Cypress Gardens Adventure Park, Winter Haven, Florida!
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
Kent Buescher, owner


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News on this page from 2005


Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Ledger Acquires The News Chief In Winter Haven
The Ledger has reached an agreement with GateHouse Media
to purchase the editorial and advertising assets of The News Chief,
a newspaper that has published in Winter Haven since it was founded as The Florida Chief in 1911.
The News Chief will continue to operate as a daily publication
with a separate news staff and its own editorial board
The News Chief's logo, a man wearing a headdress,
will be removed out of respect to Native American culture.
The paper will officially become a product of The Ledger,
which is owned by The New York Times Co.
The News Chief has a daily circulation of about 7,500 copies
The Ledger's circulation numbers 72,000 copies on weekdays and 89,000 copies on Sundays
 
Wikipedia The New York Times Company


Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Cypress Gardens Has a New Owner
For the third time in a dozen years, Cypress Gardens has a new owner.
Mulberry-based
Land South Holdings www.landsouthgroup.com
bought the oldest theme park in the state Tuesday
for $16.8 million at a bankruptcy auction in Georgia.
Former owner
Kent Buescher plans to stay on as CEO of the Gardens.
"I have mixed feelings," Buescher said, speaking from the auction site in Macon, Ga.
There were no additional bidders for Cypress Gardens or Wild Adventures,
said
Ward Stone, a bankruptcy lawyer for Valdosta-based Adventure Parks Group LLC.
The Middle District Court in Georgia will approve the sale Thursday in Columbus, Ga.,
Lakeland lawyer
Brian Philpot and Robert Harper are partners in Land South Holdings.

Friday, September 7, 2007
Cypress Gardens Is Again For Sale
Auction is planned for two amusement parks owned by Kent Buescher on Sept. 25.
Cypress Gardens and its sister amusement park,
Wild Adventures Theme Park in Valdosta, Ga.,
will be sold as part of their parent company's pending Chapter 11 bankruptcy case.
The parks will be offered to bidders together or separately
at a Sept. 25 auction conducted by the U.S. District Court in Valdosta,
said Ward Stone, a bankruptcy lawyer for Valdosta-based Adventure Parks Group LLC.
Bids for Cypress Gardens will start at $17.4 million
and at $38.85 million for the Georgia park.
The court will choose the best offers Sept. 27.
 
Greater Winter Haven Chamber of Commerce's Web site

Thursday, November 9, 2006
Cypress Gardens Getting Landmark Roller Coaster
Florida’s first wooden roller coaster is coming to Florida’s first theme park Cypress Gardens.
Starliner was built in 1963 at Panama City Beach’s Miracle Strip Amusement Park.
It should open at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park next June.
The $5 million addition is part of several enhancements
Cypress Gardens is making to overcome its financial difficulties.
  Wikipedia - Miracle Strip Park

Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Cypress Gardens Files for Chapter 11
An adverse ruling in a 2-year-old bid to collect $17 million in hurricane-related insurance claims
has prompted Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
to seek the protection of federal bankruptcy court.
But the park will remain open as usual, and employees and creditors will be paid,
park owner
Kent Buescher said in an emotional announcement Tuesday,
a day after his company filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition.
"We're honoring passes," he said.
"This is the best, most responsible thing I could do
to make sure the park is run uninterrupted and continuously.
"It's not what I wanted to do, mind you," he said.
  Wikipedia Chapter 11 - United_States_Code

Friday, March 31, 2006
CEO Lets Hopes Ride on Water Park
Cypress Gardens'
Kent Buescher says Splash Island should boost annual pass sales.
Splash Island at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
opened for its first full season Thursday. "Water parks drive annual pass sales.
I'm guessing it will increase another 20 (percent) to 25 percent"
Annual pass sales stood at almost 200,000 in 2005,
and more than 100,000 annual passes have already been sold this year, Buescher said
Last year's attendance at the park was about 1.4 million.
Buescher expects more than 1.5 million visitors to pass through the park's gates this year.
The former owners saw between 700,000 and 800,000 visitors
in their best year, according to Buescher

Monday, February 27, 2006
Boy Still Critical After Fall
A 13-year-old Orlando boy was in critical condition Sunday,
a day after he fell from the Triple Hurricane roller coaster ride
at Cypress Gardens, Polk County Sheriff's officials said.
Martin Llamas fell 10 to 12 feet onto grass,
sheriff's spokeswoman Carrie Rodgers said.
He was flown by medical helicopter to
St. Joseph's Children's Hospital in Tampa.
According to Cypress Gardens spokeswoman
Lynn Wright,
witnesses said Llamas was dared to stand up during the ride.
He apparently wriggled free of the lap restraint,
stood up and fell out as the ride neared the end of the run.
An inspector from the Florida State Bureau of Fair Ride Inspection
concluded there was no malfunction with the ride
and that the boy was properly restrained by the coaster's lap restraint
when the ride started, according to Wright.
  Polk County Sheriff's Office
  St. Joseph's Hospital
  Bureau of Fair Rides Inspection
  Roller Coaster Database

Sunday, January 22, 2006
Water-Ski Star George Blair Sworn In as 'Mayor' of Cypress Gardens on his 91st birthday
Add another title to
"Banana" George Blair's long list:
Mayor of Cypress Gardens Adventure Park.
Blair, who turned 91 Saturday, celebrated his birthday with the public at Cypress Gardens.
First he was sworn in as mayor of the park.
Then he took to the water, skiing for his constituents as he has so many times before
  www.BananaGeorge.com

Friday, January 6, 2006
Cypress Gardens Park Hires Former TV Reporter
Lynn Wright is trading crime scenes and government meetings
for Southern Belles and roller coasters.
The former Polk County reporter for
Bay News 9
is the new public relations manager at
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park in Winter Haven.
"I just wanted to do something different," she said.
"I have always been interested in (public relations). It seemed like a natural transition."
Wright, 29, worked as a general assignment reporter
for the St. Petersburg-based news station from 2002 until Dec. 21.
 
Bay News 9
 
Wikipedia St. Petersburg, Florida
 


News from 2005

Saturday, December 31, 2005
Cypress Gardens in Top 50
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
has been listed among the Top 50 Parks in North America in 2005
by Amusement Business magazine and Economics Research Associates,
a company statement said Friday.
The figures, based on attendance, placed Cypress Gardens at No. 41.
This is the first year the Winter Haven park has appeared on the charts.
Its 2005 attendance surpassed initial projections of
750,000 visitors to about 1.4 million guests.
Cypress Gardens sister park, Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.
placed 38th, its fourth straight year on the list.
 
Amusement Business
 
ERA, Economics Research Associates

Friday, December 16, 2005
Busch Gardens, SeaWorld Tickets Up
It will get a little more expensive to go to
Busch Gardens and SeaWorld beginning Jan. 2,
but the theme parks have announced ticket deals
that could take some of the sting out of the increase.
The parks will renew their Fun Card promotion,
which allows Florida residents who buy a single-day admission
to return as many times as they want throughout the year at no additional cost.
Admission to Busch Gardens will increase
$2 to $57.95 for adults and $47.95 for children.
Single-day admission prices to SeaWorld
will increase by $2.20 to $61.95.
Tickets for ages 3 to 9 will increase $1.95 to $49.95.
Ticket prices at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park,
located in Winter Haven, also rose this week.
Adult prices increased $1 to $39.95
and tickets for juniors (ages 3-9) and seniors (55 and older)
went up by $3 to $34.95.
A spokesman for
Walt Disney World
said no determination had been made on 2006 ticket prices.
Disney charges $59.75 for adults and $48 for children, not including taxes.
 
BuschGardens.com
 
SeaWorld.com
 
DisneyWorld.com
 
Google Theme Parks

Friday, December 9, 2005
Despite Cypress Gardens' Success,
the Telling Period Is Coming, Consultant Says

After a 42-year run on Panama City Beach,
the Starliner roller coaster sits stacked in numbered pieces on a back lot here.
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park owner
Kent Buescher
forked over $100,000 for the wooden coaster,
spent $200,000 more to have it taken apart
and is prepared to fork out $1.5 million more
to have it rebuilt as his park's new lure in 2007.
(see March 23, 2005)
But there's no looking back for Buescher, 50, whose award plaques as
Chamber of Commerce and Polk County tourist industry executive of the year
sit unhung on the floor of his Spartan office.
"We weren't supposed to crack 1.5 million until the fifth year
and without the hurricanes this fall we would have gotten there in the first year," he said.
"It's a blessing. But this has been a lot more difficult than I ever thought it would be.
We still face some enormous challenges."
Indeed, now comes the hard part.
Most of Cypress Gardens' attendance came from 300,000 season pass holders
who needed only to show up three times for one of the park's 50 weekly concert events
to account for more than half the park's annual visitors.
About 80 percent of the first year crowd was residents who live within an hour's drive.
That means the park attracted only half as many
bigger-spending tourists as Buescher hopes to draw.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Teen Struck by Car `Very Critical'
A 16-year-old
Winter Haven High School student was clinging to life Monday
after being hit by a car Friday night near Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
Damon Massey had been at the theme park with a group of friends
when the he was struck south of Register Road
According to the
Florida Department of Transportation,
there were 48 crashes in three years
from east of Cypress Gardens Road to west of Register Road.
This includes major intersections
and the area in front of Cypress Gardens, the DOT said

Friday, December 30, 2005
Boy Hit By Car On Nov. 11 Dies
Damon "Tellas" Massey III,
a 16-year-old Winter Haven High School student who was hit by a car Nov. 11 near
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park,
died Wednesday from injuries he suffered in the accident.
Family members declined comment Thursday about Massey's death.
But at the time of the accident,
family members said Massey had suffered severe head injuries.
The driver who hit Massey, Erolyn McCurrie, 19,
of West Fourth Court in Frostproof,
was charged with driving with a suspended license.
She suffered minor injuries in the accident, the Florida Highway Patrol said.
"The evidence in the case is she is not the cause of the crash"

Thursday, October 27, 2005
Gardens Blooming For Park, Haven
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park owner
Kent Buescher
held a 70th anniversary news conference
Wednesday that would have made founder
Dick Pope proud.
Surrounded by the blue waters of Lake Eloise, a Southern Belle,
a trick water skiing team and the media,
Buescher practically channeled Pope
as he talked about the triumphant return of the Gardens and its future.
"If we have fair weather the last two months,
we will host 1.4 million guests this year,
and will end our first year of business in the black,"
Buescher told a cheering crowd
That's twice the projected attendance of about 750,000 guests,
Gardens spokeswoman
Alyson Gernert said later.
A local economist projected that based on the original figure,
the Gardens would bring some $80 million to the community.

Friday, October 21, 2005
Janie Seright, 85, Cypress Gardens
For 43 years, Mrs.
Janie Lou Seright
took care of the fine gowns
and other clothing of the performers at Cypress Gardens.
Mrs. Seright died of cancer Wednesday Oct. 19, 2005
at Good Shepherd Hospice Center. She was 85.
Born in Montgomery, Ala., on Jan. 1, 1920,
she was a longtime resident of Winter Haven.
A seamstress and dressmaker,
Mrs. Seright retired from Cypress Gardens in the mid 1990s.
"She pressed the dresses when they needed pressing.
She did a number of things," Walston said.
"She took care of the dresses when they had the water shows.
They'd come up when their bathing suits were wet
and she took them and dried them."

Wednesday, October 5, 2005
New Adventure Ahead
As if Cypress Gardens wasn't adventure enough,
Alyson Gernert, the park's public relations manager,
has accepted a job offer from the
Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau Inc.
as its new domestic media manager.
Gernert will stay through the park's 70th anniversary celebration Oct. 26.
Gernert has been employed with the park since 2004.

Sunday, September 25, 2005
Veritable Savior of Cypress Gardens Deserves Praise
Opinion By Thomas Roe Oldt
It's no surprise that such enthusiasm attended the two awards
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park President Kent Buescher received last week.
Buescher saved an icon of Florida tourism from the brink of destruction
and remade the park into a viable, exciting and profitable
entity that has provided jobs for nearly 600 people,
almost double the number employed
when the former owners unceremoniously and without decent warning shut it down.

Friday, September 23, 2005
Cypress Gardens Wins Award for Economic Impact
And this year's
Dick Pope Sr. Award goes to . . . Cypress Gardens.
OK, so it's not the Academy Awards,
but the newly renovated theme park's impact on Polk's economic development
has made it worthy of the honor,
according to the
Central Florida Development Council.
It seemed altogether fitting that an award named for the park's founder,
the late Dick Pope Sr., would honor Cypress Gardens' stirring resurrection.
"Wow, twice in one week,"
Kent Buescher said, laughing,
in front of a crowd of about 175 people
at the Lake Region Yacht and Country Club.
"I have got to tell you, from my first visit
I was deeply humbled by the support from this community
I am proud to call this my second home."

Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Cypress Gardens Chief, Consulting Firm Founder Recognized
The man who brought life back to Cypress Gardens
and the founder of an investment consulting company
were honored Tuesday night by the
Winter Haven Area Chamber of Commerce.
Kent Buescher was honored for Cypress Gardens Adventure Park,
receiving the award for a company with 100 employees or more.
Joseph Bogdahn of Bogdahn Consulting
was presented the award for the company with fewer than 100 employees.
The park that employed 330 people in 2003 now employs nearly 600, he said.
"Mindful of the Gardens' history,
Kent Buescher has preserved the essence of the (Dick) Pope legacy --
flowers, belles and world-class skiing," Killebrew said.
"His vision to add nearly 40 rides and a full water park have made
Cypress Gardens relevant to a new generation of young families."
Buescher was given a standing ovation when he stepped up to accept his award.
"Wow. Thank y'all so much," he said.
"I gotta tell you, from the first day I came to Winter Haven,
the welcome you just gave me
is the kind of welcome we have felt every day since we've been here."

Saturday, July 30, 2005
Making A SPLASH -
Visitors Brave Heat to Visit Cypress Gardens' New Water Park

On a hot Friday morning, Britney Orr was the first person
to jump into the inviting waters of the lazy Paradise River.
Plenty of people can be found floating along on inner tubes,
but no boats or fish are allowed in the new 1,000 foot river.
Splash Island, the new water park at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park,
opened partially Friday.
By late afternoon, about 4,000 people had visited the gardens Friday,
said
Alyson Gernert, public relations manager for the park.
A grand opening celebration for the $10 million water park
will be held when the remaining elements
are scheduled to open next month, Gernert said.
Admission to the water park is included in the regular park admission
and will be open the same hours, except during winter months.
Admission is $38.95 for ages 10 to 54,
and $31.95 for seniors, ages 55 and older, and juniors, ages 3 to 9.
Children 2 and younger are admitted free. All prices do not include tax.
The water park is the last major park division planned at Cypress Gardens.
But
Kent Buescher, who owns the park
along with Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.,
plans continual improvements, Gernert said

Sunday, June 19, 2005
Gardens Plans Fireworks Affair
Attraction official says she hopes the Winter Haven park is "the place to be."
When it's time to celebrate the Fourth of July,
officials at the new Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
want the local tourist attraction to be at the top of everyone's list.
Organizers of a July 4 celebration that was started two years ago
after the original Cypress Gardens closed don't plan to give in so easily, however.
"Because we're a free program,
I don't see Cypress Gardens being a threat to the number of people
who are going to show up for our program," said
Jane Waters,
public relations and marketing manager for the
Florida Citrus Showcase,
where the Independence Day celebration will be held.
This year, city officials budgeted $5,000 toward the cost of fireworks.
The city also provides another $3,000 in in-kind services,
including waiving facility use fees, site preparation, traffic control
and assisting with planning the event, Sheehan said.
The event will be at the Citrus Festival fairgrounds on Cypress Gardens Boulevard
100 Cypress Gardens Blvd SE
 

Wednesday, June 15, 2005
Boy Dies After Ride at Disney
A 4-year-old boy died after a spin on a
Walt Disney World spaceship ride
so intense that some riders have been taken to the hospital with chest pain.
Daudi Bamuwamye lost consciousness Monday aboard "Mission: Space,"
which spins riders in a giant centrifuge
that subjects them to twice the normal force of gravity.
The boy's mother carried him off the ride,
and paramedics and a theme park worker tried to revive him,
but he died at a hospital.
The $100 million ride, one of Disney World's most popular,
was closed after the death but reopened Tuesday
after company engineers concluded that it was operating normally
Since the attraction opened in 2003,
seven people have been taken to the hospital for chest pains, fainting or nausea.

Tuesday, June 7, 2005
Cypress Gardens Names Manager
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
announced Monday that
George Vitello has been promoted
to
vice president and general manager of the Winter Haven theme park.
Vitello is tranferring from Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.,
where he served as director of revenue service.
He joined that park in September,
after working in the amusement park business since 1989.
"I am excited about it," 55-year-old Vitello said Monday.
"I can't wait. Cypress Gardens has so much potential."

Friday, May 27, 2005
New Animal Habitat Area Debuts at Cypress Gardens
Nature's Way, the park's new animal habitat area,
is home to "Tarzan," the park's largest alligator.
The 75-yearold reptile, stretching more than 10 feet,
appeared in Tarzan movies in the 1940s,
said
Kent Buescher, the park's new owner.
In addition to Tarzan and several other alligators,
the park is also the new home for snakes, goats, lemurs and exotic birds.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005
Visitors Pounce on Cypress Gardens' Newest Attraction
Sheba is taking the move to her new home in stride.
The 10-year-old
black jaguar opened her gold-colored eyes
and glanced at the people gathered outside her cage Tuesday at
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
The park acquired Sheba from an airboat tour business
in the Everglades that was going out of business
Sheba weighs 150 pounds and has a large cage all to herself
across the path from the park's alligator and crocodile area.
She has a large pool area and a downed tree trunk
that leads to her enclosed sleeping and feeding area

Thursday, May 12, 2005
Gardens Readies For Active Summer
After five months of better than expected attendance,
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park officials are bracing for an active summer.
A new water park, a fifth roller coaster and an expanded concert series
are all factors that will draw crowds, said the park's owner,
Kent Buescher.
"We've been very pleased from the support we've received from our guests,"
said Buescher, who also owns Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.
A year ago, Buescher said it would take
1 million visitors annually to keep the park operational.
The estimate was later revised to a more conservative 750,000 guests.
But then in the first 2 1/2 months after the park's Dec. 9 opening,
225,000 guests visited the Winter Haven attraction.
The surge in visitors occurred during Christmas, New Year's Eve and spring break
said
Allyson Gernert, park spokeswoman.
Now Buescher predicts 1.3 million to 1.5 million people
will visit the park by the end of the year.
As of Monday, the park had 800,000 visitors.
Attendance is calculated each time someone enters the turnstiles, Buescher said.

Friday, April 29, 2005
Water Parks Launch New Rides, Features
The revamped Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
plans to make another big splash with the opening of Splash Island
-- an in-house water park filled with big and small slides,
a wave pool, "lazy river" and other watery fun.
"It's definitely going to rival anything Orlando's got,"
says
Alyson Gernert, public relations manager for Cypress Gardens.
Expected to open in late June or early July,
the 9-acre park-within-a-park on the north side of Cypress Gardens
will feature a Polynesian theme right down to its tropical entrance:
a bridge that takes guests to an "island."
The Voodoo Plunge slide complex will feature two,
60-foot speed slides along with a another twisting slide,
while the Tonga Tubes will offer two 40-foot-tall tube slides.
Guests can body surf or bob on inner tubes
on the 40,000-square-foot Kowabunga Bay wave pool,
while kids of all ages can climb the Polynesian Adventure
a 42-foot-tall structure filled with slides, rope ladders,
water cannons and other slippery fun.
Built exactly like the Polynesian Adventure at Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.,
which shares the same owner, the structure will cool off
up to 500 guests at a time in some unique ways.
"It has a large bucket on the top that fills with water
and dumps it all over the play area," says Gernert.


Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Classic Roller Coaster May Relocate to Haven
The Starliner roller coaster could be moving south a bit.
The old roller coaster, built in 1963
as part of the Miracle Strip Amusement in Panama City,
has been purchased by Adventure Parks Group,
which owns Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
and Wild Adventures in Valdosta, Ga.
Park officials have not decided which of the two parks
the old wooden roller coaster will be moved to, said
Sara Sumner,
a spokeswoman for the parks.
"I would love to see it go to Cypress Gardens," Sumner said Tuesday.
"It's another piece of Florida tourism history."
How much the park group paid for the coaster was unavailable Tuesday.
"We're pleased to be able to add the Starliner to our ride lineup,"
President/CEO
Kent Buescher said in a statement Monday.
"Aside from its historical significance,
the coaster is a classic wooden ride that will appeal to a broad range of ages,
making it a perfect fit for either one of our family-oriented parks."
Dismantling the Starliner will take about six weeks before the ride can be moved.
The first major roller coaster built in Florida,
the Starliner was erected more than 40 years ago
when Jimmy Lark, a Panama City businessman, charged 25 cents a ride.
More rides added the following year signaled the beginning of Miracle Strip.


Starliner Roller Coaster
Miracle Strip Amusement Park
Panama City Beach
www.MiracleStripPark.com
See more
www.UltimateRollerCoaster.com


Saturday, March 19, 2005
Park Ride Operator At Fault Fired
Cypress Gardens employee is dismissed after accident.
The ride operator found at fault in last weekend's accident
involving two trains at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
has been dismissed, a park official said Friday.
"He was suspended the day of the accident
pending an investigation and results of a drug test,"
said
Todd Douthit, human resources manager for the park.
"He was released on Wednesday."
Douthit would not identify the former employee
and would not say if the results of the drug test
played a part in the employee's firing.
The former employee had not followed proper procedure
in operating the Citrus Line Railroad.
"Based upon our own investigation,
we determined operator error was the primary factor in the accident,"
Douthit said.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005
Operator Error Likely In Mishap
A communication failure is likely the cause of Saturday's accident
between two trains on the Citrus Line Railroad at
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
"We think this is operator error," said Rob Jacobs, a field administrator for the
Florida Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Fair Ride Inspections.
The trains' top speed is 12 mph.
Park officials are also looking into the accident
that happened near the end of the day that saw about 3,700 visitors at the park.
The two ride operators involved in the accident, who are paid hourly,
have been suspended pending the results of drug tests taken after the accident,
said
Allyson Gernert, the park's public relations manager
The park's ride records, required by the Bureau of Fair Rides, were in good order
but when the investigation is concluded the park may still be subject
to fines of up to $2,500 for each train, Jacobs said.

Sunday, March 13, 2005
3 Hurt on Cypress Gardens Park Ride
Two children and an adult suffered minor injuries Saturday evening
when two mini-trains collided at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park.
The trains are part of a children's ride at the park.
Two children riding the trains and a conductor
went to
Winter Haven Hospital
after the trains collided head-on about 6:15 p.m.,
said Polk County Fire Department Lt. Rodney Prevatte.
How the incident happened was unknown Saturday night.

Sunday, March 13, 2005
Cypress Gardens' Ice Show Offends
Letters:
Concerning Cypress Gardens Adventure Park,
I would like to express my disappointment in the ice show
which we attended on Saturday.
I have attended the ice show many times over the years,
and with the exception of one time, it was an excellent show.
That show had one act that featured a girl skater
that was very scantily dressed and danced -not skated -- very suggestively.
ISABEL HORTON

Sunday, January 16, 2005
Cypress Gardens Adventure Park
It was with much anticipation that we followed last year's news
about the resurrection of our beloved Cypress Gardens,
and great joy when Kent Buescher and his partners finalized
the arrangements for the purchase and rebuilding of the park

Saturday, January 8, 2005
What Makes Cypress Gardens' Rides Roll and Coast -- Safely?
At 52 feet high and a top speed of 25 mph,
Swamp Thing may not be scary as roller coasters go,
but it's fun, young riders say.
"Busch Gardens' roller coasters are a lot bigger
and they tend to scare people more,"
Jason Thomsen, 14, of Winter Haven said during a recent visit
to the newly reopened Cypress Gardens Adventure Park.
"This is probably the best roller coaster here. It's worth it."
The price tag for Swamp Thing, a suspended steel "family" roller coaster,
is $2.5 million, the most expensive of the park's four coasters,
Buescher said.
The park's wooden roller coaster, Triple Hurricane, cost $2 million,
and Okeechobee Rampage, a "junior" coaster,
or one built especially for younger visitors, came with a $1.5 million price tag.

Saturday, January 8, 2005
Thrill Rides Vary In Their Size, Speed
Because Cypress Gardens Adventure Park was built as a "family park,"
roller coasters there pale in comparison
to their record-holding relatives found around the world.
 


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