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Six Flags Darien Lake

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Six Flags Darien Lake is a resort located in Darien, New York, that features a theme park, water park, campground and lodging. It is owned by EPR Properties and operated by Six Flags.

Six Flags Darien Lake
Darien Lake Resort logo.png
Location9993 Alleghany Rd
Darien, NY 14040
Coordinates42°55′43″N 78°23′06″W / 42.92851°N 78.38488°W / 42.92851; -78.38488Coordinates: 42°55′43″N 78°23′06″W / 42.92851°N 78.38488°W / 42.92851; -78.38488
OwnerEPR Properties
Operated bySix Flags
General ManagerChristopher Thorpe[1]
OpenedMay 1981 (1981-05)
Previous namesDarien Lake Fun Country (1981–1999)[2]
Six Flags Darien Lake (1999–2007, 2019–)
Darien Lake Theme Park Resort (2007–2018)
Operating seasonMay through October
Visitors per annum1.5 million
Area1,200 acres (4.9 km2)
Attractions
Total45
Roller coasters8
Water rides10
WebsiteSix Flags Darien Lake

Contents

HistoryEdit

Darien Lake Fun CountryEdit

In 1954, Darien Lake was excavated and filled. The lake was a popular swimming destination for many years.[3] In 1964, investor Paul Snyder acquired a 164-acre parcel of land bordering the lake and opened a small 23-site campground and picnic area. Snyder continued acquiring more land eventually increasing his holdings to almost 1,000 acres of land which included seven lakes, the largest of which was Darien Lake. He stocked one of the smaller lakes, Trout Pond, with fish, increased the number of campsites and added activities for resort guests such as a small petting zoo, horseback and pony rides, paddleboats, skateboarding, tennis courts and miniature golf.[4]

From the late 70s and into the early 80s, Snyder added more attractions, including a set of water slides on a hill near the park's entrance called Rainbow Mountain, creating an amusement park he named Darien Lake Fun Country. Snyder made a deal with HUSS Park Attractions, turning Darien Lake into the North American showcase for the German manufacturer's new rides. Through this deal, the park acquired rides such as the Pirate, Ranger, Thrillbilly and the Corn Popper, for use in the park and to give HUSS a location to display them to potential US and Canadian buyers. In 1982, the newly merged Arrow Huss built and opened the park's first major roller coaster, Viper.[5]

Funtime ParksEdit

In 1983, Snyder sold a fifty-percent stake in the park to Funtime Inc., which also owned Geauga Lake and Wyandot Lake Park.[6] The Fun Country was dropped from the name, and Funtime brought in some major improvements.

Funtime's first purchase was the Vekoma-built Giant Wheel Ferris wheel, the showcase of the 1982 World's Fair in Knoxville, Tennessee and the largest in the United States at the time, which was permanently installed in the park's center.[7] Although no longer the largest in the country, the Giant Wheel is still in operation today.

Entertainment was also added to the park, with the construction of the Tops Jubilee Theater (now the Grande Theatre), the Lakeside Amphitheater, a large-scale concert stage on the south side of the main lake, presenting big-name acts including The Who, Alice Cooper, and Black Sabbath, and Cinema 2000, a wide-angle movie theatre in the back of the park. In the mid-to late 1980s, there was Splashmania, a water skiing show located on Fun Lake. The improvements continued throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, with the addition of a themed kids area, Adventure Land for Kids in 1988 and in 1989 Grizzly Run replaced a kids ride area that was located where a skatepark was. In 1990, six new slides were added to the back of the water slide complex and the area became known as Barracuda Bay and an extra charge was added to the waterpark as well a new locker area, food complex, shopping area and changing rooms.[8] Following the success of a new wooden rollercoaster at Geauga Lake in 1988, Funtime contracted Dinn & Summers to build a new wooden coaster for Darien. The Predator roller coaster opened in May 1990. Around this time, Paul Snyder, sold his remaining share of the park to Funtime, turning over all control to them.[6]

In 1992, a new style of entertainment debuted on the midway between Barracuda Bay and the Giant Wheel, a laser light show called Laser Light Fantasy (now called Ignite the Night), which included laser graphics and fireworks.[9] The show was permanently installed in the Lakeside Amphitheater the following year, while concert events were moved to the new Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, which could hold nearly four times as many guests. In 1994, the old Rainbow Mountain waterslides were replaced with a new set called 'Cuda Falls and waterpark became included with park admission.[citation needed]

Premier Parks/Six FlagsEdit

In 1995, growing regional park chain Premier Parks bought Funtime and its three parks.[10] Premier dove right into changes and additions. In 1995, Skycoaster opened located over Fun Lake. In 1996, Adventure Land was replaced by Popeye's Seaport with all new kiddie rides like a Ferris wheel made to look like barrels, a hand-cranked train ride, a submarine ride, a ship themed play place (removed in 2004), and a food stand and restrooms in the then new kiddie area in an area that was occupied by miniature golf course. A new miniature golf course opened behind the then-new kiddie area near Viper which replaced the old golf course. Also a waterpark expansion with new attractions took place in 1996 and 1997 with Hook's Lagoon (opened in 1996) the Crocodile Isle wave pool (opened in 1997) took over Adventure Land's old location by Elk Lake with new changing rooms and a food stand were built, and a bridge was built to connect the Barracuda Bay slides with the then new water park area and a boat tag game was added to the midway. Three of the old Adventure Land rides were moved to another part of the park as the Tiny Trio in 1997.

From 1996 to 1999, Premier would also install a new roller coaster each year, Nightmare at Phantom Cave in 1996, Mind Eraser in 1997, Boomerang: Coast to Coaster in 1998 and Superman Ride of Steel (the world's first Intamin hypercoaster) in 1999. Nightmare was removed in 1998 and relocated to sister park The Great Escape. In 1998, Premier purchased Six Flags Theme Parks and began to rebrand its own parks as Six Flags. In May 1999, Six Flags Darien Lake opened under its new name, with a few major changes. Premier brought Six Flags' own character base, Looney Tunes and DC Comics, into the parks, renaming Popeye's Seaport to Looney Tunes Seaport, added a show in the vacant former Nightmare at Phantom Cave building called the Batman Thrill Spectacular, and Hydro Force, Pipeline Plunge, Riptide Run, and Torpedo Rapids were removed from Barracuda Bay and Scrambler replaced Cinema 2000. The midway stage was added to replace the boat tag game and The Emporium gift shop opened in Lasso's old location, Crazy Quilt was removed and replaced with Lasso.

Premier Parks formed in 2000, assuming the name "Six Flags Inc.", and adding new attractions. The next major attractions installed the Twister in 2000 and Shipwreck Falls in 2002, replacing the old Cascade Canyon water slides on the east side of Barracuda Bay as well as Slingshot behind the 'Cuda Falls water slides; and the Tornado in 2005.

Troubled timesEdit

2006 was a year of turmoil for Six Flags and its parks. For the 2006 season, Six Flags moved the Big Kahuna, a family-sized waterslide, from Six Flags AstroWorld to Darien Lake and also moved the Batman The Escape roller coaster from Astroworld into storage at Darien Lake, with possible plans to build it. They also added an opportunity to meet with the entire Justice League at the park.

Only a month into Darien Lake's season, however, Six Flags began pulling back the Justice League from Darien Lake and announced Darien Lake, along with eight other parks, was being considered for sale. Many parks throughout the chain, not just those for sale, also experienced numerous changes and cutbacks throughout the summer.

In October 2006, after shortened operating hours and seasons, Six Flags officially announced the parks were being offered for sale as a package. Paul Snyder stated in a radio interview he would have considered purchasing Darien Lake from Six Flags if they allowed the parks to be sold individually.

In January 2007, Six Flags announced a potential sale of seven of the parks to a new company, PARC 7F (officially called PARC Management).[11] Six Flags chose to retain two parks it had originally considered for sale.[12]

PARC Management (2007–2010)Edit

 
Former Darien Lake logo used from 2007–2012

In April 2007, Six Flags completed the sale of Darien Lake and six other parks to PARC Management. Upon completion of the sale, PARC entered into a fifty-year contract with CNL Income Properties, under which CNL purchased the properties from and lease them back to PARC for operation.[citation needed]

Because of the timing of the final sale with respect to the park's opening, PARC was unable to make many major changes for the 2007 season. The biggest changes for the season were the addition of an all new show, Le Grande Cirque, which replaced the Batman Thrill Spectacular, and the removal of all Six Flags-, Looney Tunes-, and DC Comics-themed signage and references.[citation needed]

The park debuted the Orange County Choppers MotoCoaster, its first launched rollercoaster, in 2008. A Zamperla Motocoaster coaster, it was the prototype that had been running outside Zamperla's factory in Italy. PARC pledged to lower admission prices that had risen under Six Flags ownership. Floodgate Falls was closed.[citation needed]

In March 2010, Darien Lake expanded their current waterpark to Splashtown at Darien Lake (featuring several new attractions and a repaint of the 'Cuda Falls waterslide complex in Barracuda Bay), a new 16-foot-wide (4.9 m) lazy river called Flotation Station, Swirl City slide complex (with four new slides) and a kiddie wave pool called Lazy Days Lagoon. 2010 also saw some minor park changes such as Viper being repainted with a black track, The Predator getting new trains and the addition of the Critter Chase in Adventure Isle replacing Raft Adventure.[citation needed]

CNL subsequently announced that it had reached an agreement to terminate PARC's lease of Darien Lake and up to seventeen other locations.[13] The move was made after, according to their 2010 SEC filings, PARC defaulted on their lease obligations.[14]

Herschend Family Entertainment (2011–2014)Edit

In 2011 Herschend Family Entertainment assumed day-to-day operation and management of Darien Lake and Elitch Gardens.[15]

Rowdy's Ridge opened in 2012 with several family rides.[citation needed]

For the 2013 season, Blast Off was placed in the newly rethemed Waterfront Boardwalk area, which included major renovations to rides like the Grand Carousel and the Giant Wheel, along with some new dining options. Laserblast received new improvements and was rebranded Ignite the Night.[16] UFO and the 'Cuda Falls waterslides were closed and removed. The Scrambler ride returned after two years in storage.[citation needed]

Premier Parks, LLC (2014–2018)Edit

Herschend Family Entertainment's lease ended after the 2014 season and was taken over by Premier Parks, LLC.[citation needed]

New rides installed during this period include Rolling Thunder, a 72-foot Larson 22M Giant Loop; Brain Drain, a set of two body slides that drops riders through a trapdoor at high speeds; and Ripcurl Racer, a six-lane Proslide Kracken Racer.[17][18]

EPR Properties and Six Flags (2017–present)Edit

Following the 2016 season, CNL Lifestyle sold Darien Lake and fourteen other amusement parks to EPR Properties. The park continued to be leased and operated by Premier Parks, with no immediate change in operations or staffing.[citation needed]

Tantrum, a Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter coaster, opened for the 2018 season.[19]

Starting with the 2018 season, Six Flags Entertainment Corporation acquired lease rights to operate the park, with the park remaining under the ownership of EPR Properties.[20]

Six Flags SkyScreamer, a Funtime Star Flyer, opened for the 2019 season, when the park reverted to the Six Flags Darien Lake branding.[21]

On February 2, 2019, Darien Lake Theme Park Resort officially became Six Flags Darien Lake.

Current rides and attractionsEdit

Roller coastersEdit

Roller Coaster Opened Manufacturer Description
Boomerang: Coast to Coaster 1998 Vekoma A Boomerang Shuttle roller coaster. This ride is located on the edge of Fun Lake in the Darien Square section of the park. The coaster features a 120-foot (37 m) tall backwards lift hill, a cobra roll and a loop. The train passes both forwards and backwards through both inversion elements.
Hoot N Holler 1981 Zierer A steel kiddie roller coaster. Formerly called Ladybug and Nessie the Dreamy Dragon while it was part of Adventure Land for Kids. The ride was also part of the Tiny Trio and used to be called Brain Teaser. In 2012, the train was remodeled to look like an owl and the ride was given the name Hoot N Holler so that it would fit in with the new Rowdy's Ridge theme.
Mind Eraser 1997 Vekoma A steel Suspended Looping Coaster, which is considered to be New York's only Suspended Looping Coaster. This ride is approximately 120 feet (37 m) with 5 inversions including a heart-loop (half loop followed by twist followed by another half loop).
Moto Coaster 2008 Zamperla A Motorbike roller coaster which was the first of its kind in the United States. The Orange County Choppers branding was removed in 2010.[22] The coaster launches riders from 0 to 40 miles per hour (0 to 64 km/h) in several seconds up to the top, followed by dips and turns on the way down before reaching the brakes.
The Predator 1990 Dinn Corporation A wooden roller coaster. It currently holds the title of New York's largest wooden roller coaster. In 2010, used trains from The Voyage were added to the ride.
Ride of Steel 1999 Intamin A steel Mega Coaster, formerly known as Superman – Ride of Steel. With a top height of 208 feet (63 m), and a maximum speed of 72 miles per hour (116 km/h), the ride is the tallest in New York State and one of Darien Lake's largest attractions.
The Viper 1982 Arrow Huss A steel looping roller coaster. Viper was the first coaster in the world with 5 inversions. Originally painted all black, the track was painted green when Six Flags took over and painted black in 2010.
Tantrum 2018 Gerstlauer A Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter. Tantrum features a 98-foot vertical lift hill with a 97-degree drop, a pretzel inversion, a bunny hop, an Immelman turn and a tilted loop. It reaches a top speed of 52 miles per hour (84 km/h).

Flat and vertical ridesEdit

Many of the rides manufactured by Huss Park Attractions were installed as part of a deal with Huss to use Darien Lake as a North American showcase for Huss's new rides in the early 1980s.

Ride Opened Manufacturer Description
Bear Valley Bumper Buggies 1981 DUCE Ride Manufacturers A traditional Bumper Cars attraction. Guests drive around in one direction.
Blast Off 2013 S&S Power Space Shot design A Drop Tower ride relocated from Alabama Adventure, which closed in 2011. Stands on the former spot of the Raging Seas.
Corn Popper 1982 HUSS An original Swing Around. Part of the Huss showcase. This ride was called Rodeo Round Up when the park was owned by Six Flags. The name was changed back to Corn Popper in 2010.
Giant Wheel 1983 Vekoma A 165 feet (50 m) tall ferris wheel. It was originally part of the 1982 World's Fair in Knoxville, Tennessee and was the tallest in the United States when constructed.[citation needed]
Grande Carousel 1981 International Amusement Devices A traditional carousel. It received a large refurbishment before the start of the 2013 season.
Haymaker 1981 Heintz Fahtze A Paratrooper-style ride, the only one of its kind.[23]
Lasso 1981 Zierer A traditional wave swinger ride. Lasso was previously located where the Emporium currently stands. It is now located where Crazy Quilt once stood.
Pirate 1981 HUSS A swinging pirate ship ride on the edge of Fun Lake. It was installed as part of the HUSS showcase.
Rolling Thunder 2015 Larson International A Larson Giant Loop model which is located on the former site of UFO.
Scrambler 1999 Eli Bridge A standard Grasscutter Twist ride that originally opened in 1999. It was removed before the 2012 season to make way for the Rowdy's Ridge family area. The ride remained in storage until the middle of the 2014 season, when it returned in a new location next to the Predator.
Silver Bullet 1981 Heintz Fahtze The only Enterprise manufactured by Heintz Fahtze in operation.[24]
Six Flags SkyScreamer 2019 Funtime A Funtime Starflyer model that swings riders 242 feet high in the air at 35 mph. It is set to open at Darien Lake in 2019 under its new Six Flags branding.
Sleighride 1981 Mack Rides A Petersburger Schlittenfahrt type ride.
Tin Lizzies 1981 Arrow Dynamics An antique car ride.

Kiddie Rides: Beaver Brothers Bay and Rowdy's RidgeEdit

Adventure Land for Kids contained all kiddie rides from 1988 through 1996. In 1996, it was replaced by Beaver Brothers Bay (previously called Popeye's Seaport, Looney Tunes Seaport and Adventure Isle) with all new rides, exclusively from Zamperla. The Tiny Trio was a set of older kiddie rides from Adventure Land located near Mind Eraser. In 2012, the trio was expanded into Rowdy's Ridge. The Bay is located on an island surrounded by the midway originally formed by Treasure Island Mini-Golf.

Name Opened Manufacturer/Model Description
Beaver Dam Explorer 1996 Zamperla Crazy Bus Themed as a Submarine. Formerly called "S.S. Popeye (1996–1998), "Daffy's Diver" (1999–2006) and "Dipsy Diver" (2007–2011).
Bucky's Barrels 1996 Zamperla Sun & Moon Barrel themed Mini Ferris wheel, formerly called "Olive's Barrels of Fun" (1996–1998), Michigan J Frog's "Ferris Wheel" (1999–2006) and "Barrels of Fun" (2007–2011).
Chucky's Mud Buckets 1996 Zamperla Mini Tea Cup Teacups style ride themed as open aluminum spinach cans. Formerly called "Spinach Spinnaker" (1996–1998), "Bugs' Carrot Cans" (1999–2006) and "Twisty Tubs" (2007–2011).
Critter Chase 2010 Zamperla Mini Jet An animal themed ride where the rider makes the animal go up down manually. It originally operated from 1988 until 1997. The ride returned in 2010 to Beaver Brothers Bay.
Darien Lake Railway 1996 Zamperla Rio Grande A small train ride that goes on a figure eight track

Formerly called Rabbit Transit, Darien Lake Express and Anchors Away Railway

Hornet's Nest 2012 Larson Rides Flying Scooters A Flying Scooters ride where guests are able to control the flight pattern of their vehicle.
Moose on the Loose 2012 Metallbau Pony Trek Riders ride a runaway moose through multiple scenes.
Raccoon Rally 1981 Kiddie Bumper Cars Has been relocated several times. Formerly known as Dodgems.
Rowdy's Heave Ho 2012 HEEGE Tower Guests pull themselves up a tower and then drop down.
Tree Stump Turnpike 1996 Zamperla Convoy Formerly called Foghorn's Coastal Delivery, Monster Trucks and Brutus' Monster Trucks.
Wally's Weather Balloons 1996 Zamperla Samba Balloon A Samba Balloon ride. Formerly called Seaport Weather Balloons, Weather Balloons and Up Up and Ahoy.
Woody's Whirlers 1996 Zamperla Mini Swings A mini swing ride for small children that was formerly named Taz Twister, Whirlwind and Swee' Pea's Swings.

Upcharge attractionsEdit

These attractions are not included in the admission price. The cost varies for each attraction.

Name Opened Description
Midway Marina Guests can rent a paddle boat and paddle across Fun Lake.
Red Hawk 1995 A Sky coaster ride that hoists riders to 180 feet (55 m) and releases them in a swinging motion. This attraction was originally named Skycoaster. In 2013, the name changed to Red Hawk.
Slingshot 2002 A reverse bungee model that is located at the front of the park. It's the tallest attraction at Darien Lake at 300 feet (91 m).
Grand Prix Speedway 1987 A go-kart track.

Water ridesEdit

This list does not include the water rides at Darien Lake's water park.

Ride Opened Manufacturer Description
Grizzly Run 1989 Intamin A river rapids ride.
Shipwreck Falls 2002 Intamin A Shoot the Chute ride.

EntertainmentEdit

All show venues listed here are included with price of admission.

Name Recent Shows Comments
Galaxy Theatre Nik Wallenda: Beyond the Falls (2014), Sea Lion Splash (2010–2011), Survivor Live! (2009), Cirque Nouveau (2008), Le Grande Cirque (2007), Batman Thrill Spectacular (1999–2006) Building originally housed Nightmare at Phantom Cave, an indoor roller coaster. Was called the Gotham City Theatre while holding the Batman Thrill Spectacular show during the Six Flags era. This venue was closed for the 2012 and 2013 seasons with the exception of the building being temporarily used in 2013 during Kingdom Bound and for a haunted attraction during Fright Fest.
Beaver Brothers Bay Showplace Backstage variety Show (2018), The Wizard's Apprentice (2016–2017), Character Tales (2015), Multiple shows in 2013, Beaver Mania & Beaver Fever Dance Party (2012), Thomas & Friends Full Steam Ahead Live! (2011), Bob the Builder Let's Recycle (2010), Bob the Builder Live (2009), An Alarming Adventure (2008), Blake Daring's Storybook Adventure (2007), Bugs Bunny Goes Hollywood (2002, 2004–2006) Features shows for families and children. Located in Beaver Brothers Bay.
Grande Theatre Aaron Radatz Illusion Show (2018–19), American Pop (2017), American Rock (2016), World of Magic (2015), Multiple shows in 2012 and 2013 including Street Beat (2013) and the Aaron Radatz Illusion Show (2013), Legends of Rock (2011), RockNation! Don't Stop Believin (2010), RockNation! (2009), Rhythmnicity (2008), The Magic of Cliff Hopkins & Kelly (2007), Totally Pop (2006), America: State of Rhythm (2005), American Pop (2004), Radioactive (2003), Broadway Rhythm (2002) Opened as the Tops Jubilee Theatre in 1980, has also been named Tops Palace Theatre.
The Lakeside Amphitheatre Ignite the Night: COLORBLAST (2016), Ignite the Night (2013–2015), LaserBlast! (1998–2012), LaserLight Reality (1995–1997), LaserLight Fantasy (1992–1994) The Lakeside Amphitheatre used to be the home of major concerts and other events until the 90s when the Performing Arts Center opened. It also held several concerts that were free to Darien Lake guests. Now, it is the place for the nightly Laser Show and has been since 1992.
The Gazebo Stage Hypnotist Tammy Barton (2018–19), Multiple shows in 2012 and 2013 such as Hypnotist Tammy Barton (2012–2013), Jump, Jive and Swing (2011), Midway Dance Party Blow Out (2007–2008, 2011), The Heart Of Country (2010), Country Unleashed (2009), And The Answer Is! (2008), Keepin' the Beat (2007), Rockin' Country (2003–2006), Bahama Boys/Street Pop (2002) Outdoor stage in the midway. Sometimes holds special events such as karaoke.

Fright FestEdit

The original Six Flags Fright Fest was an annual event held at the end of the operating season (Weekends in October, typically) from 1998 to 2006, which celebrated Halloween. Fright Fest added new areas to the park (Bloodstone Hollow, a free haunted graveyard and town; and Brutal Planet, an upcharge haunted house) and different shows than the regular season (Dead Man's Party in The Grande Theater and Laser Spooktacular at the Lakeside Amphitheatre.)

When the park was sold to PARC Management in 2007, the event was rebranded as "Fall Family Fun Fest", adding family oriented areas such as hay mazes and pumpkin painting in addition to the haunted house. During this event, admission to the park was free, with individual charges for each ride and attraction.

A re-branded FrightFest[25] returned in 2008 with similar elements to the former Six Flags Fright Fest and additional new elements such as the Fright Night Field Trip, a bus ride through the haunted campgrounds. The Haunted House and the Trick or Treat Trail also returned from previous years. Fright Fest was removed from Darien Lake in 2015 and replaced by Harvest Fest.[26][25] The Halloween-themed event is scheduled to return to Darien Lake in 2018 under the Six Flags branding.[27] Recently, Darien Lake reintroduced Fright Fest with Six Flags' management.

Harvest FestEdit

As of 2015, Darien Lake replaced their fall events with a more family-friendly event named Harvest Fest. Although this idea was attempted before with Fall Family Fun Fest, here rides were included with admission and less focus was put on scary attractions. Instead of upcharge haunts, hay rides and crafts for children were included with admission. Food trucks, craft beers and other vendors were made available to offset lower staffing during the offseason. Also, the schedule of the season was shortened to end in September, rather than the end of October.

Former attractionsEdit

Ride Opened Closed Manufacturer Description
BMX Motocross 1980s 2011 Hampton Rides A circular kiddie ride featuring BMX style motorbikes that jumped over humps as they were moving. It was originally located near the Giant Wheel. The ride moved to Adventure Land in 1988 and to the Tiny Trio in 1997 before it was relocated to Elitch Gardens in 2012 as Tike Bikes.
Boat Tag 1996 1999 A boat ride that was located where the Midway Gazebo Stage now stands.
Boats 1980s 1990s A small boat ride. It was located near the Giant Wheel.
Crazy Quilt 1981 1998 Mack Rides A Calypso ride. It was located where Lasso currently stands.
Earth Orbiter 1980s 1996 Zierer A small kiddie ferris wheel that was part of Adventure Land.
Funtime Junction 1980s 1997 Chance Rides A miniature railway located around Elk Lake in Adventure Land.
Monty's Moon Walk 1980s 1996 A ball pit in Adventure Land.
Mountain View Golf 1996 2012 A miniature golf course located underneath the Viper. It replaced Treasure Island Golf.
Nightmare at Phantom Cave 1996 1998 Schwarzkopf This coaster was Relocated to Darien Lake from Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom in 1996 and housed in the building next to the Viper. It was relocated to Great Escape in 1999 as Nightmare at Crack Axle Canyon.
Raft Adventure 1996 2010 Zamperla A mini jet ride made to look like wooden rafts. The ride was replaced by Critter Chase.
Raging Seas 1981 2012 Mack Rides A Seesturmbahn ride that featured small hills and was themed with boats. The boats would spin as they went up and down the hills. This ride was called Sea Storm until 1999. It was removed towards the end of the 2012 operating season and was replaced by Blast Off.
Ranger 1982 2015 HUSS An original Huss Ranger, the first of its kind in North America. It was the only Huss Ranger ride still operating in North America. It was installed as part of the HUSS showcase. This ride was removed due to high maintenance costs and a lack of parts, as well as the addition of Rolling Thunder.
Red Baron 1980s Unknown A kiddie airplane ride that was located near the Giant Wheel.
Runaway Railway 1996 Zamperla A miniature train ride. Formerly called Elmer Fudd's Tiny Tooter Railroad and Muscle Junction.
SS Looney Tunes 1996 2004 A play structure themed as a ship. It was formerly called SS Olive.
Thrillbilly 1981 1990 HUSS A Troika ride located where the Predator now stands. The ride was installed as part of the HUSS showcase.
Treasure Island Golf 1981 1996 Located where Beaver Brothers Bay now stands. It was replaced by Mountain View Golf.
Turbobungy 2002 2007 An upcharge trampoline. Riders were attached to bungy cords while jumping. This attraction was located in the vicinity of the Mind Eraser bridge.
UFO 1981 2012 HUSS An original HUSS UFO ride that was installed as part of the HUSS showcase. It was removed prior to the 2013 season due to unreliability with maintenance.
Thunder Rapids 1981 2017 Arrow Dynamics A Log Flume which stood where Tantrum now stands for the 2018 season. Removed at the end of the 2017 season due to high maintenance costs, as well to make room for Tantrum.
Twister 2000 2018 HUSS A Top Spin ride. It was themed to look like it was made out of wood. Removed at the end of the 2018 season and replaced by Six Flags SkyScreamer.

Past entertainmentEdit

Former entertainment venues within the park.

Name Closed Type Description
Big Top Circus 1996 Circus show Located in Adventure Land.
Cinema 2000 1999 3D cinema Located where Rowdy's Ridge currently stands.
50's Bandstand Music show Located where the queue line for Predator is now.
Splashmania Water ski show A water ski show on Fun Lake. The pole that was used by the divers is still in the lake.

Other on-site entitiesEdit

Lodge on the Lake HotelEdit

In 1998 Premier Parks made a major investment to the property with the park's first on-site hotel, designed with a North Woods theme. The $12 million Lodge on the Lake Hotel opened with 161 hotel rooms, two suites and an outdoor heated pool. A few months later the similarly themed Beaver Brothers Cafe opened as a full-service restaurant offering breakfast, lunch and dinner.[28]

CampgroundsEdit

The campground and picnic area offers campsites, approximately half of which are equipped with park-owned RVs; cabins; a general store; two restaurants; and a gift shop.[citation needed]

Darien Lake Performing Arts CenterEdit

The Darien Lake Performing Arts Center is an outdoor music venue on the park grounds.

Laser StageEdit

Concerts were formerly held at the Laser Stage, also known as the Lakeside Amphitheater. A pool was added in front of the stage as part of the Ignite the Night laser show.[citation needed]

IncidentsEdit

  • On July 26, 1987, lightning killed three campers sleeping in tents on the campground.[29]
  • On May 16, 1999, a 365 lb (165 kg) guest who had been unable to properly secure his lap bar was ejected from Superman – Ride of Steel as the car went over a camel-hump hill. He fell approximately 9 feet (2.7 m), sustaining serious injuries. He was awarded US$3.95 million in damages.[30] Seatbelts and an extra brake segment before the final hill were added to the coaster after the incident.[citation needed]
  • On September 6, 2009, the body of Pennsylvania resident William Sutherland, who had been reported missing the day before, was found in a park lake.[31]
  • On July 8, 2011, Iraq War veteran James Hackemer, who had lost both legs in a 2008 roadside bomb attack, fell to his death from the Ride of Steel. The accident was attributed to operator error.[32]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Rodriguez, Miguel (April 1, 2015). "Gus Macker tourney won't make a Buffalo stop in 2015". Buffalo News. Retrieved April 23, 2015.
  2. ^ Albright, John Brannon (May 31, 1981). "Notes; FOR THEME-PARK VISITORS, NEW LOCATIONS AND NEW RIDES". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 5 October 2013.
  3. ^ New York NYC Travel Guide and Maps for Tourists. hikersbay.
  4. ^ Futtrell, Jim (2006). Amusement Parks of New York. Mechanicsburg, Pa.: Stackpole Books. pp. 188–189. ISBN 978-0-8117-3262-8.
  5. ^ Marden, Duane. "Viper  (Darien Lake)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved December 7, 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Funtime Inc. co-founder Gasper Lococo has died". Amusement Today. October 7, 2015. Retrieved December 14, 2016.
  7. ^ Rawls Jr., Wendell (April 25, 1982). "Knoxville Unveils Its World Fair". New York Times. New York, N.Y.: The New York Times Co. Retrieved December 7, 2016.
  8. ^ "Darien Lake – 1990". Themeparkbrochures.net. Retrieved 2013-03-22.
  9. ^ Hirsch, Rose Ann (2011). Images of America Series: Western New York Amusement Parks. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia Publishing. p. 117. ISBN 9780738574561.
  10. ^ "Nation's Oldest Fun Park To Get a Brand New Look". New York Times. New York, N.Y. July 22, 1995. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
  11. ^ "Six Flags sells seven parks". Park World Online. 2007-02-06. Archived from the original on 2007-12-13. Retrieved 2008-01-21.
  12. ^ "Randy Drew". Park World Online. 2007-05-23. Archived from the original on 2008-01-30. Retrieved 2008-01-21.
  13. ^ "CNL completes ouster of PARC Management from Darien Lake". The Daily News. 2010-11-24. Archived from the original on 2011-02-03. Retrieved 2011-01-20.
  14. ^ "CNL Lifestyle Properties, Inc. October 2010 Form 10-Q". 2010-09-30. Retrieved 2011-01-20.
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  16. ^ "Darien Lake to 'Blast Off' in 2013". 2012-09-21. Archived from the original on 2012-10-23. Retrieved 2012-09-21.
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  29. ^ "86 Deaths by Lightning in '87, Highest Toll of This Decade". The New York Times. 1988-06-14. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
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