Coaster Obsession: 2010 and the Economy


August has always been my favorite time of year. Usually by this time, parks are about to open up for the haunt season, and the announcements of new rides typically happen this time of year. Going back and thinking, I’ve heard three announcements. I know there’s got to be more than three coasters to be build in the United States for 2010. Well, I was right. With the economy in a slump, many parks are not building new attractions for the next season, possibly because they want to hold onto whatever kind of money they’ve made this season. I’m excited about the coasters being built, but it looks like I’ll have to travel far and wide to ride something new.

I made a chart up below with the rides listed below that are to be built in 2010. (I counted Flying Turns as it is still not open)

Park Coaster Coaster Type
Knoebels Black Diamond (Used) Unknown – Sit Down
Knoebels Flying Turns Bobsled – Wood
Kings Dominion Intimidator 305 Intamin
Carowinds Intimidator B&M
Six Flags Magic Mountain Unknown Unknown
Kennywood Unknown LSM
Holiday World Wildebeest Water Coaster

Okay, so counting Flying Turns, we’ve got a grand total of 7 coasters, one of which is not a brand new coaster.

In 2009, 14 coasters were supposed to be constructed and open. For 2010, half the amount of coasters are supposed to be built. I love new coasters, but it looks like this year I’ll be traveling far and wide to ride something new! It seems that the economy is really having it’s effects on parks in the United States. With the state of the economy, I could imagine the fear that parks are feeling about building new attractions. They feel they need to hold onto every little penny they make just incase the economy is still in a slump next year, but I could be wrong! I hope 2011 is a better year for the amount of coasters.

However, I must say, Carowinds and Kings Dominion are building brand new rides! New rides tend to have all the technology, Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, being a great example. They’re also smooth and there’s never before been a picture taken of the ride fully erected. Can’t really say much about new rides except that you can imagine what pieces of track fit together, what it will look like when it’s finished, and how thrilling the thrill will be.

So far, it appears Knoebles is moving Black Diamond from Dinosaur Beach in New Jersey and is the only park purchasing a used coaster from another park. I’ve done a little research on “Golden Nugget”, which is Black Diamond’s previous name. I orginally found the coaster listed on the Roller Coaster Data Base and thought it was odd that the coaster was open from 1960 until 1992. From 1993-1995 and 1999-2009 it had been listed as SBNO (Standing But Not Operating). From there I did a little bit of research. Sadly, the park caught fire and had been closed thereafter, however the ride survived the fire and reopened when the new park opened. As the popularity of the pier fell, the ride closed and sat dormant for an entire decade until it was purchased by Knoebels. I love rides that have history! This seems like a simple ride that could be themed well.

I can’t say I’m really disappointed, but I was hoping a Florida park would open a new coaster since it’s pretty much next door to me now.