On June 11 dozens of members of the Roller Coaster Club of Great Britain (RRCGB) will converge on Quassy Amusement & Waterpark here to ride “Wooden Warrior,” rated among the top 50 wooden coasters in the world.
“They have a real passion for riding and also talking about roller coasters,” noted Eric Anderson, park president. “We’ve had coaster groups from across North America and Europe in the past and are certainly pleased that the Great Britain club is coming.”
RRCGB started a whirlwind North American tour on May 31 with a stop in Atlanta, Ga., and within 17 days the troupe will have experienced more than 100 roller coasters in six states and Canada.
During the stop at Quassy, the group will have what is known as ERT – exclusive ride time – before the park opens to the public.
Not only will “Wooden Warrior” operate for them, Quassy will also offer spins on its classic 1952 Allan Herschell “Little Dipper.”
“Our small steel coaster is one of the oldest steel coasters in existence,” Frantzis said. “It’s been a staple ride for generations here and coaster groups have encouraged us to operate it for them as well.”
Anderson estimates that more than 10 million guests have ridden the “Little Dipper” in its lifetime, while “Wooden Warrior” – new in 2011 - is creeping up on its millionth rider. Both of Quassy’s coasters were designed and built in the United States.
Take if from the experts: “Wooden Warrior” roller coaster at Quassy Amusement & Waterpark is among the top 50 wood frame coasters in the world.
Coaster connoisseurs have piled on the accolades virtually every time that have visited the park since “Wooden Warrior” made its debut in 2011.
One of the biggest honors came in 2012 when Quassy’s coaster tied for 23rd place in the Best Roller Coaster Poll. The ballot ranked 168 operating wooden coasters at parks around the world. Wisconsin coaster guru Mitch Hawker, who started the poll in 1994, announced his findings tallied from 635 coaster buffs who participated. The 2013 poll put Warrior at 38th spot, keeping it among the top 50 even with a crop of new huge coasters making their debut.
"Wooden Warrior is the best small coaster in the world!" said Theme Park Review’s Robb Alvey. "Despite its size, ‘Wooden Warrior’ packs a punch and ranks right up there with the big boys!"
"Don't let its size fool you; ‘Wooden Warrior’ is one wild ride!" Alvey added. “I've ridden over 200 wooden roller coasters all over the world and ‘Wooden Warrior’ ranks in the top tier!"
Alvey, who operates the popular Theme Park Review web site out of California, visited Quassy to experience the new coaster in its inaugural year. Personally, he ranks “Wooden Warrior” number 15 in the world.
“Most everyone agrees this poll is one of the most accurate in its rankings of roller coasters worldwide,” noted Ruz Ozana, New England regional representative for American Coaster Enthusiasts (ACE).
“For ‘Wooden Warrior’ to come in at position number 23 is astonishing, as it's right up there with ‘the big boys.’ This is possible because ‘Wooden Warrior's’ design allows for it to provide all the features that coaster lovers are seeking: speed, laterals, positive- and negative-g's.”
Quassy Amusement Park & Waterpark is in its 106th year and features more than two-dozen rides and attractions. The lakeside property is also home to “Splash Away Bay” waterpark with the new “BulletBowl”
Quassy also features a new laser maze attraction in its huge arcade building.
Rides include the award-winning “Wooden Warrior” roller coaster, “Music Fest,” “Yo-Yo” super swings, “Free Fall ‘N’ Drop Tower,” “Grand Carousel” and more.
The park also has a restaurant, redemption arcade, games, live entertainment and special events.
Quassy opens April 26 for the 2014 season with Quassy Beach and the waterpark opening on May 24.
Season passes are on sale now at the park office and through the Quassy Web site at www.quassy.com. Company picnics, school fieldtrips and other catered events are also being scheduled through the park office at 203-758-2913.
Quassy is located at 2132 Middlebury Road, Route 64, in Middlebury, Conn., on the shores of Lake Quassapaug.
With photos, logos
“Wooden Warrior” at Quassy Amusement & Waterpark in Middlebury, Conn., has put the family-owned operation on the global map. The park is now drawing roller coaster enthusiasts from around the world. (Quassy photos)