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Kings Island

kings island, kings island tickets
Kings Island is a 364-acre 147 ha amusement park located 24 miles 39 km northeast of Cincinnati in Mason, Ohio Owned and operated by Cedar Fair, the park first opened in 1972 by the Taft Broadcasting Company in an effort to move and expand Coney Island, a popular resort destination along the banks of the Ohio River that was prone to frequent flooding After more than $275 million in capital investments, the park features over 80 rides, shows and attractions including fifteen roller coasters and a 33-acre 13 ha water park

Throughout its history, Kings Island has appeared in popular sitcoms and received widespread recognition for its record-breaking attractions and events One of the park's most well-known attractions, The Racer, is often credited with reviving worldwide interest in roller coasters during the 1970s Others, such as The Beast and Banshee, have set several world records including some of which are still standing The park has also suffered through times of negative publicity, particularly surrounding the early demise of roller coasters The Bat and Son of Beast

Kings Island is divided into several themed sections The seasonal amusement park is open from early spring until Labor Day in September, and then reopens for several weekends in the fall for Halloween-themed events In 2016, Kings Island was the second-most visited seasonal amusement park in the United States behind Cedar Point, with an estimated 338 million visitors It was third overall for seasonal attendance in North America, which was led by Canada's Wonderland In addition, Kings Island has won Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award for having the "Best Kids' Area" in the world for sixteen consecutive years 2001–2016


  • 1 History
    • 11 Taft Broadcasting and KECO 1970–1992
    • 12 Paramount's Kings Island 1992–2006
    • 13 Cedar Fair era 2006–present
  • 2 Areas and attractions
    • 21 Action Zone
    • 22 Coney Mall
      • 221 X-Base
    • 23 International Street
    • 24 Oktoberfest
    • 25 Planet Snoopy
    • 26 Rivertown
    • 27 Soak City
    • 28 Halloween Haunt
    • 29 Winterfest Seasonal
  • 3 Fast Lane
  • 4 Significant facts
    • 41 Notable additions
    • 42 Notable events
    • 43 Notable people
    • 44 Other
      • 441 Dogstreet Cemetery
      • 442 Kings Island resort
      • 443 Kings Island greenhouse
  • 5 Awards and recognition
  • 6 Notes
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links


Kings Island's iconic entrance with the Eiffel Tower

Kings Island was conceived as early as 1964 when Coney Island, a popular amusement park 10 miles 16 km east of downtown Cincinnati on the banks of the Ohio River, suffered from a major flood that submerged the area in over 14 feet 43 m of water Although occasional flooding was common at the successful park, the flood in 1964 was the fourth highest on record and caused considerable damage Faced with already-limited space for expansion and parking, the event triggered discussions within the organization about relocating the park34

Leading the way was Gary Wachs, son of Coney Island president Ralph Wachs, who with friends and family owned a majority of stock He decided it was time to relocate the park to stay competitive After years of research and traveling abroad, he presented ideas for a new theme park to the company's board of directors Some board members opposed relocating, including significant stockholder Charles Sawyer It wasn't taken seriously until 1968, when actor Fess Parker announced plans to build a theme park in Northern Kentucky – well within Coney Island's primary market that extended as far south as Louisville The announcement highlighted the need for change and gave Wachs' proposal credibility within the organization34

Gary met with the president of Taft Broadcasting Company, a business interested in promoting its recently acquired Hanna-Barbera division, to discuss a possible merger After receiving support, Fess Parker's efforts to secure financing fell apart along with his plans to build a competing theme park3 In July 1969, Taft Broadcasting Company purchased Coney Island for $65 million and soon after purchased 1,600 acres 650 ha in Warren County, Ohio, for $32 million5 Kings Island still owns 773 acres 313 ha of that purchase5 The site is located between I-71 and the Little Miami River in what was then a part of Deerfield Township6

Taft Broadcasting and KECO 1970–1992edit

Construction began on June 15, 1970 Later that year, a public contest was held to name the new park "Kings Island" emerged the most popular for its recognition of the Kings Mills area as well as its predecessor Coney Island Most of the former park's rides were relocated, while the rest were demolished Coney Island's popular Sunlite Pool attraction remained open, however, and the original park was partially restored in later years456

View from The Racer in the mid-1970s with the Zodiac 1975–1986 to the right

Less than two years after breaking ground, Kings Island opened its gates to the public on April 29, 1972 It was the first of several preview events The grand opening was held the following month on May 27, 19726

Arguably, the most crowd-pleasing attraction featured at the park in its early days was The Racer, a wooden roller coaster consisting of two trains that race side-by-side on identical tracks Designed by legendary designer John C Allen, The Racer was an integral part of the roller coaster renaissance of the 1970s Years later, it would be awarded the Roller Coaster Landmark plaque from American Coaster Enthusiasts ACE for its achievement Other roller coasters present on opening day in 1972 were the Bavarian Beetle, a small steel coaster brought over from Coney Island, and a new junior wooden coaster in the Happy Land of Hanna-Barbera originally named Scooby-Doo78

Kings Island was nationally promoted in two well-known sitcoms on ABC Each filmed an episode on location at the park: The Partridge Family in 1972 and The Brady Bunch in 19739 The Brady Bunch was produced by Paramount Television, a large Taft Broadcasting shareholder10 In later years, Kings Island changed ownership several times Taft sold its theme park division in 1984 for $1675 million to Kings Entertainment Company KECO, a company formed by senior executives and general managers of Taft Attractions Group11 Three parks – Kings Island, Kings Dominion and Carowinds – were involved in the sale11 Taft invested in KECO to retain one-third interest12 Three years later in 1987, American Financial Corporation, led by Carl Lindner, purchased KECO for $150 million613 The deal included a contract with KECO to continue managing park operations614 In 1989, KECO acquired the business assets of Great America, an amusement park it was managing operations for5

Paramount's Kings Island 1992–2006edit

The Eiffel Tower and the fountains at night

In 1992, Paramount Communications Inc formerly Gulf+Western purchased Kings Island and the rest of KECO's parks for $400 million131516 Paramount formed a new division known as Paramount Parks15 They bought out the remaining 80% stake in Canada's Wonderland in 1993, raising the number of parks to five517 That same year, Paramount Parks began incorporating themes from its movies into the park5 Viacom entered the picture after acquiring Paramount in 1994, paving the way for the appearance of Nickelodeon themes First was Nickelodeon Splat City, followed by Nickelodeon Central and eventually Nickelodeon Universe18

In 1997, a year after leaving Deerfield Township, the city of Mason annexed most of Kings Island19 A temporary measure allowed for some land to remain in Deerfield in an attempt to appease park officials and reduce the impact on the township20 The rest would be annexed in 199921 On June 14, 2005, Viacom announced intentions to split into two companies Viacom and CBS Corporation with CBS inheriting Paramount Parks22 Seven months later, on January 26, 2006, CBS announced that the theme parks were for sale23

Cedar Fair era 2006–presentedit

On June 30, 2006, Cedar Fair Entertainment Company purchased Kings Island and the rest of Paramount Parks for approximately $124 billion24 With this acquisition, Cedar Fair owned all three major amusement parks in Ohio: Kings Island, Cedar Point and Geauga Lake purchased from Six Flags in 200425 Kings Island kept the Paramount branding through the end of the 2006 season5 Thereafter, Face/Off became Invertigo, The Italian Job Stunt Track became Backlot Stunt Coaster, Tomb Raider: The Ride became The Crypt and Top Gun became Flight Deck, which later became The Bat Nickelodeon's presence remained in the park through 2009, when Cedar Fair changed the kids' area to a Peanuts theme26

In late 2009, the Mason City Council decided to put a measure on its 2010 ballot that would mandate a 3-percent ticket tax and a 5-percent parking tax at both Kings Island and The Beach waterpark Council member Tony Bradburn argued that it was necessary for the city to help pay for infrastructure improvements, as well as cover police and fire expenses27 This proposed tax hike was the center of debate for several months Kings Island actively encouraged the public to write, email and call Mason City Council representatives to express opposition28 On February 8, 2010, the Mason City Council voted 5–1 against the measure2930

Areas and attractionsedit

Main article: List of Kings Island attractions See also: List of former Kings Island attractions

Action Zoneedit

Action Zone opened in 1974 as Lion Country Safari, a 100-acre 40 ha section of the park featuring a monorail ride that took guests on a safari-style tour through an animal preservation This was part of a network of other safari-style zoos also called Lion Country Safari It was later renamed Wild Animal Safari in 19773132 In 1983, the area became known as Wild Animal Habitat and included Adventure Village, a new area within the rebranded section33 Over the years, it featured rides such as Screamin' Demon 1977–87, the first steel looping roller coaster to run both forward and backward in the United States, and King Cobra 1984–2001, a stand-up looping roller coaster that was the first of its kind in the world183435

Early in its tenure after purchasing Kings Island, Paramount unveiled Top Gun, a suspended roller coaster from Arrow Dynamics, in 199336 Located next to the habitat attraction, it was titled after a film of the same name and was the first ride to be added to the park with a Paramount theme36 The following year, the entire area was renamed Adventure Village coinciding with the removal of the animal habitat and monorail ride18 In 1999, a two-year expansion initiative began with the area's renaming to Action Zone and the addition of two new attractions – Drop Zone: Stunt Tower and Face/Off618 When it debuted, Action Zone resembled a movie stunt set featuring a water tower as the centerpiece The water tower was originally part of a skit with stunts and special effects that imitated a live movie set with a director and stunt performers37

Son of Beast opened in 2000, the second year of the area's two-year expansion It was the tallest and fastest wooden roller coaster in the world and the first of its kind to feature a vertical loop38 As a result of a number of structural issues and two accidents, the ride closed permanently in 2009 and was eventually demolished in 201238 Other notable rides include Delirium, which opened in 2003 as the largest Giant Frisbee ride in the world, and Banshee, the world's longest inverted roller coaster which opened in 2014 at the former location of Son of Beast3940

Name Opened Manufacturer Model Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Banshee 2014 Bolliger & Mabillard Inverted Coaster An inverted roller coaster with seven inversions located in the former location of Thunder Alley and Son of Beast It is the longest of its kind in the world 5
The Bat 1993 Arrow Dynamics Suspended A suspended roller coaster in which free-swinging cars are suspended below the track Formerly known as Top Gun 1993–2007; Flight Deck 2007-201341 5
Congo Falls 1988 Intamin Shoot-the-Chute A Shoot-the-Chute water ride with a 34' drop The ride opened as Amazon Falls 1988–1999 and was later renamed Congo Falls after the Paramount movie Congo18 4
Delirium 2003 HUSS Giant Frisbee A Giant Frisbee ride that swings riders at an angle of 120° creating a maximum arc of 240°, lifting riders 137 feet 42 m into the air Riders reach speeds up to 76 miles per hour 122 km/h 5
Drop Tower: Scream Zone 1999 Intamin Gyro Drop A rotating drop tower ride which at 315 feet 96 m is the tallest of its kind in the world although sister park Kings Dominion has one with a longer drop that does not rotate Formerly known as Drop Zone: Stunt Tower 1999–2007 4
Invertigo 1999 Vekoma Invertigo An inverted Boomerang roller coaster Formerly known as FACE/OFF 1999–2007 5
Timberwolf Amphitheatre 1982 N/A N/A Concert venue formerly known as Stadium of the Stars
Xtreme Skyflyer 1995 Sky Fun 1 Inc Dual Swing Pay-per-ride Double Skycoaster with a dive of 153 feet 47 m 5

Coney Malledit

When Kings Island first opened in 1972, a section of the park was dedicated to its predecessor, Coney Island The area was constructed to resemble the former park's carnival-style layout and featured many of its flat rides which were relocated, including Monster, Scrambler, and Dodgem One of the flagship attractions during the park's inaugural year, The Racer, was located in this section42 In addition to rides, some of Coney Island's famous Ginkgo trees were transplanted, lining the middle of the walkway6 Originally called Coney Island, the area was later renamed Old Coney in 1980 and again to its present name Coney Mall in 198643444546 The area also features game booths, arcades and concession stands reminiscent of state fairs and traveling carnivals from the early twentieth century47

In 1975, Zodiac debuted in the Coney Island mall, which was billed as a "spinning, climbing double ferris wheel"4243 Manufactured by Intamin, the three-minute ride featured twelve gondolas on each of the two wheels which were mounted to a long, hydraulic arm48 It closed in 1987 and reopened at Wonderland Sydney in 198949 In the 1980s, the area saw the additions of Skylab, Zephyr, and Vortex, a six-inversion looping roller coaster that briefly held a world record for most inversions650 Following Paramount's acquisition of the park in 1992, Coney Mall was further expanded in 1994 with Days of Thunder, a motion simulator ride in the new Action Theater attraction, and in 1996 with Flight of Fear, the world's first launched roller coaster to feature a linear induction motor LIM650

In 2005, one of the last Paramount-themed attractions to open at the park, The Italian Job: Stunt Track now known as Backlot Stunt Coaster, was unveiled651 The roller coaster replaced the antique car ride Les Taxis52 Firehawk, a flying roller coaster previously known as X-Flight at Six Flags Worlds of Adventure, was relocated to Kings Island next to Flight of Fear in 200750 The area housing both roller coasters became known as X-Base, a sub-section within Coney Mall that took on its own theme53 The most recent addition to Coney Mall was WindSeeker, added in 2011 The 301-foot foot-tall 92 m, three-minute swing ride features 32, two-person carriages that spin around a central tower up to 30 miles per hour 48 km/h54

Name Opened Manufacturer Model Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Action Theater 1994 N/A N/A A 3-D theater It is used in conjunction with Dinosaurs Alive! Formerly known as The Paramount Action F/X Theater 1998–2008 and Days Of Thunder 1994–1997
Backlot Stunt Coaster 2005 Premier Rides LIM Terrain Following Coaster A launched roller coaster based on a chase sequence in the 2003 film The Italian Job Riders launch into a parking garage, dodge police cars, and are attacked by a helicopter which ignites fire all around riders before hitting a second launch section, sending riders into darkness Formerly known as The Italian Job: Stunt Track 2005–2007 5
Dodgem 1972
Preston & Barbieri Majestic Manufacturing Azzurra Special 2-seater bumper cars from Italy with working headlights, taillights, rear-view mirrors and hazard flashers Operated at Coney Island 1924–1971 Remodeled 1986 4
Dinosaurs Alive! 2011 Dinosaurs Unearthed Dinosaurs Alive! This pay-per-entry attraction is the world's largest animatronic dinosaur park,55 stretching along a 4,000-foot 1,200 m path featuring more than 60 life-sized dinosaurs Four have interactive consoles that help show guests how scientists believe the animal moved The attraction features a replica of an excavation site as well as a paleontological dig site for children56
Monster 1972 Eyerly Aircraft Co Eyerly Monster Traditional Octopus ride that spins in three different circles at the same time It quickly raises and lowers riders as their cars spin Operated at Coney Island 1969–1971 3
Scrambler 1972 Eli Bridge Company Scrambler – Traditional Deluxe Traditional amusement park Twist ride 3 arms spin riders giving them the sensation of almost hitting the wall Operated at Coney Island 1969–1971citation needed 3
Shake, Rattle and Roll 1975 HUSS Troika A classic spinning ride Formerly known as Troika 3
The Racer 1972 Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters Wooden racing roller coaster The trains on one track were changed to ride backward in 1982, but in 2008, the original behavior was restored 4
Vortex 1987 Arrow Dynamics Mega Looper A steel custom looping roller coaster that opened as the world record holder for most inversions, with six, but was superseded the following year by Six Flags Great America's Shockwave 5
WindSeeker 2011 Mondial Wind Seeker A flat ride featuring two-person swings that slowly rotate and ascends the 301-foot 92 m tower until reaching the top where speeds increase up to 30 miles per hour 48 km/h57 After several delays, it opened June 2158 4
Zephyr 1986 Zierer Wave Swinger A suspended swing ride that rotates with a wave motion lifting riders up to 30 feet 91 m in the air 3


This sub-area opened in 2007 Flight of Fear had existed previously, but with the addition of Firehawk, the area took on its own theme, centered around flight and propulsion Although the area is designated by a sign, it's not listed on the park map and is officially part of Coney Mall

Name Opened Manufacturer Model Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Firehawk 2007 Vekoma Flying Dutchman A 1018 m flying roller coaster Firehawk is located directly beside Flight of Fear The ride carries the same theme as it did as "X-Flight," a government flight prototype looking for test subjects codenamed Firehawk This ride was Kings Island's 14th coaster Operated at Geauga Lake as X-Flight 2001–2006 5
Flight of Fear 1996 Premier Rides LIM Catapult Coaster A launched roller coaster prototype Over-the-shoulder harnesses were removed and replaced with lap bars in 2001 Identical to the same-named coaster that opened at Kings Dominion later that year Formerly known as Outer Limits: Flight of Fear 1996–2000 5

International Streetedit

At the heart of the amusement park, visitors are greeted by International Street which lies just beyond the main entrance As one of the park's original staples when it opened in 1972, International Street was designed by Bruce Bushman, a former Walt Disney Imagineering layout design artist4759 The area's architecture and cultural themes represent Italy, Spain, Germany and Switzerland4759 To save on the cost of construction, the second story of each building was designed on a three-quarters scale, borrowing from a practice used by Disney throughout their theme parks60

The area's main attractions include the Royal Fountain, a 600,000-US-gallon pool 2,300 m3 capable of shooting 10,000 US gallons 38 m3 of water into the air each minute,61 and the signature Eiffel Tower, a one-third scale replica of the original which offers a view of the entire park to its guests Grand Carousel, a classic carousel built in 1926 and originally located at Coney Island, is another International Street attraction62 Also located here is the Kings Island Theater and a variety of restaurants and souvenir shops

In 1992, a dark ride attraction known as Phantom Theater was added to the park's lineup It utilized an Omnimover system to transport riders through specially-themed rooms resembling a behind-the-scenes tour of a haunted theater Previously, the building housed the Enchanted Voyage 1972–1983 and Smurf's Enchanted Voyage 1984–1991, both Old Mill dark rides that used unaccompanied boats floating along water-filled guideways After a couple theme changes in 2003 and 2010, Phantom Theater became known as Boo Blasters on Boo Hill183463

Name Opened Manufacturer Model Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Boo Blasters on Boo Hill 1992 Sally Corporation, D H Morgan Manufacturing Ghost Blasters A family dark ride experience where riders shoot laser guns at ghosts and ghouls The building formerly housed Enchanted Voyage 1972–1983 and Smurf's Enchanted Voyage 1984–1991 The former boat ride was transformed into an Omnimover dark ride in 1992 and was named Phantom Theater 1992–2002 In 2003, the ride was re-themed by Sally Corporation and renamed Scooby-Doo and the Haunted Castle 2003–2009 During Hanna-Barbera's 2010 exit, the ride underwent minor changes and became known as Boo Blasters on Boo Hill 1
Eiffel Tower 1972 Intamin Paris Tower An approximately one-third scale replica of the Eiffel Tower in Paris at 314 feet 96 m and 450 tons The tower was initially 3315 feet 1010 m, but the structure's top antenna was eventually removed Kings Dominion has a near-exact replica 2
International Showplace 1972 N/A N/A Entertainment venue
International Street Bandstand 1972 N/A N/A Entertainment venue formerly known as Royal Fountain Bandstand
Kings Island Theater 1976 N/A N/A Entertainment venue formerly known as American Heritage Music Hall and Paramount Theater
Grand Carousel 1972 Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters Carousel #79 The classic Carousel was built in 1926 and is painted with more than 20,000 sheets of 23-karat 96% gold, 1,000 sheets of sterling silver and 48 hand-carved wooden horses It features the Wurlitzer Organ #157 Operated at Coney Island 1926–1971 1


Oktoberfest, relating to the eponymous German festival, opened with the park in 1972 The area resembles a German town with timber-framed, German-style architecture The Festhaus building is its central attraction, featuring live shows with several indoor eateries Nearby is an outdoor bar that serves alcoholic beverages, with a portion of its seating area located above water bordering Oktoberfest lake Rides within this section of the park include a mine train roller coaster called Adventure Express, which opened in 1991, and a swinging pirate ship ride called Viking Fury, which opened in 19826465 Sling Shot, one of two pay-per-ride attractions at Kings Island, is also located within Oktoberfest66

Name Opened Manufacturer Model Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Adventure Express 1991 Arrow Dynamics Mine train A mine train roller coaster 5
Festhaus 1982 N/A N/A Entertainment venue and food court
SlingShot 2002 Funtime Fixed Foundation Slingshot Pay-per-ride reverse bungee attraction that catapults riders 275 feet 84 m in the air up to 100 miles per hour 160 km/h in a steel cage that flips multiple times before returning slowly to the platform 5
Viking Fury 1982 Intamin Bounty Swinging pirate ship ride 3

Planet Snoopyedit

Entrance to Planet Snoopy See also: Planet Snoopy

The area initially opened with the park in 1972 as The Happy Land of Hanna-Barbera and was later shortened to Hanna-Barbera Land The area's flagship attraction was a junior wooden roller coaster named Scooby Doo later known as Woodstock Express, which like The Racer was designed by John C Allen The portion of the area that borders Rivertown was revamped in 1995 with the addition of a kids' play area, stage and water attraction, and the new sub-section was named Nickelodeon Splat City In 2001, the log ride Kings Mills Log Flume was updated with a children's theme and renamed The Wild Thornberrys River Adventure The Rugrats Runaway Reptar inverted roller coaster was introduced the same year This expansion into an area that was originally part of Rivertown became known as Nickelodeon Central Hanna-Barbera Land was gradually converted over the next several years and eventually renamed "Nickelodeon Universe" in 200618

Following Cedar Fair's purchase of the park from Paramount in 2006, Nickelodeon-themed elements were eventually removed and replaced with Peanuts comic strip themes in 2010 – the children's brand marketed at other Cedar Fair parks Nickelodeon Universe became known as Planet Snoopy26 The area features many rides intended for smaller children, as well as three family-oriented roller coasters and a skater coaster Amusement Today has awarded Kings Island with the Golden Ticket Award for Best Kids' Area in the World for sixteen consecutive years 2001–20166768 Kings Island's Planet Snoopy was also the largest in the Cedar Fair chain until 2013, when Kings Dominion doubled the size of its Planet Snoopy section69

Name Opened Manufacturer
Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Character Carousel 1982 Chance Rides
36-Foot Carrousel
Children's carousel Formerly known as Hanna Barbera Carousel 1982–2005 and Nick-O-Round 2006–2009 1
Charlie Brown's Wind Up 1992 Zamperla Chair swing ride for children Formerly known as Pixie and Dixie's Swingset 1992–2005 and Backyardigan's Swing-Along 2006–2009 1
Flying Ace Aerial Chase 2001 Vekoma
Suspended family coaster
Steel roller coaster for all ages Formerly known as Rugrats Runaway Reptar 2001–2009 Its top speed is 26 miles per hour 42 km/h and lasts for roughly 1 minute and 30 seconds70 4
Joe Cool's Dodgem School 1976 Jurgen Scmidt, Rivervaze, NJ Children's bumper cars Formerly known as Flintstone's Boulder Bumpers 1976–2005 and Jimmy Neutron's Atom Smasher 2006–2009 2
Kite Eating Tree 2006 Zamperla
Jumpin' Star
A mini-drop ride that lifts riders 20 feet 61 m into the air that bounces up and down as the ride eventually lowers to the ground Formerly known as Plankton’s Plunge 2006–2009 3
Linus' Beetle Bugs 1972 William F Mangels
Whip Jr
Classic whip ride Operated at Coney Island 1967–1971 Formerly known as Screecher, Funky Phantom, Alley Cat 500 1972-2005 and Swiper's Sweepers 2006–2009 1
Linus' Launcher 2006 Zamperla
Kite Flyer
Formerly known as Danny Phantom's Phantom Flyers 2006–2007 and Phantom Flyers 2006–2009 3
PEANUTS 500 1979 Venture Ride Manufacturer Inc Drivable car ride Formerly known as Mr Jinks Jalopies 1979–, Kiddie Turnpike, Fender Bender 500 –2005 and Nick Jr Drivers 2006–2009 1
PEANUTS Off-Road Rally 1972 Hampton Amusement Corporation Miniature carousel car ride Operated at Coney Island 1969–1971 Formerly known as Pee Wee Raceway, Motor Mouse and Go Diego Go! 1
PEANUTS Playhouse 2006 N/A Entertainment venue formerly known as Nickelodeon Theater 2006–2008 and Putz HQ 2009
Race For Your Life Charlie Brown 1972 Arrow Development/Hopkins Rides Themed Log Flume ride modeled after the 1977 Peanuts movie Operated at Coney Island 1968–1971 Closed during the 2000 season, it reopened under a new name and Nickelodeon theme in 2001 Formerly known as Kings Mills Log Flume 1972–1999 and The Wild Thornberrys River Adventure 2001–2009 4
Sally's Sea Plane 1998 Zamperla
Crazy Bus
Formerly known as Atom Ant's Airways 1998–2005 and Timmy's Airtours 2006–2009 2
Snoopy vs Red Baron 1992 Zamperla
Mini Jet
Themed after the comic strip featuring Snoopy Vs the Red Baron Formerly known as Dick Dastardly's Biplanes 1992–2005 and Blue's Skidoo 2006–2009 2
Snoopy's Junction 1982 Mack Rides Guided rail train cars Formerly known as Quick Draw's Railway 1982–2005 and La Adventura de Azul 2006–2009 1
Snoopy's Space Buggies 2015 Zamperla
Jump Around
A circular flat ride on which vehicles attached to a central console bounce up and down Built by Zamperla 2
Surf Dog 2006 Zamperla
Skater Coaster
Surfboard themed ride that spins as it glides over a ramp Formerly known as Avatar: The Last Airbender 2006–2009 4
The Great Pumpkin Coaster 1992 E&F Miler Industries A junior steel roller coaster that takes riders up a small hill through a series of dips and then circles back around to complete the circuit for a second time The ride lasts for roughly 52 seconds71 The queue area used to be the loading area for the Enchanted Voyage ride Formerly known as Scooby Zoom 1992–1997, Top Cat's Taxi Jam 1998–2005 and Little Bill's Giggle Coaster 2006–2009 2
Woodstock Express 1972 Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters A family-targeted wooden roller coaster The ride lasts for roughly 1 minute and 30 seconds72 Formerly known as Scooby Doo 1972–1979, Beastie 1980–2005 and Fairly Odd Coaster 2006–2009 4
Woodstock Gliders 2015 Larson International
Flying Scooters
A flying eagles ride with eight carriages that each have a paddle, enabling guests to change the movement of their carriage 3
Woodstock Whirlybirds 1998 Caripro Amusement Technology Helicopter-themed sky tram Formerly known as Yogi's Sky Tours 1998–2005 and Lazytown Sportacopters 2006–2009 1


Rivertown is an area within the park that features a western theme depicting a town with ranch-style buildings, old wooden signs, and one of the park's most iconic attractions, the Kings Island & Miami Valley Railroad Originally intended to be named Frontier Land, the area was eventually named Rivertown when it debuted with the park in 197273 The area included attractions such as Kings Mill Log Flume and Shawnee Landing, a canoe ride in a part of Rivertown known as Kenton's Cove860

Throughout the 1970s, Rivertown saw the addition of several attractions including Kenton's Cove Keelboat Canal in 1973, which was an elevated log flume ride that operated through the 2000 season, and The Beast roller coaster in 197934 Designed internally by Kings Island, The Beast opened as the tallest, fastest, and longest roller coaster in the world, and in addition to retaining its record length,74 it remains one of the most popular wooden roller coasters in the annual Golden Ticket Awards from Amusement Today757668 Other rides added over the years include a river rafting ride called White Water Canyon, which opened in 1985, and a heavily-themed, indoor flat ride called Tomb Raider: The Ride later renamed The Crypt, which opened in place of Kenton's Cove Keelboat Canal in 200234 The Crypt closed permanently in 2011

In 2009, the park's first roller coaster from Bolliger & Mabillard, called Diamondback, opened in Rivertown The 230-foot-tall 70 m hypercoaster reaches a top speed of 80 mph 130 km/h and features a splashdown water effect finale77 In August 2016, Kings Island revealed plans to build Mystic Timbers, a 109-foot-tall 33 m wooden roller coaster set to open in 20177879 The new ride added 3,265 feet 995 m of track bringing the park's wooden coaster total to 18,804 feet 5,731 m, making it the most of any amusement park in the world80

Name Opened Manufacturer
Description Thrill ratingnt 1
Diamondback 2009 Bolliger & Mabillard
Hyper coaster
A steel roller coaster that is 230 feet 70 m tall and 5,282 feet 1,610 m long with a top speed of 80 mph 130 km/h Kings Island's first hypercoaster, Diamondback spans 10 acres 40,000 m2 of terrain and features a splashdown water effect finale 5
Kings Island & Miami Valley Railroad 1972 Crown Metal Products Company81
3 ft 914 mm narrow gauge 4-4-0 Steam Train
A steam locomotive ride that travels in a 5,585-foot 1,702 m loop that provides transportation between the main park and Soak City Before the water park and its station were built, the train ride was a narrated excursion, traversing open fields and wooded areas with multiple props themed to the old west, small buildings and a fort The trains are scale replicas of the famous 1800s locomotive known as The General The two trains are named "Kenny Van Meter" Blue Train, Engine 12 and "Lew Brown" Green Train, Engine 19, formerly "Tecumseh" and "Simon Kenton" respectively The Rivertown station is also known as "Losantiville Station" 1
Mystic Timbers 2017 Great Coasters International A wooden roller coaster that is 109 feet 33 m tall and 3,265 feet 995 m long with a top speed of 53 mph 85 km/h 4
The Beast 1979 Kings Island A wooden roller coaster constructed and designed internally by Kings Island, which consistently remains a top roller coaster among many industry experts and enthusiasts75 When it first opened, it held virtually every major record for roller coasters tallest, fastest and longest As of 2014, it still holds the record as the longest wooden roller coaster in the world according to Guinness World Records The ride takes advantage of the hilly terrain and has two separate chain lifts throughout the course 5
White Water Canyon 1985 Intamin
Rapid Ride
River rafting ride that takes riders on a winding course through the densely wooded terrain in Kings Island's Rivertown Riders are placed in circular inner-tube rafts that seat up to six Whirlpools, hidden geysers and wave makers randomly soak riders along the route It is one of the longest rides in the park at 5 minutes and 20 seconds 4

Soak Cityedit

Main article: Soak City Kings Island

Included with park admission, Soak City is a 33-acre 13 ha water park featuring two wave pools, several children's areas and a variety of water slides82 It originally opened in 1989 as WaterWorks and has since been expanded several times6 It was renamed in 2004 to Crocodile Dundee's Boomerang Bay, based on the titular character from the film "Crocodile" Dundee, played by Paul Hogan who was also hired to promote the revamped water park83 Following Cedar Fair's acquisition of Kings Island, it was later renamed Boomerang Bay, and all references to the film character were removed On September 2, 2011, Kings Island announced a $10-million expansion of the water park for the 2012 season, as well as a plan to rename it Soak City84 Tropical Plunge, a seven-story water slide complex, was added for the 2016 season85

Halloween Hauntedit

Halloween Haunt is a Halloween-themed event at Kings Island that operates on weekends from September through October It features haunted houses, mazes, live shows, and most of the park's regular season attractions Special lighting and fog effects are utilized throughout the park, and actors in costume engage with guests The event originally debuted as Fear Fest in 2000, and the name was later changed to Halloween Haunt in 2007 8687

Winterfest Seasonaledit

Following a twelve-year absence, park officials confirmed in 2016 that Winterfest would return in 2017 The annual Christmas-themed holiday festival features the lighting of the park's Eiffel Tower and ice skating on the Royal Fountain Several ride attractions will be open, and International Street will be transformed into a winter village filled with Christmas carolers and homemade crafts

Fast Laneedit

See also: List of Fast Lane attractions § Kings Island

Fast Lane, introduced at Kings Island in July 2011, is a secondary queue system that offers shorter wait times on the park's most popular rides88 In addition to the standard admission charge, visitors can bypass the standard wait line by purchasing a wrist band that grants access to the Fast Lane queue A limited number of wrist bands are sold each day The two options available for purchase are Fast Lane and Fast Lane Plus, the latter of which adds several additional rides to the list89

Significant factsedit

See also: Kings Island timeline

Notable additionsedit

  • 1977: Screamin' Demon debuted as one of the first forward- and backward-looping roller coasters in the United States9091 It was later sold in 1987 to Camden Park in Huntington, West Virginia, where it operated as the Thunderbolt Express until 1999 It was eventually dismantled in 2004
Son of Beast with loop
  • 1979: Kings Island unveiled The Beast setting records as the world's tallest, fastest and longest roller coaster92
  • 1981: The park introduced The Bat, generally accepted as the first permanent modern-day suspended roller coaster93 However, plagued with mechanical problems and downtime, The Bat was removed just three years later in 1984
  • 1982: Kings Island introduced Winterfest, a Christmas-time holiday event which ran from November 25 through December 31 The yearly event was held until 1992 and made a brief return in 2005
  • 1984: King Cobra opened as the first roller coaster to be designed from the ground-up as a stand-up coaster, even though others had been converted to stand-up designs King Cobra was dismantled and put up for sale in 2002, when downtime and maintenance proved prohibitive
Overview of The Racer, plus Firehawk and Flight of Fear
  • 1987: The Vortex was added to the park and briefly held a record with six inversions
  • 1989: WaterWorks debuted as a family water park featuring a wave pool, water slides and other attractions
  • 1999: Kings Island's "Adventure Village" area began the first of a two-year expansion to re-energize the area Renamed Paramount Action Zone, the area was completely re-themed as a brightly colored movie studio backlot Two new rides, FACE/OFF and Drop Zone: Stunt Tower, opened with the latter setting a new record for the world's tallest gyro drop
  • 2000: For the second year of the Paramount Action Zone two-year expansion, Son of Beast opened setting records as the world's tallest, fastest and only-looping wooden roller coaster Billed as a sequel to Kings Island's own legendary roller coaster, The Beast, Son of Beast was also the park's first hypercoaster In October 2000, Kings Island debuted FearFest which runs annually from late September through October later renamed to Halloween Haunt
  • 2002: Tomb Raider: The Ride opened at Kings Island using an unorthodox marketing approach The vehicle was by design concealed from view even as guests are being seated Opening-day riders did not know what was going to happen as the ride started Under the hood, the ride was based on a typical top spin model ride, except that this version was the world's first Giant variation to hold nearly twice as many riders as prior efforts In addition, the ride operated indoors synchronized to a musical score, lasers, water effects, fog and theatrical lighting
Diamondback's lift hill
  • 2005: Kings Island opened Italian Job: Stunt Track, a roller coaster that primarily focused on special effects to tie in with the film The Italian Job sister park Canada's Wonderland opened one the same year
  • 2007: Kings Island unveiled Firehawk, a Vekoma Flying Dutchman roller coaster The ride originally opened in 2001 at Geauga Lake under the name X-Flight but was relocated to Kings Island after the 2006 season Its track colors were changed from neon green to red, while its supports were changed from dark gray to steel gray
  • 2009: A steel hypercoaster from Bolliger & Mabillard called Diamondback opened in place of the former Swan Lake94
  • 2010: Planet Snoopy opened in place of the Nickelodeon Universe kids area The Nickelodeon-themed attractions and characters from Hanna-Barbera's Scooby-Doo were completely removed This change marked the first time since the park's debut in 1972 that Scooby-Doo was not present in the park
  • 2011: WindSeeker, a tower swinger ride manufactured by Mondial, was added to the Coney Mall next to the Vortex Fast Lane A Pay-Per-Use attraction called Dinosaurs Alive! debuted at Kings Island as the world's largest animatronic dinosaur park55 It is located in Coney Mall near WindSeeker Dinosaurs Alive 3D was also introduced to the Action Theater presented in Dolby 3D
  • 2012: Soak City was announced on September 2, 2011, as the new name for Boomerang Bay The Australian theme was dropped and additions included a second, larger wave pool along with sand-volleyball courts and a completely revamped lazy river with new names all around95
  • 2014: The longest inverted roller coaster in the world, Banshee, opened in the location previously occupied by Son of Beast and Thunder Alley within the park's Action Zone9697
  • 2017: Mystic Timbers, a wooden coaster manufactured by Great Coasters International is added It is located in the park's Rivertown area Winterfest has also been confirmed to make its return after a twelve-year hiatus98

Notable eventsedit

  • 1972: ABC sitcom, The Partridge Family, filmed at the park in the episode "I Left My Heart in Cincinnati" which aired on January 26, 1973 Episode #66 from Season 3
  • 1973: Another ABC sitcom, The Brady Bunch, filmed at the park in the episode "The Cincinnati Kids" which aired later that year on November 2399
  • 1974: Sixty-nine-year-old Karl Wallenda broke a world skywalk distance record of 1,800 feet 550 m100
  • October 25, 1975: Evel Knievel, in the last major stunt of his career, successfully jumped fourteen Greyhound buses at Kings Island The event was broadcast live on ABC and landed high viewer ratings, garnering 52 percent of the TV audience for that hour with an estimated 55 million viewers The distance of the jump measured 133 feet 41 m, and the record feat of jumping fourteen buses on a Harley Davidson stood until 1999101102
  • May 24, 2008: Robbie Knievel, son of Evel, successfully jumped over 24 Coke Zero trucks in the Kings Island Parking Lot This was expected to be the last of Robbie's big jumps103
  • July 4, 2008: High wire artist Rick Wallenda broke the world skywalk distance record of 1,800 feet 550 m held by his grandfather, Karl Wallenda, by walking 2,000 feet 610 m on a 75-foot-high wire 23 m from Kings Island's Eiffel Tower to the park's entrance and back104105
  • August 31, 2008: Barry Williams, Susan Olsen and Mike Lookinland returned to Kings Island for A Very Brady Reunion, a four-show special of song, dance and Brady Bunch stories106
  • August 15, 2009: Nik Wallenda completed a skywalk on a wire suspended 262 feet 80 m above the ground that extended 800 feet 240 m Although it didn't break any world records, it was the highest skywalk Nik had completed to date and was three times higher than the skywalk Rick Wallenda performed a year earlier107
  • May 19, 2013: Former Brady Bunch stars Barry Williams, Susan Olsen and Christopher Knight returned to the park to "entertain park guests during four shows of singing, dancing and Brady Bunch anecdotes"108109

Notable peopleedit

The following is a list of former employees at Kings Island that later became well known in another industry:110111112113

  • Lisa Akey actress
  • Curtis Cregan actor – worked as a live shows performer and emcee for the Nickelodeon show at Kings Island
  • Carmen Electra singer – started her professional career in 1990 as a dancer at Kings Island in the show “It’s Magic”
  • Woody Harrelson actor – wood carver at Kings Island during high school
  • Justin Jeffre singer – part of quartet that performed throughout the park
  • Lewis Johnson reporter – former rides supervisor on the Beast and Racer roller coasters at Kings Island 1981–87
  • Susan Kay Johnson 1987 Miss Ohio
  • Nick Lachey singer – part of quartet that performed throughout the park
  • Dan Patrick TV/radio sports host – worked on park's golf course grounds crew
  • Susan Perkins 1978 Miss America – worked at the park as a live shows performer
  • Rob Pottorf film composer – worked as live show performer and starred in Kings Production's TV series, Pumpkin Creek
  • Gigi Rice actress


Dogstreet Cemeteryedit

Dogstreet cemetery is located at the north end of the Kings Island parking lot and is maintained by Deerfield Township The historic cemetery dates back to 1803 The Warren County Genealogical Society documented nearly 70 grave sites in the cemetery, though as of 2005update, only 52 headstones remained114

On January 11, 2012, the amusement park and cemetery were featured on season 8, episode 1 of Ghost Hunters entitled Roller Ghoster The show investigated claims of haunted occurrences inside the park and around the cemetery, particularly of a ghost reportedly known as "Missouri Jane"115 Warren County Genealogical Society records document a grave for a Missouri Jane Galeenor, who died in 1846 at age five116

Kings Island resortedit

As part of the Kings Island resort, in 1972 Taft Broadcasting Company built a golf course, hotel and campground

  • The Golf Center at Kings Island - Designed by Jack Nicklaus with Desmond Muirhead,117118 the 18-hole "Grizzly" and the 9-hole "Bruin" golf courses are located just across Interstate 71 The "Grizzly" was used for PGA and LPGA tournaments throughout the years The Kings Island golf courses were formerly known as the Jack Nicklaus Golf Center, Jack Nicklaus Sports Center119120 and The Jack Nicklaus Golden Bear Golf Courses121
  • Kings Island Inn - Designed to depict a small alpine village, the 300-room inn Also known as Kings Island Resort & Conference Center122 was located on Kings Island Drive across the street from the park It featured a restaurant, indoor and outdoor pools, tennis court, sand volleyball, half-court basketball and a conference center The inn was also featured in the Partridge Family's episode "I Left My Heart in Cincinnati" and the Brady Bunch episode "The Cincinnati Kids" The inn and conference center closed in 2014123
  • Kings Island Campground - The park used to offer a 45-acre campground It had 350 sites plus overflow, 6 cabins, pool, game room and store A free tram carried campers to and from the park The campground closed in 2004 and the land, except for the overflow area, was sold to Great Wolf Resorts124

Kings Island greenhouseedit

The park has its own greenhouse just off of Columbia Road It can be seen from the top of The Bat's lift hill It produces the flowers and topiary for the park Some of their notable work is the "Living Liberty Bell" topiary and working "Flower Clock" near the Eiffel Tower125

Awards and recognitionedit

  • Amusement Today – Golden Ticket Award for Best Kids’ Area 2001–201668
  • NAPHA – Award for best new attraction for 2009 Diamondback126
  • Themed Entertainment Association – 2015 attendance report ranks Kings Island third among seasonal amusement parks in North America with an estimated 334 million visitors127


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Ratings assigned per Kings Island's own system, where "1" is least intensity and "5" is most See their rider height guide2 for more information


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  15. ^ a b Zhito, Lisa August 10, 1992 "Acquisition of KECO sharpens Paramount's marketing edge" Amusement Business Retrieved November 10, 2015 
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  30. ^ "Council Votes Against Kings Island Tax Hike" wwwwlwtcom February 8, 2010 Archived from the original on February 25, 2012 Retrieved May 18, 2010 
  31. ^ "Lion Country Safari Renamed" The Cincinnati Enquirer March 31, 1977 p B-1 William C Price, park general manager, said Kings Island terminated its management contract with Lion Country Safari Inc and has renamed the park's 100-acre preserve Wild Animal Safari 
  32. ^ "Watch out! The Screamin' Demon is here" The Journal News Hamilton, OH April 14, 1977 Retrieved February 24, 2017 Wild Animal Safari has been re-themed for 1977 to include the addition of North American animals, bison, elk, and white-tailed deer 
  33. ^ a b c d "Timeline" KICentral Retrieved August 3, 2016 
  34. ^ Richardson, Rachel April 25, 2012 "Kings Island thrill ride history" Metromix Archived from the original on January 10, 2013 Retrieved April 26, 2013 
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  36. ^ "Kings Island Media Day 1999" June 4, 2009 Retrieved January 30, 2012 
  37. ^ a b McClelland, Justin July 27, 2012 "Kings Island to tear down Son of Beast" Dayton Daily News Retrieved May 2, 2013 
  38. ^ McNutt, Randy September 27, 2002 "New KI ride may result in 'delirium'" The Cincinnati Enquirer Retrieved May 2, 2013 
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  45. ^ "Kings Island 1986" Retrieved July 7, 2012 
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  48. ^ "The Zodiac at Kings Island" Wonderland History Retrieved November 9, 2015 
  49. ^ a b c MacDonald, Brady August 22, 2012 "Top 10 roller coasters at Ohio's Kings Island" Los Angeles Times Retrieved November 9, 2015 
  50. ^ ""MINI" Roars On Italian Job Ride - But Where is Charlze" The Auto Channel May 19, 2005 Retrieved November 9, 2015 
  51. ^ Solvig, Erica August 13, 2004 "Engines rev, tires peel" Cincinnati Enquirer Retrieved November 9, 2015 
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  53. ^ Self, Jamie August 25, 2011 "Carowinds new 'flying machine' sends riders 30 stories up" Herald Online Retrieved November 9, 2015 
  54. ^ a b "Kings Island to open world’s largest dinosaur park" Mason Buzz March 18, 2011 Retrieved October 17, 2011 
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  56. ^ "WindSeeker" Kings Island Retrieved August 21, 2004 
  57. ^ "Kings Island: Opening date for WindSeeker yet to be confirmed" Theme Park Tourist Retrieved June 1, 2011 
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  62. ^ Young, Josh October 21, 2014 "Designing Phantom Theater for Kings Island With R&R Creative Amusement Designs" Theme Park University Retrieved August 4, 2016 
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  117. ^ "Desmond Muirhead — golf course architect — golf courses built, articles, related information" Worldgolfcom 2012-08-01 Retrieved 2013-04-08 
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  119. ^ "Golf Roundup : Debbie Massey's 67 Leads LPGA Championship by One Shot — Los Angeles Times" Articleslatimescom 1988-05-20 Retrieved 2013-04-08 
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  122. ^ Salerno, Ronny 4 November 2014 "The End of Suburban Cincinnati's Alpine Chalets" queencitydiscovery Retrieved 8 March 2015 
  123. ^ Solvig, Erica March 24, 2004 "Kings Island campground may become new resort" The Cincinnati Enquirer Retrieved January 25, 2012 
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  125. ^ "NAPHA's 2009 Survey Results" NAPHA 2009 Retrieved July 9, 2012 
  126. ^ Cite error: The named reference 2015_attendance was invoked but never defined see the help page

External linksedit

  • Amusement parks portal
  • Trains portal
  • Ohio portal
  • Media related to Kings Island at Wikimedia Commons
  • Official website
  • Kings Island at the Roller Coaster DataBase

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