Monday, February 26, 2018

King's Island, Ohio

It's been a little while since we've seen some of Ken Martinez's collection of vintage amusement park postcards - so today we're going to check out another batch from King's Island, Ohio! Pictures and text all courtesy of Ken:

Kings Island Part 2

Today’s post features Kings Island while also showing the connection to its predecessor Coney Island in Cincinnati Ohio.  For a little background on both parks, the two links below are previous articles I’ve written (Here, and Here!)

Pictured here are the Antique Auto Cars, the lower base of the Intamin Eiffel Tower as well as the Sky Ride and Grand Carousel.  Both the Sky Ride and Grand Carousel were relocated from Kings Island’s predecessor, Coney Island, Ohio.  The Antique Auto Cars was actually two intertwined auto rides.  The “Les Taxi” side was boarded in the “Coney Mall” section of the park and the “Ohio Overland Auto Livery” side was boarded in the “Rivertown” section.  The Antique Auto Cars were removed in 2004 to make way for the Italian Job Stunt Coaster. 

Here’s a postcard of the Sky Ride when it was located at the older park, Coney Island Ohio.  A section at Kings Island was built in tribute to the earlier park and named “Coney Mall”.  

This Log Flume was another attraction moved over from Coney Island, Ohio.  At Kings Island it was known as the “Kings Mill Log Flume” then later renamed “The Wild Thornberry’s River Adventure” and currently “Race For Your Life Charlie Brown”.  Management certainly knows how to put the IPs to use.

Here’s the original location where the Log Flume operated at Coney Island Ohio.  Note the Flying Scooter ride partially visible on the left.  It too was relocated to Kings Island along with several other rides.

Not only did Kings Island have an antique version of the auto ride, it also had a modern version known as the “Sunshine Turnpike”.  It was located in the “Happyland of Hanna-Barbera” section of the park.  It closed in 1994 to make way for Nickelodeon Splat City.  Now there is no auto ride, antique or modern at Kings Island.

Here we have the “Enchanted Voyage” dark boat ride.  It was based on the old and new cartoons of Hanna-Barbera.  Its last voyage was in 1991.  Love the TV set fa├žade with the dials.  Especially that color dial.

Hope you enjoyed today’s post on Kings Island and its connection to Coney Island.

Information source material:

As always, a BIG thanks to Ken Martinez for all of his time and effort!


Nanook said...


Once again - memories a-plenty. I never made it to Coney Island, OH, but paid many a visit to Kings Island. The comparisons are very interesting. (Now - where is the horrible LaRosa's Pizza and the 'questionable' Skyline Chili-??) I know, I know - a cheese coney or a three-way is supposed to be the living end, but...

Thanks again, Ken.

TokyoMagic! said...

I sure wish I had been able to visit this park back in it's early years. I recognize the antique autos from when Jan and Marcia Brady were driving one. I think I also recognize the log flume ride from the same episode. But I had no idea that the park had an indoor boat ride through a television set and the cartoon world of Hanna-Barbera. From what we can see of those boats, they look a little "It's A Small World-ish." Too bad that ride no longer looks kind of trippy!

Thanks for sharing more postcards from your collection, Ken!

Alonzo P Hawk said...

Thanks Ken for sharing a very nice collection (cards) from a park that doesn't have the web info of some of the others.

I too am having a very Brady flashback of the family running through the park trying to get Mike his missing building drawings.

Alas kids driving mini cars seems to be a thing of the past as younger generations don't seem to care as much for auto ownership. The idea of a mini Uber or Lyft ride in you local amusement park doesn't sound all that fun.

Patrick Devlin said...

Thanks Mr. M for a little breadth and exposure to a place I've never been and might never see. And well written to boot.

That first shot of cars puts me in mind of Henry's Livery from Knott's, a long-time favorite then and even now in my memories.

Anonymous said...

What Patrick Devlin said.

This is all new to me. The various auto rides look like a lot of fun, and the skyway over the beautiful concourse. Too bad it's all gone.

I've said it before, and mostly about Ken's posts, but it's always fascinating to me to see the other amusement parks across the country and their interpretation of what Disney was doing (and sometimes the other way around too, Disney wasn't always the innovator).

As a kid, Disneyland was as closer or closer than most other parks, and Dad liked it best, so we nearly always went there for amusement park holidays and these other parks are almost all new to me.

Thanks Ken and Major, very much indeed.


K. Martinez said...

Nanook, I don't know about Skyline Chili, but I'm a huge fan of Cincinnati chili. I actually make my own Cincinnati chili and love it for its unique flavor. Chili spaghetti with cheese! Mmmmmm! Thanks for reminding me of one of my favorite dishes.

TokyoMagic!, you know what I always say. A YouTube video is the next best thing to being there. ;-)

Alonzo P Hawk, It's funny, but "The Partridge Family" actually went to Kings Island first, but most associate Kings Island with "The Brady Bunch" episode. Glad you enjoyed.

Patrick Devlin, Thanks for the kind comments. The antique auto ride is definitely reminiscent of Henry's Livery at Knott's. It seems like the sky rides and these auto rides are being removed or reduced at a lot of the amusement parks today.

JG, Glad you enjoyed today's post and discovered something new. Being a amusement and theme park enthusiast I'm always discovering something new from the past history of amusement parks.

Thanks to all for the kind comments.

Chuck said...

Ken, thanks for sharing these views of my junior high-years' local amusement park!

King's Island's log flume has always been one of my favorite examples of the genre. I'm not really sure why, although I think it may have to do with its length and (by 1981) heavily-wooded setting (although looking at some more recent photos, that seems to have diminished somewhat). I'm not sure I'm remembering this correctly and can't find any video supporting said memory, but I want to remember this having a rotating load area, sort of a moist version of the PeopleMover's. Anybody else able to confirm (or refute) that?

I also remember that back during the early '80s, the boats were all numbered with one or two digits (1, 8, 15, etc.) with the exception of boat #7 - it was numbered "007." That might have been removed when Paramount assumed ownership in 1992.

TM!, the Enchanted Voyage was, well, rather enchanting. Yes, there was a definite echo of it's a small world, particularly in the end scene, but it offered plenty of charm that made it worth the sometimes close to an hour wait - even for a group of junior high boys. We were all somewhat perturbed when it was converted into the Surfs' Enchanted Village in 1984 (although we still rode it multiple times per visit).

In 1992, the flume ride system was replaced with a poor man's Omnimover during the building's conversion into the Phantom Theater, a Haunted Mansion wannabe. It wasn't terrible, but it was neither the Enchanted Voyage nor the Haunted Mansion.

Love the Banana Splits along the roofline. As you can see by the video Ken linked, those were gone by the time of my first visit in 1981.

Another place I wouldn't mind visiting with a time machine...

Anonymous said...

As a very young kid, I LIVED for Coney Island. I also recall the park being flooded when the Ohio River would rose. This was all before Disneyland opened and we moved to SoCal. Long ago and far away. KS

Melissa said...

Thanks to Ken and the Maj-Man for the return trip to Kings Island! It reminds me a lot of my “home” park, Darien Lake, near Batavia, NY.

I love the old-time cars! For years, my keychain was one of those peephole photo viewer souvenir keychains I got from Darien Lake’s version of Photo pass, with a shot of me driving a little Model T with an expression so serious it's funny.

I can't do the big drop at Splash Mountain, because having my head and neck snapped back that far for that long is a migraine trigger. Between that and my sister's spinal fusion, it just isn't worth it for us. I've often wished that they could build a turnoff near the end where some logs could be diverted to a slope the size of the Kings Island log flume, for guests who wanted to see the show scenes but couldn't tolerate the big drop at the end. Also, I want a pony that sings in three-part harmony and poops gold nuggets and does all the dishes and laundry.

Love the TV gate! There was a Hanna-Barbera Land at Canada's Wonderland, but we never went it, because it was FOR LITTLE KIDS! Blecch! Ptooie! Baby cooties! Man, teenagers can be brats.

Chuck said...

Make that "we were all somewhat perturbed when it was converted into the Smurfs' Enchanted Village in 1984" in my previous comment. Hopefully, that will make our perturbation a little more comprehensible.


I never went to KINGS ISLAND but I have lots of family in the Carolinas and Virginia and we often went to KINGS DOMINION - the sister park to KINGS ISLAND. Like Disneyland & Walt Disney World it had some similar theme lands and some area exclusive ....International Street with the Eiffel Tower , a Coney Island , a Happy Land of Hanna Barbera , and a OLD VIRGINA , and a Lion Country area.

The Hana Barbera area featured a Scooby Do “Haunted” roller coaster and the modern turnpike cars were themed was The Banana Splits Wacky Racecars. There was no dark ride but there was a Yogi Bear walk-thru.

The Old VIRGINA themed area was mostly atembellun in nature except the the Arrow Antique autos were located there as THE BLUERIDGE TOLL ROAD .

KINGS DONINION was no Disneyland but somewhere on the theme scale between a Magic Mountain and 1970’s Knott’s Berry Farm.

Great to see these postcards

Robert said...

There were dark rides at KD. Land of the Dooz/Smurf Mountain and the Haunted River in the mountain that became Volcano the Blast Coaster. Guess thrills and speed sell more than slow dark rides. They also had a steam train in Old Virginia but it was removed.

Andrew said...

Chuck, don't know if you're still following this post, but to answer your question from 2 years ago, the Kings Island flume doesn't have a rotating load station. You're likely thinking of Cedar Point's station for the former White Water Landing, which did rotate. (It was an Arrow Dynamics "Hydroflume," and all of those had this feature.) Kings Island has the more typical layout where the logs can be directed into two separate channels in the station to increase capacity.