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New ride drops into Dollywood for Year of the Family

Dollywood Drop Line

A freefall tower opened this weekend at Dollywood, one of two new attractions for the Tennessee theme park’s 2017 season.

At 230-feet (70m), Drop Line by Funtime awaits brave guests in Dollywood’s Year of the Family. All family members of 48 inches (1.2m) and above are entitled to ride.

The new attraction is located in the Timber Canyon section of the park, adjacent to the wooden coaster Thunderhead. As passengers slowly ascend the tower, the gondola turns, giving a 360° bird’s eye view of the Great Smoky Mountains. However, guests shouldn’t get too comfortable with the commanding vantage point. In an instant, Drop Line descends quickly back down, before hitting the magnetic brakes.

Those that prefer to keep their feet closer the ground will enjoy Whistle Punk Chaser, a Zamperla family coaster opening later this year. Dollywood officials says the new ride will help younger guests prepare for the day they can join their parents aboard the park’s larger rides.

The Year of the Family continues with several exciting events and festivals, starting later this month. The programme is as follows:

• Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass (May 26 to June 4)

• Summer at Dollywood (June 17 to August 6)

• Dollywood’s Harvest Festival inc. Great Pumpkin LumiNights (September 29 to October 28)

• Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Christmas (November 4 to January 1)

For now, Dollywood guests can enjoy that awesome 200ft freefall on Drop Line, which opened on May 6. Funtime is represented in North America by Ride Entertainment. Last season the Austrian manufacturer installed a 100m (328ft) version of the ride ay Nigloland in France. Travelling 80m Skyfall towers from the company can also be found in Germany, the Netherlands and Mexico.

“Drop Line is the perfect new attraction for Dollywood,” says general manager Gene Scherrer. “Our guests will have a chance to enjoy the beautiful Smoky Mountain scenery as they rise up the tower, but once they get to the top, the anticipation of the drop will certainly create memories they’ll remember for quite some time.”

The Year of the Family will also be celebrated this season at the neighbouring Dollywood’s Splash Country, which reopens May 13. A new six-lane mat slide, TailSpin Racer, is promised. Families and friends can challenge each other to a wet and wild race to its splashdown finish.

All images courtesy Dollywood/Curtis Hilbun

Curtis Hilbun

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Owen Ralph

Owen Ralph

As a Lead Features Writer for blooloop, Owen brings with him two decades of experience covering the amusement and attractions industry for trade publications, including World’s Fair, Coinslot International, Kirmes & Park Revue and Park World, where he spent 15 years as Editor. He is currently a member of the IAAPA EMEA Education Subcommittee.

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