|Six Flags America|
Upper Marlboro, Maryland, USA
In 1982, an unsuspecting water park by the name Wild World would become open to the public. Primarily a water park with many slides and wet family fun, this park would soon gain the addition of some dry rides as well and become more than just a water park.
The early years brought many flat rides to the park such as the classic Himalaya ride, wave swingers, and a Cyclone spinner ride, but in 1985, Paragon Park in Boston, Massachusetts closed along with one of John Miller's greatest coasters, the Giant Coaster. But what would this mean for Wild World?
Wild World got its first coaster, and the next year brought one wild ride to this wild park. The Wild One, a classic and revolutionary twisted John A. Miller design was moved. Aside from Miller's help in designing Giant Coaster nearly sixty years ago at that time, the Dinn Corporation also helped out with rebuilding the ride. With heights nearing one hundred feet and speeds of sixty miles per hour, it remains to be a gem in the industry and remains to be the park's only coaster that isn't a clone.
Throughout the late 1980's, the park slowly became a failure, and in 1991, Wild World closed due to bankruptcy never reopened for the 1991 season. For an entire year, Wild World sat dormant until one small investment group, the Tierco Group, decides to buy Wild World out in 1992. The park was saved, and the park finally reopened for the 1992 season.
During the off-season between the 1992 and 1993 seasons, the park became a more traditional amusement park than a water park. Themed sections rose up which included International Plaza, Pirates Cove, Coyote Creek, Moroccan Village, and the A Day at the Circus kids area. For the 1993 season, the park finally saw two more roller coasters. The first and main addition was Python (defunct), an old Arrow Shuttle Looper that was the top portion of Six Flags Great Adventure’s Lightning Loops (also defunct). The coaster begins with a launch down a small hill and into a loop, up the hill where it stalls out and gravity begins to pull it back towards the earth and through the layout again, only this time—backward.
Also added in 1993 was a kiddie coaster for the Circus area, Cannonball Run (also defunct), a Molina and Sons kiddie coaster.
The next year brought a major change to the park—The park's name was changed to Adventure World. The water park portion was renamed to Paradise Island as well, and the park’s owner, the Tierco Group, changed its name to Premier Parks.
In 1995, the park got a new, state of the art roller coaster to attract people back to the Maryland park. Mind Eraser opened up in the park’s Coyote Creek area as one of America’s first Vekoma SLC’s (Suspended Looping Coasters). With inverted thrills boasting heights of over 100 feet and a twisted course of five inversions and top speeds nearing fifty miles per hour, Mind Eraser became so successful, Premier decided to clone the coaster to other parks in the chain. While 1995 was the beginning of many things for this park, it was also the end for one of the park's flat rides, the Curving Dervish.
In 1996, doom came to Adventure World as the Tower of Doom, the area's first freefall ride, came to the park. Coming from Intamin as one of their freefall tower models, Tower of Doom took riders to their doom, as riders rose up in the air at heights over 140 feet. The following year, 1997, brought even more unique thrills to the park, as Intamin came back to the park again and made another big thrill for families. Typhoon Sea Coaster, an Intamin reversing log flume ride. Almost considered a water coaster and being one of the first out there, Typhoon Sea Coaster took riders to a soaking plunge throughout this unique ride. Also opening in Paradise Island for the 1997 season was the new family activity area called Crocodile Cal’s Outback Beach House.
Roaring through the park in 1998 came a twisted wooden creation that became a top-ten wooden coaster amongst enthusiasts. In 1998, Roar, a GCI wooden twister coaster, was built. It opened to rave reviews with many intense moments and a layout so twisted, there was barely any straight track pieces to be found. But 1998 would also spell out change for the park, as two of the parks coasters, Python and Cannonball Run would be removed and forever lay in the scrap yard. In October of that year, the park announced that they would become a Six Flags park and the transformation from Adventure World to Six Flags America began. Why was it named Six Flags America? Because it was only twenty minutes away from Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States.
On May 1, 1999, the park opened under the new name of Six Flags America. With the name change, many new changes occurred at the park. The most obvious of the changes other than the name change being three brand new roller coasters. The first big coaster for the 1999 season was Joker’s Jinx, a Premier LIM (Linear Induction Motor) Launched “spaghetti-bowl” coaster. Themed around the Batman villain, The Joker, Joker’s Jinx launches riders up to speeds of sixty-three miles per hour through a twisted spaghetti bowl that consists of four inversions, and many twists and turns through the mass of green track and purple supports. Though cloned as Paramount’s Flight of Fear coasters and Six Flags Fiesta Texas’ Poltergeist, Joker's Jinx was one big hit coaster for the park.
The second big coaster for the Six Flags conversion was Two-Face: The Flipside also themed to a Batman villain, Two-Face. Taking the place of Python as the park's only shuttle coaster, Two-Face: The Flipside was an Invertigo coaster from Vekoma. The ride is nothing more than an inverted version of Vekoma’s popular Boomerang coaster, but the seats are face to face, giving riders the unique experience of being able to view each other screaming throughout the ride. The orange track and teal supports took riders through a Cobra Roll and a Vertical Loop twice during the ride, flipping riders over six times, while going to heights of 137 feet, and traveling at speeds of fifty-five miles per hour.
The third coaster was a kiddie coaster coming from Zamperla called The Great Chase. The Great Chase was a part of the package of the transition of the park’s A Day at the Circus kid's area to Looney Tunes Movie Town. A part of that themed area’s conversion included a package of either new or re-themed kids rides in the section. Other re-themed areas include Main Street 1776 which provides the park with a new entrance, Olde Boston, Nantucket, and the Moroccan Village area gets re-themed to Southwest Territory. Over thirty million dollars went into re-theming Adventure World to Six Flags America and the new millennium would bring another D.C. Comics superhero to the park.
The year 2000 came and the 21st century kicked off with the Man of Steel soaring over the park’s skyline. Superman: Ride of Steel, an Intamin Mega coaster, took riders soaring like the Man of Steel to heights over 200 feet and bullet speeds of over seventy-three miles per hour. The rides layout is nothing more but a clone of the version found at Six Flags Darien Lake, which was built there back in 1999. Nonetheless, Superman: Ride of Steel became another hit coaster for the park, boasting moments of insane airtime throughout the course of the ride. Also added in 2000 were three new flat rides, including Krypton Comet, Penguin’s Polar Street, and Octopus.
In 2001, Six Flags America’s added the area’s first flying coaster came to the park. The Dark Knight, Batman, took riders soaring to new heights on Batwing. Coming from Vekoma as a modified version of their Flying Dutchman coaster, the ride is similar to X-Flight, which was also built in 2001 at Six Flags Worlds of Adventure (later renamed Geauga Lake). The course of yellow track and purple supports consists of five inversions as riders go soaring over heights of 125 feet, and speeds of over fifty-five miles per hour as, throughout the course, riders either lie on their backs or are suspended in a flying position. Also in 2001, the Rainbow Falls waterslide complex gets renamed to Deer Park Plunge and a Skycoaster upcharge attraction is built.
The next year, 2002, brought the Fastlane system to the park and the removal of the SkyEscaper flat ride, which was a Huss Enterprise while 2003 brought another family thrill to the park, Penguins Blizzard River. The ride, built by White Water West, was one of the first spinning rapids rides built. Riders go through a course of wet turns before being plunging into a pool of water below.
Also in 2003, two flat rides are renamed, Penguin’s Polar Express was renamed Alpine Bobs and Tilt-A-Whirl was renamed The Tilt.
2004 brought no new additions to the park, but the next year, a hurricane of thrills would touch down at the park and be one of the biggest changes to the park since the Six Flags conversion.
In late 2004, it was announced that Paradise Island, the park's longtime water park, would close for good. Being a staple of the park since it first opened, Six Flags re-themed the area to be branded as Six Flags’ Hurricane Harbor. In May 2005, Hurricane Harbor opened its doors to a brand new and renovated water park. Many parts of the old Paradise Island park were renovated and renamed to Hurricane Harbor standards.
The revamp included three brand new wet attractions, the star attraction of the park being Tornado, a Proslide Tornado that takes riders through a giant funnel. Also added were a new family slide complex, Bahama Blast, and a new kid's area, Buccaneer Beach. A new up-charge attraction, The Wall, a basic rock climbing wall finished off the 2004 additions. Touch-ups were also made to two of the park’s coasters as well. Joker’s Jinx got a fresh coat of paint, and Mind Eraser got a new paint scheme of yellow and red.
Present Roller Coasters (9)
|Apocalypse||Bolliger & Mabillard||Stand-Up||2012||Operating|
|Firebird||Bolliger & Mabillard||Floorless||2018||Operating|
|Joker's Jinx||Premier Rides||Launched||1999||Operating|
|Roar||Great Coasters International||Wooden||1998||Operating|
|Ragin' Cajun||Zamperla||Wild Mouse||2014||Operating|
|Superman - Ride of Steel||Intamin AG||Hyper||2000||Operating|
|Wild One||Dinn Corporation||Wooden||1986||Operating|
|Batman & Robin: the Ride (Six Flags America)||Bolliger & Mabillard||Dueling Roller Coaster, Inverted Roller Coaster||2017||Planning|
Past Roller Coasters
|The Great Alonzo's Cannonball Coaster||Molina & Son's||Kiddie||1993||1998|
|Two-Face: The Flip Side||Vekoma||Shuttle||1999||2008|
|Apocalypse||Bolliger & Mabillard||Stand-up||2012||2018|