On June 9, throughout most Cedar Fair parks, a wonderful thing happened. Coaster enthusiasts rode coasters for hours on end. While that is actually quite a regular occurrence during summer months, this particular day, it was for a purpose. The 5th Annual Coasting for Kids event raised over $150,000 for the Give Kids the World Village in Kissimmee. Since 2009, the annual event has raised a total of over $350,000, helping to fulfill the Give Kids the World mission of “providing magical memories to kids battling life-threatening illnesses and their families”.
For the second year in a row, participant Jason Stull of Maryland, raised the most money – over $8,000 this year. The coaster club with the highest total was Theme Park Review with over $50,000 raised this year! Each participant paid a $25 registration fee and fundraised an additional $75, all of which was donated to Give Kids the World. Participants received park admission, lunch, event t-shirt and countless rides on numerous coasters. Many events began before the parks opened to the public. When the parks opened to the public, participants had exclusive access to specific coaster(s). Participants rode marathon style, over and over.
Surely, a fun time was had by all (if not some vertigo), but the real winners of course are the kids who will get a magical time with their families in our favorite places in Central Florida.
The participating parks included Knott’s Berry Farm, Worlds of Fun, Canada’s Wonderland, Kings Island, Kings Dominion, Valleyfair, California’s Great America, Cedar Point, Dorney Park, Carowinds and Michigan’s Adventure. If one of these is close to you or you’ve always wanted to visit and you’re a coaster fan, perhaps consider joining Coasting for Kids 2014.
• Andy Guinigundo is the author of the Out of The Loop column in “Orlando Attractions Magazine”. He lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with his wife and three daughters. He grew up frequenting theme parks around Ohio and making trips to Orlando with his family. While for most of the year, he’s out of the Orlando loop, he tries to visit Florida at least once a year. You can follow Andy on Twitter at @AttractionsOOTL.