Cedar Fair Entertainment Company (NYSE: FUN), a publicly traded leader in regional amusement parks, water parks and vacation resorts, has announced plans for $62 million in new attractions, roller coasters and family rides in 2009.
The highlight of the 2009 capital program will be Diamondback, a $22 million roller coaster that will rise above the landscape at Kings Island in Cincinnati.
“Diamondback is one of the most exciting and exhilarating additions to Kings Island since its opening in 1972, ” said Dick Kinzel, chairman, president and chief executive officer. “This is a unique opportunity to balance Kings Island’s award-winning family attractions with a new level of roller coaster thrill that our guests and dedicated Ride Warriors will enjoy.”
Diamondback is a true steel serpent, snaking through the midways, slithering between existing attractions and navigating the unique hills and ravines that surround the park. Riders will board open-air trains that feature unobstructed views of the coaster’s track (this is the first time trains of this nature will be used in the U.S.). After cresting the 230-foot-tall lift hill, the trains will dive to the ground and encounter hills, banked turns and generous amounts of “airtime, ” adding to the scales of Diamondback’s massive layout. Diamondback will be one of the largest single investments in Kings Island’s 36-year history.
In addition to Diamondback, two additional thrill-inducing animals will stake their claim within the Cedar Fair family of parks in 2009.
Guests at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City, Missouri, can pounce on their fears with the debut of Prowler, a wooden coaster that will carve a tangled path in the park’s wooded terrain. Riders will board trains that provide a comfortable ride during the coaster’s two-and-a-half-minute journey through the Africa section of the park. Prowler will attack its hills, twists and turns at over 51 mph and its layout will feature a total elevation change of 102 feet.
In 2009, the Carolina Cobra is set to strike at Carowinds in Charlotte, North Carolina. This steel boomerang-style coaster takes its train of riders to the top of a 125-foot-tall lift hill and then releases it, sending the snake-like train through a coil of track with three inversions at speeds of 47 mph. Riders will then travel through the entire course again – in reverse!
Along with the addition of the new roller coasters at Kings Island, Worlds of Fun and Carowinds, a new wave of fun will lap the shores of the newly-named Soak City Water Park at Valleyfair in Shakopee, Minnesota. Breakers Bay, a 350, 000-gallon wave pool will feature the waves and action of the ocean in a safe environment. Guests will have access to private cabanas, a new bathhouse and new food and merchandise options.
At Kings Dominion in Doswell, Virginia, two new family rides will debut in the Grove section of the park next summer. The Americana Ferris wheel and the El Dorado rotating car ride are sure to help families create new memories.
Finally, several parks will debut a variety of exciting live shows, including a brand-new ice-skating show at Dorney Park, and the expansion of the “All Wheels Extreme” stunt show, featuring BMX-style bikers, skateboarders, gymnasts and in-line skaters, to several properties.
“Cedar Fair will remain committed to exceptional and affordable family fun in 2009, ” said Kinzel. “The addition of these world-class attractions will provide diverse riding options for our guests, no matter where they land on the thrill-riding spectrum.”
Cedar Fair Entertainment Company (NYSE: “FUN”) is a publicly traded partnership headquartered in Sandusky, Ohio. The Company, which owns and operates eleven amusement parks, six outdoor water parks, one indoor water park and five hotels, is one of the largest regional amusement park operators in the world. Its parks are located in Ohio, California, North Carolina, Virginia / District of Columbia, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Missouri, Michigan, and Toronto, Ontario. Cedar Fair also operates the Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park in Gilroy, California under a management contract. Cedar Fair’s flagship park, Cedar Point, has been voted the “Best Amusement Park in the World” for eleven consecutive years in a prestigious annual poll conducted by Amusement Today newspaper.