Theme Park Central

A site for theme park junkies everywhere.

Archive for the month “October, 2010”

New Rides For Busch Gardens and Discovery Cove

Busch Gardens in Tampa and Discovery Cove in Orlando both announced new attractions Wednesday. Cheetah Hunt, a new thrill ride, is scheduled to open at Busch Gardens in spring of 2011. The Grand Reef, an 875,000-gallon artificial lagoon in which guests can swim among tropical fish, is scheduled to open next June at Discovery Cove.

Cheetah Hunt, a “launch coaster,” will use the force of repelling magnets to shoot riders in sudden bursts at up to 60 mph at three different points along the 4,429-foot track, Busch Gardens said in a press release.

Concept art for Cheetah Run

On one section, riders will race along near ground level to give a sense of a cheetah running across the African plains. Cheetah Hunt will be Busch Gardens’ first new thrill ride since Sheikra in 2005. In conjunction with the new ride, Busch Gardens also announced plans for a nearby exhibit, Cheetah Run, that will offer close-up views of live cheetahs through clear plastic windows. Trainers will coax the cheetahs into daily sprinting displays, according to a press release.

The Grand Reef, the forthcoming attraction at Discovery Cove, will simulate the sights of a natural reef, the park said in a press release. The massive tank will have waters of varying depths for snorkelers and swimmers to explore. The artificial reef will be filled with real fish, Discovery Cove said, from colorful wrasses to large, spotted eagle rays. Venomous lionfish and sharp-toothed reef sharks will swim behind glass in the exhibit. The waters will be surrounded by white-sand beaches outfitted with hammocks.

Concept art of the upcoming The Grand Reef


Roller Coaster Cars Collide At Knott’s Berry Farm

Ten people were hurt early Thursday evening when two roller coaster cars collided at a theme park in southern California. The accident happened just after 8 p.m. PDT on the Pony Express ride at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, a city in Orange County. “First units that arrived on scene encountered multiple patients,” said Captain Greg McKeown of the Orange County Fire Authority. McKeown said two cars of the roller coaster hit in the loading area of the roller coaster. McKeown said all ten patients were transported to nearby hospitals with mostly minor neck and back injuries. The Pony Express is a a steel motorbike roller coaster which features sweeping turns and sudden drops in an “out-and-back” configuration. It has two trains with eight cars per train and riders are arranged two across in a single row for a total of 16 riders per train. It was first opened in 2008.

British Man Dies At Florida Theme Park

A british tourist was dragged from the fast swirling waters of a theme park ride in Florida but did not survive. Ivan Henson, 68, from Manchester, was on the Roa’s Rapids ride at SeaWorld Orlando’s Aquatica park when he was rushed to hospital.
His condition improved while he was in the ambulance but it’s thought Mr Henson – who was holidaying with his family – may have died from natural causes. A sign at Roa’s Rapids warns: “Only guests in good health should ride this attraction.” British honeymooners Steve and Danielle Brown, of Luton, Beds, toook the ride after it reopened. Danielle said: “The current can be quite strong.”

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