Happy Roller Coaster Day & USA Today’s 10 Roller Coasters

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Happy National Roller Coaster Day!
Today’s National Roller Coaster Day. On August 16th of 1898, Edwin Prescott submitted a patent for a looping roller coaster. And, in some strange twist of fate, today’s also my birthday. Since I’ve found out this weird coincidence I’ve had a hard time convincing some people that I didn’t create the holiday so that it coincided with my birthday. It’s real I tell you!

Let’s celebrate by looking at yet another roller coaster list. This time it’s USA Today’s “10 Great Places to Thrill to a Roller Coaster”. The list was compiled by Paul Ruben from Park World. According to the article, Ruben’s 73 and he’s ridden around 800 roller coasters! I’m hoping that I’m still able to ride when I’m his age. The list is described loosely as “his favorites”. So they probably aren’t necessarily Ruben’s top ten roller coasters, just some notable rides:

Steel Roller CoastersIntimidator 305 - Kings Dominion
Intimidator 305 at Kings Dominion
Intimidator at Carowinds
Millennium Force at Cedar Point
X2 at Magic Mountain
Bizarro at Six Flags New England

Wooden Roller Coasters
Viper at Six Flags Great America
Beast at Kings Island
Thunderbolt at Kennywood
Hades at Mt. Olympus
Ravine Flyer II at Waldameer

After I ride Intimidator 305 in a few weeks I’ll have been on every coaster on this list. I’d say that it’s pretty solid although some great rides will always be left out. The woodies here are especially strong. They include: two Gravity Group coasters that have been in my Top 10 in the past, two terrain roller coasters (a favorite of mine), and the surprisingly smooth Cyclone-clone Viper. I’m more of steel coaster fan, but I’d take these five woodies over these five steel coasters. How about you?

What’s Your Take?
What do you think of this list? How’d you celebrate National Roller Coaster Day? Leave a comment below.

Founder of CoasterCritic.com. My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.


  1. Hey Coastercritic, be sure to write a review of Intimidator 305 after you ride it! I'm really curious as to what you'll say about the "controversial" coaster. I'm still deciding if it is worth a 5 hour drive to KD just for I305 as nothing else at that park particularly excites me.

  2. Have a great birthday, Joel!

  3. Happy Birthday, buddy! I wish I'd been born 2 weeks earlier so I could share this national holiday. All of my friends already think I'm the most coaster crazy person they've ever known. I'll be 61 in less than two weeks and I'm still going strong. Rode my first in 1956 (The Wildcat, Woodside Park, Phila. PA) and have been addicted ever since.

    Peace, a smooth ride and much airtime,


  4. 9 out of 10 on the list. The Beast was a disappointment as was its son and is now so painful I won't ride it again unless retracked. Ben Gay and Excedrin could be its sponsors.

    See: http://www.jhu.edu/jhumag/0902web/rollers.html

    There are still lots of great wooden coasters out there; Lightning Racer, El Toro, everything at Holiday World just to name a few. Even the Comet at HersheyPark, which is older than I am, is still a good, well cared-for ride.

  5. Happy late birthday, Joel!

    That sounds like a pretty good list, although I hear Hades has been extremely rough lately, at least the people one Theme Park Review do. Timberliners, anyone?

    • Hades has had that sign that says "Hades is Extremely rough Today" for a few months. Hades needs a Timberliner.

      • Speaking of Timberliners, has anyone ridden the Voyage this Year?

  6. Happy belated roller coaster day to all!

    …ahem.. Public calling for making this a gov't holiday? Anyone?? Haha

    And happy belated b-day CC! Thanks for having the most awesome blog on the web. Ride on brother!

  7. After I have ridden Viper, I really need to ride the original Coney Island Cyclone. Hades needs a timberliner.

  8. by the way, Happy Birthday! Or as the French would say, Joyeax Anniversaire!

  9. cool


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