Cedar Fair Entertainment
Park News - (4/21/2023) In the fallout of incidents involving teens over the last two weekends, first at Worlds of Fun and then at Kings Island this past weekend, Cedar Fair is now rolling out new Chaperone Policies for most of their parks that should go into effect starting this Saturday.
The new policy going into effect at Kings Dominion states that anyone 15 years of age or under will now need to be accompanied by a chaperone, age 21 or over, to remain in the theme park after 4pm. The chaperone must have a valid photo ID and remain with their group throughout their stay. Guests 15 and under found in the park without a chaperone will be asked to leave.
2023 - Restore The Roar / Grizzly Refurbishment - (5/23/2023) A reader sent in a report about the refurbished Grizzly wooden roller coaster experience at Kings Dominion. The good news is that the newly refurbished sections of the ride are utterly fantastic, and very smooth. The bad news is that the entire coaster was not retracted (we knew this) and there are some extremely rough sections left on the ride. The end result is that you go from riding in sheer pleasure to immediate pain, switching back and forth a few times throughout the layout.
They compared this experience to how Thunder Road at Carowinds was over the last several years before they pulled the plug on it, which I experienced first hand myself. Each winter they would rip out and rebuild a large section of Thunder Road, and those new sections were wonderful, but the rest of the ride had gotten in such bad shape that you felt more like you were riding a bi-polar roller coaster that constantly switched from good to bad on you. I don’t imagine the experience was good for the trains either, because by the time they would fix another new section the following year, the bad sections would become worse and even the good sections from the year before were starting to show signs of roughness.
On top of this, they reported that Grizzly was only running one train at this time, so the lines were also very long because of this. With this in mind, I actually hope they take the time to try and finish the rebuild entirely over the upcoming winter and don’t stop here.
(5/13/2023) Kings Dominion has posted a preview video of the “ROAR RESTORED” Grizzly wooden roller coaster making some great looking test runs at Kings Dominion. According to the post Grizzly will open to guests TODAY, May 13th, so if you drop by the park to give it a ride, I’d love to hear how this restoration worked out. (Because I rode it last July 4th and boy was it in rough shape then, so this project was definitely well needed.)
(4/16/2023) Kings Dominion has revealed that as part of the rebuilding of The Grizzly, when it reopens the first drop on the wooden coaster will now be 12 feet taller (86’9”) and 10º steeper (55º).
(11/15/22) Kings Dominion has posted their second update about the refurbishment of The Grizzly. The blog post includes a lot of history about the making of the coaster itself and even a throwback video showing off the original TV commercial used to promote it in 1982.
(11/9/22) Kings Dominion has confirmed that The Grizzly is “undergoing extensive renovations and retracking and will re-emerge some time next season more pierce than ever before.” Follow the link to read the park’s official update and see current construction photos of the work being done.
(11/5/22) Kings Dominion posted an interesting message on Facebook on Friday labeled, “Restore the Roar” along with Monday’s date for the big reveal. The graphic also shows what looks like a bear claw ripping through the background image of a wooden coaster, and putting it all together, this would seem to be a message about the future of The Grizzly coaster at the park.
I haven’t mentioned it here, but it has been discussed on the Screamscape Facebook page that The Grizzly was officially closed for the rest of the season on Labor Day and since then guests have noticed lots of construction taking place on the ride, including the removal of the top of the coaster’s lift hill.
Having just ridden Grizzly on July 4th, this was welcome news, as it was extremely rough and clearly in need of some major help, so a high profile restoration would go a long way. Now we just want to wait until Monday to find out just how extensive this restoration will be.
???? - Jungle X-Pedition Phase 2 - Rumor - (7/11/22) While we know that eventually in the next couple of years the plan for Kings Dominion was to replace the former Volcano: The Blast Coaster with the park’s next major roller coaster, but we honestly don’t know when. The addition of Tumbili was sort of a Post-COVID stop-gap measure to buy a little more time for this project by adding a smaller coaster and by creating a little new theming in the form of the Jungle X-Pedition area.
To be honest, having just visited the park myself, the Jungle X-Pedition area actually looks pretty great. Nice theming all around the new Tumbili area, including the transformation of the former Avalanche coaster into Reptilian along with turning the Scrambler into Arachnidia. Along with the new light theming to the restaurants, food stands and the rest of the infrastructure in the area, this area of the park looks pretty good right now and even Anaconda fits the overall theme.
Around the one corner you do have the slight oddity that is the plaza that features both Flight of Fear and Intimidator 305, but I’ll let that one go for now. The one attraction that does sort of stick out like a sore-thumb is the Backlot Stunt Coaster (formerly The Italian Job: Stunt Track). While as a coaster, the ride still works great and is a lot of fun, but the theming has been better days. Currently most of the ride’s once highly-touted special effects are dead and broken.
But would you believe there may be a plan to change all that? According to a new rumor sent in, there may be a “Phase 2” of new theming and additions planned for Jungle X-Pedition to come before the next big coaster project. Our source claims that this could possibly include importing the Berserker (Bayun Kurve) from California’s Great America as a way to bring back Kings Dominion’s lost Mt. Kilimanjaro attraction. Even more exciting however may be a possible plan to revamp the Backlot Stunt Coaster to have new ‘jungle’ appropriate theming, new effects and to retheme the cars to look like off-road jeeps instead.
Just a rumor at this point, but I think it would be great to see more additions brought to fill out this section of the park if any of this ends up happening.
2024/2025 - New Large Roller Coaster - (2/28/20) No details known, but the next big coaster is expected to replace the park’s Volcano: The Blast Coaster site, but this wont happen until a couple of years after a smaller coaster is added in 2022 to replace The Crypt.