Coaster Junkie From Birth?

Monday, July 12, 2004 11:39 AM
Well, not exactly from birth. Anyway, my brother and I were discussing how long we have been coaster fanatics. It really goes way back to our early childhood. I used to make coasters out of Legos. My brother used to take one of my father's train cars and make believe it was a coaster that traveled all over our couch. When we would visit my grandparents, we would make coasters out of clothes pins. We even used to make coasters out of Matchbox tracks. We remembered a parade (maybe Macy's Day Parade) where they had a float with a working coaster on it. Anyone remember this? My question is, "How long have you been a coaster fanatic?"
Monday, July 12, 2004 11:51 AM
Oh heck yah! I grew up in a rough neighborhood and so my folks wouldn't let me out to play in the hood that often. I used all my blocks, legos, Lincoln logs, matchbox tracks, Darda track, electric trains to build amusements parks.

I think I loved parks from the get-go, but didn't become obsessed until I was 7 or so. *** Edited 7/12/2004 3:51:31 PM UTC by janfrederick***

Monday, July 12, 2004 11:51 AM
Well in early childhood I was obsessed with trains and what I wanted to be when I grew up was a train enggenierr(sp). I had everything. From Thomis the Train to the wooden trains my grandpa made for me. So I use to build the wooden flat tracks all around our house and going around and under things. I guess I would count that.
Monday, July 12, 2004 11:59 AM
Before I ever rode a coaster, I used to be obsessed with the coaster-like car tracks, like Darda and others. I had probably a dozen of them.

I remember drawing coasters as early as third or fourth grade. I didn't ride a "real" coaster until a PKI trip in the fifth grade, but I was so determined that I rode the Beast and Vortex by myself when all my friends chickened out.

Monday, July 12, 2004 12:03 PM
My first coaster experience was apparently around age 1. As my mom explained it...

I was in a baby walker popular in the 70's. Big circular base with wheels, where the baby sits in a sling and the feet just touch, so he can move around. The base diameter was much wider than the doorways in the house, so my mom figured I was safe. Nope.

Apparently I managed to tilt the walker enough to get it through the doorway to the basement. My mom was only a few feet away in the kitchen, so she saw as I went tumbling down the stairs. She ran over, to see me land at the bottom, right side up. I looked up, giggled, and kept walking...


Monday, July 12, 2004 12:04 PM
I believe the float with the working coaster model on it was the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena on New Year's Day one year ... don't remember the year.

And how long have i been a coaster fanatic ... about 15 years since when i was younger i had a severe fear of heights.

Monday, July 12, 2004 12:52 PM
Since the age of five. We would go to my grandfather's farm and ride sleds down the hillside in the wintertime and on our bikes when we spent a week in the summer. It was about 700 ft from the top to the end. The hill was maybe 80ft and sloped off at 500ft. We would make it all the way to the house on a good day. That was around 1970.
Monday, July 12, 2004 4:34 PM
dragonoffrost was correct about the of Roses Parade. A pic (not actual) is also included in the story:
Monday, July 12, 2004 7:44 PM
I remember seeing that float in the parade. It was sponsored by Honda motors. There was a topic about it on here last year I believe, so if you search you might find it.

I've been into coasters since early grade school. I was always drawing park layouts and designs for rides as far back as first grade. I used to build park models out of everything. Then one Christmas, the Erector set arrived and really stepped things up a notch. I had a working shuttle loop built of Hot Wheels track and Erector set parts for the loop support. Hot Wheels made a rubber band launch so that was the catapult. It only had one spike though. The Erector set also came in handy for building a 4 car Enterprise ride. Ah, fun times.

Monday, July 12, 2004 8:06 PM
I was obsessed about looking at them. I think I admired their design, in general, but I was deathly afraid. My grandparents kept talking about the Puyallup Coaster:thrill ride as though it was a deathtrap. First off, the fact that it had a death on it years ago, and secondly, "it made you feel like your stomach fell out."

Great.............. Thanks, Grandma, and Grandpa. ;)

Monday, July 12, 2004 8:30 PM
I have a pic of me at age 3 riding Jr. Gemini for the first time. Thanks to my dad, it was instilled at a very young age. Now at age 60, he still wishes he could ride Magnum all day!
Monday, July 12, 2004 8:45 PM
I have been a *junkie* as far as I can remember. My parents took my brother and I to Camden Park, King's Island, and Myrtle Beach early on. I have vague memories of Opryland. They never rode the coasters with us though. My dad claimed he "loved them" in his teens and my mom gets motion sickness just from watching them.

Luckily I have never had motion sickness.

My paternal grandparents worked at Silver Dollar City in the late 70's which probably fueled the fire, so to speak. I remember grandma was a *coaster enthusiast* before the term was coined. She rocked!

I have always been an adrenaline junkie though, I used to ride my Big Wheel down these WV mountains before I even rode a coaster. ;-)


Monday, July 12, 2004 10:20 PM
Since I can remember I have had that thrillseeking type of personality. As soon as I could ride a bike I was putting a ramp up our picnic table, and jumping trashcans in the backyard because I watched the episode of Happy Days when Fonzie jumped a bunch of trashcans. Around age 12 I started skateboarding, and by 15 was competing in halfpipe competitions in the PA, MD and VA area.

Somewhere between 7 - 8 I started riding coasters, and haven't stopped since. Being from a non enthusiest family(my parents didn't like any type of rides) I had to get my coaster rides when I could. This consisted of annual picnics at Willow Mills and Williams Grove, Occasional trip to Hersheypark, and our yearly family vacation to Wildwood NJ.

Since I am older now, and my body isn't what it used to be(31 years old,)I find coaster riding to be the best thrillseeking outlet.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 11:43 AM
Much like Rob, I was more about looking at 'em then riding 'em for a long time. Mostly because my parents wouldn't let me. Once I did start riding around age 15, it was all over.

One of my enthusiast friends actually rode his first coaster in utero. I know it wasn't safe, but it was his mom's decision and not his. It was Avalanche at GAdv. and he can't figure out whether it's a credit or not. ;)

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 12:09 PM
Thanks for all the responses. I was just interested in when other people took a liking to coasters. Great examples in this thread. And, Apollo Andy, I think we could say that your friend should get credit for that. Technically, he did ride it.:)
Tuesday, July 13, 2004 12:14 PM
How long? About 26 years now, I think. 1978, my first trip to Kings Dominion, 5 years old: After hitting some shows and a few kiddie rides, I begged my parents to let me ride with them on...the log flume. My two older bros chickened out. My folks very reluctantly gave in, and after my bros saw me grinning from ear-to-ear coming down the exit ramp, we all rode it several times and had a blast.

By the end of the night, the whole family had marathoned Scooby Doo about 15 consecutive times...and the rest is history.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 1:23 PM
I also was very lucky in the fact that my parents took me to parks starting at a young age. Although they did scare me away from adult coasters by taking me on the Blue Streak at Conneaut when I was 3, lol. I would ride kiddie coasters till the sun didn't shine, but forget about adult coasters till I was 10 when I rode Corkscrew at KBF with my cousin. Ever since then, I'll ride anything.

I've done the same with my daughter. We take her to parks and she's loves most coasters. Twister at Knoebel's scared her a little but not enough to keep her from riding other coasters, like Sooperdooperlooper. I find her drawing coasters or making tracks from just about anything she can bend (licorice, long skinny pieces of cardboard, noodles, etc). I think I've created a monster, LOL.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 2:20 PM
My first visit to Disneyland was before I was one years old. My first coaster - Matterhorn - was at or around the age of three. But the thrill ride gene goes deep in my family as the grandparents on both sides of my family took my parents to parks. My mom frequently visited Cedar Point, Euclid Beach, and Chippewa Lake when she was young. And conversely all of my nieces and nephews lover rides.
Tuesday, July 13, 2004 4:37 PM
I used to make a track out of garden hose, and set up a little coaster on the porch, and rolled balls down it.

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