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Michigan's Adventure readies new roller coaster

The Grand Rapids Press -

Original Article »

October 05, 2007

MUSKEGON -- Roller coaster enthusiasts will be introduced to the latest in "suspended roller coaster" technology in 2008 at Michigan's Adventure Amusement Park.

Cedar Fair LP -- owners of Muskegon County's largest tourist attraction -- announced Tuesday that it will build Thunderhawk for operation in the 2008 season.

The looping roller coaster suspends pairs of riders with feet dangling in seats hanging from a steel track. It represents the single largest ride investment in the 51-year history of the park, between Muskegon and Whitehall.

The tubular track ride will be 2,260 feet long, providing rides of 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Sitting side-by-side, a train will carry 20 passengers secured in their seats with over-the-shoulder harnesses and an interlocking safety belt.

"Thunderhawk will bring a new dimension of thrills to the park," said Camille Jourden-Mark, vice president and general manager of Michigan's Adventure. "It will be an exciting ride that twists, turns and flips. A suspended coaster that loops will be an instant favorite with our guests."

The 105-foot-tall ride -- just under the 125-foot height of the park's signature wooden roller coaster Shivering Timbers -- will invert riders five times and take them to speeds of 50 mph. Thunderhawk is the seventh roller coaster in the park.

Cedar Fair purchased Michigan's Adventure in 2001 from Roger Jourden. Since then, it added the Funnel of Fear ride to the WildWater Adventure water park in 2005 and the Grand Rapids, a river-rafting ride, in 2006.

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