Happy Roller Coaster Day 2011

Theme Park News

Roller Coaster Loop Gap - YouTube Geek WeekLooking for that roller coaster with a gap in its loop from the YouTube Geek Week commercial?

Check out this post: Loop Gap Roller Coaster: YouTube Geek Week Commercial
[divider_line]Today is National Roller Coaster Day. On August 16, 1898, Edwin Prescott submitted a patent for a looping roller coaster. So, someone decided that today would be a great day to celebrate these great inventions. If you’re a long-time reader then you know my coincidental connection to this day as well.

Manta at SeaWorld - flying roller coaster

Hopefully, you’ll celebrate with some airtime and g-forces. If not, maybe these 13 Freaky Facts About Roller Coasters will help. They include some interesting facts like the current record for roller coaster riding (17 days), injury statistics, and a blurb about  a planned roller coaster that was designed to jump over a track-less gap. Luckily, the idea was abandoned before someone was hurt. I doubt that designer’s could pull that off today in 2011. I don’t know what those engineers in 1902 were thinking!

Check out this video of what might be my favorite commercial of all time:

More on this awesome commercial here.

What’s Your Take?
How are you celebrating this holiday? Did you know that there was a National Roller Coaster Day? What’d you think of the commercial? Leave a comment below. Image courtesy of SeaWorld.

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


  1. Wasn't it 1878?

    • Interesting. I'm seeing both 1898 and 1878. Don't have the time to research it now, but whoever wants to find the most authoritative site and set the record straight, be my guest. Thanks for pointing that out!

      • American Coaster Enthusiasts have referenced this list of early coaster patents: http://www.personal.psu.edu/faculty/v/a/vac3/rcpa

        It looks like the 8/16/1898 patent was for the first roller coaster loop. Not sure how it was chosen as Roller Coaster Day, but it works for me. I'll go back and edit my posts to be accurate as it looks like there other coaster-ish patents before 1898.

  2. Today, I am going to my home park, Dorney Park, to ride some coasters! Unfortunately, Dorney closes at 7 pm tonight due to private events. Oh well, I will still get some coaster riding in. I will also re write my top 10 list including the new coasters ive ridden this year. Happy Roller Coaster Day and Happy Birthday Coaster Critic!

  3. I'm writing via mobile to tell that i am currently queuing for TH13TEEN. I am having a wonderful and Alton Towers and for the fun of it my family and I are all dressed up as superheroes (I am Iron Man!) I hope everyone enjoys HRC Day their stay to the most!


  4. Happy Birthday! (right?)

  5. Do any parks celebrate this day? I'd send you a cake, but I don't think it would make it CC.

  6. Technicaly, #8 is false, seeing that the Skycycle is not actualy a coaster.

    Happy Birthday, I just rode a coaster for the first time all year today, not even realising what day it was.

  7. National Roller Coaster Day has always been held annually on August 16th. This Facebook group was formed so that localized informal get togethers can be planned at the many amusement parks around the country to celebrate and ride the kind of thrill rides, the roller coaster.

    This very special day was chosen back in the early 1980's to commemorate when the original American roller coaster was patented in 1898. This event is not sponsored by any roller coaster or amusement park organization. It is simply an annual tradition for roller coaster and amusement park enthusiasts to share a common love and enjoyment of roller coasters found at amusement parks around the country.

    We are looking for individuals to both spread the word to roller coaster enthusiasts around the country and also to help plan these informal meetings in your region. Anyone interested in heading up local or regional events may contact me or add posts pertaining this annual event. We only have around three (3) months from today's date to coordinate this, so let's start talking! Even if you don't get involved with a group of people coordinated by a volunteer, we hope that you will still be able to get out to your local or regional amusement park and have FUN!!!

    If you know of a roller coaster enthusiast who would like to join this group, please send them an invitation or click on the below link. The more the better! This has the potential of being really big and a small group of people cannot coordinate a national day of celebration such as this by ourselves. Thanks!



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