On a curiously chosen Sunday, Kentucky Kingdom pulled the wraps off of the new attractions coming to the park when it reopens in spring of 2014, and they scream “family oriented.”
For starters: the first new coaster to be added to the park in over a decade, turns out to be the first Chance Rides Hyper GT-X model. It comes up a little short at 100ft, but kicks off it’s run of airtime hills and tight curves with a wicked 80 degree drop. The park will also be adding a few new flat rides, including a flying scooters titled Professor John’s Flying Machines, a 130ft drop tower called FearFall, new bumper cars, and a 5D cinema.
As far as the touted waterpark goes, new additions include a second wave pool, the much questioned “Adventure River” with water speeds up to 6 times faster than the Lazy River, a 121ft speed slide tower which turns out to be the tallest in America, a 3 slide tower with what looks to be a Proslide Topsy-Turvy, bowl slide, and Mammoth, as well as a “family raft” slide called Plummet Summit, (gee, that name sounds familiar…)
While I’m sure enthusiasts and park locals alike are thrilled that the park is reopening, I’m somewhat skeptical of these new offerings. Yes the waterpark additions look fun, and there are a few new flat rides and shows, but to a veteran enthusiast Lightning Run seems somewhat lackluster. This pales in comparison to the B&M inverted coaster Kings Island is building a mere 2 hour drive from Louisville for 2014. However, this isn’t to say that they aren’t being competitive, season passes just went on sale for $60, and bring with them a slew of discounts and incentives. Kentucky Kingdom is also matching local theme park giant Holiday World’s claims to fame, offering free waterpark tubes and sunscreen. I’ll continue to watch closely and see how locals chose to spend their theme park dollars next year.