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2008 Golden Ticket Award Winners

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For Immediate Release

 

September 3, 2008

 

Contacts:

Gary Slade 817.460.7220

Janice Witherow 419.357.3520

 

 

“THE GOLDEN TICKET AWARDS HONOR

THE “BEST OF THE BEST” IN AMUSEMENT INDUSTRY

 

AMUSEMENT TODAY ANNOUNCES WINNERS

OF ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL POLL

 

ARLINGTON, Texas, Sept. 3, 2008 – Envelope, please … and the Golden Ticket Award goes to … In an awards’ show today hosted by Give Kids The World Village, Kissimmee, Fla., Amusement Today announced the winners of its prestigious 2008 Golden Ticket Awards.

 

The Golden Ticket Awards are presented to the “Best of the Best” in the amusement industry calculated from an international poll conducted by Amusement Today. Surveys were sent to a database of experienced and well-traveled amusement park fans around the world – in balanced geographical regions – asking them to rate the “bests” in 25 categories such as “amusement parks,” “roller coasters,” “shows,” “friendliest staff” and “water rides.” The 2008 winners are …

 

Best Amusement Park

Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio

 

Best Waterpark

Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort, New Braunfels, Texas

 

Best Children’s Park

Legoland California, Carlsbad, Calif.

 

Best Marine Life Park

SeaWorld Orlando, Orlando, Fla.

 

Best Seaside Park

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Santa Cruz, Calif.

 

Best Wooden Coaster

The Voyage at Holiday World, Santa Claus, Ind.

 

Best Steel Coaster

Superman Ride of Steel

at Six Flags New England, Agawam, Mass.

 

Best Kids’ Area

Kings Island, Kings Mills, Ohio

 

Friendliest Staff

Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari, Santa Claus, Ind.

 

Cleanest Park

Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari, Santa Claus, Ind.

 

Best Halloween Event

Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando, Orlando, Fla..

 

Best Landscaping

Busch Gardens Europe, Williamsburg, Va.

 

Best Christmas Event

Smoky Mountain Christmas at Dollywood,

Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

 

Best Food

Knoebels Amusement Resort, Elysburg, Pa.

 

Best Shows

Six Flags Fiesta Texas, San Antonio

 

Best Outdoor Night Show Production

IllumiNations: Reflections of the Earth

at Walt Disney World’s Epcot Center, Orlando, Fla.

 

Best Water Ride

Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls

at Universal’s Islands of Adventure, Orlando, Fla.

 

Best Waterpark Ride

Master Blaster at Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort,

New Braunfels, Texas

 

Best Dark Ride

Amazing Adventures of Spiderman

at Universal’s Islands of Adventure, Orlando, Fla.

 

Best New Ride of 2008 - Amusement Park

Ravine Flyer II at Waldameer Park, Erie, Pa.

 

Best New Ride of 2008 - Waterpark

Dragon’s Revenge at Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort,

New Braunfels, Texas.

 

Best Carousel

Grand Carousel at Knoebels Amusement Resort,

Elysburg, Pa.

 

Best Indoor Roller Coaster

Revenge of the Mummy at Universal Orlando,

Orlando, Fla.

 

Best Indoor Waterpark

Schlitterbahn Galveston Island, Galveston, Texas

 

Best Funhouse/Walk-Through Attraction

Frankenstein’s Castle at Indiana Beach, Monticello, Ind.

 

 

This is the 11th annual year for Amusement Today’s coveted Golden Ticket Awards, which are the most sought-after awards in the business of amusements and attractions. The awards have become the subject of much discussion by park aficionados the world over and have garnered mentions in such notable media outlets

as USA TODAY and the Chicago Tribune, by venerable radio newsman Paul Harvey and were the topic of a one-hour documentary on the Travel Channel.

 

“We commend the Golden Ticket Award winners and all of the finalists for their varied achievements,” says Gary Slade, publisher and editor-in-chief of Amusement Today. “These awards are the pinnacle of honors in the amusement industry, and it is nice to recognize parks and attractions around the world who are striving for excellence each and every day.”

 

Personally chosen by Slade, the Publisher’s Pick Awards are presented in three categories: Park, Individual and Supplier. Respectively, the 2002008 recipients are Xocomil waterpark in Retalhuleu, Guatemala, for its first-class quality and amazing attention to detail; Paul Nelson of Waldameer Park in Erie, Pa., for his remarkable 15-year effort in bringing a venerable wooden roller coaster back to life; and Zamperla in Parsippany, N.J., for its continuous innovation, longevity and creativity.

 

For the fourth consecutive year, Amusement Today recognized college students who plan to pursue a career in the amusement industry and are employed by the ceremony’s host park of Give Kids The World Village, Weeki Wachee Springs in Spring Hill, Fla., and Fun Spot USA in Kissimmee, as Ms. and Mr. Golden Tickets. These individuals exemplify the spirit and integrity of the amusement park industry by promoting the cornerstones of safety, service, courtesy and cleanliness at the highest level, while consistently exceeding job expectations. This is an annual designation by Amusement Today to promote education in the field of hospitality and amusement, as well as to spotlight future leaders in the amusement industry.

 

Amusement Today newspaper covers international amusement and water park news and trends and in its 12-year history is a five-time winner of various awards from the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions. Give Kids The World Village is a 70-acre, non-profit resort in Central Florida that creates magical memories for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families.

 

For a detailed outline of the 2008 winners and survey results, please log on to amusementtoday.com. News media may also call the Amusement Today offices at 817.460.7220 for interviews or more information about the Golden Ticket Awards.

 

View the complete list of winners!

Click here to download 2008 Golden Ticket Awards Bonus Section PDF file (13.6 mb)

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Im glad KI got the best kids area award once again, what is that 10 years in a row? Next year it'll say "Best new ride for 2009- Diamondback- Kings Island, Kings Mills, Ohio!"

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I can't say that Dollywood is better than Holiday World because I haven't been to HW, but I can say the DW had very friendly staff :)

The HW employees are so friendly that they will try to kick you out of the park for wearing a KI shirt :P

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Im glad KI got the best kids area award once again, what is that 10 years in a row? Next year it'll say "Best new ride for 2009- Diamondback- Kings Island, Kings Mills, Ohio!"

To be exact its the 8th year in a row but i get your point, i think its pretty cool that we have kept it as long as we have. And right now i also think that there is a good chance that the Best new ride for 2009 will be Diamondback

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Well, what competition will Diamondback have in the world of roller coasters?

 

Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit at Universal Studios Florida

Fireball at Happy Valley

Manta at SeaWorld Orlando

Prowler at Worlds of Fun

 

And a few others that have not been completely announced.

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Oh yeah, I only wish Kings Island had the potential to receive many of these awards. Like friendlist staff? That's a joke. I've had bad experiences with several staff members. And clean park is more likely, but it's still dirty in many areas.

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Very dirty like in Rivertown I remember seeing ewww I get sick just thinking about seeing that little girl puke and seeing that trash all over the midway it reallly grossed me out and what made it worse was that KI employee's would just walk by it!

 

 

Still I love Nick Universe even if it's in it's last days.....Kidding.

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