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NEWS
March 1, 2014 | By Brady MacDonald
Like art, music and fashion, roller coasters speed through trends in a never-ending pursuit of the latest and greatest record-setting feat. Over the years, theme parks have introduced all sorts of "world's first" coaster designs billed as the fastest, tallest or longest -- only to be overtaken in subsequent summers by faster, taller and longer behemoths. Photos: Banshee inverted coaster at Ohio's Kings Island So it comes as somewhat of a surprise that Ohio's Kings Island will introduce the world's longest inverted coaster in April with an under-the-track design that last reigned supreme in the 1990s.
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NEWS
March 1, 2014 | By Brady MacDonald
Like art, music and fashion, roller coasters speed through trends in a never-ending pursuit of the latest and greatest record-setting feat. Over the years, theme parks have introduced all sorts of "world's first" coaster designs billed as the fastest, tallest or longest -- only to be overtaken in subsequent summers by faster, taller and longer behemoths. Photos: Banshee inverted coaster at Ohio's Kings Island So it comes as somewhat of a surprise that Ohio's Kings Island will introduce the world's longest inverted coaster in April with an under-the-track design that last reigned supreme in the 1990s.
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NEWS
August 2, 2011 | By Brady MacDonald, Los Angeles Times
Hersheypark will add a first-of-its-kind $25-million steel roller coaster in May that will be the tallest, fastest and longest at the Pennsylvania theme park. > Photos: Skyrush coaster at Hersheypark After a yearlong viral marketing campaign that teased fans with hints and clues about " Attraction 2012 ," Hersheypark unveiled plans Tuesday for an Intamin Wing Mega coaster , with winged seats, called Skyrush. Under construction in the Comet Hollow section of Hersheypark , the 200-foot-tall Skyrush coaster will feature a near-vertical 85-degree first drop followed by four high-speed banking turns and five airtime hills at speeds reaching 75 mph. The 3,600-foot-long Skyrush track will travel along a creek and cross over the 1947 Comet out-and-back wooden coaster.
NEWS
February 24, 2014 | By Brady MacDonald
A $10-million first-of-its-kind attraction coming to Canada's Wonderland will combine a 4-D interactive dark ride with a roller-coaster track inside the Toronto-area amusement park's decades-old Wonder Mountain centerpiece. Photos: Wonder Mountain's Guardian at Canada's Wonderland Debuting on May 4, Wonder Mountain's Guardian will carry riders up a 60-foot-tall coaster lift hill on the exterior of the man-made mountain before dipping inside a cavern and slowing down for a dark ride experience complete with wind, motion and other special effects.
NEWS
October 18, 2010 | By Brady MacDonald, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
Knott's Berry Farm has reopened a roller coaster involved in an accident that injured 10 riders after making adjustments to the ride following an initial state investigation, officials of the Buena Park theme park said. The Pony Express launch-style coaster failed to make it up an incline on Oct. 7 and rolled back into the loading station, slamming into another train waiting to depart. All the injured riders were released from the hospital the day after the accident.
NEWS
November 19, 2012 | By S. Irene Virbila, Restaurant Critic
I use this wine coaster almost every night. Subtle and understated, it was designed by Austrian architect Josef Hoffmann in 1905. I bought it at the Neue Galerie   in New York. The museum dedicated to early 20th-century German and Austrian art and design has a phenomenal gift shop with reproductions of many of the iconic pieces of Viennese design. (It is also home to Café Sabarsky, a great address for coffee and pastries or a light lunch -- and just across from the Metropolitan Museum.)
NATIONAL
July 22, 2013 | By Michael Muskal
A roller coaster manufacturer is sending investigators to Arlington, Texas, to determine what led to the death of a woman on a ride at the Six Flags Over Texas amusement park. The dead woman has not yet been officially identified but local media reports have named her as Rosy Esparza, who with her son climbed aboard the 14-story Texas Giant roller coaster about 6:45 p.m. on Friday evening. Witness Carmen Brown who said she was next in line, said she saw the woman fall. "She goes up like this," Brown said raising her hand up in the air. "Then when it drops to come down that's when it released and she just tumbled.” Gerstlauer Amusement Rides, the German company that built the cars for the Texas Giant, is sending experts to look at the shuttered ride and investigate the incident, Tobias Lindnar, a project manager for the company  in Munsterhausen, Germany, told the Dallas Morning News.
NEWS
September 19, 2011 | By Brady MacDonald, Los Angeles Times staff writer
The Verbolten multi-launch roller coaster debuting in Spring 2012 at Busch Gardens Williamsburg will take riders on a high-speed drive along the German autobahn before detouring through the forbidden Black Forest. > Photos: Verbolten coaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg The themed family coaster at the Virginia theme park will feature two launch zones and an indoor section of the ride with special effects. The 3-1/2-minute ride will travel along a 2,800-foot-long track twisting and turning through the woods.
NEWS
August 28, 2012 | By Brady MacDonald, Los Angeles Times staff writer
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk plans to replace a 20-year-old steel coaster with the $5.5 million Undertow spinning coaster in summer 2013. > Photos: Undertow spinning coaster at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk Undertow is being billed as Northern California's only spinning coaster after Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo removed Pandemonium, a short-lived 2008 Gerstlauer spinning coaster formerly known as Tony Hawk's Big Spin. The 50-foot-tall Undertow will reach speeds of 40 mph along a 1,400-foot-long track.
NEWS
May 11, 2012 | By Brady MacDonald
Dino Land theme park in China recently unveiled the $20-million Dinoconda , a thrilling fourth-dimension roller coaster with independently rotating seats. PHOTOS: Dinoconda 4-D coaster at China's Dino Land Located in Changzhou about two hours west of Shanghai, the Chinese park known as the "Jurassic Park of the East" features roller coasters, thrill rides and attractions themed to dinosaurs and mythical creatures. The mechanically complex coaster boasts wing-shaped vehicles with seats that rotate head over heels, both forward and backward.
NEWS
February 9, 2014 | By Brady MacDonald
The Flight of the Demon winged coaster debuting March 29 at Germany's Heide Park will swoop through the dark along a twisting track bathed in devilish lights and lasers. Photos: Flight of the Demon winged coaster at Germany's Heide Park Known as Flug der Damonen in German, the $20-million coaster built by Switzerland's Bolliger & Mabillard is currently undergoing on-track testing at the Hamburg-area theme park. Custom painted by German graffiti artist Markus Genesius , the coaster trains will be themed as flying demons with gleaming red eyes and dagger-like fangs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 11, 2014 | By Chris Megerian
SACRAMENTO - Gov. Jerry Brown stepped out from behind the podium holding a green marker, ready to assume the role of professor. As he laid out his new budget plan, he circled the spot on a chart showing California's budding surplus. Some people think "we should go on a spending binge," he said. He wouldn't do that, Brown said: "We see the lessons of history. " If anyone in the Capitol knows California history, it's the 75-year-old governor serving his second stint in office.
NEWS
December 11, 2013 | By L.A. at Home staff
Andrew Riiska's aptly named Construction Coasters are notched so that creative types can build a little tabletop sculpture when they aren't sipping Chardonnay. Fit the pieces in just the right way and you've got a wine bottle holder. The coasters are made of reclaimed oak and sold in sets of eight. Price: $60 through Riiska's new website . The artist crafts furniture and has completed large installations, but for those looking for a more affordable bit of handmade goodness, may we suggests these with a nice red?
ENTERTAINMENT
November 26, 2013 | By Mikael Wood
What a difference (not having) R. Kelly makes. Last week the R&B star gave a shot of energy to Justin Bieber's so-called Music Mondays series with his long-rumored appearance on " PYD ," an appealingly raunchy slow jam that got listeners talking about Bieber's music (as opposed to his antics) for the first time in what felt like forever. A mere seven days later, though, no one seems to be talking at all about Bieber's latest Music Mondays single, "Roller Coaster," which appeared online late Sunday -- just as Kelly was driving attention elsewhere with his presidential performance with Lady Gaga on the American Music Awards.
NEWS
November 21, 2013 | By Maria Speidel
Erin Dollar walked into the printmaking studio at UC Santa Cruz in 2006 and discovered, she said, “My jam. Once I found it, it is all I wanted to do. " Dollar, 27, has turned that jam into dough with Cotton & Flax, her line of silk-screened housewares. She sells her bold, graphic designs through Cottonandflax.com , at local craft fairs and in 13 boutiques, mostly in California. She also has some far-flung fans. “For whatever reason, people in New Zealand have gone crazy with this stuff,” she said, adding that the Kiwis have found her online.
NEWS
November 19, 2013 | By Lisa Boone
Like so many handmade designs, Bari Ziperstein's stoneware coasters are distinctive in their size, color and shape. The Glassell Park artist said she is inspired by Finnish patterns and the California desert in creating her Bzippy & Co. collection, which includes jewelry, brutalist vases and bowls, bud vases and pyramid lamps. The heavy stoneware coasters are hand-painted circles or hexagons, easily stacked on a table. A set of four is $45. They're available at Individual Melody in Los Angeles, ReForm School in Silver Lake, Fifth Floor in Chinatown, Platform in Highland Park, the Orange County Museum of Art Museum Shop in Newport Beach and BKB Ceramics   in Joshua Tree.
NEWS
March 7, 2012 | By Brady MacDonald, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
Six Flags Magic Mountain is expected to add a terrain hugging launched roller coaster in 2013 featuring the world's tallest loop, according to an employee who wasn't authorized to speak on behalf of the amusement park. A Magic Mountain mechanic inadvertently revealed closely guarded facts about the record-setting 2013 attraction while casually talking with a group of coaster enthusiasts during the recent West Coast Bash event at the Valencia amusement park. Details of the conversation quickly appeared on the Theme Park Review website and rapidly spread through the online coaster community.
TRAVEL
May 27, 2012
If you go Cedar Point, 1 Cedar Point Drive, Sandusky, Ohio; (419) 627-2350, http://www.cedarpoint.com . Must: Cedar Downs Racing Derby, one of the last racing carousels in the world. Miss: The miserable Mantis stand-up coaster, which left my head aching. Kennywood, 4800 Kennywood Blvd., West Mifflin, Pa.; (412) 461-0500, http://www.kennywood.com . Must: The Sky Rocket is ideal for kids transitioning from junior coasters to metal monsters. Miss: Garfield's Nightmare, a glow-in-the-dark comic strip makeover of the 1901 Old Mill ride that ruins the park's oldest attraction.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 1, 2013 | By Bob Pool
What goes around comes around, some in Long Beach are saying about a proposal to rebuild the city's famous seaside roller coaster. City Council members will be asked Tuesday night to authorize a feasibility study into the construction of a two-lane “racing” roller coaster on a 2½-acre site near either the Long Beach Aquarium or the Queen Mary. Backers of the project say they have lined up investors for what designer Larry Osterhoudt calls the Cyclone Racer coaster. City Council member Gerrie Schipske wants the city manager to determine the feasibility of the coaster project, which she said “would create considerable tourism dollars” for Long Beach.
WORLD
September 11, 2013 | By Kathleen Hennessey and Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON - In the last two weeks, President Obama has brought the United States to the brink of another military operation, then backed off unexpectedly. He went abroad and tried to rally international partners to join his cause, but returned empty-handed. He launched one of the biggest public relations and lobbying campaigns of his presidency, then aborted the mission. He called the nation to its televisions to make the case for using force, but made the case for more diplomacy. The White House's stop-and-start response to the chemical weapons attack in Syria three weeks ago could at best be described as deftly improvisational and at worst as impulsive and risky.
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