Local group bands together to save the Zippin' Pippin at Libertyland

Posted Monday, December 5, 2005 12:31 PM | Contributed by Jeff

A new fight to save a Memphis landmark is gaining steam. The group Save Libertyland came together after the sudden closure of the struggling amusement park earlier this month. They are protesting the move through petition and song.

Read more and see video from WMC/Memphis.

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Monday, December 5, 2005 1:20 PM
A truly worthy cause. Who would want to see a classic woodie never run again?
Monday, December 5, 2005 2:51 PM
Maybe they should send it to graceland(sp), was that not the coaster that elvis loved?
Monday, December 5, 2005 6:46 PM
I really hope this coaster gets saved, but I think the whole thing about it being Elvis' favorite roller coaster is overstated. From what I've read, he only visited the park once in his lifetime and Zippin' Pippin was his favorite ride in the park. Probably being the only coaster there at that time, it only makes sense that it would be his favorite. Regardless, I think the park could be saved if they implement some kind of water park. It's a very nice little park, but they need a few more staple attractions. This is not to mention the fact that Zippin' Pippin gives you a head ache whenever you ride. It really needs some maintenance. More than the coaster, they have a really cool ride where you take a cart down a drop and skim over a pool of water when you reach the bottom. This is something you'd never see at the big parks.

I generally think the park needs to pick its audience more wisely. They seemed to have a very young group of visitors at the park, but few attractions which really appeal to the adults who take them to there. Some shows would definitely add a missing element. I don't recall a ferris wheel or train ride in the park. I think these are the kind of rides they need.

Monday, December 5, 2005 9:12 PM
From the sign at the entrance to Zippin Pippin:

"The Zippin Pippin was Elvis Presley's favorite ride. The "King" rented Libertyland August 8, 1977 from 1:15 am to 7 am. to entertain a group of about 10 guests. Decked in a blue jumpsuit with black leather belt, huge belt buckle with turquoise studs and gold chains, the "King" rode the Zippin Pippin repeatedly during a two-hour period. He lost his belt buckle on the ride that morning, and it was found and returned the next day. Elvis's Libertyland rental became his last public appearance. He died August 16."


I still remember being at SFOG on August 16 and returning to the hotel to hear the TV news that Elvis had passed. I hope ZP can be saved as it's quite a historical ride as well as a fun one. And yes, the Aqua Scoot ride is AWESOME! There's also a Dentzel carousel at LL very much worth saving and there was a train ride as well. Rebellion was possibly the scariest free fall tower I've ridden. Seemed like the brakes would never catch and then suddenly you stopped at ground level.

Monday, December 5, 2005 9:46 PM
I've never ridden the Pippin, but ever since I first started Considering myself an enthusiast, (about 7-8 years ago), I've heard many times about the Zippin' Pippin. Not just because of the Elvis link, but because it's just a legendary coaster!

It's needs to stay around because it's holds a very prominent place in coaster history. I don't know about all the plans for the coaster museum that ACE has proposed, but if it included installing classic/legendary coasters...this one would belong.

Tuesday, December 6, 2005 9:22 AM
Thanks for the article!

I am glad to hear that they are doing something to help preserve it. The Pippin is one of my favorite woodies, and I would HATE to see it go to waste.

It was running flawlessly during the Preservation Con last year, and we had a blast! Some of the ride ops mentioned that Elvis and his friends used to jump out of the coaster at the top of the lift hill just to mess with the ride ops. Whether that is fact or fiction we will never know, but it was fun listening to the park's employees tell those stories over peanut butter and banana sandwiches. :-) I am sure if Elvis was still alive he would be the ultimate credit ho. He LOVED coasters and used to go to parks whenever he toured.

Yes, I know way too much about Da King.

I hope the whole park can be saved. I HATE seeing small parks like Libertyland shut down.


Tuesday, December 20, 2005 12:20 PM
I think maybe this is my second post on this board. Last time, I was upset about the Starliner. At least there's good news on that front.

The Zippin' Pippin was my daughter's first coaster! She was 5, now she's 11, and she's not happy about Libertyland closing. They definitely should have warned people that they were about to close, we would have had season passes last year. Oh, well.

I think one of the big problems with Libertyland was it's location. Memphis is a very crime-filled city, and Libertyland is in one of the worst areas. I did not like driving to and from the park. Yeah, I felt safe in the park, but not on the streets. Personally, I was hoping someone would buy Libertyland and move it to the suburbs.

Doesn't look like that will happen.


Saturday, December 24, 2005 6:03 PM
I fisrt rode the Pippin around 1980 when I was 7, and it was the first coaster my son rode when he was 4... had to fudge his height a little to get him on. I was saddened to hear that the park was closing. Being a coaster junkie and having ridden many bigger, faster more impressive looking coasters, the Pippin is still my favorite coaster.... the airtime you get on the backside bunny hops I have yet to find better anywhere else. I even spent one day a couple of summers ago doing nothing but riding the Pippin, 110 times to be exact. If anyone has any info on the Save the Pippin campeign please pm me. thanks.



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