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Coney Island (Luna Park / Deno's) Development Discussion Thread

P. 60: Phoenix coaster announced for Phoenix at Deno’s Wonder Wheel

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I believe the four requirements for ACE Classic Coaster Status are:

Traditional Lap Bars (no seat belts, no ratcheting laps bars)

No seat backs

No seat dividers

No assigned seating

 

I think it is great to recognize the coasters that still fulfill these requirements. This status really meant something when the trend was to retrofit so many woodies with seatbelts, racheting lap bars and seat dividers. However, with so few powerful coasters remaining with the designation, it means less to me. You have Coaster (Playland), Thunderbolt and Cyclone as true remaining beasts with a few other including Blue Streak (CLP), Jack Rabbit, Skyliner and Rollo Coaster that are fun coasters. But you have most tame/family coasters and scenic railways remaining.

 

With that said I see no reason to hate ACE if a park modifies a coaster. The bar has been set and it is ACE's role to maintain it. However, I don't like the terminology ACE uses when a coaster loses classic status. I think it is fine to say the coaster has "lost ACE classic status". However, when a coaster is modiied and doesn't meet the requirement its "award is rescinded". That terminology is just elitist in my mind and leaves a bad taste.

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Right, Larry, I should have been more specific... you hit the nail on the head. It's the wording ("rescinding") and bad-taste-in-mouth elitism that bugs me most. For something that's a nice gesture when it stands, it's an equally not nice gesture to revoke it in such an almost bitter way when a park has to modify a ride for comfort or, more likely, safety. (Or whatever multitude of reasons a park could have for fixing up these older rides.)

 

You know the saying "once a classic, always a classic." I wish instead of revoking the classic status, when parks had to change trains, or any of the parameters that makes a coaster an ACE classic, instead of revoking the designation there would instead be an addendum that said "on X date X park made X modifications..." and make some mention of the fact that even if the coaster isn't running the same way it did on its opening day, the park put in the years. It really seems like the right thing to do. I don't know if that's the solution, but it would seem there should be some middle ground rather than totally revoking the status. It's not really a huge deal either way, but it definitely does leave a bad taste in one's mouth sometimes.

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^I'm not sure how insulting it really is, since I'd assume only ACErs and a small number of other enthusiasts are going to care if a ride loses its status. Do they even notify the parks? (That could be obnoxious, but would presumably only affect a few people.)

 

Besides, the designation has no bearing on whether or not a wooden coaster is "classic". Classic means old (slight oversimplification). If I say a coaster is classic, that has nothing to do with ACE.

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This development is kind of interesting. I''m hoping to go back to Coney Island this year and if the refurbishment starts very soon, I'll be looking forward to a more smooth ride on the Cyclone. Here's hoping!

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I did not want to hijack the thread to a focus on ACE and apologize for that. I also did not want to create whole thread around their requirements. However, this has been very interesting to find out some of the requirements. This explains why Racer at Kennywood is not one, since it has seat dividers (as Larrygator pointed out for requirements). I am curious on what ACE considers seat belts though. The last time I went to Kennywood I thought the park added these to the trains for Jack Rabbit during a refurbishment a few years back. I believe the ACE classic status is still there for that coaster. I could be completely wrong on that though, maybe I should just look it up on their site.

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I did not want to hijack the thread to a focus on ACE and apologize for that. I also did not want to create whole thread around their requirements. However, this has been very interesting to find out some of the requirements. This explains why Racer at Kennywood is not one, since it has seat dividers (as Larrygator pointed out for requirements). I am curious on what ACE considers seat belts though. The last time I went to Kennywood I thought the park added these to the trains for Jack Rabbit during a refurbishment a few years back. I believe the ACE classic status is still there for that coaster. I could be completely wrong on that though, maybe I should just look it up on their site.

 

Here is the requirements to be an ACE Classic to clear things up.

 

The concept of ACE Coaster Classics was developed during a period when changes in the design, equipping, and operation of wood coasters threatened to erase these time-honored experiences and rituals. ACE awards ACE Coaster Classic status to coasters that still adhere to these principles that allow riders to safely experience the thrill of the classic wooden roller coaster ride. To be eligible for ACE Coaster Classic status, the coaster must meet the following criteria:

 

The coaster must use traditional lap bars that allow riders to experience so-called airtime, or negative G's (that sensation of floating above the seat!!). Individual, ratcheting lap bars do not meet this requirement.

ACE Coaster Classics allow riders to slide from side-to-side. A coaster with any restraint or device that restricts this freedom is not eligible for ACE Coaster Classic status.

ACE Coaster Classics allow riders to view the upcoming drops and thrills. Coasters with headrests on every seat, or the majority of seats, restrict this view and are not eligible for ACE Coaster Classic status.

On ACE Coaster Classics, riders are free to choose where they sit. Some parks' operating procedures assign seating; these coasters are not eligible for ACE Coaster Classic status.

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I don't see why everyone here is so concerned about what a different club chooses to recognize as one of THEIR classics, unless you're a member of the club. They've very clearly laid out what the requirements are to run in a classic way. That was how classic coasters ran. They didn't have ratcheting lapbars and seat dividers and headrests and assigned seating. When a coaster is run in that way, then ACE awards it its "ACE Coaster Classic" status. When it's modified to longer run that way, it loses that status. That may or may not matter to you or to the parks. But those are the rules and they're pretty simple.

 

On a side note, it's not specifically seat belts that disqualify a coaster from the Classic status. It's INDIVIDUAL seat belts, for the same reason that seat dividers also disqualify it. Because it doesn't "allow riders to slide from side-to-side".

 

One thing should be clear though, and that's that no coaster HAS to be modified in such a way to lose its status. The parks CHOOSE to modify them that way. it is completely possible AND safe to run them in that manner. And that's exactly what the club is trying to highlight with that award. Some of those criteria I care more about than others. (I personally really don't care about headrests at all.) But they're trying to make the point that coaster can be run this way. And the fact that some coasters still ARE run this way safely and without incident proves that point. And back to the topic of this thread, I think that it's PRECISELY situations like this which are why they have this status. To let parks know when they are considering changes and modernization of older coasters that it IS possible for them to safely run in the "classic" style.

 

This is a point that I really wanted to make in this thread, because I keep hearing here that GCI or Zamperla may "HAVE TO" make certain changes. And that's absolutely not true. They may CHOOSE to make certain changes for varying reasons, including to save money on maintenance or insurance. But they absolutely do NOT have to. That's not to say that any particular changes will necessarily be good or bad. Look no further than the New Texas Giant for something I didn't think I was going to be too happy about, which turned out to be a great improvement.

 

ACE also understands that there are a lot of worthy coasters that aren't run in that fashion, including a bunch of noteworthy steel coasters. That's why they created the "ACE Coaster Landmark" status. That sounds like exactly what people are talking about when they say that the Cyclone deserves a "classic" status. Different terms for different criteria. Different awards for different purposes.

 

And I'm sure that if the Cyclone were to lose the classic status due to changes to the trains, then it would likely get the landmark status. I don't think there's any doubt that the Cyclone is a coaster landmark, as well as an American landmark!

 

And even if a coaster doesn't merit one or the other award, ACE still supports the coasters and parks. The Williams Grove Cyclone is a great example to use because far more importantly than any award or plaque, the group helped to raise a lot of money in donations and grants to help reopen the coaster and keep it running.

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I rode the Cyclone in 1999 and I loved every second of it. It was wild, rough but exciting. I dont really care about it losing it ACE status, to me the most important thing is the fact that it is being properly maintained to ensure that it will run for years to come. I am a bit concerned over the re-profiling aspect of the re-tracking. When you consider that this was designed and built before computers it leaves some of the modern woodies standing. Does anyone know where this is happening?

I do remember my partner commenting on the fact that the car we rode on seemed to be held together by string ( this added to the thrill element to me lol, not much for him though, coward!). The cars were comfortable due the padding and some of the modern designs aren't so. Well done for Zamperla for recognising that this coaster is not only important to Coney Island but to history.

If only we had some coasters like this in Scotland. sigh.

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I rode this ride a few years ago and it was an absolutely terrible ride. I wanted to like it and excuse it's roughness because it's such a classic coaster but I was wishing for it to be over for the entire ride.

 

I really don't care if ACE thinks the coaster is a classic or not. If GCI can take a coaster that sucks and make it great again, then I'm all for it. I'd rather have a great coaster than a terrible coaster that has a plaque in front of it.

 

Some people may disagree with me, but in my opinion it sucks in it's current form.

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On a side note, it's not specifically seat belts that disqualify a coaster from the Classic status. It's INDIVIDUAL seat belts, for the same reason that seat dividers also disqualify it. Because it doesn't "allow riders to slide from side-to-side".

 

Amplifying though: The High Roller at ValleyFair! has been modified to include seatbelts - that stretch the entire width of the bench (one seatbelt per row). It keeps the insurance companies happy, and allows the coaster to maintain its "Classic" status.

 

And yes, that was my favorite coaster growing up, and how I chose my screen name.

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I rode the Cyclone last year and found it to be re-ridable up to a point. I think I took about 6 trips on it that day.

 

I rode it previously around 2005 or so and there was some sort of NYPD event going on at Coney and for most of my rides that day, I was the only person on the train not in a police uniform. Having learned on early rides not to sit over the wheels, I was in the next-to-last seat on a ride when a guy cop in the back seat told a lady cop next to him, "I'm surprised you'd ride wit me back here." She said, "why wouldn't I?"

He replied, "There's only two types of person what rides in the back seat of the Cyclone: masochists and those dat don't know no bettah."

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Coney Island Development Corporation has sent us a notice that Coney Island is hiring new employees for the 2012 summer season!

 

Coney Island is hiring for the 2012 summer season! Central Amusement International (CAI) and Nathan’s Famous, together with the Coney Island Development Corporation (CIDC) are recruiting for seasonal positions.

 

Positions are available with CAI at Luna Park and Scream Zone and with Nathan’s Famous restaurants for various positions including:

 

  • Ride and Game Operators
  • Food and Beverage Service
  • Park Service
  • Customer Service/Retail Sales
  • Ticket Sales Associates/Cashiers

This is a unique opportunity to become a part of “The One and Only Coney” by joining the team of dedicated employees that make Coney Island an entertainment destination worldwide. We are looking for courteous, reliable and enthusiastic individuals with flexible schedules.

 

Luna Park, Scream Zone and Nathan’s Famous use this recruiting process to find their employees each summer. The process consists of a screening event to review your credentials for any of the open positions available. If you are qualified, you will be referred for an interview.

 

If you are interested in landing one of these great positions and having one of the best summer jobs ever, please attend one of the upcoming screening events.

 

  • Tuesday, February 28, 2012 12:00pm-6:00pm MCU Park 1904 Surf Avenue
  • Thursday, March 1, 2012 12:00pm-6:00pm MCU Park 1904 Surf Avenue

 

In order to meet the eligibility requirements, you must attend one of the screening events and be at least 18 years of age.

 

For more information on these opportunities, see the event flyer. Additional information and job descriptions are also available on the CIDC website.

 

We look forward to seeing you there!

 

Sincerely,

Coney Island Development Corporation

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  • 3 weeks later...

So, in this article on www.nypost.com, it states that they will NOT be replacing the old trains on Cyclone. Sounds like good news to me.

 

"Riding the Coney Island Cyclone will remain as thrilling as ever — officials are dropping plans to replace the world-famous roller coaster’s rickety old cars.

 

Zamperla USA, the operator of Luna Park, has been tapped by the city Parks Department to continue operating the 85-year-old thrill ride for the next 15 years, officials confirmed yesterday.

 

And Zamperla says it’s planning to satisfy a huge concern of adventure junkies worldwide by refurbishing the cars to their former glory."

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^^That is something for which I am quite happy. Over the years, I have begun to appreciate older stuff more, coasters included, and seeing as there are very few four bench cars remaining, I am very happy that they are staying.

 

I haven't been on it since 2005, and I am strangely looking forward to it for the NYC add-on, despite the fact that it hurt more than a little. (Well, that, the pizza, and that Zamperla Air Race.)

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How about some off-season excitement? I visited Coney Island on September 3, 2011, and here are the photos! (Part 2 to follow)

 

Enjoy

Kirk

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The 'wonder' from 1920

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Disk-O

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Stilt walker Kae Burke

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Stilt walker Kae Burke

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New entrance

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IMG_8511.thumb.jpg.dbb307f8698398632f3aa12730515075.jpg

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kirkf1tz, those are some really great photos! I really like how you did something different with each of them, and how you captured so many great expressions. I absolutely LOVED Coney Island, and I can't wait to get back there to spend some more time. Thanks for sharing your photos!

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^Thanks! Doing that much processing is still new to me, so I'm having fun experimenting. I'm typically much more conservative, but thought the colors and moods fit the feel of the area.

 

Now get back to counting duckies!

 

Kirk

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Some wonderful photos that do a great job of capturing the spirit of the place. (I especially like the dog with the sunglasses.) And it's so good to hear that the old trains will be staying on the Cyclone.

 

The new season is almost here... almost time to ride the excellent Air Race again.

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  • A.J. changed the title to Coney Island (Luna Park / Deno's) Development Discussion Thread

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