Beast (Kings Island)

Roller coaster
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The Beast
Beast (Kings Island) 2009 01.jpg
Kings Island
Location Mason, Ohio, USA
Coordinates 39°20′25″N 84°15′58″W / 39.340185°N 84.266002°W / 39.340185; -84.266002
Park section Rivertown
Status Operating since April 14, 1979
Cost $4,000,000 USD (estimated)
Rider height 48 inch minimum
Statistics
Builder Charles Dinn
Designer / calculations Al Collins, Jeff Gramke, John C. Allen
Type Wooden - Terrain
Hourly capacity 1200
Propulsion Two chain lift hills
Height 110 feet
Drop 141 feet
Top speed 64.8 mph
Length 7361 feet
Inversions 0
Drop angle 53°
Duration 4:00
G-Force 3.6
Rolling stock
Manufacturer Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters
Riders per train 36
HELP

The Beast is a wooden terrain roller coaster located at Kings Island in Mason, Ohio, USA. It is currently the longest operating roller coaster in the United States, as well as the longest wooden roller coaster in the world. The ride takes up 35 acres (14.2 km/h) of land. The trains were built by Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters.

History

Kings Island unveiled the roller coaster, at the time unnamed, on July 10, 1978. According to the park, the project had been in planning for three years.[1]

Lead engineers Al Collins and Jeff Gramke, with some consulting assistance from legendary designer John C. Allen, headed the project. Charles Dinn, director of maintenance and construction, led construction efforts and enlisted help from Curtis D. Summers for the footings and helix finale. Late design modifications were made to resolve issues discovered during testing, delaying plans to build an enclosure over the helix until the following off-season. Ruth Voss, the park's public relations manager at the time, is credited with naming the new coaster in early 1979.[2]

The ride's name was revealed on February 6, 1979. It would be called The Beast.[3] Construction of the attraction was completed in March 1979.[4]

The Beast opened at the start of the season on April 14, 1979 following an exclusive preview the day before.[5]

For its 25th anniversary in 2004, The Beast was given a new soundtrack and visual audio effects.[6]

In 2019, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the attraction, Kings Island restored the original yellow color scheme of the trains, as well as the footprints that lead to the entrance.[7]

On November 1, 2021, a project started to refurbish 2,000 feet of track. The Gravity Group reprofiled the first drop and tunnel, the second drop, and the 540-degree helix. In-house carpenters replaced approximately 1,090 feet of track in other areas, and the angle of the first drop was changed from 45 to 53 degrees to allow smoother transitions throughout the first tunnel.[8] With the modifications, the ride's length changed from 7,359 feet to 7,361 feet.[9] The Beast then reopened on May 8, 2022.[10]

Design

Elements

Ride experience

As the train rolls out of the station, riders make a right turn towards a mineshaft. The train makes a left turn and climbs a 110 foot tall chain lift hill. While ascending the first lift hill, dramatic music plays on the speakers. An announcer says "Remain seated throughout the entire ride. Please keep hands and legs inside the car at all times. Thank you." The dramatic music continues to play until the train reaches the top. After holding for a few seconds, riders plunge 135 feet into the first tunnel, reaching a max speed of 65 mph. The tunnel is followed by a left turn as the train zooms through the forest. A right turn is followed by a long straight section of track. Riders turn right and head into the second tunnel. Prior to 1980, the second tunnel was separate, with the outdoor section being enclosed. After exiting the tunnel, the train hits a right turn. As riders hit a second right turn, they bank right up a hill and descend down a straight section, which leads into an another chain lift hill. The train climbs the lift hill as the announcer on speakers repeat the same thing as the first one. At the top, riders get a view of the park and the train hits an 18 degree bank, as it drops 141 feet into a double helix with two tunnels added during the 1980 season. After this, riders make a left turn and return to the station.

Trains

3 trains with 6 cars per train. In each car, riders are arranged 2 across in 3 rows, for a total of 36 riders per train. The trains were built by Philadelphia Toboggan Coasters.

Rankings and Awards

In October 2004, The Beast was given a Coaster Landmark Award by the American Coaster Enthusiasts club. There is a plaque outside the ride commemorating this.[11]

Images

References

  1. "Kings Island Unveils Plans For Faster, Higher Roller Coaster", The Circleville Herald.
  2. "Tunnel Vision: How The Beast tunnels came to be". Kings Island. https://www.visitkingsisland.com/blog/2019/february/tunnel-vision-how-the-beast-tunnels-came-to-be. 
  3. "On this day 43 years go, The Beast was named". Kings Island. https://www.visitkingsisland.com/blog/2022/february/on-this-day-43-years-ago-the-beast-was-named. 
  4. "Kings Island’s Beast Celebrates Anniversary". Coaster101. July 10, 2013. https://www.coaster101.com/2013/07/10/kings-islands-beast-celebrates-anniversary/. Retrieved May 30, 2022. 
  5. "Unchained Beast on the timid side", The Journal Herald.
  6. Paramount's Kings Island Adds Effects to Coasters (Wayback Archive)
  7. "Kings Island gives Beast retro upgrade for its 40th anniversary". https://www.wlwt.com/article/kings-island-gives-beast-retro-upgrade-for-its-40th-anniversary/26292255. 
  8. Helbig, Don (2021-12-25). "Beast of a project this winter at Kings Island". Kings Island. https://www.visitkingsisland.com/blog/2021/december/beast-of-a-project-this-winter-at-kings-island. Retrieved 2021-12-27. 
  9. Showalter, Chad (2022-03-30). "Kings Island Beast roller coaster will break its own record in 2022". https://www.visitkingsisland.com/blog/2022/march/kings-island-beast-roller-coaster-will-break-its-own-record-in-2022. Retrieved 2022-04-17. 
  10. "The Beast reopens just in time for Mother's Day". https://www.wcpo.com/news/local-news/the-beast-reopens-just-in-time-for-mothers-day. 
  11. "40 things you may not know about The Beast roller coaster, which turned 40 this year". Kings Island. https://www.visitkingsisland.com/blog/2019/july/40-things-you-may-not-know-about-the-beast-roller-coaster-which-turned-40-this-year. 

External links

The category Beast (Kings Island) contains additional media.
  • Beast on the Roller Coaster DataBase.
Tallest roller coaster drop
April 1979 - May 1981
Preceded by
Colossus
Tallest roller coaster drop
April 1979 - May 1981
Succeeded by
American Eagle
Fastest roller coaster
April 1979 – May 1981
Preceded by
Screamin' Eagle
Fastest roller coaster
April 1979 – May 1981
Succeeded by
American Eagle
Longest roller coaster
April 1979 – 1991
Preceded by
Giant Coaster
Longest roller coaster
April 1979 – 1991
Succeeded by
The Ultimate
Longest wooden roller coaster
April 1979 – Present
Preceded by
Racer
Longest wooden roller coaster
April 1979 – Present
Succeeded by
None


Articles on Kings Island
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