News: January 2015 Edition

Looping Dragon El Diablo

El Diablo - Six Flags Great Adventure

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Parts have arrived on-site for Six Flags Great Adventure’s 2015 addition but the park seems to have retconned the theme in favor of the name El Diablo. The new name seems to allude to that it will be placed in Plaza del Carnival rather than Golden Kingdom.

I think it’s a better name. Looping Dragon was pretty generic sounding as well as out of place since there are no dragons in Golden Kingdom, Plaza del Carnival, or anywhere in the park. The name can also be seen as a call out to the Jersey Devil lore that our great of New Jersey state has. It would have been nice to save that name for a coaster though…oh, that’s right, El Diablo is still being referred to as a roller coaster!

The name change has flared up some conversation/wishing that something might be added to Golden Kingdom. After all, there’s a lot of land where Rolling Thunder used to be, and I believe that the Safari portion directly behind it isn’t in use anymore (unsure about that, however.)

Of course, some people are still moaning about the addition of this “carnival ride,” some going so far as to e-mail the park with their 2-cents. El O El

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5 Crazy Rides from Eastern Europe

Crazy Russian RidesBeing a fan of amusement parks and carnivals, I’ll surf YouTube from time to time obsessively looking for ride videos. This is especially so during the off season…so, like, now! It always happens like this: I look up some random flatride, I click a related video after watching the first one, this leads to some weird ride videos from South America, which then leads to a bunch of related ride videos with Cyrillic titles. I click, and click, and go deeper down the rabbit hole.

Eventually I’ll find enough videos to say “hell, I can make an article out of this!” So, here we go, I’ve collected 5 of the coolest, sketchiest, and craziest rides from Russia, Ukraine, and other countries of Eastern Europe.

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Best Ride Experience of 2014

Zumanjaro - Six Flags Great Adventure2014 was a pretty good year for me in themeparkdom. I’m not really one to travel somewhere just to ride a new ride, but the fact that two major openings happened at nearby parks meant that I managed to hop on two new rides: Luna Park’s Thunderbolt and Zumanjaro at Six Flags Great Adventure. I call that a win for me!

While I wouldn’t necessarily say that riding a brand new ride would automatically put them into contention for the “best ride experience” of a particular year, it turns out that my best ride experiences of 2014 came on the two new rides I rode this 2014 season. I can’t decide which one I liked more, so let’s just do both!

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Ride Review: Thunderbolt – Coney Island

Thunderbolt Coney IslandLet’s go back…way back…all the way to 1925. That was the year that a wild and wooly roller coaster sensation called the Thunderbolt opened! This ride was the real McCoy, designed by the seasoned thrill ride veteran John Miller. It was built solid with a state of the art steel structure! Steel! The ride occupied a space on the west side of W 15th street and butted up against the boardwalk. The ol’ Kensington Hotel formerly operated on the property. Was it knocked down? Get outta’ town! It was left in place and the coaster was built around it! As George Moran, the owner of the property, said “You don’t tear down buildings in Coney Island if you can help it.”

2000. Thunderbolt, after sitting abandoned since 1983, was demolished by the city in a move that was later deemed illegal by federal courts. So much for Moran’s words of wisdom.

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News! November 2014 Edition

Skyscraper at SkyplexHey, it’s the off season, and there isn’t a thing to talk about that most amusement parks fans don’t already know about. Like really, “did you know Carowinds is building this ride called Fury 325? Wow!” Even reporting about Dorney Park’s 2015 addition, Cedar Creek Flyers (flying scooters) is old news by now. Funny enough, some park fans are lauding Dorney Park for their addition of a “carnival ride,” while still groveling over Great Adventure’s Looping Dragon addition for 2015. Oh, that’s rich!

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