Funtown Pier News February 2015

Funtown Pier recently proposed initial plans for the rebuilding of the amusement park and pier at a Seaside Park, NJ planning board meeting. Along with the plans were a request for an ordinance to increase height restrictions.

The ordinance request is to increase height restrictions for portions of the pier up to 300 feet. Currently, Seaside Park has restrictions of 50 feet. The initial plans illustrate several thrill rides and kiddie rides. Among the major rides in the plans are a 195 foot Sky Coaster, Space Shot, Zip Line, Turbo Force, Giant Wheel, Vertical Swing, Musik Express, and a Moto(?) Coaster.

The plans are getting mixed reviews by residents and businesses; some saying that rides are needed to sustain their business while residents aren’t so enthused about the screams, music, and mechanical sounds that they would generate.

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These are just initial plans, nothing set in stone, more like an idea of what could be done if the ordinances were allowed to go through. I think that a vertical swing type of ride (this, for those unfamiliar) would be an awesome addition to a pier park. The plans also seem to have “Moto Coaster” on them, suggesting a Zamperla launched coaster similar to what Darien Lake has. Finally, Turbo Force is a Zamperla version of Casino Pier’s Skyscraper.

By the looks of things, I doubt we’ll see anything significant until 2016.

Much more information, and a photo of the plans, can be found at the Asbury Park Press.

5 Roller Coasters That I Wish I Had Ridden

It’s February. In my parts, we’re a little over halfway through the off season, with my home park, Six Flags Great Adventure, opening on April 3rd. During off seasons in any interest, strange questions begin to arise. Like in baseball, you’ll start to see forum posts like “which team and year had the best jerseys,” or “what if an entire team died in a plane crash.” Similar random topics arise in theme park off seasons amidst construction updates: “El Diablo: coaster or not,” “Top Thrill Dragster vs Kingda Ka Debate Thread #48,” and “What past coasters do you wish you had ridden?”

Well, that last one sounds like a fun one. Here’s my list of five that I’ve always wanted to ride.

5. Crystal Beach Cyclone

May as well get this one out of the way first as it’s probably the most predictable of the lot. I mean, is there there any coaster fan that wouldn’t have this one on their list? Crystal Beach Cyclone is one of the most infamous coasters in history. The ride looked more like a wooden version of a portable Scwharzkopf coaster rather than a woodie built in 1926. Its designer, Harry Traver, actually designed two other coasters similar to CBC: Lightning in Revere Beach, MA and Cyclone at Palasades Park, a defunct park that was just a stones throw away in Fort Lee, NJ.

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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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