Cedar Point closes Wildcat; Magic Mountain has coaster title to itself

May 2, 2012, 7:50 AM · Cedar Point announced this morning that it will demolish the Wildcat roller coaster. The Schwarzkopf steel coaster opened for the 1979 season, and Cedar Point cited "low ridership and increased maintenance costs" as factors in the decision to eliminate the aging coaster, which will make way for an expansion of the park's Celebration Plaza.

Cedar Point
There'll be one fewer coaster on the Roller Coast this summer

The removal of the Wildcat takes Cedar Point down to 16 coasters, giving Six Flags Magic Mountain the "most coasters" title to itself. Cedar Point is now tied for second with Canada's Wonderland.

Replies (26)

May 2, 2012 at 8:04 AM · Maybe this ultimately..despite what they say now..has to do with a potential new coaster/ride for 2013. I'm not as familiar with CP as many here, and I forget what else is in the surrounding area that would be a candidate for removal, because Wildcat is not a big footprint at all.

I had no special felings for Wildcat..I usually skipped it because of the often longish, slow moving line..you know, the one that screams "low ridership." I do remember having a "discussion" with someone..can't remember who..over whether it was a mouse. Me:No. Her:Yes. Would have been pretty ironic for a MOUSE to be named WildCAT!

Almost always hate to see a coaster close, though...

May 2, 2012 at 8:11 AM · They need to add two new coasters to replace this one.
May 2, 2012 at 8:21 AM · Always was a fun and popular ride, but it was getting old, likely more expensive to keep up, and the capacity wasn't that good. Still it had a good run. 40ish years is pretty good for a semi-permanent steel coaster that was designed for state fairs.

Sad to see it go, but that's the way it goes. I'm sure that some people won't like it, but I think it's a pretty decent move. Actually it's kind of refreshing that they are removing a coaster for other improvements. Wildcat lived near the expanding light show, and they probably want the space to better handle the people, among other things. With all of the visual improvements and light packages they have planned around the park so far, I'm interested in what the space will look like when it's finished.

As for the record, who cares. I'm sure they will build another one very very soon...

May 2, 2012 at 8:16 AM · Wildcat's line moved so slowly that I've never bothered with it on any of my visits to Cedar Point.

Everything in a theme park is judged by capacity vs. cost. I totally understand why Cedar Point would throw in the towel on this one. Hope they build something better in the next few years.

May 2, 2012 at 9:15 AM · Another Schwarzkopf model bites the dust. I hate to see this one go, but I understand its time has come and gone. Taps, please?

FYI - there are now only four of this model of coaster left operating in the world today. =(

"Coaster Capital of the World"... does it really matter anymore? Magic Mt and Cedar Point both have about a half dozen good, non-kiddie coasters. What does it mean to have the most coasters, if most of them are average or worse?

Question: what park has the most GOOD coasters on the planet? Anyone know?

May 2, 2012 at 9:35 AM · I think that's a title that Cedar Point can still contend for James. There are a lot of good ones there.

Speaking of, I hope they can give Mean Streak the Texas Giant treatment soon.

May 2, 2012 at 10:28 AM · Excellent question, James!

This needs to be a project. Lemme go crunch some voting data. In the meantime, nominations? Give me the park name, plus the number of and names of the good coasters at that park.

May 2, 2012 at 10:35 AM · @Derek. I think this Wildcat was only there for 33 years not 40ish. Cedar Point had a previous Wildcat that was erected in 1970 but it was moved to Valleyfair in 1978 with the current model arriving in 1979.

I agree with your comment on "most good coasters" - Cedar Point is definitely in the running.

May 2, 2012 at 10:49 AM · On the 'most good coasters' allow me to nominate Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Not a lot of coasters, but every one of them (assuming you don't count the kiddie coaster Grover's Alpine Express) are really great rides, and with another on it's way shortly.
May 2, 2012 at 11:17 AM · Both Busch Gardens parks should be in the running for "most good coasters".

And I did not intend to exclude Cedar Point or Magic Mountain from the running with my comments, just wanted to know if they were still tops if you only count the good coasters.

MM (7): Apocalypse, Batman, Goliath, Ninja, Scream, Tatsu, X2.

CP (6): M. Force, Maverick, TTD, Raptor, Iron Dragon, Magnum.

BGT (6): Cheetah Hunt, Gwazi, Sheikra, Kumba, Scorpion, Montu.

BGW (5): Griffon, Alpie, Verbolten (?), Loch Ness, Apollo.

Kings Dominion (5): Volcano, I305, Stunt Coaster, Dominator, Grizzly.


May 2, 2012 at 12:01 PM · The way I interpret the question raised is thusly:

What park has the highest percentage of quality coasters?..let's say a park must have 5 minimum (eliminates Knoebels.)

My vote goes to Kennywood. I haven't been on SkyRocket, but all of their others are high quality. They're batting 1.000!

May 2, 2012 at 12:55 PM · I agree with the highest percentage thing, cause parks like Cedar Point and MM would still win if it were just who has the most good coasters (simply cause they both have a ton of coasters, many of them should be good.) That was why I put in BGW, instead of BGT, cause I think they have a better percentage of good coasters.
May 2, 2012 at 3:18 PM · If you combine both Universal Orlando parks, and count Non-Dueling Dragons as two separate coasters, they meet the five minimum (youth coasters excluded - although the Flying Unicorn/Hippogriff coaster is pretty sweet for a kiddie coaster), and all are good. 1.000 as well!

How 'bout Knotts, Kings Island, or Hershey? I haven't visited those parks in so long, I am not comfortable commenting on them!

May 2, 2012 at 2:04 PM · As much as I love BGW, I consider all of their coasters..svae for Nessie..to be non-prime examples of their genre...i.e, Nitro is better than AC, Sheikra is better then Griffon, Afterburn is better than Alpengeist, etc.

Of course, that's just my opinion(s.)

May 2, 2012 at 2:20 PM · I won't miss Wildcat, as it always seemed like a ride better suited for a small or mid-size park than a major park like Cedar Point. I rode it once and it was okay, but I wouldn't wait more than ten minutes to ride again.

As for parks with a high percentage of coasters, here's what I've got from the parks I've been to with at least five coasters (listing all the coasters at the park I consider must rides):

Busch Gardens Williamsburg: 3/5 (Alpengeist, Apollo's Chariot, Griffon)

Carowinds: 4/13 (Afterburn, Intimidator, Nighthawk, Thunder Road)

Cedar Point: 7/16 (Gemini, Magnum XL-200, Maverick, Millennium Force, Raptor, Top Thrill Dragster, Wicked Twister)

Dollywood: 3/5 (Mystery Mine, Tennessee Tornado, Thunderhead)

Kings Dominion: 5/14 (Dominator, Flight of Fear, Grizzly, Intimidator 305, Volcano)

Knott's Berry Farm: 4/9 (GhostRider, Montezooma's Revenge, Silver Bullet, Xcelerator)

Six Flags Great Adventure: 5/13 (Bizarro, El Toro, Kingda Ka, Nitro, Superman-Ultimate Flight)

Six Flags Magic Mountain: 7/17 (Apocalypse the Ride, Goliath, Riddler's Revenge, Scream!, Superman: Escape from Krypton, Tatsu, X2)

Six Flags New England: 2/10 (Batman-The Dark Knight, Bizarro)

Six Flags St. Louis: 3/8 (American Thunder, Batman the Ride, Mr. Freeze)

Based on this, Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Dollywood have the highest percentage of good coasters while Cedar Point and Six Flags Magic Mountain have the most good coasters. This is consistent with the way the chains seem to run their parks: Six Flags and Cedar Fair like to add as many rides as possible, but a decent percentage are unremarkable, while SeaWorld and Herschend (as well as most other park chains) add fewer but higher quality attractions.

May 2, 2012 at 2:51 PM · I'm all for quality over quantity, so the most coaster record is pointless to me. It's great for marketing to those that care, but does it really make people upset if their favorite park doesn't hold whatever record in question?
May 2, 2012 at 3:21 PM · @Mike They may not be the top of their class, but they are all "good".

@AJ Nice work!

May 2, 2012 at 5:09 PM · I've run the data, and will publish a Theme Park Insider Top 20 coaster parks list on the Flume tomorrow.
May 2, 2012 at 8:09 PM · I don't know nothing about nothing, but I hear rumors that indicate that this may be the last year to get nice pictures like the one that Robert posted with this article...
May 2, 2012 at 8:14 PM · What, they're not going to let people parachute into the park from passing airplanes anymore? ;^)
May 2, 2012 at 9:00 PM · As soon as Celebration Plaza was announced, people began to question if there was really room for the end-of-day show, Luminosity, to be presented at that location. The blueprint showed the new stage extending almost to Wildcat, leaving very little room for pedestrian traffic. This announcement, while rather regretable, is not a big surprise. It will open a large area up for the crowds that they are predicting for the show.

Wildcat was a nice, old-fashioned traditional carnival-type coaster, but it was not well maintained. There were lots of weeds growing through the asphalt under the ride, and it looked like it was welded to the ground with rust. It was the red-haired stepchild coaster of Cedar Point. It is regretable that there was no announcement last season about it closing, for those who wanted one last ride, but I doubt that there will be much complaining about it being removed.

May 2, 2012 at 9:18 PM · ^Mike, in response to your query about what was in the area other than Wildcat that could be removed to provide more room for a future attraction, there was lots of speculation on the CP boards about that. The most commonly mentioned ideas that I read was that 1) they had started testing Wildcat already this year, and speculation is that some major defect or structural flaw was discovered that would be too expensive/difficult to repair. Most believed that Wildcat was going to be removed within a few years anyway, but this discovery (still just speculation) sped up the removal. 2) Just beyond the fence behind Wildcat is the Perimeter Road, that runs around the edge of the Point to the hotels and Soak City. On the other side of the road from Wildcat is the former Cedars Hotel, now seasonal employee housing. Removing the housing and relocating the road would give a rather large area for a future attraction of some kind.
May 3, 2012 at 4:12 AM · James, I don't deny that they're good coasters. Just saying, for me, there are others of each type I like waaayyy better.
May 3, 2012 at 4:57 AM · Mike, if Worlds of Fun was your home park, you would think almost everything was WAYYYYYYYY better!!! =)

Now, from the Office of Nobody Cares But I Am Going To Type It Anyway: I am heading to Dollywood in just a couple of weeks... Wild Eagle, baby!!!! =)

May 4, 2012 at 7:30 PM · Hey James, I'm going to Dollywood in a few weeks, too! Can't wait to ride Thunderhead a dozen times or so! Love that airtime! :-)
May 5, 2012 at 10:24 PM · WildCat actually open for the 1970 Season!

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