By Jerry Huffman
Take a Ride with Elvis
How’s this for a bucket list item? You can hitch a ride on Elvis Presley’s favorite roller coaster and it’s only going to cost you a buck.
Yep, one of the King’s favorite carnival rides lies just up Highway 43 (take the Webster Avenue exit) at Bay Beach Park in Green Bay.
Elvis would sometimes rent an entire Memphis amusement park overnight for his entourage so they could cut loose. That’s where Elvis first saw the Zippin Pippin that became his favorite roller coaster.
It was a beauty. All wood. Built in 1912, the Zippin Pippin can hit 50 miles per hour and has a vertical drop of seventy feet. Elvis would ride the roller coaster all night. Legend has it Elvis made his last visit to the park the week before he died in 1977.
In 2010 the Zippin Pippin was moved to its new home at Bay Beach Park. After one hundred years most of the original materials have been replaced but it still has that Elvis connection.
Details: 48” minimum height.
For the Younger Crowd
Little Amerricka in Marshall is a great stop for families with younger children.
Best known for a miniature steam engine train ride, they also have a kid friendly roller coaster called The Meteor. Adults can ride too but it is geared to the younger set.
Details: 36” minimum height. A variety of discount tickets are available for the entire park.
For Roller Coaster Aficionados
The promised land for roller coaster fans in Wisconsin is the Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park in Wisconsin Dells. There are five coasters on the property ranging in level from kids only to serious thrill seekers.
As if being the first 360 degree, upside-down coaster isn’t enough, Hades also features the world’s longest underground tunnel. Hades 360 tops out at seventy miles per hour.
Just like its namesake, Pegasus swoops and dives over the 1600 foot track peaking at sixty feet and then dropping forty-five. Park managers say this coaster is, “great fun for the entire family.”
Buckle up for Zeus. A 2,700 foot track that races through a forest, Zeus reaches sixty miles per hour climbing 90 feet before hitting an 85 foot drop. Did we mention you should buckle up for this one?
Now this sounds like fun – a 75 foot drop that screeches to a halt after a thunderous 1680 foot run.
Little Titans Kids only roller coaster
Adults, literally, are not allowed.
Details: Minimum height limits vary on the coasters. Most are 48”, Pegasus is 42”, and Little Titans is 40”.