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Kings Dominion

Kings Dominion is a amusement park located in Doswell in Hanover County 23 miles (37 km) north of Richmond, Virginia and 83 miles (134 km) south of Washington, DC on Interstate 95. The park is currently owned by Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, and was part of the former Paramount Parks chain that Cedar Fair acquired from CBS Corporation on June 30 2006. The park was named after its sister park, Kings Island in King's Mills, Ohio. Both parks were originally built and owned by Kings Entertainment Company. While Kings Island was named as a combination of Kings Mill (it's location) and Coney Island (the theme park that it was built to replace), Kings Dominions name has no local ties. Its name is simply a play on the Kings Island name.

History

Early history as Kings Dominion (1975-1989)

Kings Dominion officially opened in 1975 with 15 rides. However, in 1974, the park had a "soft" (partial, low key) opening only for the now gone Lion Country Safari attraction and a junior roller coaster, now called Scooby Doo's Ghoster Coaster. By 1975, the park had added the Rebel Yell, a racing roller coaster designed by John Allen; a log flume; antique cars; steam train; and a collection of flat rides. Another roller coaster, Galaxie, was located in the Grove next to the man-made Lake Charles, which took up 10 acres of the park's property. In addition, Kings Dominion's 1/3-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower, which featured an observation deck where people could go in order to see the whole park, was open by the park's first full operating season. In addition to the Lion Country Safari, the original themed areas of the park were called The Happy Land of Hanna-Barbera, Old Virginia, and Coney Island (renamed Candy Apple Grove prior to the next season).

Kings Dominion added their fourth roller coaster, a Schwarzkopf shuttle loop known as the King Kobra, in 1977. The King Kobra featured a flywheel launch and was the park's first launched roller coaster. It was in the park for nine seasons before being relocated to Jolly Roger Amusement Park in Ocean City, Maryland. After several more relocations, it continues to operate today as Katapul at Hopi Hari in Brazil. Also in 1977, Kings Dominion was one of several amusement parks used as sets for the film Rollercoaster.

In addition to the King Kobra, Kings Dominion opened a campground and its well-known Lost World mountain before the end of the 1970s. Originally, the Lost World featured three rides: a flume ride called Journey to Atlantis, a children's attraction known as Land of the Dooz, and a rotor called Time Shaft. Journey to Atlantis was replaced by the Haunted River themed flume ride in 1980. Kings Dominion would add their second wooden roller coaster, the Grizzly, in the forests of the Old Virginia section of the park in 1982. Kings Dominion opened its rapids ride, White Water Canyon, in Old Virginia in 1983. During that same year a man died after being decapitated on Galaxie, which was removed the following year. A swinging, inverting pirate ship known as the Berserker was added on International Street the following year. In 1984, a Smurf ride, Smurf Mountain would replace the mine ride in the Lost World. From then on, the Lost World was known as Smurf Mountain. The mountain was rebuilt in 1997, and has been occupied solely by Volcano: The Blast Coaster since 1998.

After three seasons without a new roller coaster, Kings Dominion unveiled its TOGO stand-up roller coaster, Shockwave, in 1986, the same year that the park removed King Kobra. Shockwave, like King Kobra, has one loop but also has a helix. (The similarly-named King Cobra roller coaster at Kings Island, which was a stand-up coaster similar to Shockwave, closed in 2002.) The third and last roller coaster that Kings Dominion added during the 1980s was Avalanche, which remains the only Mack bobsled roller coaster in the United States. The trains of Avalanche are themed after the United States', France's, Germany's, Canada's and Switzerland's bobsleds, so that riders in different trains can simulate being in a bobsled race in the Winter Olympics.

Although the Lion Country Safari attraction was the first portion of the park to open, it was phased out after Paramount bought the park. Much of the Lion Country Safari occupied the land behind the Anaconda roller coaster; Kings Dominion still owns the land but has used most of it primarily for storage rather than opening new attractions. Diamond Falls, another flume ride, premiered in 1985 until closing in 2002. Three sets of Racing Rivers slides water slides premiered in 1987 and stayed open through the early 1990s.

Early 1990s/transition to Paramount ownership

Kings Dominion continued adding new areas to its park in the early- to mid-1990s. In 1990, they expanded Hanna-Barbera Land to include more rides for children. The 1991 season saw the addition of their next large roller coaster, the Arrow looper Anaconda, which was also the world's first coaster to feature an underwater tunnel. (Its tunnel went under part of Lake Charles.) Anaconda was also originally billed as having six loops and continues to be billed that way. However, unlike Drachen Fire, a six-inversion Arrow looper which was opened at Busch Gardens Williamsburg the following year, the Anaconda actually has only four inversions: a vertical loop, a sidewinder, and two consecutive corkscrews.

Kings Dominion opened its water park as Hurricane Reef in 1992. In its opening season, it first featured the Monsoon Chutes (two pairs of free-fall body slides, at 70 and high, respectively), the Torrential Twist (two enclosed body slides which wrapped around each other), the Pipeline (four open body slides), Cyclone (three enclosed body slides, the center of which was a free-fall), Tidal Wave (two open slides, which riders rode on inner tubes, Splash Island (an area for children with five water slides), and a lazy river. To build the water park, Kings Dominion filled in the two thirds of Lake Charles nearest the Candy Apple Grove region of the park; the Anaconda continued to pass over the remainder of the lake.

The Paramount Parks years (1993-2006)

Kings Dominion continued its growth when it became part of Paramount Parks in 1993 and switched its name to Paramount's Kings Dominion. New attractions and areas of the park themed to Paramount's television shows and movies appeared at Paramount's Kings Dominion almost every season that they were under Paramount's ownership. In 1993, they added a motion simulator attraction, originally featuring the Days of Thunder movie, and Lion County Safari was removed at the end of the season. The 1994 season saw the addition of a new area of the park themed to the 1992 Paramount motion picture Wayne's World, which featured their third full-size wooden roller coaster, The Hurler, a shop called the Rock Shop, and a Stan Mikita's restaurant similar to the one featured in Wayne's World. Since then, the Wayne's World section has been merged into the Candy Apple Grove (since renamed the Grove); the Stan Mikita's was converted to the Happy Days Cafe, and the Hurler no longer has Wayne's World theming, except for a few spray painted "Waynes World" logos near the exit of the ride. In the next year, another children's area, known as Nickelodeon Splat City, opened near the Shockwave roller coaster. This was later converted into Nick Central. Also Smurf Mountain was removed in 1995, leaving a dormant styrofoam mountain in the back of the park.

In 1996, Paramount's Kings Dominion introduced its second launched roller coaster, and first LIM-launched roller coaster, The Outer Limits: Flight of Fear. The Outer Limits had a 56-mile-per-hour launch, four inversions, and a similar "spaghetti bowl" layout to the ride of the same name at Paramount's Kings Island. Almost as notable as the launch of The Outer Limits was the fact that the entire ride was in semi-darkness; the riders could not see where they were going. (Six Flags America, a nearby park in Maryland, features another similar roller coaster to Flight of Fear, known as Joker's Jinx. Joker's Jinx, however, is an outdoor coaster.) Five years after The Outer Limits opened, Paramount Parks' licensing agreement to use theming from the television show after which the ride was named expired; the Outer Limits-related theming in the ride and its queue was removed, and the ride was renamed Flight of Fear.

1997 featured the debut of Kidzville, a re-theming of the Hanna-Barbera section. Added was the new Taxi Jam roller coaster, and Scooby's Playpark became a construction themed playpen called Kidz Construction Co.. Yogi Bear was removed from his cave and that attraction was renamed Treasure Cave and filled with scrappy theming from other rides.

Paramount's Kings Dominion continued what became a trend of adding launched roller coasters in 1998, when they opened Volcano, The Blast Coaster in the former Lost World mountain. The mountain's previous rides had all been removed several years prior, and Volcano gave the mountain a major transformation. Volcano, which was manufactured by Intamin AG, was the world's first LIM-launched inverted roller coaster. The ride featured two separate launch sections, a vertical loop out of the top of the mountain (which is accompanied by fire being shot out of the mountain behind the riders), and three heartline rolls on the way back down. Volcano was themed to Paramount's 1997 film Volcano; the other Paramount Parks added inverted or suspended roller coasters themed to Top Gun around the same time. During the next two seasons, Paramount's Kings Dominion expanded Hurricane Reef behind the Rebel Yell and renamed it Waterworks. (Most of the original Hurricane Reef remains open as of 2006; the two areas are joined by a path under the Rebel Yell.) The new portion of Waterworks includes Pipeline Peak, a set of four enclosed water slides, one of which (the Night Slider) is the world's tallest dark free-fall slide. In 2000, Nick Central opened on what was Nick Splat City and part of Kidzville.

The park added its third launched roller coaster, Hypersonic XLC, in 2001. Hypersonic XLC, an air-launched coaster made by S&S Power, launched riders from 0 to 80 miles per hour in 1.8 seconds, taking them up a 90-degree incline and down a 90-degree drop. The entire ride takes about 25 seconds. Hypersonic XLC broke down frequently and was closed for the first three months of its second season; no other Paramount Parks installed a similar ride. Nevertheless, Hypersonic XLC helped establish Paramount's Kings Dominion's new reputation as "the launched coaster capital of the world". Hypersonic XLC was removed after the 2007 season.

The early 2000s have seen Paramount's Kings Dominion opening new rides similar to existing rides at other Paramount Parks. In 2002, the park opened its new wild mouse roller coaster, Ricochet. Another Ricochet was installed at Carowinds in 2002. Diamond Falls, the giant flume ride at Paramount's Kings Dominion, also closed that season, leading to several seasons of speculation from park visitors over which ride would take its place. The 2003 season saw Kings Dominion become to final of several of the Paramount Parks to open a Drop Zone Stunt Tower. The Drop Zone at Paramount's Kings Dominion, at high, was the tallest freefall ride in the world at the time it opened. In 2004, Paramount's Kings Dominion added Scooby-Doo! and the Haunted Mansion; similar Scooby Doo-themed dark rides had opened at three other Paramount Parks during the three previous seasons. In the next season, Paramount's Kings Dominion added an inverted top spin called Tomb Raider: Firefall, which was an outdoor version of a similar ride named Tomb Raider: The Ride at Paramount's Kings Island. The differences between the two were that at King's Dominion riders' feet dangle freely and at King's Island there is a floor. In the 2006 season, Paramount's Kings Dominion opened the Italian Job Turbo Coaster, its fourth launched roller coaster. Unlike the previously-built launched coasters at Paramount's Kings Dominion, each of which was faster than its predecessor, the Italian Job Turbo Coaster is designed more as a family ride and features several launches at 40 miles per hour. The Italian Job Turbo Coaster is similar to the Backlot Stunt Coaster ride at Kings Island and Canada's Wonderland, which both opened in 2005.

The Cedar Fair era (2006-present)

Control of the Paramount Parks had been transferred from Viacom to CBS Corporation at the start of the 2006 season; the parks had themselves been up for sale since the previous off season. CBS made several controversial moves with Paramount's Kings Dominion during the 2006 season. First, a roller coaster based on The Italian Job had been advertised on television as being open at the start of the park's 2006 season, whereas it did not actually open until late May, almost two months into the season. The placement of the ride was rather dubious; some enthusiasts ridiculed the park management for placing the entrance of The Italian Job, which was themed to a street chase, in the middle of the park's African-themed Congo section near the Anaconda. Second, visitors to the park during the 2006 season found that the trees in the queue of the Grizzly were cut down to make room for a new upcharge go-kart attraction called Thunder Raceway. Third, Paramount's Kings Dominion closed Flight of Fear. Paramount's Kings Dominion gave no indication in the previous season that Flight of Fear would be closed for 2006. Rumors had suggested that it would be relocated to another former Paramount Park; since Cedar Fair acquired Paramount's Kings Dominion, the park worked to get the ride operable again. Flight of Fear reopened on August 18, ending speculation of the ride's relocation and/or sale.

On May 22, 2006, Cedar Fair Entertainment Co. announced that they were purchasing all five Paramount Parks. The sale was finalized on June 30, 2006.

On December 14, 2006, Kings Dominion issued a press release giving details about their 2007 WaterWorks expansion and changes to their ticket prices. The park is lowering its single-day admission by $5 to $44.95; Cedar Point made the same change to their ticket prices in 2006. This is the first time that Kings Dominion has ever lowered their ticket prices for a full season. In addition, they are bringing back their Starlight discount, which allows admission to the park for $29.99 after 4pm. Kings Dominion also added a second wave pool called Tidal Wave Bay, a four-person family raft slide called Zoom Flume, and a ProSlide Tornado.

In December 2006, Kings Dominion also put Hypersonic XLC up for sale. The park announced plans to keep it running until a buyer is found; it remained in operation during the 2007 season. On October 23, 2007, Kings Dominion announced that Dominator, a floorless roller coaster which operated at Geauga Lake until that park closed, would be moved to Kings Dominion and located in the International Street section. Over the offseason, Cedar Fair renamed the park's last two rides to open with Paramount theming. The Italian Job: Turbo Coaster became Backlot Stunt Coaster, and Tomb Raider: Firefall received the name The Crypt. Also the Paramount Theater is now Kings Dominion Theater. Hypersonic XLC was removed from the park several weeks before the 2008 season started.

Ownership

The theme park was originally built and owned by Family Leisure Centers, a joint venture between Top Value Enterprises and Taft Broadcasting Company, both of Cincinnati, Ohio.

In 1993 Paramount purchased Kings Dominion and changed its name to Paramount's Kings Dominion. Viacom would purchase Paramount a year later.

On January 27, 2006, CBS Corporation (formerly the original Viacom) announced their intention to sell Kings Dominion and the other parks in its Paramount Parks division by the end of the year.

On June 30, 2006, Cedar Fair Entertainment Co. acquired Kings Dominion along with the rest of the parks owned by Paramount for a price of $1.24 billion USD.

Current rides/attractions

International Street

International Street is the park's main street area, which greets guests when they enter the park. Both sides of the street are lined with shops, including two park-related souvenir shops just inside the park's front gate. International Street also has one flat ride, Berserker. Originally, only the street and its shops were considered part of the International Street area ; during the park's Paramount years, the boundaries of International Street expanded to include the Action FX Theater.

Like Kings Island, the centerpiece of Kings Dominion is its 1/3 scale replica of the Eiffel Tower, located just across the International Street fountain from the main entrance gate. This Tower was built by the late company Bristol Steel, which was located in Richmond, Virginia. An elevator regularly takes patrons up to the lookout tower, which provides a chance to see the entire park. The observation deck offered the best view of the nightly fireworks show (which no longer runs), and the Fourth of July fireworks, which are set off from behind the Anaconda roller coaster.

  • Grande Bandstand features live concerts.
  • Eiffel Tower (opened 1975) is a 1/3 scale replica of the Eiffel Tower; guests may ride elevators up to its observation deck at .
  • Berserker (opened 1984) is a swinging Viking ship similar to a Looping Starship.
  • Action Theater motion simulator attraction has been open in the park since 1993. Dating back to 1975, the park had a country-western themed show in its same location called Hoedown, although it was considered part of the Old Virginia section. In the early 1990s, this became the Country Crossroads amphitheatre. The Country Crossroads Amphitheater closed after the park's 1992 season and was replaced by Days of Thunder, a motion simulator; at this point, International Street's borders expanded to include Days of Thunder. After five seasons with the Days of Thunder film, the Paramount Action F/X Theater received its current name and has been playing a variety of films in its two motion simulator theaters. In 2007 and 2008, it has played a 3D SpongeBob SquarePants movie.
  • Dominator (opened 2008) is a floorless roller coaster built by Bolliger & Mabillard. It has five inversions, the most of any of Kings Dominion's roller coasters, and holds the records for largest vertical loop on a roller coaster (135 ft) and the world's longest floorless coaster (4,210 ft). It originally operated at Geauga Lake.

Old Virginia

Along with International Street, Old Virginia is the only original section of Paramount's Kings Dominion that has kept its same name throughout the park's history; one of its current attractions, the Shenandoah Lumber Company Flume, is one of the park's longest-running rides. In the 1970s, Old Virginia had an Intamin Flying Dutchman flat ride called Jamestown Landing; behind it, Old Virginia had a steam train ride, the Old Dominion Line, which ran through the woods in the back of the park. Jamestown Landing closed by 1980; the Old Dominion Line stayed in the park until it closed in the 1990s. White Water Canyon, the park's river rapids ride, opened in 1983. Since then, Old Virginia has added its current flat ride, Flying Eagles, which moved over from the park's former Wayne's World section.

  • Kings Dominion Theater (opened 1975 as Mason Dixon Music Hall, operated through 2007 as Paramount Theatre) is the park's largest indoor theatre and has hosted a wide variety of shows, including ice skating and musicals.
  • Flying Eagles, a set of Bisch-Rocco Flying Scooters, first opened with the park in 1975 and has had several location changes and name changes since it first opened. In the 1970s, the ride was called Parrot Troopers and was located in the Safari Village section, overlooking Lake Charles. Parrot Troopers closed in the 1980s and reopened in the park's new Wayne's World section as Scream Weaver in 1994. Scream Weaver was located on part of the former Hypersonic XLC site; to make room for the new roller coaster, Paramount's Kings Dominion moved Scream Weaver to Old Virginia, across from the Paramount Theatre, and renamed (and rethemed) it Flying Eagles to fit into the Old Virginia section.
  • Shenandoah Log Flume (opened 1975), one of the park's original attractions, is a log flume with two hills and a course that travels through the woods of Old Virginia and past White Water Canyon's queue.
  • White Water Canyon (opened 1983) is a rafting ride with six-person boats, waterfalls, and geysers. White Water Canyon also has an indoor portion toward the end of the ride. In recent years, the ride has often opened at noon (along with WaterWorks) rather than at the rest of the park's opening time; the ride's popularity also gives it some of the longest lines in the park.
  • Xtreme SkyFlyer (opened 1996) is a 160-foot-tall skycoaster which can take up to three riders at a time. As is the case with most other skycoasters, Xtreme SkyFlyer is an upcharge attraction.
  • Blue Ridge Tollway (opened 1975) is an antique cars ride, where riders ride gas-powered antique cars (guided by rails) around a track.
  • Grizzly (opened 1982), the park's second full-size wooden roller coaster, has a Coney Island Wildcat design. Paramount's Great America's Grizzly, which also has a Coney Island Wildcat Layout but is slightly taller and longer, opened four years later.

The Grove

The Grove, which opened with the park in 1975 as "Coney Island," was renamed Candy Apple Grove, and is currently Kings Dominion's largest section. The Candy Apple Grove first opened with an orchard theme, complete with singing mushrooms, and contained large candy apples and 3 apple-themed flat rides, an enterprise called Apple Turnover, a himalaya called Adam's Apple and a Monster model known as Bad Apple. It lost much of this theming during the 1990s and changed its name to the Grove by 2001.

Today, The Grove is the location of the park's main midway; the park's largest arcade, which opened in the 1970s, continues to operate there. The Grove has grown several times since the early 1990s. From the 1980s to 1995, the park had a small Shady Grove section in the present-day location of Shockwave and the Paramount Showplace. When Nickelodeon Splat City opened in 1995, most of the Shady Grove section was demolished and the Green Slime Zone rose up in its place; Shockwave has since been part of the Grove. The park also operated a Wayne's World-themed section for several years, beginning in 1994 with the opening of Hurler. Hurler and Hypersonic XLC (which travels over part of the former Old Dominion Line site in Old Virginia) are now part of The Grove. The Grove is also known for the Rebel Yell roller coaster, the park's first full-size roller coaster; Drop Zone: Stunt Tower, the world's tallest drop tower; and its carousel, which was first built in 1917.

  • Carousel (opened 1975) was first built in 1917 by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company; prior to opening at Kings Dominion in the park's first season, it operated at Riverside Park in Springfield, Massachusetts, from 1917 to 1938, and at Roger Williams Park in Providence, Rhode Island, from 1938 to 1973. This all-wood carousel features 50 jumping horses, 16 standing horses, and two chariots, spread out over four rows.
  • Ricochet (opened 2002) is a Mack wild mouse roller coaster. Its compact layout contains a series of hairpin turns.
  • Triple Spin (reopened 2002) is a Huss Troika.
  • Dodgem Bumper Cars opened with the park in 1975 and are located at the edge of the Grove section near the Backlot Stunt Coaster.
  • Drop Tower (opened 2003) is one of the world's tallest drop tower at high. Drop Tower can take up to 56 riders at a time on its drop; they travel 72 miles per hour before the ride's magnetic braking slows them. Several rides have been in its same location in the Grove: a Monster model known as Bad Apple, a spinning aviation ride called Sky Pilot, and a Scrambler flat ride. Previous to 2008, the ride was called Drop Zone: Stunt Tower.
  • Hurler opened in 1994 as part of Paramount's Kings Dominion's Wayne's World section, which has since become part of the Grove. Hurler has a triple out-and-back layout.
  • Rebel Yell (opened 1975) is a racing wooden roller coaster with an out-and-back layout that travels along one side of Lake Charles. In the 1990s, one train was turned around so that one track of the Rebel Yell runs with riders facing forward, whereas the other track has riders facing backward. In 2008 one train was turned around with both tracks now having trains going forward only.
  • Shockwave (opened 1986) is a TOGO stand-up roller coaster located in part of the park's former Shady Grove section and featuring one vertical loop and a helix.
  • Wave Swinger (opened 1975) is a Zierer Wave Swinger 48.

Nickelodeon Central

  • Meet Blue is a meet and greet area where guests can meet the star of Blue's Clues.
  • Nickelodeon Meet & Greet is another meet and greet area, this time featuring characters like Tommy, Chuckie and Angelica from Rugrats, SpongeBob and Patrick from SpongeBob SquarePants, and Cosmo and Wanda from The Fairly Oddparents.
  • The Showplace is a theater with game shows and shows featuring Nickelodeon characters.
  • Slime Zone, a maze filled with pipes shooting water in all directions, was one of Kings Dominion's original Nickelodeon Splat City attractions.
  • Rugrats Toonpike, is a ride where children can drive through a simulated Rugrats town on small cars in a confined track set up to resemble a miniature town.
  • Nickelodeon Space Surfer is a Chance Morgan Aviator where riders board kite-like vehicles and glide through the sky at up to a 90 degree angle. Riders travel over the surrounding trees and attain almost the same height as the nearby roller coaster, Shockwave. The cars seat 1-2 riders in seats resembling those from an inverted roller coaster.

Kidzville

  • Treasure Cave is a funhouse featuring gemstones in the walls and tilted floors. It has been renamed and rethemed twice; it was first called Yogi Bear's Cave and has also had the name Pirate Cave.
  • Scooby-Doo and the Haunted Mansion (opened 2004) is a shooting dark ride themed to Scooby Doo. Its outdoor and indoor queue sections are likewise both themed to Scooby Doo.
  • Kidz Construction Company is a large children's play structure themed to a construction site, containing slides and ball pits similar to those found at Chuck E. Cheese.
  • Alleycat 500 is a small Topcat themed car ride. It has a cow that the riders pass.
  • Boo Boo's Tree Swings is a small swing ride located next to Treasure Cave.
  • Boulder Bumpers is an indoor bumper cars ride for children.
  • Dick Dastardly's Airfield is a junior flat ride with small airplanes that go over a creek.
  • George Jetson's Spaceport is a junior airplane ride themed to The Jetsons.
  • Huck's Hot Rods, a driving ride featuring Huckleberry Hound, is located near Alleycat 500.
  • Ranger Smith's Jeep Tours is a small jeep ride for little kids.
  • Topcat's Turnpike is a junior car ride.
  • Touche Turtle's Clipper is a ship ride similar to a scaled-down, tamer Berserker.
  • Taxi Jam Coaster is an 8-foot-high junior roller coaster.
  • Scooby-Doo's Ghoster Coaster (opened 1974 as Scooby Doo), a junior roller coaster, is located near the front of the park next to the former site of the Racing Rivers waterslides. Debuting in 1974 with the Lion Country Safari, Scooby Doo's Ghoster Coaster is the park's first ride to have Scooby Doo theming. American Coaster Enthusiasts gave the ride an ACE Coaster Classics plaque but have since removed the ride from their list due to design changes. The park added "Ghoster Coaster" to the ride's name when Kidzville opened in 1997.
  • KidZVille Gazebo is a venue for children's shows.

Congo

Congo is Kings Dominion's largely African-themed section. It carries over its theme from Kings Dominion's Lion Country Safari attraction, which had a monorail train which ferried visitors through a nature preserve that closed in the 1990s. Today, Congo's most recognizable attractions are the Anaconda roller coaster and the Lost World mountain, although its Mack bobsled coaster, Avalanche, is the only one left in the United States. Anaconda, Volcano, and The Crypt (formally known as "Tomb Raider: Firefall") all carry the African theming; several attractions with different themes are also located in the Congo area.

  • Avalanche (opened 1988) is, as of 2006, the only Mack bobsled ride left in the United States; the cars in its trains are themed to Olympic bobsleds from five countries.
  • Scrambler (reopened 2003), one of the Congo's two flat rides, is a classic amusement ride similar to a Huss Breakdance. It was originally located on International Street and was moved to Candy Apple Grove in 1993, near the location that the Drop Zone Stunt Tower occupies today; it was moved to the Congo section in 2003.
  • Anaconda (opened 1991), which was one of Kings Dominion's most well-known rides in the early 1990s, continues to be well-known for its tunnel, which travels under Lake Charles. The ride was built over Lake Charles while Lake Charles still occupied 10 acres of the park; although the original WaterWorks rides reside on part of Lake Charles, Anaconda still traverses most of its layout over the lake. When Anaconda opened, its four inversions were the most of any roller coaster at Kings Dominion.
  • Backlot Stunt Coaster (opened 2006 as The Italian Job: Turbo Coaster), Kings Dominion's third LIM-launched roller coaster, is themed to a street chase and is a nearly exact replica of similar rides found at Kings Island and Canada's Wonderland. Originally themed to The Italian Job, it was the last ride with Paramount theming to open at the park and was renamed in the 2007 offseason.
  • The Crypt (opened 2005 as Tomb Raider: Firefall) is a suspended top spin originally themed to the film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. It still has the same theming but was renamed in the 2007 offseason after the park's change in ownership.
  • Volcano, The Blast Coaster (opened 1998), the second of Kings Dominion's LIM-launched roller coasters, is also Kings Dominion's second-fastest roller coaster and has occupied the Lost World mountain since its opening in 1998. After taking the first launch to travel around the back of the mountain, riders are then launched up the mountain through a vertical loop and pass through three heartline rolls on the way down.
  • Flight of Fear (opened 1996 as The Outer Limits: Flight of Fear) is one of the first two LIM-launched roller coasters in the world, along with Flight of Fear at Kings Island, with which it shares the same theming and layout. Flight of Fear is an indoor coaster with little lighting, which provides riders with a disorienting feeling.

WaterWorks

WaterWorks, Kings Dominion's water park, can be thought of in terms of its two sides, Northside which was formerly known as Hurricane Reef, and Southside which is the newer section of waterworks. The rides that WaterWorks had as Hurricane Reef in the mid-1990s are all located in front of the Rebel Yell roller coaster; the newer rides are behind the Rebel Yell and are accessible by walking under the Rebel Yell on a walkway between Baja Bends and Shoot the Curl. The original Hurricane Reef attractions received new names when Paramount's Kings Dominion renamed the water park WaterWorks in 1999. Although several other former Paramount Parks have received the Boomerang Bay name and theming as part of their mid-2000s expansions, WaterWorks is keeping its current name for the 2007 season.

  • Lazy Rider (opened 1992 as Lazy River) is a lazy river which travels around the center of the water park. With the exception of FreeStylin', all of the remaining slides that originally opened with Hurricane Reef travel over Lazy Rider, which allows the lazy river to have several short tunnels during its course. As of 2005, the Lazy Rider's entrance and exit were located on different parts of the river, which kept riders from making more than one lap of it without having to exit.
  • Baja Bends (opened in 1992 as Pipeline) is a set of four green open water slides located behind the Lazy Rider and in front of Lake Charles. The Baja Bends slides travel over Lazy Rider and end in a splashdown pool.
  • Spiral Chute (opened in 1992 as Torrential Twist) is a pair of enclosed slides that wrap around each other in a spiral manner. The queue for Spiral Chute passes under Anaconda; the loading station for the slides was built over the lake. Spiral Chute was closed for part of 2005 because a construction road for the Italian Job: Turbo Coaster was cut through its queue, making the station inaccessible. The slides reopened in 2006.
  • Shoot the Curl (opened in 1992 as Cyclone) is a set of three enclosed blue slides located in front the Rebel Yell; the slides travel over the Lazy Rider. The center slide is a free-fall slide, though not as tall as Night Slider on Pipeline Peak. The other two slides mirror each other and feature 360-degree helixes.
  • FreeStylin' (opened in 1992 as Tidal Wave) is a pair of white open slides, which riders ride on one-person inner tubes; the slides end in a splashdown pool. Because the riders each carry their own tubes, the ride has two separate loading stations on connected towers, and the queue, which starts as one queue, splits in two part of the way up.
  • Big Wave Bay (opened 1999), the park's first wave pool, holds 650,000 gallons of water; its wave machines generate four-foot waves.
  • Surf City Splash House (opened 1999) is a multi-level water play structure with several smaller slides and an 800-gallon bucket which dumps all of its water on guests every several minutes.
  • Lil' Barefoot Beach (opened 1999) is a smaller water play structure for young children.
  • Pipeline Peak (opened 2000), the park's largest slide structure in 2006, is a set of four enclosed slides manufactured by ProSlide. The top level of the tower features two body flumes: Night Slider, which, at tall, is the world's tallest free-falling dark water slide, and Power Plunge, a long, twisting slide which is high at its beginning. Turbo Twister and Power Plunge, which are at the tower's lower level, are two-person raft slides which open in several places in the middle of their course to splash water on riders.
  • Tidal Wave Bay (opened 2007) is the park's second wave pool. Several other Cedar Fair parks include multiple wave pools. Dorney Park opened a second wave pool in 2006; Great America will also open their second wave pool in 2007, and Michigan's Adventure has three wave pools of varying sizes and depths.
  • Tornado (opened 2007) is a 65-foot-tall slide which deposits riders into a large funnel. ProSlide Tornadoes have opened at many Six Flags parks and several other Cedar Fair parks in the early 2000s; Kings Dominion is the second former Paramount Park to receive a Tornado.
  • Zoom Flume (opened 2007) is a four-person family raft slide.

Kings Dominion's Timeline

  • 1975: Park opened; Rebel Yell also opened
  • 1976: Apple Turnover (flat ride)
  • 1977: King Kobra (steel coaster)
  • 1978: Kings Dominion Campground opened
  • 1979: Lost World themed area, featuring Journey to Atlantis, Land of the Dooz, and Time Shaft
  • 1980: Haunted River replaced Journey to Atlantis
  • 1982: Grizzly; Showplace Amphitheatre also opened
  • 1983: White Water Canyon
  • 1984: Smurf Mountain replaced Land of the Dooz; Berserker
  • 1985: Diamond Falls; Scooby's Play Park
  • 1986: Shockwave; King Kobra removed
  • 1987: Racing Rivers
  • 1988: Avalanche
  • 1989: Sky Pilot (flat ride)
  • 1990: Hanna-Barbera Land expansion
  • 1991: Anaconda
  • 1992: Hurricane Reef water park
  • 1993: Days of Thunder
  • 1994: Hurler; Old Dominion Line steam train removed
  • 1995: Nickelodeon Splat City; Showplace Amphitheatre reopened as Kingswood Amphitheatre; Smurf Mountain is removed
  • 1996: Flight of Fear; Xtreme SkyFlyer
  • 1997: Taxi Jam Coaster; Hanna-Barbera Land renamed KidZville
  • 1998: Volcano; Action Theater replaces Days of Thunder
  • 1999: Expansion of Hurricane Reef water park to WaterWorks
  • 2000: Nickelodeon Central; Pipeline Peak added to WaterWorks
  • 2001: HyperSonic XLC (Xtreme Launch Coaster)
  • 2002: Ricochet; Triple Spin; Diamond Falls closes
  • 2003: Drop Tower; SpongeBob SquarePants 3-D in the Action Theater
  • 2004: Scooby Doo and the Haunted Mansion
  • 2005: The Crypt; kids area of WaterWorks is removed
  • 2006: Backlot Stunt Coaster; Flight of Fear shut down until mid-August, when it reopened
  • 2007: Tidal Wave Bay, Tornado, Zoom Flume added to WaterWorks; last year for Hypersonic XLC; Halloween HAUNT
  • 2008: Dominator (B&M Floorless Coaster from Geauga Lake)

References

External links

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