Kings Dominion gave Theme Park Review a preview tour of the new Planet Snoopy, which will open tomorrow (March 29) when the park officially opens for the 2013 season. Here's the official press release about the new, improved area for kids and families.
Kings Dominion to Debut Expanded, Multi-Million-Dollar Planet Snoopy Eight new family rides featured in the world’s largest PEANUTSTM-themed children’s area
DOSWELL, VA (March 28, 2013) – Family-fun and thrills reach new heights, as Kings Dominion announces the opening of Planet Snoopy, the largest PEANUTSTM-themed children’s area in the world, on March 29. Planet Snoopy boasts eight new rides (18 total rides) based on the world-wide sensation of Charles Schulz’s PEANUTSTM characters. In all, the bigger, better Planet Snoopy spans nearly 14-acres.
The eight new family rides in Planet Snoopy are:
Charlie Brown’s Wind Up: Hop on with Charlie Brown and swing through the air on Charlie Brown’s Wind Up; Flying Ace Balloon Race: Up, up and away! Soar high into the sky in a hot air balloon that climbs 37 feet into the air; Linus Launcher: Let’s go! Tilt up, let your feet dangle and feel as if you are flying through thin air on Linus Launcher; Lucy’s Tugboat: Come aboard and set sail on the high seas with Lucy and your family by your side on Lucy’s Tugboat; Snoopy’s Junction: All aboard the only PEANUTSTM-themed railroad at Kings Dominion, as Woodstock and Snoopy lead the way on Snoopy’s Junction; Snoopy’s Rocket Express: Blast off with this rocket-themed monorail that gives your entire family an aerial view of Snoopy’s playhouse; Snoopy’s Space Buggies: Defy gravity and bounce your way to the moon on Snoopy’s Space Buggies; Woodstock Whirlybirds: Take the kids for a spin around on the classic teacups with a Woodstock twist.
In addition to the new family rides, Planet Snoopy will also feature:
· Three new live shows, including a high-energy BMX-bike show with bikers and skaters who were semifinalists on Season 7 of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” starting June 22. The new entertainment in Planet Snoopy is part of a major entertainment expansion, including 7 new shows (10 total) at Kings Dominion.
· An 1,100 square-foot Family Care Center with reading time, changing rooms, feeding rooms, nap areas and more;
· The Kings Dominion Marketplace with healthy food options, including fruits, cheese, vegetables, salads and healthy drink options;
· “Planet Snoopy Family FUNtastic Guide”: a first-of-its-kind education guide containing lessons geared toward family interaction before, during and after a visit to Planet Snoopy. Parents can pick up one at the Family Care Center in Planet Snoopy.
“The new, world-class Planet Snoopy along with our enhanced live show line-up at Kings Dominion, demonstrates our commitment toward providing a day for families to spend together and create new memories,” said Kings Dominion’s Vice President and General Manager Pat Jones. “We are determined to make Planet Snoopy at Kings Dominion the best children’s area it can be.”
Kings Dominion opens on Friday, March 29 for its 39th season of operation. Guests can find the best deal on season passes and daily tickets, along with park hours at http://www.kingsdominion.com.
The new, expanded Planet Snoopy involved more than just adding a few new rides for kids. The entire infrastructure of what used to be Kidsville had to be modernized and brought up to steam. In the past, the Kidsville rides were all "independent" of each other. But for Planet Snoopy, all the rides' control systems were networked together to improve operations. In addition, all rides that were rethemed for Planet Snoopy were stripped down and completely refurbushed--which includes fresh new paint. The area is now brighter and more "open" than Kidsville used to be. The old gazebo has been moved, and will now serve at the Kings Dominion Market healthy snack stand, and a new show stage now occupies its old space. They've also expanded and upgraded the Family Care Center. All the rides have been tested and are ready to go.
And for those of you wondering about Windseeker, here is the park's official statement:
We are currently working with the ride manufacturer, Mondial, to design a new evacuation system in the event the ride is unable to return to its home position through normal operations. We are committed to the safety of each and every guest at Kings Dominion and we will re-open the ride to the public once we're comfortable that all appropriate safety precautions have been taken.
In other words, Windseeker will not be open over the spring break period in Virginia.
Here's a look at the new, expanded Planet Snoopy. Thank you to Kings Dominion and Gene Petriello for the sneak peek!
Looks like we're in the right place.
Topiary Snoopy is dang glad to see us!
This is the iconic fountain where Snoopy's Splash Dance used to be (near the Flying Ace ride). Yes, Snoopy will spit water out of his mouth.
Hey, Larry! Got a sign for ya!
I'm sure that tea-cup ride fans, such as Larry, will be happy to see this. As for me, I will be happy to hold others' bags while they ride. ;)
Besides being a flying ace, Snoopy is also an engineer . . .
. . . and here is his train.
A closer look at the train, with Woodstock as the signal man.
Let's not forget Snoopy's sort-of master, Charlie Brown.
This will be a step up from the old kiddie swings that used to be in Kidsville, as these will be more like a "mini Wave Swinger." In the background are the refurbished bumper cars (Lucy's Crabby Cabbies).
Just giving Good Ol' Charlie Brown his due.
Just because Taxi Jam is now the Great Pumpkin Coaster does not mean it's a new credit. Let's get that straight right now! ;)
The same goes for Woodstock Express.
But doesn't its new paint look nice?
Dominator got a fresh coat of love during the off season, too. It looks great.
Sweet Frog should be open tomorrow, too, for all your frozen yogurt needs.
Here's another new ride--a Peanuts version of the "Rocket Jets."
I had no idea that Snoopy was the "First Beagle on the Moon." They don't mention this as the Kennedy Space Center.
Linus doesn't look to sure about this.
I wonder how Linus feels about the Linus Launcher?
Yes, you can spin these balloons on the Flying Ace Balloon Race, which means you can spew from 37 feet in the air!
Lucy's Tugboat is another new ride. I had no idea that Lucy was a sailor and a psychiatrist.
Here's one of the refurbished Kidsville rides.
Yes, it's been "Snoopified."
"This is my domain, and I protect those who come here!"
Here is the biggest new Planet Snoopy ride.
I know that many of you will be pleased that Kings Dominion now has a monorail.
Fresh, new track!
Be sure to visit Planet Snoopy, because his planet has cookies! Thanks for reading.
^Well, not exactly "exclusive." I noticed that KD Fansite toured sometime that day (they posted some Facebook pics). It was different approach than most "preview" days, and it was rather nice to take things at my own pace.
I'm impressed with the Planet Snoopy upgrades across the chain and this one is probably the best I've seen so far! The fountain is pretty cool, something that is only at the Kings Dominion Planet Snoopy. Can't wait to see what it's going to look like with the water running!
I have a feeling Kings Island is going to finally have some decent competition in the GTA Best Kids Area this year!
Dominator looks great too. This must be one of the B&M coasters where they're not allowed to paint the rails, or are painted grey?
Excited to finally head over there this summer, along with a stop to Hershey! The Cedar Fair parks are looking great and can't wait to see all of the changes this year in person!
I think it's more about keeping track of how everything's running and making sure that they can fix problems more quickly. I don't think it has anything to do with queue lengths. The old Kidsville rides had been there a long time, and I imagine the operating systems were pretty antiquated.
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