Out of the Loop: Cedar Point's Demon Drop heads to Knotts Berry Farm

By Andy Guinigundo

demondrop1Cedar Fair has announced that after a 26-year run at Cedar Point, The Demon Drop will be dismantled and reassembled at sister park Knotts Berry Farm near Los Angeles. First opened in 1983, the Demon Drop is an elevator-style drop ride that simulates a free-fall drop from a 10-story building.

In the summer of 1983, I was 10 years old. Being a 10-year-old in Cincinnati, Ohio I, like many of my friends, was already coaster enthusiast. Kings Island amusement park was just a short drive from my house. It was an easy drop off for mom to make. I had braved the longest wooden coaster in the world, The Beast, on many occasions. I had also ridden the classic out-and-back Racer forward and backwards many times.

I had heard about the “Roller Coast” up on Lake Erie in Northern Ohio in a city called Sandusky. I don’t really remember how I found out about the Demon Drop, but I remember hearing about it and “needing” to ride it. Somehow we convinced dad to take us. I remember riding Magnum Force for the first time. It’s still one of my favorites. I remember falling in love with looping coasters for the first time, having ridden the Corkscrew over and over with minimal wait. But we did wait, and wait and finally rode what we had come to ride: The Demon Drop.

Before Disney’s Tower of Terror or other lift and drop thrill rides like Kings Island’s Drop Tower, there was Demon Drop. Let’s take a look at some of its stats:

Height of Tower: 131 feet
Length of Drop: 99 feet
Drop Time: 2.5 seconds
Lift Speed: 18 feet/second (six seconds to get to the top)
Speed of drop: 80 feet/second, 55 miles/hour
Restraint system: Over the shoulder harness
Ride Vehicle: six, four-passenger cars
Total rides: 18,528,610
Manufacturer: Intamin AG of Switzerland (Millenium Force, California Screamin’, Colossus, Fahrenheit, El Toro, and others)

A ride move for Cedar Fair is not completely foreign. X-Flight was formerly at Geauga Lake in Northern Ohio before being moved and re-opened as The Fire Hawk at Kings Island in 2007. Demon Drop should make an excellent addition to the line-up of coasters and other thrill rides at Knotts Berry Farm. Cedar Point Demon Drop fans have a few last chances to ride. The last day of Cedar Point’s season is Nov. 1 and it will remain open until then. The Demon Drop is set to re-open at Knotts Berry Farm in 2010.

Demon Drop Tribute

Andy Guinigundo is the author of the Out of The Loop column in “Orlando Attractions Magazine”. Out of the Loop keeps you up-to-date with attraction news outside of Central Florida. Andy 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.


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  1. Agreed – still scary and empty those pockets. Whether you’re on your way to Knotts or Cedar Point – better have a plan for you wallet, cell phones, car keys, etc if you’re going coastering! Most places, you’ll never get stuff back even if it’s in plain sight!

    OOTL Andy

  2. You’re mixing up two rides the Magnum XL and Millennium Force. I just learned about this since I haven’t been to Cedar Point in a few years. I did love that ride, and I’m sure the maintenance crew loved the spare change it collected. XD

  3. Katie – you’re correct. I meant Magnum XL which I always think of as the forerunner to Millennium Force. So, in my mind, the names melted together. In many ways, I prefer Magnum to Millennium.

    Thanks for your comments.

    OOTL Andy

  4. Also, as an update to this story. The move to Knott’s was cancelled, but the ride still moved.

    It was set to reopen at Dorney Park in Allentown, PA. They are open weekends, and the ride is listed on their website, but I don’t have confirmation as to whether the ride is open yet.

    OOTL Andy

  5. i don’t like that they moved this, i am a thrill seeking teenager & i love this ride. i hate that it’s not there anymore 🙁

  6. Kaylie,

    I am sorry it’s gone too. But, this is a good excuse to make a weekend trip to Cincinnati and Kings Island. They have the Drop Tower that is higher than Demon Drop and the view is spectacular. Riders have seat in a giant ring facing outward. As it rises it slowly spins giving a great 360 degree view of southwest Ohio. Also, the Diamondback, Beast, Racer, and Invertigo are coasters not to be missed!

    Out of the Loop Andy

  7. i rode all those rides; i went to kings island for a band competition about a month ago…yeah, the drop zone is fun. but hey, if CP takes out demon drop, they might be putting in something else? i hope.
    i will miss it.

  8. Kaylie,

    Cedar Point has promised a new thrill ride for 2011, but no word as to what kind of thrill ride. Media, like me, guess coaster because they haven’t had a new one for a while (I think Maverick was the last). Also, Six Flags out in Cali threatens their of “most coasters” title. They were to pull to a tie this year, but Six Flags delayed the construction of their family coaster to 2011.

    OOTL Andy