The Missouri Triangle: Part 3 – Six Flags St. Louis

After a shorter day at Worlds of Fun, Pete and I had come to our final day and park of the Missouri Triangle. Six Flags St. Louis opened in 1971 as the third and final Six Flags park developed under the vision of Angus Wynne – before expansion switched from new park development to acquisition. It is apparent that the concept had been streamlined by the third try. While the six flag-themed areas remained, far less emphasis was placed on nation specific theming. By the 70s it was obvious rides are why people went to Six Flags and the park opened with multiple of what made the Six Flags concept work: two Arrow log flumes, two Arrow mine trains, and two Arrow car rides. While the park has undergone some dramatic changes through the years, it benefits from this simplified formula, and, despite the changes, the park feels cohesive. What was it about this “lower-tier” Six Flags park that made it a highlight of our trip?

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The Missouri Triangle: Part 2 – Worlds of Fun

In part one of this series my friend Pete and I started our Missouri trip with an amazing Thursday at Silver Dollar City. Friday’s park was one of Cedar Fair’s mid-tier parks, Worlds of Fun. Worlds of Fun opened in 1973 at the height of the regional park boom. Despite some dramatic changes since the park’s 1995 sale to Cedar Fair, Worlds of Fun still very much feels like a product of the 70s. Loosely themed to Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days, the park is divided into various international regions such as Europa, Africa, and the Orient. These areas are more distinguished than I expected and are united by a streamlined 70s aesthetic. For coaster enthusiasts World of Fun features some impressive coasters including the tallest full-circuit coaster in the state, Mamba and the well regarded GCI woodie, Prowler. The biggest question for the two of us was how did this Cedar Fair property compare to it’s Ohio siblings.

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Lost Coasters of California – Part 10: Déjà Vu

In Part 9 of this series I briefly mentioned Six Flags ambitious expansion throughout the 1990s and early 2000s.  A growing American economy made the expansion of the theme park market seem unstoppable.  A series of park acquisitions and the acquisition of Six Flags by Premier Parks that was finalized in 1998 expanded the company’s portfolio to include European parks, movie themed parks, and animal parks.  At the park level Six Flags unveiled park expansions and additions at a dizzying rate.  From the years 1997-2003 Six Flags Magic Mountain received a brand new coaster every year.  It is worth noting that with the exception of 1999 each one of these additions was a major, and in many cases record breaking coaster: 1997 saw the addition of the record breaking 400 ft tall Superman: The Escape.  1998’s Riddler’s Revenge remains the largest Stand-Up coaster in the world. 2000’s Goliath opened as the world’s tallest continuous circuit coaster. 2002’s X introduced the world to the 4th dimension coaster.  And 2003’s B&M floorless Scream was built to be a reliable addition after X‘s problems. X was originally set to open in 2001 but was delayed significantly.  Six Flags chose to open another major thrill machine from Vekoma. Unfortunately, this coaster would have its own set of problems. In August of 2001 Six Flags and Vekoma unveiled the world’s first “Giant Inverted Boomerang”, Deja Vu.

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Lost Coasters of California – Part 8: Invertigo

Last week we focused on Windjammer Surf Racers and how it was a product of Knott’s Berry Farm’s attempt to navigate the space between the family and thrill market.  It faced the problem of Magic Mountain dominating the thrill market with major coaster additions, many of which we’ve discussed here, and Disneyland’s hyper detailed themed experiences.   Northern California in the late 90s had a far less competitive theme park market.  After the construction and runaway success of Tidal Wave in 1977 Marriott’s Great America, eventually Great America in 1985 and then Paramount’s Great America in 1993, had remained consistent with coaster trends.  In 1986 they opened the wooden Grizzly, 1991 saw the addition of the B&M standup Vortex, and 1993 saw the addition of the still-beloved B&M invert Top Gun.  These consistent additions, despite changes in ownership, resulted in a solid coaster collection any regional park could be proud of.  

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Spanish Theme Park History – Part 3: Monte Igueldo & Parc d’Atraccions de Montjuïc

Today we’ll continue our series about the Spanish Theme Park History with the third article. Every two weeks we’re publishing one of eight articles about the history of thirteen Spanish amusement and theme parks. Some of them no longer exist, but some others are still operating and receiving guests nowadays. In this series, we travel in time through 168 years in theme park history, starting in 1853, to our days in 2021. In this article we’ll focus on two very special parks, the first one is Monte Igueldo, which still operates in the Spanish region of the Basque Country and, the second one, Parc d’Atraccions de Montjuïc, which was located in Barcelona.

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Scandinavia Series- Part 6: Kolmården Wildlife Park, Sweden

With the theme park season drawing to a close in many countries and people forced to stay home again, we thought we’d bring you a brand new article series. Expect regular updates from myself as we explore one of the most beautiful, cultural and historical regions of Europe: Scandinavia! We’ll be taking you from Norway across to Finland, through Sweden and then down to Denmark. We’ll be providing you with detailed insights and top tips into the theme parks each of these countries has to offer. We will also be diving into which rollercoasters and attractions you aren’t going to want to miss out on. So grab a cup of coffee, a slice of cake and enjoy! Continue reading “Scandinavia Series- Part 6: Kolmården Wildlife Park, Sweden”

Central Florida Coaster Construction + Testing – Mid-December 2020

This will be a rather unusual report because we’re combining Iron Gwazi, TRON Lightcycle / Run and Jurassic World: VelociCoaster into one update! We visited the three parks/projects over the past three days and though we didn’t quite collect enough for three separate reports, we definitely have enough to share for an exciting Central Florida Coaster Construction report! Continue reading “Central Florida Coaster Construction + Testing – Mid-December 2020”

Hotel Charles Lindbergh- An Exclusive Experience by Day and Night

Phantasialand fans have been waiting on a new project for the last 4 years. It has finally come to life. In the middle of September, Rookburgh was unveiled to an eager audience. The project’s opening date was inevitably pushed back by the ongoing pandemic. This meant that an originally planned opening date of June wasn’t feasible. Therefore, the public’s anticipation and excitement had grown even more over the extra months of waiting.

Phantasialand’s brand new and third resort hotel, Charles Lindbergh, is intertwined with this exquisitely detailed themed world, and opened at the end of September. With a new lockdown recently announced in Germany, the resort has been forced to close again. Unfortunately, this meant the window of opportunity to visit this new hotel was very small. We were lucky enough to experience this brand new hotel in the middle of October, and will be providing you with a detailed insight into the experience it has to offer.

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TRON: Lightcycle Run Construction Update – Magic Kingdom – Mid September 2020

Though we had originally made a reservation for Disney’s Hollywood Studios for today, we ended up switching that to Magic Kingdom. Why? – Well, Rise of the Resistance is running with just one elevator, and with the chances of that being a smooth process being very slim, a trip to Magic Kingdom suddenly was much more appealing to us. Of course we captured TRON: Lightcycle Run construction pictures to share with you! Continue reading “TRON: Lightcycle Run Construction Update – Magic Kingdom – Mid September 2020”

TRON: Lightcycle Run Construction Update – Magic Kingdom – Early September 2020

Today we spent the day at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. The day turned out to again be quiet and relaxing, allowing for rerides on some of our favorite rides. The highlight, however, was observing the active construction site of TRON: Lightcycle Run. Join us for a construction update of this highly anticipated new coaster: Continue reading “TRON: Lightcycle Run Construction Update – Magic Kingdom – Early September 2020”