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ACE News

In This Issue

MARCH-APRIL 2020

ARTICLES POSTED APRIL 4

Upper Clements Park Is the Latest 2020 Casualty

Before 2020 concludes, it will undoubtedly be considered a harsh year for amusement parks. The COVID-19 global pandemic has made a substantial blow to the industry, as it has to numerous businesses. ACEers, along with the affected communities, have also had to endure news of traditional parks closing their gates. Add one more. (Posted 4/4/20) [MORE]

ACE Western Pennsylvania: CoasterBash! XXXI

It seemed like an ordinary sunny but cold Saturday in March, as 210 ACEers and their guests met for a day of fun, friends and news at CoasterBash!, ACE Western Pennsylvania’s annual midwinter event. They didn’t realize how lucky they were at the time. Only a week later no one knew when another such gathering would be possible. The world changed that quickly as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Posted 4/4/20) [MORE]

Obituary: Marie Jenkins 1958 - 2020

Marie (Kramer) Jenkins, 61, loving wife of Torrence (Torry) V. Jenkins Jr. of Denver, Pennsylvania, passed away suddenly Tuesday, March 17, 2020, at WellSpan Ephrata Community Hospital. (Posted 4/4/20) [MORE]

ARTICLES POSTED MARCH 25

Conservation Corner - March-April 2020

Dreamland and Scenic Railway Celebrate 100 Years

While its name may perhaps not resonate quite so loudly across the Atlantic as does that of its larger, brasher, more northwesterly compatriot, Dreamland (Margate, United Kingdom) possesses a heritage that can be traced further back in time than even the earliest incarnations of Blackpool Pleasure Beach (Blackpool, United Kingdom). Way back in 1867, what would probably have been the closest to a bona fide trolley park ever to grace this side of the pond was ambitiously conceived for the Margate seafront. (Posted 3/25/20) [MORE]

ACE Mid-Atlantic: Mountainfest

A cold breeze on your face and nature around you — 12 ACE members enjoyed just that with a gathering at Wisp Mountain Resort on Sunday, March 8, to ride the only mountain coaster in the Mid-Atlantic. Tucked in the far northwest corner of Maryland, Wisp makes for a perfect annual stop on the day after CoasterBash!(Posted 3/25/20) [MORE]

Robert “Bob” MacCallum 1937 - 2020

Longtime ACE member Robert “Bob” N. MacCallum passed away on March 17, following a short bout with cancer. He had just turned 83. Bob’s health had declined in recent years, which curtailed his ACE and travel activities. Bob joined ACE in 1985 and was a familiar face at events, particularly those in Ohio and Pennsylvania. (Posted 3/25/20) [MORE]

ARTICLES POSTED MARCH 16

ACE’s Trip to Italy Postponed

Over the years, ACE has had event cancellations owing to weather and park closures, and even lost a trip day and a visit to Parque España owing to Typhoon Trami during the recent 2018 international trip to Japan. But this is likely the first time ACE ever lost an event, never mind a whole trip, to a virus. (Posted 3/16/20) [MORE]

Amusement Industry Brought to a Halt

It’s a news story enthusiasts thought they’d never see. Over the winter, when reports were coming from Asia that Disney parks and Ocean Park were temporarily suspending their operations for a few weeks because of the outbreak of the coronavirus, it was shocking but understandable. Still, it was distant. It was taking place “over there.” (Posted 3/16/20) [MORE]

Nuts & Bolts - March-April 2020

  • Wonderland Eurasia Switches Off and On … Maybe
  • Playland Eyeing Big Plans for the Future
  • Yomiuriland Finds Space for Next Coaster
  • Waldameer Goes for Another Spin
  • Oh, Those Neighbors

(Posted 3/16/20) [MORE]

ACE South Central: Fiesta Fest — Leap Day Style

The creative minds behind Six Flags Fiesta Texas realized that Leap Day would not fall on an operating day again for a few decades. It was a simple enough reason to have fun with the park’s annual event. They took the expected traditions of Fiesta Fest and threw in a bunch of cool surprises. (Posted 3/16/20) [MORE]

Obituary: Mike Homza, 1958 – 2020

We've lost one of our interesting enthusiast friends. Anybody who spoke to Mike Homza for more than a few moments knew that he was not going to talk about coasters. There was so much more than that. (Posted 3/16/20) [MORE]

ARTICLES POSTED MARCH 6

Take a Dive on Texas Stingray

SeaWorld San Antonio unleashed one of the most anticipated new coasters in 2020 and the only wooden coaster to open in North America this year. They say that everything is bigger in Texas, and now Texas Stingray can boast it is the tallest, fastest and longest wooden coaster in the state. (Posted 3/6/20) [MORE]

From the President - March-April 2020

I feel confident that after more than 40 years, I can unequivocally and proudly say that ACE is the premier amusement park enthusiast group on the planet. As evidenced by parks inviting us to participate in their roller coaster openings, this club is an enthusiastic amusement industry influencer as a result of the varied knowledge and skills of the many members of ACE. (Posted 3/6/20) [MORE]

ACE Southern California: A Preview Tour Takes a Look at Emperor

On the bright, warm morning of February 25, a few lucky Southern California ACEers were treated to a hard-hat tour of SeaWorld San Diego’s newest addition, the dive coaster Emperor, slated to open in spring 2020. Attendees were first treated to a short presentation on the background and specifics of the new coaster — billed as the tallest and fastest dive coaster in California— by SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment’s Corporate Vice President of Attractions Mike Denninger. (Posted 3/6/20) [MORE]

ACE New England: The Great Nor’Easter

The Canobie Lake Park (Salem, New Hampshire) employee training room was the setting for ACE New England’s annual off-season event, The Great Nor’Easter. On a chilly Saturday Leap Day morning, Regional Representative Rus Ozana donned crazy eyeglasses and welcomed 53 ACE members and several park representatives to “the year of perfect vision.” (Posted 3/6/20) [MORE]



Photo: Judy Marcin.


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I feel confident that after more than 40 years, I can unequivocally and proudly say that ACE is the premier amusement park enthusiast group on the planet. As evidenced by parks inviting us to participate in their roller coaster openings, this club is an enthusiastic amusement industry influencer as a result of the varied knowledge and skills of the many members of ACE. Another example of our impact is the questions that are probably familiar to most of ACE: “What’s the best roller coaster?” “Where are you going next?” “How many coasters have you ridden?” “Have you been to Cedar Point?” “How do you pronounce Knoebels?” and, “Did Kenny Rogers own Kennywood?” All questions that demonstrate the breadth of the club’s collective knowledge. (Posted 3/6/20) [MORE]


Dreamland and Scenic Railway Celebrate 100 Years

While its name may perhaps not resonate quite so loudly across the Atlantic as does that of its larger, brasher, more northwesterly compatriot, Dreamland (Margate, United Kingdom) possesses a heritage that can be traced further back in time than even the earliest incarnations of Blackpool Pleasure Beach (Blackpool, United Kingdom). Way back in 1867, what would probably have been the closest to a bona fide trolley park ever to grace this side of the pond was ambitiously conceived for the Margate seafront. The projected railway connection from London, however, failed to materialize, and it was not until 1874 when the Italian and Zoological Gardens — Dreamland’s immediate antecedent — opened on the site. Today, Dreamland remains the oldest U.K. amusement park continuing to operate at its original location. (Posted 3/25/20) [MORE]


  • Wonderland Eurasia Switches Off and On … Maybe
  • Playland Eyeing Big Plans for the Future
  • Yomiuriland Finds Space for Next Coaster
  • Waldameer Goes for Another Spin
  • Oh, Those Neighbors

(Updated 3/15/20) [MORE]



Editor:   Tim Baldwin

Photo Editor:   Tim Baldwin

Layout:   John W. C. Robinson

Online Content Coordinator:   Jerry Willard

Editorial Staff:   Lee Ann Draud, Randy Geisler, Rus Ozana

Online Content Facilitators:   Jay Jacobs and Mac Rush


Do you have questions? Would you like to contribute an article or photo?
Click here to contact the ACE News team.



Photo: Justin Garvanovic




Photo: Bill Galvin Collection




Photo: Jill Ryan



Photo: S. Madonna Horcher



Photo: Courtesy SeaWorld



Photo: John Gerard



Photo: Miranda Ronan



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