Wild Mouse coaster leaves riders stranded at Cedar Point
Cedar Point closes Top Thrill Dragster after rider injured in 2021
The roller coaster that dominated the Ohio park’s skyline has sat idle since a serious injury occurred to a guest in August of 2021.
Scott L. Hall, USA TODAY
Cedar Point’s newest coaster is proving to be trickier than a mouse.
The Wild Mouse roller coaster stopped abruptly Thursday amid a preview for roller coaster enthusiasts and the media at the Sandusky, Ohio park.
Passengers on cars had to be rescued by park personnel.
One of the cars stopped atop one of the coaster’s highest points, while the other stopped amid the winding turns closer to the ground.
The passengers, who were not injured, had to climb down safety staircases after the coaster stopped unexpectedly twice during the previews.
The park’s newest coaster is a mere mouse among giants.
The Sandusky amusement park’s Millennium roller coaster reaches a staggering height of 310 feet and a top speed 93 mph.
The new Wild Mouse roller coaster reaches some 52 feet in height and has a top speed of 35 miles per hour.
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Unlike the park’s more recent coaster additions that set out to break records and turn stomachs inside out, this new attraction highlights Cedar Point’s past.
Part of the newly revamped and renamed The Boardwalk section of the park, the coaster is the centerpiece of the area that includes the new Grand Pavilion bar and eatery along with the relocated Matterhorn ride and the Scrambler that has a new paint job and a new name — the Atomic Scrambler.
The park’s Tiki Twirl spinning ride that was already located in the former Lakeside Midway area of the park got some TLC over the offseason and has been renamed after a former park classic — the Calypso.
Park General manager Carrie Boldman said they were not looking to set any records with this addition to the park, but rather add a family ride that fits with the historic boardwalk theme to the new area.
“It’s a classic boardwalk ride,” she said. “It’s a perfect fit.”
Cedar Point’s new Wild Mouse roller coaster
Nestled right next to the Lake Erie beach that has made the park famous since 1870, the Wild Mouse harkens to the past.
The ride pays homage to the park’s previous Wildcat coaster that opened in 1970 and was removed in 2011 to make way for an outdoor stage in the Celebration Plaza near the Valravn roller coaster.
The similarities — other than the tight, twisting track — pretty much end there.
There is a nod to the old ride at the top of the lift hill where a throwback sign of a wild cat swats at riders.
This latest incarnation has a mouse theme with its cars that can accommodate four guests seated four across, has six mouse cars and one cheese car.
As guests traverse 1,312 feet of bright orange twisting and dipping track, the cars spin around.
Just how much the car spins depends on the number of the riders in each of the cars.
The coaster has a 48-inch height requirement for a guest to ride alone or 42 inches to ride with a supervising companion.
Manufactured by Zamperla, the Wild Mouse is the 18th roller coaster at Cedar Point.
Adam Sandy of Zamperela said this coaster is unique to Cedar Point.
It is the first time the coaster manufacturer has incorporated a so-called Immelmann turn — so-named after German World War I Eindecker fighter ace Lieutenant Max Immelmann — that creates a sense of weightlessness for riders.
Sandy said the turn is sort of like a horseshoe.
“We didn’t want this coaster to be the old wild mouse rides,” he said. “We wanted it to be fresh and new.”
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At the start of the 2023 season, the park’s coaster count will be just 16; the Iron Dragon will not be open, because some of its track had to be removed and reinstalled over the offseason as work continues to reimagine the Top Thrill Dragster that remains closed.
Park officials say they hope to have Iron Dragon up and running by mid-May.
As for the coaster formerly known as the Dragster, Cedar Point says it hopes to have it ready for the 2024 season.
An accident in August 2021 resulted in a piece of the coaster becoming dislodged and severely injuring a park guest waiting in line.
Craig Webb can be reached at email@example.com.
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