Two of the guys who started Kings Island were at a convention in Chicago and they found out that John Allen was there. They asked him to design the Racer for their new park, and he declined saying that he was retired, so they kept buying him drinks until he finally caved in.
Kings Island used to own 1600 acres.
John Allen, although he did not design the Beast, took interest in the project and did several calculations for the ride and designed the braking system.
Kings Island used to only have five themed areas.
Both Partridge Family and Brady Bunch have filmed episodes there.
The Bat was the shortest lived major attraction ever at Kings Island. Working only two years.
The queue and station for the Vortex was the one used for The Bat.
A Lion in the Wild Animal Safari attacked its keeper.
There are still cages from the Wild Animal Safari laying about the area by Son of Beast and Adventure Express.
The Enchanted Voyage used to have a huge compass on top of the building.
The Beast station was originally built over a shallow lake.
One time the Sky Ride broke down for 8 hours and stranded people on the ride, when they finally got off, Kings Island offered them “lifetime passes” to the park. Most people turned them down saying they enjoyed the extended view.
About two million guests enjoyed the 150-acre park that first season.
The Screamin’ Demon was the first forward- and backward-looping roller coaster in the country when it was built.
Flight of Fear was one of the first roller coaster in the world to use linear induction technology.
Before Paramount, Season Passes used to be green.
There used to be a separate entrance for season pass holders.
John Allen made his calculations on the back of a placemat in the International Street Restaurant.
The Action 180 Theater used to show a movie where a cat drove a car from the police.
A part of the queue for the Adventure Express is the same concrete used for the Flying Dutchman ride pad.
The Royal Fountains on International Street were built for the park`s opening. They cost more than double the budgeted $251,000 to build. The fountains are a mere two feet deep and hold 500,000 gallons of water. 10,000 gallons of water are pumped through its many nozzles each minute! The park completely renovated the Royal Fountain before the start of the 2003 season. These fountains were upgraded again for the 2019 season. The renovation included 112 new nozzles that can send water 50% higher, 176 new LED lights and the addition of 130,000 new pavers on the midways around the fountains.
In an average year, 100 tons of hamburgers and 300 tons of French fries are consumed by guests. Additionally, guests consume about 3,000,000 gallons of soft drinks each year, which is enough to fill the Royal Fountain about six times.
Kings Island`s parking lot contains approximately 11,000 parking spaces.
In 2000, the 10 most popular rides were: (1) The Racer [2,081,115 riders], (2) Adventure Express [1,322,188 riders], (3) Vortex [1,288,492 riders], (4) The Beast [1,143,739 riders], (5) Top Gun [1,049,989 riders], (6) Phantom Theater [914,269 riders], (7) The Beastie [862,860 riders], (8) Flight of Fear [847,300 riders], (9) Congo Falls [845,932 riders], (10) Viking Fury [840,667 riders].
Before The Beast was built there used to be a canoe ride that used to stand right about where The Beast station sits today. The ride was named “Shawnee Landing.”
Prior to being purchased by Paramount , Wings Diner in River Town was known as the “Columbia Palace .”
The River Town station for the Kings Island and Miami Valley Railroad is known as Losantiville, the original name of Cincinnati .
In 1980, a year after the ride opened, the Beast`s helix was enclosed. Also, the park added a tunnel to the first drop of Scooby Doo in Hanna Barbera Land to allow young kids to experience something similar to the Beast. When the park added the tunnel they changed the name of the ride to the Beastie.
Each Saturday night, before Q-TV was installed, the popular late 1970`s song S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y Night! by the Bay City Rollers was played in the Beast`s queue line.
In 1993, Quickdraw`s Café was replaced by the Busytown Grill featuring Richard Scary`s children`s book characters. Also in 1993, the German Bier Gardens are renamed to Oktoberfest Gardens .
There were 50 lions in “Lion Country Safari” when it opened.
Attendance in 1990 was 3.2 million guests. Attendance in 1991 fell 11% from the year before to 2.85 million guests. In 1992, attendance was 3.26 million visitors.
Some of the access stairs that were used on The Bat were part of the Vortex and were used as the access stairs to the block brakes.
Kings Island opened “softly” on April 29th , 1972. Only 4,000 guests showed up because it poured down rain all day. The official grand opening was not held until May.
Evil Keneval successfully jumped 14 busses in the King’s Island parking lot on October 25, 1975. He did it in front of 70,000 spectators .
In an average year, the park spends more than $100,000 on replacing and fixing wheels for all the rides.
In 1993, Paramount banned the sale of alcohol in the park. Needless to say, the ban was short lived as the sale of alcohol is a big money maker. Alcohol was still sold in the International Restaurant and in the private picnic groves.
Adventure Express is dedicated to Robert Rinkel, a head of maintenance who passed away prior to the opening of the coaster. The park placed a plaque dedicating the ride to him on a stone by the entrance to the ride.
The oldest attraction to have ever operated at Kings Island was the Tumble Bug. It was originally built for Coney Island in 1925 before being moved to KI in 1972. It continued to operate at the park through the 1984 season. The current oldest ride in the park is the 1926 PTC Carousel.
The second-floor of the International Street shops borrow a trick from Disney. To fool the eye and save money, the doors and windows on the second floor of the shops are built at 3/4 scale.
The original attraction on the site of Nickelodeon Central was the Sunshine Turnpike.
Preston T. Tucker`s Roadside Café opened in 1994 and was based on the Paramount movie “Tucker: The Man and his Dream.” Today, it is home to Jukebox Diner.
RSL Commercial Architecture, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, has worked extensively at Kings Island for several seasons. They designed the station for Invertigo. They also designed the Animation Station transformation from the old sky ride building. They also did the design work for the Flight of Fear and Tomb Raider buildings. In addition, they were responsible for the Preston T. Tucker`s Roadside Café, and were then responsible for the transformation of that building into the Happy Days Diner in 2005. They were also responsible for Graeter`s and Italian Job: Stunt Track in 2005.
The Cincinnati based TRA Design did the construction drawings for the Banshee coaster station, as well as the Kings Mills Antique Autos.
The now demolished Kings Island Resort and Conference Center, originally owned by Taft Broadcasting, was owned by Belvedere Hotels Ltd. Of Cincinnati .
The Graeter`s Ice Cream shop that opened on International Street in a 1,700 square foot shop in 2005, was the first new Graeter`s to open in ten years in the Cincinnati area.
Kings Island maintains a spare parts inventory valued at more than $3 million.
Many of the rides and structures` foundations designed by Steven Schaefer Associates, Inc. and their Entertainment Structures Group division. They are a structural engineer firm based in Cincinnati. They designed the Son of Beast station, and the foundations for that ride. They also designed the foundations for Invertigo and Drop Zone, as well as Face Off`s station. They also designed the steel frame supporting the 30 foot tall Reptar outside of Runaway Reptar. They also designed the station, foundations and theme elements for Italian Job: Stunt Track. They also have done work at the Cincinnati Zoo.
The central store in the Planet Snoopy used to be one of the stations to Sky Ride.