November 27, 2014

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Cedar Point has the golden ticket again

SANDUSKY — Same kudos, different year.

To everybody else in the amusement park business, it may be getting old hat, but Cedar Point officials don’t find it boring to be named “Best Amusement Park in the World” for a record 10th straight year by an international poll of veteran theme park fans.

MCT FILE
Cedar Point’s Millennium Force was named the No. 2 steel roller coaster in the world by Amusement Today magazine.

The honor was announced Wednesday at Dollywood amusement park in Tennessee by officials of Amusement Today, the Arlington, Texas-based amusement and waterpark industry magazine.
Amusement Today publisher and editor-in-chief Gary Slade said remaining top dog in the industry is Cedar Point’s annual goal.

“Those boys up there are very proud to put those tickets on display, and they have no plans to hand the crown over any time soon,” Slade said.

Known as the Golden Ticket Awards, the rankings are determined by a poll of 500 amusement park and thrill ride enthusiasts in four geographic regions of the U.S., and those in England, France and other European countries. Those surveyed are asked to rate parks for the “bests” in 24 categories covering roller coasters, water rides, cleanliness, food and staff.

“These people are well-traveled and do parks all summer,” Slade said. “It’s their hobby and their love.”
Cedar Point’s dominance in the poll stems from the fact that the historic 364-acre Sandusky park does such a good job at offering everything from a great selection of rides and entertainment to a waterpark, marina, beach and resort facilities.

“You can do virtually anything you’d ever want to do there,” Slade said. “It’s all within a short walk.”

The location doesn’t hurt either.

“No other single amusement park lets you pull up in a boat at a dock, get out and start riding rides immediately,” Slade said. “Some seaside parks might be similar, but not on the scale of Cedar Point.”

This year’s poll again saw the park’s 310-foot, 93-mph Millennium Force and Superman Ride of Steel at Six Flags New England in Massachusetts slug it out for the top two spots on the list of Top 10 steel roller coasters.

“They are in a tug-of-war with each other,” Slade said.

The 208-foot, 77-mph Superman Ride of Steel grabbed the No. 1 spot for the second straight year, with Millennium Force ranked No. 2. “It’s a coin flip as to which you prefer,” Slade said. “Both are outstanding rides.”

Cedar Point’s new $21 million Maverick, a roller coaster sporting 10 banked turns, three inversions, a series of 360-degree rolls and a zero to 57-mph launch grabbed top honors for “Best New Ride of 2007.”

As it has done in previous years, Cedar Point saw two other steel roller coasters ranked among the top 10: Magnum XL-200 at No. 5 and Top Thrill Dragster at No. 9.  

Castaway Bay, Cedar Point’s year-round indoor water park, ranked third for “Best Indoor Waterpark.”

Contact Steve Fogarty at 329-7000 or sfogarty@chroniclet.com.