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Need personal stories for 40th Anniversary article

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I'm working on a story about the 40th anniversary of KI for About.com, and I figure KIC is a great place to source some of the best personal experiences in the park.

I'd like some immersive anecdotes from park fans, spanning any time over the past 40 years. I'd love to hear from those who can remember attending the park when it first opened, the heyday of the Paramount years, tales from former employees (that don't violate any secret-keeping contracts) and maybe even someone who rode The Bat. ^_^ I will be quoting excerpts from each story for a series of time-traveling vignettes that will put the reader right in the park.

Funny stories, first visits and first impressions of the park, something amazing that happened, those magical days when everything just falls into place, parking lot picnics, the first time you took your kids... there are so many stories out there about Kings Island.

If you have a photo to go along with your story, (I know I've got one somewhere of 4-year-old me hanging out in HB Land with Cindy Brady pigtails...) I'd be open to posting family photos or photos taken of the park from the Eiffel Tower. Anything that really brings the history to life.

You can post stories/photos here, or, if you prefer, PM me.

Thanks so much for any help you can provide! I really want to show off what the park means to fans.

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I went to a Catholic elementary and high school.

In elementary school we raised money for a 7th & 8th grade field trip which alternated in-between Kings Island and Cedar Point in the late 70's. Our trip was usually planned for on a weekday just after Memorial Day. The nuns would go with us, too. On the bus trip there we would sneak on Kingsbury Brew, which had a slight beer taste and perhaps .5% alcohol, but sold as a soft drink so we had no trouble buying it. Around the same time there was a soft drink called Chelsea, which has about the same amount of alcohol in it naturally. We would wrap these drinks in tin foil to keep them cold, and so the nuns would not figure out what we had. (I don't know if the tin foil worked or not, but at least we thought it did.)

If we raised more than enough money it was given back to us at the park. But to get it back, we had to find the nun's at the park after 2 pm. They were usually in the arcade trying to rack up the tickets to win prizes. We always gave our extra tickets to them.

5 or 6 of us were going to get on The Racer as one of the last rides of the day. After going through the switch backs and we were almost ready to walk up the ramp into the station. There were a couple of people smoking some doobie there. We had no idea what was going on with these funny smelling cigarettes. They let us pass by them because they were not finished, offering us some as we walked by. We just kept on walking up to the station. Ok, we later told some others from our class about it, and one kid knew what it was. So, we talked about it and laughed on the bus trip, drinking our Chelsea and Kingsbury Brew, thinking we had a lot of fun and getting one over on the nuns.

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August 25th 2009 a Tuesday, one of my best and greatest birthday’s ever I would be 32 years of age, and yes enjoyed every minute of the day at the Mid-West Sensational, Super, Duper, Wonderful Park that is Kings Island in Mason Ohio south of Dayton north of Cincinnati.

My incredible teammates from a 13 year career at a large airline that came to an end in March of the same year decided to throw a great day for me at Kings Island followed by an incredible dinner at Max and Erma’s in Kenwood south of the big park.

The day was great, spent with Amber, Grisel, Dutle, a Moxley and two pilot friends. The day was just some adult fun, incredible amazing wonderful assortment of ride’s, probably the best Larosas pizza out of all the places to get the one of kind Cincinnati Pizza of course no one knows why Kings Island Larosas is the best either. We hit Boomerang Bay, the new Diamondback, The Beast, we had a whole day to ride, laugh, talk, eat some munchies, take in rays at one of the best seasonal parks in the whole nation in the grand land we call the United States of America. Really I think we rode the Scooby doo and the haunted castle just to see who could get the top score. We rode and rode, and memories were made for my own birthday, but some of us still each other and or stay in touch even recommending one another for jobs, and checking in on kids, and family members.

What better way to take in a birthday but at Kings Island the great park , to live like there was no tomorrow. This birthday will always be with me, as a great day.

Of course Kings Island this was one memory, I’ve been there with family, friends, girlfriends, my lovely rollercoaster partner of life SWEETPEA my wife , my own boys have taken in the park on many occasions even one year being Cedar Fair VIP’S even sporting the black jackets that came with our season passes.

Many hours, days, water park trips, thrills, chills, WINTER FEST, Haunt Nights, and the list goes on.

Of course this is the story of a thrill seeker, a Dad, Friend, Love Kings Island, but the whole Amusement industry across the globe. Memories of your first Coaster, your first FERRIS WHEEL, the first shouts on a PIRATE SHIP, eating some blue ice cream, taking in the day like there is no tomorrow.

Luckily for my own memories this Birthday a few years ago will never be forgotten, to many more memories at Kings Island, the great Cedar Fair chain, even Disney oh my.

What is around the next corner is anybody’s guess, today is the present making the most of it building friendships, bonds, and those ever precious memories.

To many more happy years at Kings Island, who knows what the Park will look like in the next 40 years.

Happy Birthday in 2009 to my own great day brought to you by the letter F for friendship. To a big 40th to a world class one of a kind park Kings Island.


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