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What is New at Kings Island in 2011?

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The 2011 season at King Island will include new thrills and prehistoric wonder as never seen before at the park. Here is what you can expect to experience at Kings Island during the 2011 season:

Windseeker

Since I was 6 years old, I've enjoyed flights on the Zephyr, a circular swing ride that rises, rotates and tilts to send riders gliding gently through the sky. So when I heard about WIndseeker, my first thought was that this was an overgrown Zephyr. After all, it is another swing ride, where the swings tilt out under the power of centrifical force.

As I kept an eye on the construction progress of Windseeker at the Kings Island Blog, I quickly became aware of the thrill potential of this new mega ride. To give you a little perspective, Windseeker is 301 feet tall, just shy of Drop Tower's 315 feet. If you have ever ridden Drop Tower (the world's tallest gyro drop), you know that feeling as the ride pauses at the top of the tower and your stomach anticipates it's first flip on the way down. I can only imaging what Windseeker will be like, gliding in circles above the Mason landscape. Stay tuned as I risk my own lunch for you later this season!

Until Opening Day, check out the Windseeker construction photos and live video at visitkingsisland.com

Dinosaurs Alive!

Last year, my family took a trip down to Cave City, a silly tourist down south of Louiville that includes Dinosaur World. My sister, Emily, took the Dinosaur World tour. $12.75 later, she came out completely deflated and growling about Crapasaurus. This is a woman who has built her own dinosaur models since since we first clashed Play-Doh diplodocus' as children. From inconsistencies in dinosaur names to the colors used on their paint jobs, she sure had a mouthful for the people at Dino World. For this, and this reason alone, I must pay the $5 upcharge to visit Dinosaurs Alive! at Kings Island.

Over 60 life-size dinosaurs are going to appear in the woods near The Racers, 56 of which will include animatronic movements. I am going to take Emily on the tour as your ultimate critic of prehistoric plastic. Will blinking eyes count as 'animatronics' on some of the ancient monsters? Will the skin colors live up to the Gordon Ramsey of terrible lizards? Time traveling dinosaurs will touch down at Kings Island on May 26th, so don't expect to enter their neighborhood on opening day.

The addition of Dinosaurs Alive! leaves me wishing for more consistent theme at Kings Island. How great would it be if White Water Canyon, Diamondback, Amazon Falls, Adventure Express and the Beast were all together near this exhibit? I am hoping it will be possible to get lost in the world of the dino's at this new attraction after walking past the Peach Basket game and Vortex. Come back for a review before investing the five bucks yourself.

For more information, check out the official Dinosaurs Alive! page at visitkingsisland.com

A New Look in Coney Mall

My family loves to take a leisurely stroll down the length of Coney Mall at Kings Island, an old fashioned area dedicated to classic carnival rides, arcades and gotta-win-it games. One thing we we never fond of was the tar underfoot. There was nothing worse than trying to down a fresh Subway sandwich while inhaling the stink of the black pavement on a hot day!

In 2011, the dreaded black tar will be replaced with 40,000 brick pavers, restoring the vintage feel of the Coney Mall area, and sparing us the steaming driveway smell when the temperatures rise. This may sound like a minor asthetic improvement (hey, it's no Diamondback), but our family actually had debates on hotter days as to whether or not to return to Coney Mall... the smell really was overwhelming. Call me silly, but I am looking forward these bricks as much as a ride on Windseeker!

Son of Beast in 2011?

No word yet on the fixing of Son of Beast. If it were to be opened again in the 2011 season, I think we would have heard at least a whisper of hype by now. For lots of speculation, visit the Kings Island Central message board to shrug your shoulders with the rest of us.

Action Theater in 2011?

There is a lot of speculation in the pre-season this year, due to WIndseeker's location immediately in front of the old Action Theater line queue. The simple answer here is that I have no idea! Great reporting, right? Kings Island has made no official announcement for this attraction, and most likely will not, even if the movie changes. I will find out as soon as possible what is playing, or you could keep an eye on the many Sponge Bob lamentations at the KIC message board.

A look back on 2010:

2010 Opening Day Review

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