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Overload of roller coasters in Orlando

What's next? a coaster at the Holy Land Experience?

From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted April 29, 2011 at 5:31 PM
Once upon a time, Space Mountain was THE roller coaster in Orlando. Now there are coasters everywhere. Wasn't Disney and Universal supposed to be all about dark rides? Wasn't Sea World suppose to be all about sea shows and exhibitions?

Epcot is the only theme park that has not get tempted of adding a coaster. I say NO MORE COASTERS!


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Albino Pygmy
Posted April 29, 2011 at 6:38 PM
I couldn't agree more with you, which is why I was extremely pleased to hear about the Thrill Park that was going up off I-Drive. It sounded like a mini Six Flags nightmare to me. Here's the recent scoop from Screamscape:

"Orlando Thrill Park - (4/20/11) Bad news for the Orlando Thrill Park proposal. According to the Orlando Sentinel, the city actually voted against the zoning change requested by the developers due to concerns that noise levels would become troublesome to the nearby neighborhood. Currently the developers have five days to file an appeal."

From Nick Markham
Posted April 30, 2011 at 9:52 AM
Are you guys crazy? Florida will never even come close to the level California is at theme park wise if it doesn't get more coasters. Roller coasters are some of the best parts of a theme park experience, and a theme park without roller coasters isn't really as fun as one with roller coasters.

As to your "Six Flags Nightmare", Six Flags has some very nice parks with very nice thrill rides. You guys are crazy to want to turn away roller coasters, you barely have any as it is.

From David Graham
Posted April 30, 2011 at 10:12 AM
Have to agree with Nick on needing more coasters here in Orlando. Just because you might not enjoy riding them, doesn't mean there isn't a need for them to be built here. I think the Orlando Theme Park would work, but just poor location (with Tangelo Park right there) Maybe opposite end of I-Drive by our convention center or something.

And yeah, Holy Land needs one, Highway to Hell or Stairway to Heaven.(Yes sarcasm)
And as for Epcot, there were always rumors to build a Matterhorn ride called Mt. Fuji at the Japan Pavilion when I left Disney in 94. But we got Mt. Everest and is a great ride.

From Albino Pygmy
Posted April 30, 2011 at 10:19 AM
Roller coasters do not make a theme park, they make an amusement park. True, Six Flags might have some decent amusement parks out there, SFoG is one in mind, however amongst all the coasters out there, there's hardly any attractions left for everyone to enjoy except for a couple water rides, and a kiddie area.

Besides, what happens when it starts to get cloudy and the rain starts to pour down, and your amusement park has all outdoor rides, what are you left to do? Sit around in a restaurant or gift shop and wait it out?

I'm part of the minority out there that doesn't enjoy coasters, but I do enjoy visiting theme parks. There's hardly anything left outside of Universal and Disney when it comes to awesomely themed dark rides and attractions that everyone can enjoy.

I'm sorry, but I don't consider Six Flags as being family friendly where they have coasters for the older crowd, and a kiddie area for the little ones, and hardly anything in the middle for both of them to experience together.

From Orrin Carstarphen
Posted April 30, 2011 at 11:07 AM
I don't have a problem with coasters being added as long as the themeing is good. I love Everest and would love to see a Mt Fuji or Matterhorn themed coaster put in EPCOT. Also a coaster can also be a "dark ride" ex.(Mummy, Space Mountain and Rock and Roller Coaster)A successful theme park needs to have attractions that appeal to all age groups.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted April 30, 2011 at 12:17 PM
David said: "And yeah, Holy Land needs one, Highway to Hell or Stairway to Heaven.(Yes sarcasm)"

They could even be the two tracks of a dueling racing woodie!


From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted April 30, 2011 at 1:28 PM
I like the Mummy because it's part dark ride, but the new coaster (rockit) is more Six Flags than Universal.

At Magic Kingdom they are changing a dark ride (Snow White) for a coaster (Seven Dwarfs). Are we going to be able to see with detail the animatronics of the seven dwarfs at 35 mph? (or whatever the speed will be).

Disney and Universal should leave the roller coaster fever to Six Flags and Cedar Point, and instead they should go back to what they are good at; DARK RIDES!

From David L.
Posted April 30, 2011 at 2:31 PM
Roller Coasters aren't necessary in theme parks(ex: Epcot, an amazing park) but are great to have as long as they are themed. If disney puts a ride like California Screaming in Disney World i would be very unhappy but the7 dwarfs coaster seems like a great addition(they won't put AA during the speedy parts so it should be a great ride). Disney should add more roller coasters. They are really good at making them(Everest, Thunder Mt, etc...) and will draw more crowds. If disney just adds dark ride after dark ride, they will loose a crowd of people who don't like dark rides(not me). Also, seaworld is more than just an outdoor aquarium, it should(and has) great rides and other attractions. Disney and Universal are not all about darkrides, themeparks should have a variety of all rides as long as they are themed. Six Flags parks do have attractions for the whole family. SFOG even has a dark ride(and it's really good too). Besides the coasters and kiddie areas, SFOG has the log flume, the Crime Wave, Thunder River, Wheelie, Splash waterfalls, Acrophobia, the train, the sky buckets, the bumpercars, the Carousel, the Hanson Cars, Up Up and away, Rock 'n' Tug, and Skull Island. SFOG(and other six flags parks) have lots to do that the whole family can enjoy.

From M. Ryan Traylor
Posted April 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM
Overload of coasters in Orlando?!?! What?!!?!

There's: BTMR, Space, Everest, Primeval Whirl, Rock N' Roller, Dragon Challenge, Hulk, Mummy, Woody Woodpecker, Rip Rock whatever, Manta, Kraken, and 1/2 of Atlantis. That's 12 1/2. Plus Snow White next year. 13 1/2. In one city. Over 7 parks. That's barely 2 a park.

Go north to Kings Dominion: 12. Busch Gardens Europe: 4.

Now, on the west coast. SFMM: what, 13? Knotts: 9. DL: 3. CADV: 1.

I agree with Albino, coasters don't make a theme park, they make an amusement park. But to say that there's too many in Orlando is absurd.

Certain parks in Orlando need them. Can you imagine AK without Everest? It'd be called a zoo, not even an amusement park.

From Orrin Carstarphen
Posted April 30, 2011 at 5:45 PM
Snow White and Mr. Toad were great dark rides, however I didn't think the themeing was all that great. More like something you would see at a carnival than a Disney park. Really wish they would bring a version of the Indiana Jones ride to Florida. That is a good DARK ride. BTW Universal needs to take RRR out and bring a Kong attraction back.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted April 30, 2011 at 6:50 PM
Ryan said: "Busch Gardens Europe: 4. "

5!!!!!!!!!!! How DARE you forget Grover's Alpine Express???!!! :)..if that is indeed the one you omitted..

From Mike Gallagher
Posted April 30, 2011 at 6:52 PM
David, when you mentioned the dark Ride at SFOG, are you talking about what I think is called Monster Plantation, the dark boat ride? Since I was disappointed with the coasters there, that ride and the carousel were the ones that left an impression on me.

From David L.
Posted April 30, 2011 at 6:57 PM
Yeah, its now called Monster Mansion after a massive refurbishment which made the ride even better than before. I personally think that it is better than the fantasyland dark rides like Snow White and Peter pan(but not stuff like Pirates or Haunted Mansion).

From Andrew Holden
Posted April 30, 2011 at 8:29 PM
To those who say that CA is better because it has more coasters I say look how many of the top ten parks are in SoCal, now look how many are in Central Florida. My point, and look whose first!

To those who are for a strict moratorium on thrills, I say go look at Everest, Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, Mummy, Manta, etc. As long as the rides are themed well, I am for whatever Disney/Universal/Seaworld/Legoland(in fall) want to put in. I trust those brands and look forward to whatever they put in.

Central FL is the Theme park capital of the world. The title of roller coaster capital goes to SoCal (and I am okay with that!)

From Terri Pierce
Posted April 30, 2011 at 10:41 PM
Just have to comment on Monster Plantation (or whatever it is now)...

Maybe if I would have remembered it from childhood I would have liked it but seriously, it wierded me out. All four of us that got off that boat were very confused and concerned for our sanity. Then again- it was very late in the day and we were very dehydrated. It was a nice several minutes out of the sun though! ohh the sun at SFOG....


As for the roller coasters I have to go with the side of there being just enough. Many of the coasters are very themed and some even act as dark rides (Mummy mainly). As a younger visitor to the park I see the need for the coasters and would think twice if I didn't have any big trill rides to go to... Even though I LOVE dark rides and the atmosphere of just being in the park.

From M. Ryan Traylor
Posted May 1, 2011 at 12:51 AM
@Mike: I forgot about Grover's. BGE is 5 coasters.

@Andrew: The THEME credit goes to Orlando. The AMUSEMENT/THRILL credit could go to numerous places. SoCal has a lot of thrills within an hour radius (depending on traffic). I love that parks like SFMM, Kings Dominion, Cedar Fair, SFGAdv, Kings Island, etc etc compete in the coaster realm frequently, but they will never reach the top of the THEME list.

From Randall Peek
Posted May 1, 2011 at 2:04 AM
Let us consider why roller coasters are put into parks in the first place. One of the reasons people go to parks is to experience something thrilling, and roller coasters fit the bill particularly well. They also have a high capacity in general compared to a flat ride, and therefore allow parks to manage large crowds easier. As mentioned earlier, it also provides variety from dark rides and flat rides, giving a more comprehensive experience to a park. While it can be difficult to come up with a theme for a massive coaster that will fit into a theme park, smaller coasters tend to be easy to theme and fit with existing areas.

Reasons not to include roller coasters? Nope, can't think of any!

From Ashleigh Noad
Posted May 1, 2011 at 6:31 AM
I know it isn't the same for everyone, but rollercoasters are a huge attraction to our family. We don't really care much for EPCOT and nor Animal Kingdom. The themeing is excellent and I love the whole logistics of Disney parks, but my family aren't as geeky as me and just want to experience some awesome rides - many of which are rollercoasters. These are often the most photographed attractions at the park - arguably it is a little different in Orlando.

From Nick Markham
Posted May 1, 2011 at 7:33 AM
First of all, M. Ryan Taylor, you're in Los Angeles! How do you not know SFMM's coasters! It is now known as the park with the most coasters in the world: 18.

That means in California: 4 in Disneyland, 2 in DCA, 9 in Knott's, 1 in Universal Studios hollywood, and 18 in SFMM. If we wan't to go statewide, 8 in SFDK, 7 in CAGA, 1 (soon to be two) in Sea World, 3 in LegoLAND.

Second, California is better because it is the first of everything. Florida has copies of Disneyland, Sea World, Universal Studios Hollywood, and soon to be LegoLand. I am just saying I prefer the original.

But, since this is not a California vs Florida thread, ignore that.

Florida has a pretty good number of coasters, but to say it should just stop making anymore or even so much as get rid of some there is insane.

From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted May 1, 2011 at 9:14 AM
If the Holy Land Experience decides to get a coaster, name it Dante's Inferno.

From Carrie Hood
Posted May 1, 2011 at 10:13 AM
Coasters are a huge drawl. Part of the fact being forgotten here is Floridians are jaded, we have very high standards at parks because we have amazing places like Disney World/Universal/BGA. We are used to "Theme Parks" where they spend the money on atmosphere and making anything special. From a restaurant to a coaster.

95% of the country (meaning the US) doesn't have that. They get "Amusement Parks" where coasters and specialty rides are the attractions. They don't need themes or atmosphere to be happy! They want to go higher and faster, be twisted and turned more then any other park they have been to. They will travel days because someone has a new coaster just a little bit higher and faster then someone else. The largest local park near me has had 4 coasters since 1991, at that same time Disney World only had 2. Busch Gardens had 3, guess where the older kids would rather go?

You've got to look beyond themes and into what people want. THRILL RIDES! Give them to us, give them to us NOW! While Walt Disney World may draw people without these rides they won't get nearly as much repeat business as other parks with these rides will get. Why? Nothings changed, Nothing new that appeals to them to spend the money in going to WDW when they could go to a 'Ride Park' which gives them what they want for a bit less in price.

So you need to think about this also before you say something silly like "No More Coasters". Frankly, Orlando needs more to keep up. In my personal opinion, the Orlando parks can do it and do it amazingly well. So they need to get on ball and do it, show the world you can have coasters with themes. Everest is good, now make 6 more like it Disney.
There is also the consideration that rides, ANY ride gets old and either needs a major overhaul or replacement with something new. So add that into the calculations also that something new HAS to be built anyway. It might as well be something that will draw people for years.

And if Holy Land gets a coaster, I've gotta vote for Dante's Inferno too!

Oh! Better yet, put in a Merry-Go-Round with little demon beasts as the horses and call it "The 9 Levels of Hell" and have it go around 9 times!
...I need to copy right that idea!

From Orrin Carstarphen
Posted May 1, 2011 at 10:58 AM
@ Carrie, I have to respectfully disagree about Disney not getting as much repeat business as a park with more coasters. WDW is #1 in attendance and I would guess a good percentage of that is repeat business. I live less than an hour from SFOGa and would rather drive 5 hours to go to WDW and yes I do love roller coasters.

From M. Ryan Traylor
Posted May 1, 2011 at 3:15 PM
@Nick: I was making an average of what they have operational on a daily basis ;)

From Andrew Holden
Posted May 1, 2011 at 5:05 PM
@Carrie-I am a firm believer in the philosophy that every ride does not need to be an e-ticket ride. If Disney were to have six expedition everest scale rides put in a once, they would be spending 600 million dollars, or roughly twice the amount of the Harry Potter land at Islands. Six Flags can afford large coasters because they don't cost 100,000 grand a piece because they aren't quite that worried about attention to detail. I'd rather see Magic Kingdom go the way of Mr. Toad than to spoil it with Six Flags style thrills. Disney/Universal/Seaworld has a great strategy, and I promise you they are having no problem attracting repeat visitors (what with SeaWorld's use of subliminal messages in their fireworks show and all ;)

From Albino Pygmy
Posted May 1, 2011 at 9:44 PM
I'll have to agree with the rest saying that Orlando has no problem with repeat visitors, at all. I highly doubt they're coming in just to ride their favorite coasters again, and again, and bringing their entire family just to ride coasters. If they were, they wouldn't spend all that money to come from where ever they are in the country to one place rather than any of the numerous other amusement parks out there with plenty of coasters.

Honestly, I think the other parks should take note of what we're doing in Orlando and start investing in dark rides. Sure, they're not going to be anywhere near the quality of Universal or Disney, but it will offer up some variety that everyone is sure to enjoy. Possibly a nice break in between riding coasters. Think about how awesome Mr. Toad's Wild Ride was, and also think about how cheaply that ride was made, and probably would still attract a large crowd to it. I'm sure if other parks would at least come up with a dark ride like that with the 'cardboard cutouts' it'll be a nice start to something well needed in the rest of the country.

I applauded BGW when they came out with DarKastle, even though it seemed like a cheap knock off of spiderman. At least it wasn't yet another coaster, and the thought of someone else other than Universal and Disney to come up with a dark ride that really blew my mind. So now that we know it is possible for others to come up with such awesomeness, lets see more of it!

From Colton McLaughlin
Posted May 2, 2011 at 12:19 PM
Am I the only one who think s there should be more roller coasters in Orlando? If the ride is well themed and fits the park, I don't see why they shouldn't add it! I also think that the only park in Orlando that needs another dark ride is Universal, and the ride needs to be some form of Kongfrontation.

From James Koehl
Posted May 2, 2011 at 2:05 PM
Daniel, I don't understand your objection to roller coasters in Orlando. Is there a maximum limit of fun you can have in a theme park, and if you ride Thunder Mountain too many times you will use up your alloted amount of fun and can't enjoy Haunted Mansion or it's a small world? If a coaster is properly themed for a theme park, and it doesn't infringe on the theming of the other lands, what is wrong with it? My biggest complaint about themed roller coasters is that, if you can look around and enjoy the theming, the coaster isn't going fast enough! If I want to look at the scenery, I'll ride the train.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted May 2, 2011 at 6:04 PM
James said, "... If I want to look at the scenery, I'll ride the train."

That about sums it up for me. Thanks, James.

I may not get to Florida much, but I'm saddened that the Orlando Thrill Park concept probably won't come to fruition.

From Rob P
Posted May 3, 2011 at 1:29 AM
Orrin wrote :
"Snow White and Mr. Toad were great dark rides, however I didn't think the themeing was all that great. More like something you would see at a carnival than a Disney park. Really wish they would bring a version of the Indiana Jones ride to Florida. That is a good DARK ride. BTW Universal needs to take RRR out and bring a Kong attraction back."

I agree with most of what Orrin says except for bringing Indiana Jones to Florida. I like having differences between the Parks in Orlando and Anaheim. It makes them unique.
On the other hand replacing RRR with King Kong is a great idea and gets my vote.

On the Coaster argument I'm okay with having more provided that the Parks ensure a good balance of attractions and that the ride fits in with the overall ambience of the Park it's in.

How about a "Duelling Dragons" style ride at " Holy Land" called: " Heaven and Hell ?

From Mike Gallagher
Posted May 3, 2011 at 2:24 AM
Rob P. said: " How about a "Duelling Dragons" style ride at " Holy Land" called: " Heaven and Hell ?"


Is there an echo in here? :)


From Tyler Bell
Posted May 3, 2011 at 5:04 AM
Bring on more coasters, and more parks.

From Rob P
Posted May 3, 2011 at 5:01 AM
Calm down Mike. Just missed reading your earlier post that's all. We often get similar or identical ideas being proposed here on TPI 'cos we're all singing from the same songsheet. It's happened to me before and it'll probably happen again. I'm sure no-one means any harm by it and I certainly didn't here.
Tell you what.......you can have all the royalties.

From Albino Pygmy
Posted May 3, 2011 at 5:26 AM
As much as I'd like to see Kong make a comeback, I'm not sure how the removal of RRR would help bring back Kong, since RRR was built in between very little space between the soundstages and NY set pieces, and even into City Walk. Twister should get the boot, and hope that there's enough space to come up with a smaller Kong 360 attraction, or even our own unique Kong experience!

From Tyler Bell
Posted May 3, 2011 at 5:50 AM
Twister has to go for the ride

From Scott B
Posted May 3, 2011 at 7:46 AM
Get rid of Twister?! Then where am I suppose to go for my Bill Pullman fix?!

Honestly though, I will hit up Twister on visits if there is no wait. But if it went, I honestly wouldn't care. But it isn't exactly the biggest attraction. What else could fit in that spot? Maybe something Ghostbusters related? Like something 'Spooktacular' themed??

From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted May 3, 2011 at 8:01 AM
Ok everyone, I got your point. But RRR at Universal Studios should go; it takes away the original idea of riding the movies. The Mummy, on the other hand, fits very well into the park, and it is a movie ride.

I hope that at least you would agree with that.

From Rob P
Posted May 3, 2011 at 8:56 AM
I'm with you Daniel. RRR may be a good coaster ( I haven't ridden it yet so can't comment ) but it doesn't belong at Universal Studios.

From James Rao
Posted May 3, 2011 at 10:07 AM
In short, more coasters AND more dark rides... but all of them should have a strong narrative and be highly themed.

From Scott B
Posted May 3, 2011 at 11:29 AM
Does anybody else find it odd that two movie themed themeparks in the same city both have rock and roll themed rollercoasters that have nothing to do with movies??

On a side note, I have always lamented the loss of the Hitchcock exhibit at Universal Studios. I have been a huge Hitchcock fan for as long as I can remember. Which is why I propose that the RRR coaster be altered so it can be themed towards the films of Alfred Hitchcock . I'm still working out the details.

From Manny Rodriguez
Posted May 3, 2011 at 3:28 PM
im sorry but i think all theme parks need a roller coaster it doesnt have to be an outdoor ride look at rock n roller casters at mgm

From Mike Gallagher
Posted May 3, 2011 at 4:32 PM
Rob, just joshin' ya! Didn't you see my smiley face?

Besides, I bet yours would be steel....

From Albino Pygmy
Posted May 3, 2011 at 7:45 PM
For the record, it's Bill Paxton. It's hard to forget his name after he introduces himself too much in the attraction. Watch this.

James Rao for the win. There's no problem with getting more coasters as long as they don't stop coming up with more dark rides first :)

From James Rao
Posted May 3, 2011 at 8:50 PM
Whoo-hoo! Do I get a prize??!! ;)

From steve lee
Posted May 3, 2011 at 9:29 PM
I'm going with the theory that the Paxton/Pullman thing was intentional, since there was an article last week that claimed people couldn't tell them apart (the thrust of it was that people also couldn't tell The Rock and Vin Diesel apart, which I totally don't get).

Go with this, Scott. The link totally vindicates you!

From Rob P
Posted May 4, 2011 at 1:25 AM
Mike wrote : Besides, I bet yours ( dueling coaster ) would be steel....

Just a thought, Mike, but I wonder what new materials will be used in the coasters of the future ? Something with all the tensile strength of steel but the giving, almost organic, feel of wood.

I'll go for that on my one...........best of both worlds.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted May 4, 2011 at 2:40 AM
I say we make them out of sourdough bread.

From Orrin Carstarphen
Posted May 4, 2011 at 4:58 AM
Speaking of "dueling coasters" anyone know why Universal no longer operates the Dragon Challenge as dueling coasters. At first I am sure it was to move people thru the line more quickly but the last few times I have been it only had a 15-20 minute wait. IMO the ride loses some of its appeal due to the fact the trains now run independent of one another.

From Scott B
Posted May 4, 2011 at 5:11 AM
I am so mad at myself. I totally KNEW it was Bill Paxton, I just was talking about Bill Pullman with a coworker earlier and the day and I think they got scrambled in my brain!

From Mike Gallagher
Posted May 4, 2011 at 5:03 PM
Mmmmm....scrambled Bills and bacon!

From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted May 4, 2011 at 6:08 PM
What has Bill Paxton anything to do with the main discussion?

My thread has been hijacked !!!

From Tony Duda
Posted May 4, 2011 at 8:21 PM
Which Bill was on Galaxy Quest?

From steve lee
Posted May 4, 2011 at 8:31 PM
Galaxy Quest? Neither. Or I've TOTALLY missed your meta-joke.

From Andrew Holden
Posted May 7, 2011 at 3:10 PM
I've been recently and haven't noticed the change on Dragon Challenge. Sometimes they will dispatch one coaster without the other if it takes to long or has a problem with the loading process. You may have just ridden at an unfortunate time...

On the other hand I could be an idiot who doesn't know what he is talking about and you could be right!

EDIT: My sister went yesterday and said the dragons are dueling fine!

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