"It goes up and down, round and round, and even goes upside-down!" Those were the words of John Arie, Jr., Fun Spot's CEO and media spokesperson, right before the all new Mine Blower coaster officially opened in a colorful explosion of streamers and smoke. And he's exactly right, because this new attraction is the first and only wooden coaster in the Southeastern United States with a complete 360 degree barrel roll, turning riders completely upside-down.
The Mine Blower, which opened Friday, June 23, 2017 at Fun Spot America Kissimmee, was designed by The Gravity Group and costs $6 million to build. That makes it the highest amount of money the company has invested in a single ride. And it looks like it was worth it as guests were lined up to be some of the first to experience this unique new ride, with some coaster fanatics traveling from across the country to ride.
Designed to look like a mine car that's been outfitted with bright red "ACME" brand rockets, the Mine Blower takes you on a relentless 80-second ride of your life. The classic style chain lift brings you up 83 feet where you immediately drop down 82 feet at speeds up to 49 mph! That's when the train rotates 360 degrees directly over the load station, sending passengers in a zero-g inversion, the ride's signature moment. Riders can purchase an on-ride photo on the way out that's snapped just as everyone is flipped upside-down.
As if going completely upside-down and speeding around the track at nearly 50 mph wasn't enough, the ride also contains a dozen instances of airtime. That means you can feel yourself coming out of your seat 12 times during the ride! There's nothing greater than the sensation of weightlessness on a coaster. Mine Blower doesn't use bulky shoulder harnesses either. You're strapped in with a seat belt and specially designed rounded lap bar, leaving you free to look around, and really feel those airtime moments. There's also 115 degree banked turns, where you're completely sideways on the track, but because you're traveling so fast you're stuck to your seat from the inertia.
Mine Blower is an amazing addition to Fun Spot America in Kissimmee. If you're a coaster fan it's a must-do attraction when visiting Central Florida. You can purchase individual ride tickets or save with an all-day armband, so you can ride it over and over again. It'll blow your socks off!
Orlando, FL – 6/28/17
Words and photos by: Alicia Stella