WindSeeker render

This week's poll asks whether you'd like to see the current fad for spinning tower rides spread to every park around the globe.

With news this week of the continuing progress being made on the Windseeker spinning tower rides at Kings Dominion and Carowinds, due to open this spring, it hardly seems that a week goes by without another US park announcing an opening date for a similar ride.

Kings Island, Cedar Point, Knott's Berry Farm, Six Flags St Louis and Six Flags Discovery Kingdom pioneered the rides last year, which are basically very tall, vertigo-inducing variations on the classic "Chair-O-Plane" attraction. As an added bonus most feature elaborate LED lighting arrays which bring them to life at night.

With so much hype around this new generation of theme park attraction, this week's Big Debate asks the question: should there be a spinning tower ride at every theme park? Cedar Fair and Six Flags certainly seem to think so.

Soaring through the skies

Surely every park looking for a eye catching centrepiece would look no further than the Mondial WindSeeker and Funtime StarFlyer models that have been adopted by the two US theme park chains. At up to 300-feet-tall, the rides are likely to be able to be seen from any part of the park. At night, the LED arrays create an impressive visual spectacle, and at around $6-7 million the cost is not at the top end of theme park attractions.

For guests, the traditional "Chair-O-Plane" ride experience is one many will have fond memories of as a child - so who could possibly resist hopping aboard the ultimate version and feeling as if you are flying up high with the birds?

Boring and samey?

Slight drawbacks, on the other hand, could be the slower loading times than many other attractions, and a lack of appeal to some guests, particularly those suffering from motion sickness or a fear of heights. Another concern for some may be the fact that the WindSeekers and SkyScreamers lack unique qualities and seem to be very "samey" in each park - when you've experienced one, you've experienced them all.

Being a UK resident, I have to wonder whether we'll ever see spinning tower rides take off over here. Most theme park fans in this country will be familiar with the planning restrictions placed on the likes of Alton Towers, which would probably have to install any such ride in a 250-feet-deep hole in order to gain approval from local authorities.

Vote Now!

The WindSeekers and SkyScreamers have proven to be very popular, after a few teething problems which could be expected with a new such attraction. Why not let us know if you think there should be a spinning tower ride at every theme park by voting in our poll below.

Should there be a WindSeeker or SkyScreamer-style ride at every theme park?

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Thanks for voting in Theme Park Tourist's Big Debate. Why not let us know why you voted as you did using the comments section below?


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