Favorite activity at EnterTRAINment Junction?

The poll is closed, and the results are in…

Total Votes: 19

Welcome Message from Russ Johnson

I’m back, you can’t get rid of me that easily.  I’ve never really been gone, just lurking in the background, attending a few events here and there.  I guess it was a bit of depression after my surgery that made me step down a couple years ago, but I’m glad Brian had the chance to take the lead and he did a great job.  I hope he takes a rejuvenating rest and comes back to being active again.  I’ve been asking the ACE Executive Committee for things to do, so when the Rep Director asked me if I wanted my old job back I said “Yeah!”

I’m glad that Brian is staying around to conduct Winter SOAR.  I’ll have to talk to the parks to see what else we can do this year.   Does anyone else in the region feel like I do that we should get involved a little more?  I mean, if the parks could use us and our volunteer efforts would help them, would you want to get a little dirty and help them get ready for the season? Would you want to work at Kings Island for a day?  Do you know of any opportunities either directly involved with the preservation of rollercoasters, or rollercoaster related fund raising methods to benefit the preservation fund?  Until I verify my ACE email is working again, please contact me at russ@coastercat.net.  Thanks!  It is good to be back.

Rep Change for SOAR

Dear friends, it is with deep regret that I have decided to step down as your rep for this region.  It has been a real pleasure serving you all for the last 2 years.  I have learned a lot.  I am considering other directions in my life at this point, and don’t feel I will have the time needed to continue to devote to this.

Russ Johnson will be coming back to fill in for awhile as Rep, and Adam Wasiljov will continue as Assistant Rep.  I will stay around until after Winter SOAR, as that event is already under way in the planning stages.  Winter SOAR will be on February 27th at Entertraintment Junction.  Details on that will be out at a later date.

Again, thank you for allowing me to serve the last 2 years as your rep.  I will still be around the parks this year riding coasters as usual. Just as a civilian!

Brian Neal

Krazy City Closes

It appears another amusement park has closed down.  Krazy City, located at the Tri-County Mall just south of I-275 on Rt 747 is no longer operating.  We have no further details at this time. Krazy City was a small indoor amusement center chain that mostly was located in major malls across the country.  The Tri-County location featured an indoor go-kart track, drop tower, and 2 other thrill rides.  Also included a concession center and full service restaurant.   We are sad to see another park close down.

Cedar Fair Agrees to be Acquired by an Affiliate of Apollo Global Management

Cedar Fair Entertainment Company who owns Kings Island,  Cedar Point and 9 other properties has agreed to be acquired by Apollo Global Management.  This is the official press release from the Cedar Fair Website.


SOAR Member Surpasses 900 Coasters

The American Coaster Enthusiasts Southern Ohio Region would like to honor David Cornell of Cincinnati, Ohio for his accomplishment of riding well over 900 coasters in his lifetime.  This past summer, David got his 900th coaster on Evil Knievel located at Six Flags St Louis.  Six Flags St Louis is the park where David began his coaster riding on the River King Mine Train some 30 years ago.   To this date, David has now ridden 967 total coasters.  Although, many enthusiasts have ridden coasters numbering in the hundreds, very few reach 900 and beyond. We congratulate David on this accomplishment!


Diamondback gives more than 1.85 million rides in debut season!

KINGS ISLAND, Ohio – The new Diamondback roller coaster at Kings Island ended the 2009 season with more than 1.85 million rides given – the most rides given by a new attraction at the park since the Vortex made its debut 22 years ago in 1987 (2.18 million rides given).

Gary Coleman, 67, of Monfort Heights, Ohio accrued the most rides on Diamondback this season, riding the tallest, fastest and meanest roller coaster to ever strike Kings Island 1,579 times in 90 visits for an average of 17.5 rides per day.

Kings Island 2010 season passes are on sale now at www.visitkingsisland.com.  Buy your season pass now and pay later in April, when the park and Diamondback open again.

…from Don Helbig

Freak Out Video

ACE member, Buddy Hall was kind enough to make this video and allow me to post it here on the site. Thank you, Buddy for providing this to us!


Long Time ACE member, Gary Baker Passes Away

Our hearts were saddened to learn of the passing of Gary Baker, long time ACE member, and assistant rep in the Western PA Region.  Gary passed away suddenly of an apparent heart attack Friday evening after going home sick from work.  Gary was a huge supporter of Kennywood Park. You could find him there during Halloween seasons, working as one of the scare actors.  Gary did so much for ACE as well. For those who ever attended East Coaster in Allentown, PA, you’ll remember Gary. He was instrumental in the success of that event.  We will truly miss Gary, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.  Visitation and services will be this evening, October 19th.

Kings Island: The Gary Wachs Years

Enquirer article:

CET’s Nate Byrum takes viewers on a nostalgic trip through Kings Island history with a new nine-part documentary available now on the station’s Web site, www.CETconnect.org.

“Riding History to the Limits,” believed to be the first film about the park’s history, takes you back to Hanna-Barbera Land, the Enchanted Voyage, Antique Cars, Sky Ride, Animal Safari monorail and the visit by TV’s “Brady Bunch” in 1973.


WCET Website:

As early as 1964, the design and concept of a groundbreaking amusement park was growing in the mind of an ambitious young man by the name of Gary Wachs. Until this time, modern amusement parks were leaving roller coasters and other thrill rides out of the mix. Mr. Wachs knew that bringing back the thrill to amusement parks was a path that would be as profitable as it was popular in the future of entertainment. After a five-year struggle, Gary’s dream became reality when Kings Island opened to the public in 1972.

The story of Kings Island combines archival film footage, photographs taken by Rick Norton and also by park patrons, and there’s also video shot recently in the park. Interviews include: Gary Wachs, Dennis Speigel, Charles Mechem, Jack Rouse, Don Helbig, Carmen Electra, Walter and Nancy Duff, Barry Williams, and Michael Lookinland. Hosted by Nate Byrum.