Monday, August 11, 2003

Breaking News -- Six Flags Magic Mountain to Run for Governor of California

While details are still sketchy, ARN&R can exclusively report that Six Flags Magic Mountain has decided to enter the race for governor and filed the necessary paperwork quietly several days ago. "Heck, we only lost $100 million last year -- that's a whole lot less than Gray Davis has!" said the park in an exclusive interview. Initial reports have the park's platform being based on spending billions of dollars on experimental highways that will never actually operate as designed.

Hersheypark to Build World's Fastest Hydraulic Elevator

Hersheypark amusement park, in world famous Hershey, Pennsylvania, announced yesterday at high-noon that something big and exciting would be coming to central Pennsylvania's largest thrill park in the year 2004. The announcement came along with an announcement that its launched coaster plans had been cancelled due to "a really slow year of sales at the roasted nuts booth."

"We're absolutely thrilled about our newest, currently unnamed attraction for the 2004 season," said a Hersheypark public relations official. "Our planning and development department keeps up on all the latest trends and new technologies. Of course when we heard about the latest thrill ride technology, hydraulics, we were overjoyed. We knew that we would want to be among the first to install one of Intamin's exciting hydraulic beasts so we set to work on a concept for an amazingly fun and amazingly reliable ride."

Hersheypark noted a few days before the announcement that their new thrill ride would be a "third of a kind" attraction. "Of course the first two installiations of Intamin's hydraulic technology are Xcelerator at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California and Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, but we wanted something to really push the envelope," quipped Hersheypark's vice president of planning and development. "We wanted to thrill the socks off of our guests, hopefully increasing sock sales in our gift shops, and what we came up with was a super-high capacity thrill machine that we've codenamed "2004 Attraction."

He continued: "'2004 Attraction,' whose name will be chosen by park guests at our website, will defy gravity in not one, but two totally opposite directions! Not only will '2004 Attraction' move up, but it will also move down! It's going to be the most amazing and extreme thing anybody has ever seen!"

Yesterday at noon the park unveiled its monstrosity. Citing inspiration gained on a trip to Walt Disney World's Disney/MGM Studios and taking a spin on the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror and going for a ride in the Hershey public library's elevator to the basement, the park's P&D department, in conjunction with Herbert Schmeck and the crew at Intamin, designed the world's fastest and highest hydraulic elevator.

Hydraulic elevators, known for their lack of speed and limited height due to the deep shafts that must be bored into the ground for the car's support tubes, are often used in small commercial buildings such as office complexes, libraries, and some hospitals.

Sandor Kernacs, President of Intamin AG, had this to say about "2004 Attraction":

"We at Intamin were faced with several challenges. First, traditional hydraulic elevators cannot normally service beyond five stories due to the deep shafts that must be dug for the equipment. Second, they cannot normally travel at speeds beyond 2 km/h because of the hydraulic mechanisms that are employed. For '2004 Attraction' we were able to, after much thinking, double both of those figures. Our new hydraulic elevator will stretch ten stories and travel at speeds of up to 4 km/h! All of this with a minimal support structure that will admittedly have to be modified after a year of operation."

The marketing department at Hersheypark encourages all Hersheypark guests to vote on the name of their new ride at The three name choices are "Rent-a-guy," "Elevator Stampede," and "Storm Walker." Voting ends August 15th.