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Holiday World | Good Gravy | Vekoma Family Boomerang | 2024

JoshC.

Strata Poster
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I like it.
 

JustLarry

Roller Poster
Also, is it only me who’s very surprised that this is America’s first Family Boomerang? It feels like these coasters are everywhere in Europe, so I’m surprised that America has only just cottoned on…
Right?? The rumor is though two for next year ( dueling pair/ Nashville Zoo!) and a few for the year after . So here they come!
(Hopefully opening the door for some of those beautiful new Vekoma nextGen launched ones!)
 

roomraider

Best Topic Starter
Surely a Gravy themed ride should have been a boat rather than a coaster? 👀

Looks like a great addition to the park though. And actually I love the theme.
 

vaugc002

Mega Poster
RCDB has this down as $10m USD.... surely it couldn't cost that much??
A cute addition but I had no idea these were so expensive damn.
 

MLDesigns

Hyper Poster
^I would assume that's every dollar spent on the project. From demo of the old water ride, land clearing, the ride itself, foundations, installation, etc., it adds up quick, even if the ride itself is only a few million dollars.
 

TPoseOnTantrum

Giga Poster
Also, is it only me who’s very surprised that this is America’s first Family Boomerang? It feels like these coasters are everywhere in Europe, so I’m surprised that America has only just cottoned on…
The American theme park scene is a different beast from Europe, and this change probably comes down to three overarching factors; A growing demand for family rides, Vekoma's meteoric rise, and the semi-implosion of the domestic manufacturers' local dominance.

  1. American parks until recently typically haven't shared the same ideals as the European parks; marketability matters here, and most parks were focused on building huge coasters aimed to either stand out in the region through word of mouth or claim some increasingly baffling first/largest/tallest/fastest title. Two things more or less hit the parks after the COVID crisis; increased attendance and demand across the board, and rising disruption from juveniles visiting the parks. Seriously, every other week you'd hear of some park or carnival being shut down over teens getting out of hand, something that wasn't a constant five years ago. Both trends resulted in parks re-examining and feeling the need to expand their potential-heavy family offerings, and its shown very quickly. In the last year we've seen the arrival of several high-effort family coasters (Zambezi Zinger, Big Bear Mountain, Wild Mouse, Snoopy's Racing Railway, Flying Viking, many more coming), which is in HEAVY contrast to the average American coaster year. Parks are seeking new options, and that brings us to...

  2. Saying by now that Vekoma has rebounded is a bit like saying that water is wet, but I'll say it anyways; Vekoma has become a new beast. They've had a huge string of successful products, none more so than the Family Boomerang; its simplistic, highly marketable, stands out in a lineup, cheap to sell, easy to produce, super versatile, and extremely high quality. There were a couple of proposals in recent years to bring one to the US (see: Deno's Wonder Wheel), but eventually some park was going to have to bite, especially given the renewed demand to appeal to families. New-gen Vekoma is also spreading like wildfire in North America right now, with no less than 10 projects under development across the States and successful product showcases like Big Bear Mountain/Phoenix/Dragonflier. They've very suddenly forced their foot through the door, because...

  3. Throughout the 2010's there was a mindset that domestic manufacturers would support the large-scale theme park scene, with "domestic" being defined as companies who either had their offices, manufacturing abilities, or both located within the States. There were consistent (and often memorable) swings out to other major European firms, but asides from that this was the way. Unfortunately, aided by shifting corporate investment strategies and rising products from across the industry, this ideal has more or less crumbled by now. RMC and Premier Rides have mostly failed to diversify and won't have as high demand moving forwards. S&S was poising themselves to become the next major player, but a series of high-profile mechanical flops has essentially written them off as a go-to manufacturer (for awhile at least). The wooden coaster manufacturers have also shifted their focus towards existing ride overhauls. The biggest indication in the end however was that this domestic ideal was geared more towards larger coasters than smaller. As a result, various different companies either began to step up their game with smaller but fancy new products (Zamperla, Skyline, SBF Visa even), or larger companies stepping in to survive long-term (B&M's recent exploits at SeaWorld Orlando). This was fueled in tandem with a rising small-park market and the renewed family focus, taking us full circle and back to point #1.
Now let's use Holiday World as an example, since their most recent two coaster investments come from very different time periods. Thunderbird was commissioned to outdo the re-emerging Kentucky Kingdom and put the park on the roller coaster map yet again. It was a huge, thrilling, and very expensive B&M that ultimately wasn't a smart or financially satisfactory addition. Now we have Good Gravy, which is fairly small, fills a major gap in the park, and focuses more on providing an all-ages and high-effort experience over marketability. I'm not trying to say that one kind of investment is better or works more than the other, or that we should be seeing more Vekoma Famerangs than B&M launched wing coasters.

Good Gravy will be a fantastic addition for Holiday World, yes, but it's also symbolic of the shifting American theme park scene. There's always still going to be a demand for more ambitious coasters here, but we're also now embracing a very different direction. And this is where the Vekoma Family Boomerang has found its niche; I for one welcome it.
 

Antinos

Slut for Spinners
What a fun and unique theme!

Is this a custom layout or a clone of one of the existing layouts? It doesn’t look like a Family Boomerang layout I recognise, but I could be missing something.

Also, is it only me who’s very surprised that this is America’s first Family Boomerang? It feels like these coasters are everywhere in Europe, so I’m surprised that America has only just cottoned on…

Adventure City beat Holiday World by a few years. Different manufacturer but in essence the same ride.
 

Hyde

Matt SR
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
Today we are thankful for Holiday World giving us a peek at Good Gravy process over in the Netherlands... track installation will also begin next month;
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Source

That's also not the only gravy that they were kind enough to pass, has nothing to do with the park but I don't think Vekoma was ready to share it yet;
View attachment 27088
I feel like this needs to be the ongoing theme given the Thanksgiving vibes; just "I'm thankful Holiday World started laying concrete footers."
 

Lofty

CF Legend

Hyde

Matt SR
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
I feel like this needs to be the ongoing theme given the Thanksgiving vibes; just "I'm thankful Holiday World started laying concrete footers."
I'm thankful Holiday World has enough warm weather to keep the construction process going into December!
 

JackFish

Mega Poster
I can't wait for my visit to Holiday World Music Fest. Hopefully, it will be open by then, it is early in the season so I hope. If not I always have Voyage. Looking good with the progress though
 
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