Last fall, when Cedar Point made its annual announcement of coming attractions, park officials apparently were holding out on guests.
This week — days after media began questioning why a filing with the Federal Aviation Administration indicated a ride with a proposed height of 236 feet was going to begin construction in Sandusky next month — they spilled the beans.
The new surprise ride is SlingShot, where riders are secured in an open-air, two-person capsule, then launched nearly 360 feet into the sky at speeds of up to 62 mph.
For those who can keep their eyes open, they’ll find themselves at the second-highest vantage point in the park, just below the park’s tallest coaster, Top Thrill Dragster.
“After a brief feeling of weightlessness, riders will descend back towards Earth before catapulting back up and down until the capsule comes to rest back at the launching point,” a park news release explained.
The ride is manufactured by Funtime in Australia. The park will open May 10, but the ride will not be ready until the summer.
Another surprise: It will cost extra to ride SlingShot.
The fee hasn’t been set, but the park’s general admission ticket won’t give you access.
It’s the second time the park has added an attraction that requires visitors to whip out their wallets in the midway. Dinosaurs Alive!, an animatronics experience that opened in 2012, costs extra as well.
Cedar Point spokesman Bryan Edwards said he wouldn’t call that a trend. Instead, consider SlingShot “the cherry on top of the ice cream,” he said.
SlingShot will be located near the Gemini roller coaster.
“We’re really focusing on that section of the park. We had this plot of land available, and it’s the perfect spot for that ride,” Edwards said.
While area media applied pressure to park officials to learn about the secret ride, Edwards said it had always been Cedar Point’s intention to reveal it this month. The ride wasn’t announced with other new 2014 attractions in August because plans had not been finalized.
“But we would rather have people snooping and trying to figure out what we’re doing next than not caring,” Edwards said.
Other new rides previously announced are Pipe Scream (a Disk’O Coaster) and Lake Erie Eagles (a Flying Scooters ride.)
Some new additions to the park’s cuisine also were announced this week.
They include a full-service Starbucks, Auntie Anne’s, Cinnabon, Chickie’s and Pete’s Sports Bar, a Coca-Cola Freestyle station and a Yogurt Plus.
“With a collection of 72 rides, including 17 roller coasters, three kids’ areas, live shows, unique and interesting places to eat and spend the night, Cedar Point offers something fun for everyone,” said Jason McClure, vice president and general manager of Cedar Point.
For a complete operating schedule, visit www.cedarpoint.com.