at one of the many early failures at Disney's California Adventure: Superstar Limo and the park's eventual fix for the ride, Monster's Inc.

Here is Superstar Limo:

And here is Monsters Inc: Mike and Sulley to the Rescue:

I'd say it's quite an improvement.

Dorney Park 2007 Closing Weekend Update

Stopped by the park on Saturday the 27th to visit the park for the last time of the 2007 season. I wanted to visit the park at night one last time, so there aren't really any good Voodoo pics.

First, a question. The above picture (sorry so dark) is of a Vulture thing that's on the rocks behind the Cedar Freak Cannonball station. Does anyone know where it's from? Perhaps it was bought for Halloweekends, but something tells me it's a recycled prop. Anyone know?

The park had a nice crowd on Saturday night. The line for Scream Works started way back in the middle of the photo above.

Night time Voodoo shots! Really though, very little was different anyway. They started to take down the green stuff on the fence by the entrance road and it looked like they cleared out a little more dirt where the Zephyr tracks were.

Similar view. Looks like we won't get to see a lot of the construction, I will of course take some pics from outside the park once steel goes up.

I also took some time last night to get some night photos. I like the way this photo of the entrance to the Fright Zone turned out. I kinda tried to make the big version sized like a desktop - not that I think it's that awesome but it could be cool I suppose.

The Dominator sign looks trippy. I just realized that hardly anyone is mentioning where the former Geauga Lake, soon to be Kings Dominion ride got its name from. Credit where it's due!

Another one from the other side. I didn't make this one big because my camera put and ugly line or two though it. I'll be replacing the camera this off season for sure, I'm sick of my current one.

Let's end with a picture of yellow glowing Dominator.

That's it for me!

By the by, if anyone ever wants any larger images of any that I've had this season just e-mail me, I'll gladly send them.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Noah's Ark 4-D Dive In Theater

I had no idea this opened this past summer until In Park Magazine had an article about it in their current issue. (Very good magazine, btw)

Noah's Ark - a massive water park in the Wisconsin Dells, opened a new 4-D theater at their water park this summer.

Being a water park, the theater was aptly named Noah's 4-D Dive In Theater, and is currently showing the Spongebob Squarepants movie that can be seen at many amusement and theme parks.

There's a catch though. Noah's Arc was not happy to just add a building and show the show with it's traditional 4-D effects, no, they decided to take it up a notch.

This desire led to them adding 9 different special effects in the theater to entertain guests. The $2 million investment needed to represent it's location in a water park, so some changes were made to the normal effects.
Many 4-D theaters use water effects to entertain guests, Noah's Arc took the opportunity to try to soak their guests. In addition to the seat sprays, and over head mist effects, both of which were increased in use, Noah's decided to actually add two gigantic water bombs in the front of the theater.

Other effects, such as wind, bubbles, and lightning are also used to create the 4-D theater.

Noah's Ark has really been on the cutting edge of showing that 'non-traditional' rides can work in a water park. For instance, they have a Chute-the-Chutes, and a themed attraction - Noah's Incredible Adventure - A Vekoma Mad House.

The 4-D theater sounds like another hit for the property. It pumps though 700 guests an hour while showing the 12 minute film.

For more information you can check out Noah's Arc's page for the ride.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Disney's Hollywood Studios Article

Reader Randy was nice enough to forward me an article about Disney's Hollywood Studios, which was published by the Orlando Sentinel in one of their tourism blogs.

Shedding more light on the choice of logo, the article says, "The logo replaces the MGM lion logo that has graced Disney-MGM Studios since it opened in 1989. "Mickey still plays a prominent role for us," said Studios vice president Michael O'Grattan, "and Hollywood now truly is our middle name."

Above is a picture, © the Orlando Sentinel, showing the current construction status of Toy Story Mania, new next year at the park.

Let's hope for more announcements in the near future!

Disney's Hollywood Studios Logo

Not bad, not bad.

Sorta a mix between old style lettering in the former logo and name and an updated version through a modern yet classic color choice.

There's something off with Mickey though... can't put my finger on it.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Dollywood's Splash Country 2008

Miss Dolly has announced her new addition to Dollywood's Splash Country water park for 2008 - SwiftWater Run.

The $1 Million investment will be a tubing bowl slide, popular at many water parks these days. Dolly says that more details won't be available until May, though.

I'm sure it's a Proslide and I'm sure it'll be fun.

Here's the release.

That's Not Dominator!

Take notice of the photo that is on this page:


California's Great America 2008 + 2009

Great America announced today that they are changing their name to California's Great America starting in 2008. Cedar Fair will spend $14 million on the property over the next two years.

They also announced Firefall and a new Ice Skating show for 2008.

Firefall will be made by Huss, and while not mentioned in the press release, sounds like it is indeed the Top Spin from Geauga Lake. Surprisingly, Firefall will feature fire and water effects, a very non-Cedar Fair move if I must say. I suppose they still had Kings Dominions Firefall's plans laying around.

The park will also stay open until 10 pm most days next summer.

The big news is the park's early announcement of their 2009 addition. They're adding a Great Coasters International wooden coaster. Standing 104 ft. tall and going 52 m.p.h., the ride sounds pretty similar to Renegade - which is awesome.

I'd like to take a moment to point out that I actually let it slip that this coaster was on the way in this post. You're all welcome!

Anyway, I have a feeling this two year announcement is the next step in Cedar Fair's plan regarding that 49ers stadium. We'll see.

Official press release.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More Nick Universe Photos

User cwsr has a gallery up on WebShots of the construction going on at Nick Universe at the Mall of America, too.

Their photos include some of new ads that have gone up around the park that features some concept art for new rides. Like this:

of Avatar Air Bender, which is said to be an Intamin Half Pipe ride.

And this:
Spongebob Squarepants Rock Bottom Plunge - a Gerstlauer EuroFighter roller coaster.

You can see all the pictures from cwsr on WebShots.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Interesting Renegade Pictures

One of our readers, Chris, sent me some cool views of Renegade at Valleyfair!.

Talk about beautiful, huh?

It looks like it's just sitting out on the side of some woods in a field. The angle of these shots is pretty neat.

Thanks again to Chris for sending the pics.

If you have something to share e-mail me!

Kings Dominion Announces Dominator

Today Kings Dominion announced Dominator, their new for 2008 roller coaster.

I'd have added a spiffy graphic or two when covering this, but Kings Dominion went ghetto style and put out a press release and that's it. Perhaps this was a rushed announcement to help season pass sales?

At this point I guess I'm glad that Voodoo got a new name. With Thunderhawk and Dominator being moved without name changes, and Thunderhawk not even getting painted, Voodoo seems to be coming out on top of the heap.

Anyway, you can read the semi-short and not super detailed press release on Kings Dominions' website.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Hong Kong Disneyland Halloween = Cool

What a cool commercial, eh?

TDL Fan has some great pictures of the event as well.

Nick Universe Construction Update

The transformation of the former Camp Snoopy theme park at the Mall of America into Nickelodeon Universe is moving right along.

Valleyfair Zone has some construction pictures up that are worth a peek. They've already started footers for several of the new attractions, such as the Gerstlauer Eurofighter roller coaster.

The Biggest X-Mas Tree in the World!

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom just put out a press release that details their plans to have the "biggest Christmas Tree in the world" this holiday season.

Seriously, they're saying that the tree will stand 125' tall. That's pretty insane for a Christmas tree.

Last year we got a 10 footer and thought it wouldn't fit in the living room!

You can read about the park's plans for Christmas craziness yourself here.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

California's Great America

Theme Park Village has a photo update from California's Great America - yes, that appears to be their new name.

I believe ScreamScape published that before but it sounded wacky to me. Like that many people confuse it with the Six Flags' Great America?

I still think pushing Knott's as a brand and using Knott's Great America would have been better but I'm sure they have their reasons. Like in case they bullzone it. Ha.

Theme Park Village also has lots of photos of some Halloween decorations and of the park's Carnevil haunted house - even though their Haunt event won't officially start until next year.

Check it out!

Dorney Park 10.20.07 Update

Here are some pictures from October 20th, 2007. There's not much happening as far as Voodoo construction, so there are some general park photos as well.

Voodoo construction site. Not much different here.

Closer view.

One more. I also noticed that almost all of the construction vehicles are gone from the site now.

There were no new track pieces so there's no new pictures of that either.

The Ghoul Bus is back as well. It has some cute characters on it this year. Does anyone else think that this part of the park would be perfect for a 2nd scare zone?

Thunder Creek Mountain is already having its winter maintenance performed. The lift has its belts removed and there is some scaffolding up at the top of the lift.

Same with White Water Landing. The very bottom piece of the drop has been removed.

I didn't notice this before, but I thought it was cool that they put a pink and blue coffin on Coasters to match the cars out front.

That's it for this week - next week is the last weekend of the season!

Don't forget to vote for NewsPlusNotes in the 2007 Coaster Web Poll.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Undated Knott's Berry Farm Brochure

I'm not sure what year this is from, but if I had to take a guess I'd say early nineties. Boomerang is in one of the photos, and that was added in 1990.

There's the Sky Jump on the Sky Cabin tower with a cool looking paint job.

Lots of nice shots of the park's attractions. Notice the emphasis not on steel rides, but on other attractions and such.

If anyone knows the years of this let me know!

Zoombezi Bay Construction Update

One of our readers, Nick, was nice enough to send a couple of pictures of the construction going on at Zambezi Bay water park that's being built at the Columbus Zoo for next summer.

As you can see the area is pretty torn up. There's some buildings going up though, and you can see a lot of poured concrete in the middle there.

Now that's a slide tower! Looks like fun, eh? That looks rather tall as well.

You can see more of Nick's pictures by following this link.

Thanks again to Nick, and remember if you have something to contribute feel free!

More on Disney's California Adventure

© O.C. Register 2007

Now that a day has passed since the announcement, there's lots more goodies online to peek at regarding the expansion of Disney's California Adventure theme park.

Above is a good graphic from the O.C. Register that shows where the expansions are taking place.

Here is a link to a post on the MiceChat boards that has a tons of screen caps from the video that was on Disneyland cast member TV. It's like a gold mine of concept art.

The new entry plaza looks amazing, and I'm really excited for the Little Mermaid ride - a 'traditional' dark ride will serve the park very well.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Vote for NewsPlusNotes!

Coasterdom is running the 2007 Coaster Web Awards, and NewsPlusNotes has been nominated for "Best Blog."

If you feel similarly, or don't, please head on over to their site to vote in the poll. There's a lot of good categories to express your opinion in regardless.

Here's a direct link to the voting. Many thanks!

Disney's California Adventure Expansion

So today Disney officially announced their $1.1 Billion 'extreme makeover' for their California Adventure theme park next to Disneyland in California.

Here's a break down of what is new, some Disney's concept art for each. All images are © Disney.

Cars Land

The expansion will culminate with an entirely new, 12-acre addition: Cars Land, immersing guests into a world inspired by the hit Disney/Pixar movie, Cars, playing to America's love affair with automobiles.

Radiator Springs Racers, a major "E-ticket" attraction, places guests right in the middle of the amazingly detailed, dimensional Cars world of Mater, Lightning McQueen, Doc and Sally. Guests get a quick race briefing from Doc and Lightning, and suddenly find themselves in the midst of a race around hairpin turns and steep banks.

Cars Land increases capacity to the park with two additional immersive family rides, featuring Luigi and Mater from the movie. Cars Land represents an unprecedented level of collaboration between Pixar Animation Studios and Disney Imagineering to create this extensive new area. The new land will substantially extend the total area of Disney's California Adventure park.

Paradise Pier

Paradise Pier will host major new attractions beginning next summer with the opening of Toy Story Mania!, a ride-through, interactive adventure where Guests ride into a high-energy 4-D carnival midway hosted by Toy Story characters. Woody, Jessie, Buzz, Hamm and the gang come to life in amazing ways, immersing guests in the rich stories of the Pixar blockbuster Toy Story films.

A major ride based on Disney's classic The Little Mermaid comes to the park's Paradise Pier with leading-edge animation and special effects. Guests will dive into the magnificent scenes and magical songs from the movie. A Mermaid Grotto area with a fountain and sand castle will offer new play experiences for children.

Unique Nighttime Spectacular

The dramatic and unique Disney's World of Color will bring new nighttime excitement to Paradise Pier. This nightly panorama of spectacular water effects, colorful lighting and music will bring Disney animation to life with an entirely new creative and technical approach. The 9,000 person viewing area offers prime waterside viewing of the show - and provides a site for live entertainment, music festivals, and outdoor film premieres.

Entry Plaza and Gateway

The totally new gateway to Disney's California Adventure welcomes guests into an immersive world of historic California streets as Walt experienced them as a young artist arriving with big dreams.

A new visual icon in the tradition of Los Angeles, California's great entertainment palaces will draw guests into the heart of the attractions. This new facility, which was inspired by Los Angeles' historic Carthay Circle Theatre that premiered Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937, will house a next generation Walt Disney Story featuring an interactive tribute to Walt's California experiences, and his entertainment legacy that continues world-wide today. Red Car trolleys reminiscent of the old Pacific Electric Railway will travel up and down the main street. New dining and shopping experiences and a slate of unique, live entertainment will bring energy to the Walt Disney Plaza.

Hollywood Pictures Backlot

Hollywood Pictures Backlot will be a new home for a slate of special ticketed events and chances to hear first hand from innovative directors, writers and animators. An update of the popular family show "Playhouse Disney" will provide an experience for younger children.

Golden State

The "Golden State" area of the park will see the addition of numerous new dining opportunities tied to the incredible bounty of California's farmland and its rich ethnically diverse food heritage. Food and wine festivals that celebrate the seasons, tastes and cultures of the dynamic communities of the Golden State will entertain guests, bringing unique one-of-a-kind experiences.

Preview Center

A Preview Center located on San Francisco Street in the Golden State region of the park will feature models, Imagineering concepts - giving park guests a sneak peek at the excitement that lies ahead. The Preview Center is scheduled to open in late 2008.