This is a wonderful park with an excellent line up of rides for the thrill seekers, families, and little ones. This park is 364 acres (147 ha) in size and opened on April 29, 1972 but its history goes back even further than that. Taft Broadcasting, then owners of the park, was actually in negotiations with the owners of Cincinnati’s Coney Island on the banks of the Ohio River in 1968. Taft wound up buying the park in 1969 and immediately began construction of King’s Island. Taft closed Coney Island on September 6, 1971 and moved many of the parks rides to the new property including the parks Grand Carousel. Since then, Taft Broadcasting sold their KECO (King’s Entertainment Co) to Paramount in 1992 and King’s Island, as well as their sister parks King’s Dominion, Carowinds, and Canada’s Wonderland, ran under the Paramount brand. That brought with it, movie and TV rights, until 2006, when Cedar Fair, parent company that owns other parks like Cedar Point and Knott’s Berry Farm, bought the parks in 2006.
Before we get into the parks, there are a few things you need to know. Smoking is not allowed in the parks with the exception of designated smoking areas and I do believe this also includes vaping as well. Pets are not allowed in the park with the exception of guide dogs and service animals. Contact the park to find our if they have kennels available or not. There also are recycling bins and trash cans throughout the park so please recycle and deposit your trash in the appropriate bins.
Now, on to the park. There are seven distinct areas at King’s Island which are International Street, Planet Snoopy, Rivertown, Coney Mall, X-Base, Action Zone, and Oktoberfest. Lets begin with International Street.
This area has three rides and two theaters. The first attraction on our journey is the Eiffel Tower which is a 1/3 replica of the famous Eiffel Tower in Paris. It stands 314 feet (96 m) tall, was designed by Intamin, and built by Southern Ohio Fabricators and opened with the park in 1972. You can take the elevator up to the observation platform near the top to get some breathtaking views of the park. DO NOT throw things from the top because you can be arrested for doing just that. Here’s my video and photos of the Eiffel Tower.
You may also see a stage near the base of the tower at the end of the Royal Fountain which is called the International Street Bandstand which originally opened in 1972 as the Royal Fountain Bandstand. There are several shows there every day so check the show schedule to see what will be there.
Just to the south of the Eiffel Tower is a large amphitheater called the International Showplace which opened in 1977. A show called “JUMP! The Ultimate Dog Challenge” is showing there and is an action packed stunt show featuring dogs with their trainers performing incredible stunts set to up beat music.
On the other side of the Eiffel Tower is a classic and a staple of every amusement and theme park.
This is the Grand Carousel which is actually older than the park itself. It originally opened at Cincinnati’s Coney Island in 1926 and was built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Co (PTC) and has a serial number 79. There are three rows with 28 jumpers, 20 standers, 2 chariots, and one 1926 WurliTzer 157 band organ. There are also four PTC Signature horses on the platform according to the National Carousel Association.
Here is my off ride video of this gorgeous carousel. Sadly, the band organ was not working the two days I was there but they were playing a CD of band organ music. I believe it is from the Katy Lou organ which is a WurliTzer 153 band organ.
Now we’ll head back towards the gate to our next theatre called the King’s Island Theater which originally opened in 1976 as the American Heritage Music Hall. The name changed to Paramount Theater in 1992 and that lasted until 2007 when it changed to its’ current name.
The current show is called “Gravity, A Cirque Experience”. This show is being described as a mesmerizing performance by acrobatic performers showcasing strength, ability, and athleticism. Unfortunately, I was never in the area to see the show. Next up is out last ride in International Street called Boo Blasters on Boo Hill.
This attraction originally opened as a boat ride called the Enchanted Voyage in 1972. It remained that way until 1983 when it was re-themed to the Smurfs and renamed Smurfs Enchanted Voyage which lasted until 1991. Then the boats were removed and a Omnimover style attraction was installed and reopened as Phantom Theater which lasted until 2002 when the Sally Corp came in and re-themed it again to an interactive dark ride where guests aim laser guns at targets. The ride was called Scooby-Doo and the Haunted Castle which lasted until 2009. The ride underwent some minor changes as they removed the Scooby-Doo theming and renamed it to Boo Blasters on Boo Hill. That brings us to the end of International Street and the beginning of one of the best and largest kids areas.
This area is filled with lots of things for the kids to see and do, many of them can be ridden by the adults as well. This area originally opened with the park in 1972 as the Happy Land of Hanna-Barberra with rides named after the Flintstones, Jetsons, and Scooby-Doo. The name was later shortened to Hanna-Barberra Land. Nickelodeon was introduced in a small sub area in 2001 called Nickelodeon Splat City where the Race for your Life Charlie Brown log flume is. Hanna-Barberra Land was gradually taken over by Nickelodeon over the next few years until the entire land was renamed Nickelodeon Universe in 2006. That name remained until 2010 when everything was re-themed to the Peanuts Gang and given the Planet Snoopy name. I took lots of photos but I wasn’t able to get all of the rides in this land so there will be some that I have missed. The first three attractions we come to are Charlie Brown’s Wind Up, Joe Cool’s Dodgem School, and the Woodstock Express. All three of them are in the photo below.
Charley Brown’s Wind Up is a kids chair swing ride from Zamperla that was installed here in 1992. It originally opened as Pixie and Dixie’s Swingset until 2005. It was renamed Backyardagain’s Swing-Along until 2009 when it was renamed again as Charlie Brown’s Wind Up.
Joe Cool’s Dodgem School opened here in 1976 as the Flintstone’s Boulder Bumpers until 2005. It was built by Jurgen Schmidt from Rivervaze, NJ and ran under the Flintstones name until that time when it was renamed Jimmy Neutron’s Atom Smasher which lasted until 2009 when it was replaced by the Joe Cool name.
The Woodstock Express is a Wooden from the Philadelphia Toboggan & Coasters company (PTC) and it opened here in 1972 as Scooby-Doo. It operated under that name until 1979 when it was changed to Beastie. It ran under that name until 2005 when it was changed again to the Fairly Odd Coaster and then again in 2006 to its’ current name. This coaster is fairly tame as it is really targeted to the younger kids but they do let adults ride as well. This coaster is 1,350 ft. (411.48 m) long, 38 ft. 6 in. (11.76 m) high, has a top speed of about 35 mph (56.3 km/h) and a total ride time of about a minute and thirty seconds long. Here is an on ride video from coastercrutchfield’s YouTube channel.
The Peanuts 500 is a kiddie car ride from Venture Ride Manufacturer Inc. that originally opened here as Mr. Jinks Jalopies in 1979. This is something that the kids can actually drive themselves as the cars are guided along a center rail. It operated under that name until it was changed to the Kiddie Turnpike, Fender Bender but the date is not currently known. It then was then changed to the Nick Jr. Drivers in 2005 and ran until it was changed to the current name in 2009.
Next up is a really fun ride for adults and kids as well called Surf Dog.
This is a Skater Coaster model from Zamperla that originally opened in 2006 as Avatar: The Last Airbender. It ran under that name until 2009 when it was changed to Surf Dog. This ride really is a lot of fun. Here’s an off ride video from the King’s Island YouTube channel.
Next up are three more kiddie attractions called the Peanuts Off-Road Rally, Snoopy’s Junction, and Linus’ Beetle Bugs and all three of them are in the photo below.
Peanut’s Off-Road Rally (background right) is a miniature car carousel ride from the Hampton Amusement Corp. that was first installed at Cincinnati’s Coney Island in 1969 and operated there until it was moved here in 1972. It is a common kiddie ride that you’d find on most traveling fair circuits that involve several cars, trucks, or motorcycles that rotates around a central axis. This one was also known as the Pee Wee Raceway, Motor Mouse, and Go Diego Go! ride.
Snoopy’s Junction in the yellow building (middle ground) is a kiddie train model from Mack Rides that was installed here in 1982 as Quick Draw’s Railway until 2005. It was then renamed La Aventura de Azul until 2009 when the Peanuts Gang moved in.
Linus’ Beetle Bugs is a Whip Jr. ride from the William F. Mangels Co. and it previously operated Cincinnati’s Coney Island as well. It was installed there in 1967 and made the move to King’s Island in 1972. It ran under names like Screecher, Funky Phantom, and Alley Cat 500 from 1972-2005. It was renamed Swiper’s Sweepers from 2006-2009 when it was changed to its’ current name.
This is the petting zoo called the Barnyard Friends where you and your kids can feed several animals you might find on a farm. This was originally known as the Nickelodeon Theatre from 2006-2008, and Putz HQ in 2009.
In this beautiful sunset photo, you can see the next two rides which are the Kite Eating Tree (center) and the Woodstock Gliders (right). The Kite Eating Tree is a Jumpin’ Star ride from Zamperla and was installed here in 2006 as Plankton’s Plunge. It raises riders up 20 ft. (6.1 m) and bounces them up and down and eventually lowers them to the ground. The name was changed to the Kite Eating Tree in 2009.
Next up is a really fun ride called the Woodstock Gliders.
This is a Flying Scooters attraction from Larson International that was installed here in 2015. There are eight tubs that spin around a central pole and you can control how high the tub gets by moving the rudder to the left and right. You can really gain some altitude if you figure out how to do it right. I absolutely love riding these type of rides.
Here is an off ride video from Coastermatt Productions’ YouTube Channel.
The next attraction is a Helicopter themed Sky Tram ride from Caprio Amusement Technology called the Woodstock Whirlybirds.
This attraction is a motorized tram that takes riders above a part of Planet Snoopy and returns them to the station in a few minutes. It opened here in 1998 as Yogi’s Sky Tours which lasted until 2005 when it was renamed Lazytown Sportacopters. It operated under that name until 2009 when it was changed again to its’ current name. There are two other rides on either side of this one but are not in the photo. They are Snoopy’s Space Buggies and Snoopy vs Red Barron. Snoopy’s Space Buggies is a Jump Around ride from Zamperla that was installed here in 2015 and Snoopy vs Red Barron is a Mini Jet ride from the same manufacturer that was installed here in 1992. It originally opened as Dick Dastardly’s Biplanes from 1992-2005, and then Blue’s Skidoo from 2006-2009.
The next attraction is a staple of all amusement parks.
This carousel is a 36 foot (11 m) children’s carrousel that opened here in 1982 as Hannah-Barbera Carousel. It operated under that name until 2005 when it was changed to the Nick-O-Round and then again in 2009 to its’ current name.
This is the Great Pumpkin Coaster from E&F Miler Industries. It is an Oval Family Coaster model that opened here in 1992 as Scooby Zoom until 1997 when it was changed to Top Cat’s Taxi Jam. It operated under that name until 2005 when it was changed to Little Bill’s Giggle Coaster. Then it was changed to its’ current name in 2009. It is 199.3 ft. (60.75 m) long, 8 ft. (2.43 m) tall, and has a ride time of about one minute.
Next up is the world’s first Family Inverted steel roller coaster.
This is a Family Suspended Coaster/342m model steel roller coaster from Vekoma and it opened here as the Rugrats Runaway Reptar in 2001 and lasted until its’ name changed to Flying Ace Aerial Chase in 2009. It is 1,122.1 ft. (342 m) long, 48.6 ft. (14.8 m) high, with a top speed of 26 mph (42 km/h) and a ride time of about one minute and thirty seconds. Here is an on ride video from coastercrutchfield’s YouTube Channel.
Next to this coaster is another kiddie ride called Sally’s Sea Plane. It is a Crazy Bus ride from Zamperla and it originally opened here in 1998 as Atom Ant’s Airways. It operated under that name until 2005 when it was changed to Timmy’s Airtours until 2009 when it was changed to its’ current name. Now let’s go grab a snack shall we?
There’s a reason why there’s such a long line here and that is because this is the only location where you can get the parks famous blue ice cream and it is delicious. Now that we have had our fill of blue ice cream, let’s go on our next ride.
This is a Kite Flyer model from Zamperla originally opened here as Danny Phantom’s Phantom Flyers in 2006. The name was shortened to Phantom Flyers for 2008 and 2009 and then changed to its’ current name at the end of 2009. Now let’s go ride the last ride in Planet Snoopy.
I absolutely love log flumes and this one is pretty fun, if don’t mind getting a bit wet. This one was built in 1968 by Arrow Development/Hopkins Rides at Cincinnati’s Coney Island and made the move to the new location in 1972. It opened here as King’s Mills Log Flume until 1999. the ride remained closed throughout the 2000 season and reopened in 2001 as The Wild Thornberrys River Adventure. The name was changed again in 2009 to Race for your Life Charlie Brown. Here is an on ride video from Theme Park POV’s YouTube Channel.
Well, that’s it for the largest kids area in North America if not the world. This area has been awarded the Golden Ticket award on many occasions as being the best in the world. They were also recognized by other charities like the one that gave them this statue in recognition of their charitable donations.
Now, on to our next area.
This area originally opened with the park in 1972 but was originally going to be named Frontier Land. Rivertown carries a western theme with ranch style buildings and antique looking signage. The area originally included what is now known as the Race for your Life Charlie Brown log flume ride but that was moved into the kids area when it expanded. This area has several world-class roller coasters, a river raft ride, a steam train ride, and one of the parks two indoor air-conditioned restaurants, as well as several shops and outdoor quick service restaurants.
Our first attraction is a really good one called Diamondback.
This behemoth of a coaster is a Hyper Coaster model from B&M (Bolliger and Mabillard) and opened here on April 18, 2009. It is 5,282 ft. (1610 m) long, 230 ft. (70 m) high with a 215 ft. (65 m) drop, has a top speed of 80 mph (129 km/h), and a total ride time of about three minutes.
The ride ends in a spectacular water element that does NOT get riders wet.
This ride is an absolute air time machine which is what I love and this one does not invert riders so there is no need for the over the shoulder restraints, just a simple lap bar that comes down between your legs and over your lap. Here’s my off ride video of Diamondback.
Here is an on ride video from King’s Island’s YouTube Channel.
Now on to our next ride called the King’s Island & Miami Valley Railroad.
This train will take riders out through the woods, over White Water Canyon, and through Mystic Timbers and Diamondback with a stop off at Soak City. Here is an on ride video from Coaster Addict’s YouTube Channel.
Those of you who have been to Busch Gardens Tampa might just recognize one of these trains. That is because the green train at Busch Gardens Tampa used to run at King’s Dominion, a sister park to King’s Island, before they retired their ride.
It should be noted that this trains were built by Crown Metal Products and opened here with the park in 1972. It is a 3 ft. (914 mm) narrow gauge steam train that has a 4-4-0 wheel configuration. That means the rails are 3 feet (914 mm) apart and the steam engine has 4 guide wheels, 4 traction wheels, and no trailing wheels. Both trains are scale replicas of the General, a famous steam locomotive in the 1800s. The blue train is engine 12 and is named “Kenny Van Meter”, and the green train is engine 19 and is named “Lew Brown”. The blue and green trains were formerly named “Tecumseh” and “Simon Kenton” respectively.
Now we come to our first indoor air-conditioned restaurant called Reds Hall of Fame Grill and it is worth your time to just walk around here and see all the memorabilia from former players and the stadiums they used to play at.
Here, you can sit in air-conditioned comfort, order delicious food and then walk around and marvel at everything they have collected.
I ate here twice and wound up spending a few hours here each time so I could escape the heat, watch the World Cup, and eat lunch. It got very hot the two days I was here as temperatures were around 95 F (35 C) with heat advisories on both days. I live in Florida and it was very much like Florida that first week of July. I had the Red Leg Burger basket which was a large bacon cheeseburger with fried onions, lettuce, and their own special sauce with a side of potato chips which was pretty good in my opinion. The red seats were from Crosley Field, the White seats and yellow foul pole was from Riverfront Stadium.
Next up is a really good wooden roller coaster called Mystic Timbers.
This incredible coaster was built by Great Coasters International (GCI) and opened here on April 15, 2017. It is 3,265 ft. (995 m) long, 109 ft. 2 in. (33 m) high, has a top speed of about 53 mph (85 km/h), and a special surprise inside the shed at the end. This coaster may not be very tall for some but it more than makes up for that in its course through the woods with its relatively low to the ground run after the first drop and quick turns. There’s even a trick track segment just before going up into the shed. A trick track is where the track banks in one direction but then continues straight.
I like riding front and back rows on every coaster and there is a marked difference with every coaster but this one has the biggest difference I’ve ever experienced on a coaster. The front row was great, but then I rode the back row and the only thing I could say after I got off was “Oh my GOD!” I rode this three times and I love riding in the back on this one. Here’s my off ride video of Mystic Timbers.
Here is an on ride view from Theme Park Review’s YouTube Channel.
What is in the shed you ask? well, the train comes into the shed and the radio comes on and starts playing a Hall and Oats song, then the screens in front and to your right that show an open barn door and windows start showing either bats, snakes, or trees coming through as the train starts moving through to the station. I got bats once and snakes twice. This is one incredible ride and is one of the best wooden coasters I’ve been on.
Now on to White Water Canyon, a water ride that will get you completely soaked.
This attraction was built by Intamin and opened here in 1985.
Now onto the Beast, one of the best wooden roller coasters on the planet.
This legendary terrain coaster was designed by Al Collins and Jeff Gramke and built by Charlie Dinn and opened here to rave reviews on April 14, 1979. This coaster is 7,359 ft. (2243 m) long, 110 ft. (33.5 m) high with a 141 ft. (43 m) drop. The Beast has a top speed of 65 mph (105 km/h) and a total ride time of four minutes and ten seconds long. This coaster was given Landmark status by the American Coaster Enthusiasts (ACE) in October of 2004 as the Beast held three world records when it opened. It was the worlds tallest, longest, and fastest roller coaster in 1979 and it still holds the record for being the world’s longest wooden roller coaster.
Much of this coaster is back in the woods so these are the only photos I was able to get. It is absolutely incredible to ride in the daytime as it really does stay low to the ground following the terrain which accentuates the speed just that much more. It is even better to ride at night as you really can’t see where you are going. A night ride on the Beast is right up there with a night ride on the former Big Bad Wolf that used to run at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.
Here is an on ride video with some off ride behind the scenes shots of the Beast from Theme Park Review’s YouTube channel.
Here are a few more shots of Riverton before we leave this area.
Now on to a mall.
This section of the park opened with the park in 1972 as a tribute to the parks predecessor and was originally called Coney Island, that name lasted until 1980 when it was changed to Old Coney and then again in 1986 to its current name. It was built to resemble Coney Island’s carnival style layout. There are several games of chance, quick service restaurants and concessions, and roller coasters in this area. There are also several flat rides that made their move from the old park in this area as well as a newer sub-section called X-Base. Several of Coney Islands famous Ginkgo trees were also moved here and now line the middle of the midway. The first attraction we come to was originally called Italian Job: Stunt Track.
This double launched coaster opened here on May 20, 2005 during the time when Paramount owned the park and was themed after the action movie called the Italian Job. This coaster did it’s best to try to replicate some scenes in the movie during the ride like the drive through the sewer system, the shoot out with LAPD and some chase scenes.
The ride actually had trains where each car in the train was a Mini Cooper car complete with headlights, doors that opened, and even the Mini logo. The cars even slid slightly from side to side to try to mimic a fishtailing car as they try to avoid the LAPD roadblock midway through the ride. Unfortunately, that all changed when Paramount sold the parks to Cedar Fair and they were forced to remove all aspects of the movie franchise which includes removing all the Mini references as well.
The photo above shows you the entire course of the coaster. It starts out by launching right out of the station at 40 mph (64 km/h) using a LIM (Linear Induction Motor) launch system that sends riders spiraling up the parking garage, then down through the roadblock and then through a overbanked turn to the left. Riders then go through a tunnel and then back up in between some shipping containers where they com to a stop. The a helicopter opens fire on them and there is a fire effect explosion in front of them and the train is launched into a dark tunnel where there is a right turn, a few small hills, then a right turn, and then out of the giant sign. The train then dives under an overpass and then turns left right back into the station. This is a fun ride and a good first step for those that have never been on a launched coaster before. The ride operated under the Italian Job: Stunt Track name until 2007 when it was changed to its current name. It was built by Premier Rides and is 1,960 ft. (597.4 m) long, 45 ft. 2 in. (13.7 m) high with a drop of 31 ft. 2 in. (9.5 m), and has a ride duration of just over one minute. Here is an on ride video from Front Seat Coasters YouTube channel.
Next up is our first flat ride in the Coney Mall called Shake, Rattle, and Roll.
This is a standard Troika model ride from HUSS that was installed here in 1975. On this ride, there are three arms that radiate from the center with each arm holding seven cars that are arranged in a circular pattern. The ride starts with each circle rotating, then the whole ride rotates, and then each arm lifts to the point you see in the photo. That lasts for a few minutes at which point the ride slows to a stop and the arms slowly return the riders to the ground. Our next attraction was a record holder at the time it opened called Vortex.
This coaster was actually built on the former site of the Bat which was the world’s first suspended roller coaster. The Bat opened here on April 26, 1981 and closed in 1983 due to escalating maintenance costs and some design flaws. Vortex actually uses the former Bat station.
The coaster was built by Arrow Dynamics and was the worlds first roller coaster to have six inversions with two loops, two corkscrews, and a Batwing which has two inversions. All six of the inversions can be seen in the two photos below.
This coaster opened on April 11, 1987 and it really hasn’t aged well as it is quite a bit rough so I recommend riding in the front row for the smoothest ride. Vortex is 3,800 ft. (1,158 m) long, 148 ft. (45 m) high with a drop of 138 ft. (42 m), 6 inversions, a top speed of 55 mph (88 km/h) and a ride time of about two and a half minutes long.
Here’s my off ride video of Vortex.
Here’s an on ride video from Coastercrutchfield’s YouTube channel.
Our next ride is right next door and will send you soaring over King’s Island.
This attraction was built by Mondial and opened here on June 11, 2011. It is 301 ft. (92 m) tall and has a top speed of about 30 mph (48 km/h) and really is a fun ride, that is if you aren’t afraid of heights. Riders also get to listen to music that helps accentuate the feeling of soaring. I’ve ridden this kind of ride at this park as well as Cedar Point and Carrowinds, two of King’s Islands sister parks and I’ve loved every one of them and they’re especially beautiful to look at, at night with their LED light display.
Here’s my day and night off ride video of Windseeker. By the way, the building in between the two wooden coasters is called Action Theater which opened in 1994. It was a motion simulator theater that first showed Days of Thunder and then SpongeBob Squarepants before closing for good around 2010.
The next attraction is something that every amusement park should have and this one is called….
This is a Wave Swinger model from Zierer that was installed here in 1986. I just love riding these type of rides ever since I was a kid.
Now we come to the sub-area called X-Base.
This area opened in 2007 and is themed around flight and propulsion but is still listed as part of Coney Mall. There are just two roller coasters in this area with Flight of Fear and Firehawk, both of which can be seen in the photo below. Flight of Fear is the on inside the large building.
Flight of Fear, which was built by Premier Rides, is the first coaster we come to and it originally opened as Outer Limits: Flight of Fear in 1996 and it operated under that name until 2000. Paramount chose to drop the Outer Limits from the name seeing as the reboot of the original “The Outer Limits” TV show which ran from 1963 to 1965 was taken off the air at that time. This coaster opened on June 18, 1996 as did the same coaster at Kings Dominion, their sister park.
The ride is themed to Area 51 which is a very secret base in the Nevada desert that is rumored to have some interesting aircraft, possibly even extraterrestrial in origin. The number 18 is in reference to Hangar 18 at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton which is just about an hours drive north of the park. Hangar 18 is rumored to be where the supposed evidence from the UFO crash site in Roswell, New Mexico is being stored. The theme for this ride is somewhat similar to that with the exception being that an alien spaceship had crashed near the park and the government was allowing the press and civilians in to see it. Riders first enter the press area on the right which then leads into the hangar where the UFO is being kept. There the line winds around the hangar until you end up entering the UFO. Then riders come into the loading station where they will see several cryotubes each with a mannequin that is dressed in the parks souvenir clothing and wrapped in plastic. This is done to make you believe that the aliens have abducted several park patrons and cryogenically frozen them. Riders then board the empty trains and are then launched into the abyss at a top speed of 54 mph (87 km/h). This ride is 2,705 ft. (824 m) long, 74 ft. 2 in. (23 m) high, has 4 inversions, and a total ride time of about a minute. This is a very intense ride in extreme low light and to be honest, I found it to be very rough, even in the front row. I rode it once and that was good enough for me. Here is an off ride video from CoasterBob62’s YouTube Channel. Keep in mind that this was a special event so the lights in the main coaster building are not normally on when the coaster is in normal operation.
Next, we come to the first Flying Dutchman coaster I’ve ever ridden called Firehawk.
This coaster originally opened at the Now closed Geauga Lake park that was in northeastern Ohio. It opened there on May 26, 2001 as X-Flight when Six Flags owned the park. Six Flags then sold the park to Cedar Fair in 2003 and they chose to move this coaster to King’s Island at the end of the 2006 season. It opened here on May 26, 2007 and has been operating ever since. This coaster is unique in that it was one of the first flying coasters and it was the first flying coaster I ever rode. This one was manufactured by Vekoma and is pretty smooth for them. Riders board the trains and are secured by a lap-bar and a vest type restraint which buckles in the middle. The train is then lowered into the flying position and then you climb the 115 ft. (35m) tall lift hill facing the sky. Once at the top, you flip from a lying to flying and then go down the first drop at a top speed of 50 mph (80 km/h). Then the train goes into a overbanked turn, another drop, and then a turn where you go from fly to lie and then go through the first inversion which is a loop. Then riders flip back to a flying position where they go through one more drop, then a turn into two in line twists and a helix before going back to lying on their backs and entering the station and completing the 3,340 ft. (1,018 m) journey in just over two minutes. All in all, it isn’t a bad ride but the lines can get long as the loading and unloading process does take some time. Here is an on ride video from Attraction Spot’s YouTube channel.
That completes the sub-area known as X-Base so now we’ll finish with the Coney Mall and our next attraction is the….
This attraction was originally built at Coney Island in 1924 and operated there until the end of the 1971 season when it was moved here. This is one of the largest bumper cars attractions I’ve ever seen.
This one is the Scrambler and it also operated at Coney Island as well. It was built by the Eli Bridge Company and opened at Coney Island in 1969. It operated there until the end of the 1972 season when it was moved here.
Up next is another classic ride called the Monster.
This ride was built by the Ayerly Aircraft Co. and installed at Coney Island where it operated until the end of the 1971 season. It was then moved here and opened with the park in 1972.
Now we come to two great wooden roller coasters called the Racer.
This coaster is really a fun ride and even better when both sides are running and dispatched at the same time. The Racer is a historically significant coaster as it was responsible for starting the second golden age of roller coasters when it opened here on April 29, 1972. It was designed by the famous John Allen and built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company. The design was inspired by the Shooting Star coaster that operated at Coney Island until 1971. It was also the world’s first racing coaster to operate with one of the trains turned backwards in 1982 which is a real interesting way to ride a coaster. Unfortunately, the park turned it back around in 2008 so they both face forward. This coaster was also featured in a Brady Bunch episode called “The Cincinnati Kids”. ACE (American Coaster Enthusiasts) declared this an ACE Coaster Landmark on June 18, 2007. The plaque pictured below is next to the Racer’s entrance.
The two side to Racer are Red and Blue and are both identical to each other. Both Red and Blue sides are 3,415 ft. (1,041 m) long, 88 ft. (27 m) high. The top speed is 53 mph (85 km/h) and both run about a two-minute ride time.
Here is an on ride video of the Blue side facing forward from Coastercrutchfield’s YouTube Channel.
And here is what it was like riding the Red side when it was backwards.
Now we come to the end of the Coney Mall with its classic carnival style midway games and rides and Coney Island’s famous Ginkgo Trees in the middle.
By the way, I would recommend you try the Three Way at Skyline Chili. It is the famous Cincinnati Chili, which is not spicy at all, that is served on top of spaghetti with a mountain of shredded cheddar on top. I’m not a fan of spicy foods and I absolutely loved it.
This area is relatively small and only has three attractions, an indoor air-conditioned dinning hall called the Festhaus that also has live shows inside and an outdoor beer garden next to Oktoberfest Lake. The buildings in this area that opened with the park in 1972 carry a German theme. The Festhaus is a nice place to come in, cool off, and watch a show, but the food leaves something to be desired, even for amusement park standards. The first ride we come to is called Adventure Express.
This is a Mine Train coaster that was designed by the famous Ron Toomer, built by Arrow Dynamics, and opened here in April 13, 1991. This one was built to feel as if it is an out of control mine cart with several volcanic tunnels, mine shafts and a few themed rooms set to the Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom movie that came out in 1984. This isn’t a bad ride but it is a bit rough so I recommend riding in the front row for the smoothest experience. Adventure Express is 2,963 ft. (903 m) long, 63 ft. (19 m) high, has four tunnels and two lift hills, a top speed of 35 mph (56 km/h) and a ride time of about two minutes and twenty seconds long.
The park chose to dedicate this attraction to Robert G. Rinckel who was the parks Construction Manager from 1974 to 1990. The plaque is on a rock on the left side of the entrance to Adventure Express. Here is an on ride video from Coastercrutchfield’s YouTube channel.
Next up is Slingshot, this is one of the two attractions that are an extra charge per ride.
Slingshot was built by Funtime and was installed here in 2002 and catapults riders up to 275 ft. (84 m) into the sky at speeds approaching 100 mph (160 km/h). Riders flip over multiple times on the way down.
The last ride in this area is called Viking Fury and is in a very photogenic spot of the park right next to Oktoberfest Lake.
This is your basic swinging pirate ship ride that was installed here in 1982. This Super Bounty model ride from Intamin does not go upside down but you can still get some moments of air time if you sit at the ends. Viking Fury brings us to the end of Oktoberfest and the beginning of the last area in the park.
This area of the park opened as Lion Country Safari in 1974 and had the monorail ride that took riders through the animal preserve. This ride was part of a nationwide network of zoos that were called Lion Country Safari. It was then renamed in 1977 as Wild Animal Habitat that included Adventure Village. There were several rides that called this area home including two coasters that were the world’s first which were the Screamin’ Demon and King Cobra. The Screamin’ Demon was the world’s first modern steel roller coaster with a loop. It was built by Arrow Dynamics and opened here in 1977 and ran here until it was removed in 1987. Camden Park in Huntington, West Virginia bough it and moved it to their park where it stood until it was demolished in 2004. It was a shuttle loop coaster which means it went out to a point and then returned to the station the same way it came. It also was a launched coaster as well. Here is my off ride video of the Sidewinder which is the same type of coaster from Arrow Dynamics. This one is located at Elitch Gardens in Denver, Colorado.
The King Cobra was the world’s first stand up coaster which operated from 1984 to 2001. This one was built by TOGO and was 2,219 ft. (676 m) long, 95 ft. (29 m) high, had one inversion which was a loop, and a top speed of 50 mph (80.5 km/h). The video below shows both of these coasters plus a few others including the Bat that used to be where Vortex now is.
Now, on to the attractions and the first one is called Delirium which is a Giant Frisbee ride from Huss that replaced King Cobra in 2003.
This is basically a pendulum style ride that swings back and forth while slowly spinning giving riders a different feeling with every swing. Delirium is a very fun ride in my opinion as it swings riders up to a maximum angle of 120 degrees from the ground. The ride swings 240 degrees from end to end lifting riders 137 ft. (42 m) into the air at about 76 mph (122 km/h).
Next up is a record breaker called Banshee.
This coaster was pretty good and extremely smooth but that is to be expected from a coaster that was built by B&M (Bolliger and Mabillard). This attraction replaced a former world record holder called the Son of Beast which was the worlds tallest, fastest, and only wooden coaster with a loop. It operated here from 2000-2009 and was 7,032 ft. (2,143 m) long, 218 ft. (66.4 m) tall with a 214 ft. (65 m) drop, a top speed of 78 mph (126 km/h) and one inversion. The loop was removed in 2007 in order to allow the coaster to run lighter trains so the ride wouldn’t be so rough. I rode it in 2009 without the loop and it was really rough and twice was enough for me. The SoB was standing but not operating (SNBO) from 2009 to 2012 when it was torn down in favor of the new coaster. They even sold pieces of the track that were mounted on a nice backboard with a photo of the ride and a certificate of authenticity. I was one of the lucky few to receive one of these as a Christmas present. Here is an on and off ride video of the Son of Beast from Theme Park Review’s YouTube channel.
Now, back to Banshee!
This is an Inverted coaster from B&M and it opened here on April 18, 2014 as the world’s longest at 4,124 ft. (1,257 m) long, and fastest at 68 mph (109 km/h). Inverted and Suspended coasters are completely different from each other so please do not confuse the two. The only thing they have in common is that they both hang below the track but that is it. A Suspended coaster is one where the individual cars are suspended from the track above and are allowed to swing from side to side and does not go upside down. The individual cars on an Inverted coaster train are suspended from the track below but cannot swing from side to side and it does go upside down.
This coaster is also 167 ft. ( m) tall with a 150 ft. ( m) drop, it has seven inversions, and a total ride time of about two minutes and forty seconds. As I said before, this was a pretty good ride and it is definitely one of the best Inverted coasters I’ve ever ridden. By the way, there is a tribute to the Son of Beast in the Haunted Hill area as you walk through the queue.
Here’s my off ride video of Banshee.
And here’s an on ride video from Theme Park Review’s YouTube channel.
The next ride is the Bat and it is a great example of what a Suspended coaster is. This Suspended coaster from Arrow Dynamics opened here on April 9, 1993 and was originally called Top Gun after the popular movie starring Tom Cruise that came out in 1986. It ran under that name until 2007 when the park was sold to Cedar Fair. The name then changed to Flight Deck and ran under that name until 2013 when it was changed in 2013 to the current name. They did that to pay homage to the original Bat coaster.
This coaster is really fun and I enjoyed riding it. This coaster does a very good job of following the terrain through much of its course and there are a lot of twists and turns amongst the trees which accents the feeling of speed.
This one is 2,352 ft. ( m) long, 78 ft. ( m) tall, has a top speed of 51 mph ( km/h) and a ride time of about two minutes. Here is my off ride video of the Bat.
Here is an on ride video from James C’s YouTube channel.
Now let’s go drop in on our next two rides and the first one is an extra charge attraction called Xtreme Skyflyer.
This is a Dual Swing Skycoaster ride from Sky Fun 1 that was installed here in 1995 and is 153 ft. (47 m) tall. There are two sets of cables that are hung on either side near the top of the arch. Riders put on a large safety suit and are raised to the cables they will be attached to. Once that is done, the loading platform is lowered and the riders are then pulled backward up one of the rear towers. Once up at the top, the rider(s) are instructed via speaker, to pull the ripcord which then releases them into a free fall for a second or two. Then the guide wires take over and swing riders through the arch and back much like a pendulum. You’ll swing back and forth a few times until a large ring is raised for you to grab onto. That will bring your group to a gentle stop. The loading platform the raises and you are detached from the wires. I’ve done these types of rides and they are fun but be advised, they are a bit expensive for a one time ride. Next up is Drop Tower: Scream Zone.
This monster of a tower is a Gyro Drop tower from Intamin that opened here as Drop Zone: Stunt Tower. A Gyro Drop tower means that the gondola slowly turns as it climbs up to the top, then drops straight down without turning. This tower was the tallest in the world at 315 ft. (96 m) when it opened and it is an absolute rush when the drop occurs. It operated under the Drop Zone: Stunt Tower until 2007 when the park was sold to Cedar Fair. Here is my off ride video of the drop tower.
Next up is a large outdoor amphitheater called Timberwolf Amphitheatre. It was built in 1982 and was originally known as Stadium of the Stars. This is where you’d go to see special concerts and separately ticketed events so it is not open all the time. Next up is the Congo Falls, a ride that will cool you off on those hot summer days.
This is a Chute-the-Chutes attraction from Intamin that opened here in 1988. The ride originally opened as Amazon Falls but changed to Congo Falls in 1999 after Paramount released their movie called Congo. Congo Falls features a 34 ft. (10 m) drop into a pool of water that soaks both the riders in the boat and those that are on the bridge. WARNING! You WILL get very wet on this ride.
Next up is the final attraction in the park called Invertigo.
This inverted shuttle coaster originally opened on April 17, 1999 as Face/Off and was originally painted with yellow track and red supports. The name was changed to Invertigo in 2008 and that is when the coaster was repainted with the current colors.
There are quite a few of these shuttle coasters from Vekoma but there are relatively few of these Inverted shuttle coasters and there is an added thrill in that riders sit back to back so they can see the expressions of the riders that are facing them.
This coaster, like the Screamin’ Demon, is a shuttle coaster as well but this one is a bit different. This one loads and unloads at ground level and gets pulled up the 131 ft. 3 in. (40 m) rear spike via the chain lift in the above photo on the right. The train is then released once at the top and then rockets back through the station at a top speed of about 50 mph (80 km/h), through a dual inversion element called a Cobra Roll, then a Loop, and then up the front spike where it is pulled to the top. Once at the top, the train is released to travel back the way it came through the 1,013 ft. 8 in. (309 m) track and back up the rear spike where the chain lift slowly lowers it back into the station. Vekoma can produce some pretty rough rides but this one really isn’t that bad. Here’s my off ride video of Invertigo.
That brings us back to International Street but you might want to check you park map for show schedules as they do have International Street Light and Fireworks show at closing time on certain nights. I was here near the Independence Day holiday so that is why everything is lit up in red, white, and blue.
Here is the show which is absolutely beautiful from Coasters Worldwide’s YouTube channel.
I hope you enjoyed this review and I hope you end up visiting this wonderful park when you are in the Cincinnati area. I absolutely loved the two full days I spent here and look forward to coming back in the near future.