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How did you get into roller coasters/amusement parks?


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When I was in 8th grade, we were on a class trip at Islands of Adventure. My friends wanted me to go on Dragon Challenge (Chinese Fireball) with them when they went for the second time. I had chickened out the first time, and they were really pressuring me to go with them. Eventually, I gave in, and when we were waiting in line, I was literally flipping out. I was just repeatedly asking stuff like: "Is it scary?", and "Are we going to die?" As we were going up the lift hill, the flipping out reached a climax. By the time we hit the brake run, I was in love with the ride, and I ended up riding it three more times. After all of that, I knew that I was obsessed.

 

Now that I consider myself an enthusiast, I look back on that trip and regret not riding the Incredible Hulk.

 

I'm sure that a lot of us have similar stories (going from being terrified of coasters to not getting enough of them), but exactly how did it happen to you?

 

 

 

P.S.: Sorry if this is a duplicate. Feel free to merge it.

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I rode my first real coaster when I was in Jr High School. I visited a park called Deer Park Funland. Today it is now known as Michigan's Adventure. The coaster was Corkscrew and at that time it was a great ride. Prior to going there I was real skiddish about roller coasters or any upside down ride. My love of coasters began but really took off years later when I finally made it to Cedar Point. And the rest they say is history.

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My mom worked at Knott's Berry Farm before I was even born, so I guess you could say it's in my blood lol. Anyways, because she worked there I was at Knott's almost every weekend during my early youth years and grew to love roller coasters/theme parks and it took off from there.

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It was a family tradition that we visited Heide Park Soltau every year when I was younger. I also went to smaller parks around my birthtown Hannover in Lower Saxony with my grandparents.

When I moved to North Rhine Westfalia 12 years ago I visited Movie Park Germany and Phantasialand for the first time.

After the first visits I looked for some things about the parks on the internet and so I came in contact with some fanpages.

And now some years later I met a lot of people and run my own fanpage with some friends...

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Well my grandparents on my mom's side have been living near Paris for quite a while and when I was 3 (1999) we went there and visited Disneyland and I rode my first coaster: big thunder mountain. From then on I started going to all these crappy fun fairs we have here in Portugal until eventually I got to try some bigger rides and then, yeah, this is what happened.

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Back in the day, my parents had a LOT of VHS tapes and one of them happened to be America's Greatest Roller Coaster Thrills in 3D and I used to watch that tape all the time. Over the years as my obsession of roller coasters was growing, my parents started recording any T.V show amusement park related. Then when we finally got a computer, I discovered some roller coaster sites such as Coastergallery and RCDB and that's where my interest really sparked. Over the years of visiting Adventure World (Now Six Flags America), and Kings Dominion, I started actually riding bigger roller coasters as I got older and here I am today.

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For me it started very young with visits to Memphis Kiddie Park, which wasn't too far from my house and my parents would take the annual family trip to Cedar Point. Once Kings Island was built we would take a trip down there every few years. As I got older I became more fascinated with roller coasters which in turn started my love affair with the amusement industry.

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When I was 3, my aunt brought me to this carnival in Grand Haven, Michigan. It had all the rides you'd expect, a drop tower, zipper, Fireball, etc, etc, etc... Apparently, the ride that caught my attention was one of those teeny tiny dragon coasters for kids, so I went on it and LOVED it. I later wandered away and my family freaked out, but my sister knew EXACTLY where I was... yeah, it was in line for that dragon coaster. That's how I got started anyways, I went to Michigan's Adventure the next year and went on the Zach's Zoomer and I was in LOVE with roller coasters from that day on.

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When I was younger, before moving to Spain, we used to spend 4 weeks every year from 1996 to 2002 (when we moved) on the south coast of Spain. We usually spent 1.5/2 weeks worth of time at PortAventura. PA became a massive part of my childhood and kind of started the flame. I then started playing RCT and it just snowballed from there. I'm not the type of enthusiast that goes around riding all the coasters I can, but if you asked me anything about coasters, you would have my full attention immediately.

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When I was growing up, we could only afford to go to an amusement park once a year and that was when they had a discount day - usually in late spring. We either went to Geauga Lake (1 hour away) or Cedar Point (3 hours away). I looked forward to that one day for months and I knew that I forever had a love for the amusement industry.

 

Over the years we didn't have the disposable income to travel so we didn't do much. After graduating from college and moving to Charlotte, we started getting season passes to Carowinds. One year while doing a search for information on new attractions for the upcoming year I stumbled upon the fan site for Carowinds. As I read through posts there I learned about enthusiasts clubs and that's when I realized I am a theme park and roller coaster enthusiast and it's been all downhill from there. Since that day (which was just a few years ago), I went from around 30 coaster credits and a handful of parks to where I am right now.

 

I hope to work in the amusement industry some day (when I grow up ) in some capacity (other than being a seasonal employee).

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When I was younger I used to dream of owning an amusement park, which was actually kind of strange because I barely ever visited them despite living about 15 minutes away from one. I really became more obsessed with them in 2012 when I started working at one, though. Although originally it wasn't my dream job, I now wouldn't mind having a career in a theme park as a full time employee.

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Ravine Flyer II is the root of my passion for roller coasters and amusement parks. However, it was almost a decade before RFII was built, that I developed an interest. As I got more curious about this proposed "big" coaster to be built in my small home park, I started coming across other pieces of coaster information. Next thing you know I was hooked. Of course RFII's Opening Day is still the highlight of my passion as that was moment everything came full circle. Ever since then, my travels have really picked up and I began to branch out from the parks within three hours of me and explore a whole range of parks. Heck, I got so hooked on exploring parks and coasters that it became very clear that my career should be in this industry.

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From when I was really little I had always gotten a season pass for Lake Compounce. I always did the kiddie coaster and Boulder Dash and WC when I was tall enough, but one day I was feeling brave and I was like I'll go on thunder and lightning, enterprise, and zoomerang, and now I love coasters

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I always loved them growing up, and supposedly I LOVED the wacky worms. But when I rode the Pepsi Ripsaw Coaster (now Orange Streak) at the Mall of America I became hooked! I found POVs and pictures online, and TPR was actually the first coaster site I found back in 2005. Ever since it's just gotten better. We go to parks whenever we can and love every second of it.

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My dad was a huge influence. He scared me to death on my first big super slide at I think Virginia Beach and then took me on my first log ride at Gold Rush Junction (aka Dollywood). I miss him so much. Mom helped me keep all my collectible nostalgia memorabilia and rode Mountain Slidewinder with me...never forget. I owe them both huge gratitude. My older sisters forced me on WDW's Space Mountain at 6 or 7 years old against my will as I was terrified, and I was never the same. Thank you to them all!

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Growing up in NYC, my first major coaster was Hurricane at Adventureland in Farmingdale (Long Island). After that I was hooked. Not just on coasters, but thrill rides in general. I believe my first wooden coaster was The Famous Coney Island Cyclone. Went on some trips with school and camp groups to SFGAdv, Cedar Point, Lake Compounce (I had no idea Boulder Dash was so great at the time!) and other parks close to the Northeast. Living in FL now I'm completely spoiled by year-round ops. No idea how the other half lives anymore!

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I got my first La Ronde season pass when I was 7 years old, 9 years ago in 2005. I quicjly became fascinated by the bigger rides of the park, even tough I was too young to ride them (I was actually pretty scared of riding them and I was sure I would never do !). During my free times I was going on the park's website and looking at the different rides' informations and stats. Also, the next year La Ronde decided to install the Goliath which at the time was a gigantic coaster for a young kid like me at the time. I followed its construction the whole winter and that pretty much made me an enthousiast !

 

I have to say that the RCT series helped me to learn a lot about amusement parks too. I discovered several Six Flags parks like Magic Mountain through RCT2 way before I ever saw a real picture of the park.

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This rollercoaster documentary.

 

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My parents recorded it for me as it was quite late at night for a young kid. Its still my favorite of all rollercoaster/themepark documentarys and it holds a special place in my heart. I dont know the exact year, but since Dragon Kahn is featured in the intro it cannot have been before 1995. I since watched it dozens of times for years even before I rode my first proper rollercoaster in 2002. So for me the interest came long before I started riding.

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I remember when I was a kid (around five or six) and I already loved roller coasters my grandfather (who was the only one with a computer and, therefore, access to the internet) would download every video he found of coasters, some of which I later came to find out were from TPR's coaster expeditions! I also remember my parents recording a documentary from TLC called "Top ten ultimate thrill rides" which I still have in VHS. It must have been from around 2000 or 2001 as Millennium Force (no 1) was quite recent.

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Growing up, I was deeply afraid of roller coasters. My dad always use to push me and my sister on them and we both would throw fits. Through, I was always fascinated by them. All I wanted to do when I was young was to go to amusement parks and look at all of the roller coasters. Not ride them, just look at them. I always found them interesting by the way they move and their architecture. I would just stand there and stare at them for hours. After I started to get older, and was able to start bringing friends along, I started to lose my fears ever so slowly. By the age of 10, my dad started to let me be more independent while at theme parks. Me and my friends would ride different rides, and I started to leave my comfort zone when it came to coasters. It wasn't until my 8th grade end of the year field trip to Six Flags Great America when my fear of roller coasters finally went away. Something clicked in me when I was riding one of the coasters. I swear to god I rode it at least 6 times in a row. From that day on, I was hooked. Every time I would go back to Six Flags, the more and more I would fall in love with them. As of last summer, a friend of mine took me to Cedar Point for the first time. That's where I came to the conclusion that I was a roller coaster enthusiast. Lately, I've been watching POVs on YouTube and stumbled across Theme Park Reviews. I absolutely adore their footage of coasters, so I decided to check out their site. This is where I found a community of people that share the same interest as me. I just had to sign up! So now I'm here, hoping on day I can travel the world and visit different amusement parks like the people on here do.

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^This is really similar to how I felt about them as well. From as early as I can remember, I was just obsessed with them. Even before I was big enough to ride them, and even a little later on when I was still a little too scared to ride them, I was just obsessed with them. When we would go to my home park (AstroWorld R.I P.) I wouldn't be able to take my eyes off of them. And any time I saw a roller coaster on TV or a picture of one in a magazine or something, it was like porn to me. I couldn't get enough of it. I would draw pictures of them and talk about them constantly. My parents thought it was weird. Lol. It sounds strange, but it's almost like I was born with some innate attraction to them.... I can almost liken it to being born gay (if that makes any sense.)

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