August 16th marks National Roller Coaster Day. Thrill-seekers have been enjoying these contraptions for well over a century, and there’s no lack of coverage in newspapers showcasing the danger and excitement.
Considered the granddaddy of them all, the “Leap the Dips” debuted in 1902 at Luna Park in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. “Big Attractions at Luna Park” described the many attractions the park offered and mentioned the Leap the Dips with its devotees. In 1990, the roller coaster received the distinction of being on the National Register of Historic Places by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
The Sun from Baltimore, Maryland, showcased “Some of the Season’s New Attractions at the Trolley Parks” with a list of novelties at the different locations as well as pictures – one of the images was the new double roller coaster at Riverview.
In 1923, Hershey Park celebrated its 20th anniversary with a new roller coaster built by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company. The coaster was nearly one mile in length and was designed by Herbert Schmeck. No ladies were allowed on the ride until the afternoon of its debut.
Wooden roller coasters, also lovingly known as “woodies” by coaster enthusiasts, are different from their steel counterparts. The ride is much rougher, but they are exceedingly popular. “Woodies – Coasters with the Mostest” gives insight into the wooden roller coaster phenomenon.
The “Lifestyle Family” section of the Wilson Daily Times published two articles on roller coasters. “Riding High, the Faster the Better” shared a guest article by a Daily Times photographer and his love for the coaster experience. “Thrill Seekers Love Riding Those Roller Coasters” included an outstanding infographic titled “Coaster Craze” with fun facts about the roller coasters of the world. For example, what’s the world’s most expensive roller coaster? Hint – it cost a whopping $100 million!
A 1992 edition of the New Castle News included a “clip and save guide” to the top amusement parks in the United States. The parks, listed in alphabetical order, provided highlights and new attractions. For a bit of nostalgia, readers can compare admission costs from nearly 30 years ago. Kings Island, for instance, had a one-day admission price of $22.95 in 1992. Today, the cost is $45 – if you purchase online. It’s a whopping $80 if you purchase your ticket at the gate!
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