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Remember these now-defunct Six Flags Great Adventure rides?

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Remember these now-defunct Six Flags Great Adventure rides?

 

By Brian Donohue | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
on August 16, 2016 at 9:15 AM, updated August 16, 2016 at 11:01 AM

 

You may have forgotten to mark it on your calendar. Or perhaps you just missed it because you were traveling upside down at 60 mph and screaming your head off. But today is, apparently, National Rollercoaster Day.

 

In an era when every product or experience seems to have a holiday, a good rollercoaster is certainly one of the more worthwhile causes to celebrate.

And rollercoaster fans have a lot to celebrate. We've come so far, so fast.

 

I remember the chatter on the schoolyard in the summer of 1979, with incredulous kids telling each other between chews of Bubble Yum: "They have a roller coaster that goes UPSIDE DOWN!!!"

 

The buzz was over Lightnin' Loops, the first roller coaster in New Jersey's Six Flags Great Adventure to take riders in an inverted loop. Once you went on the ride, you had bragging rights for the rest of the summer.

 

By the standards of today's monster coasters — like park's latest addition The Joker — Lightin' Loops seems like a kiddie carousel. But the memories of those old rides are still a trip.

 

The blog greatadventurehistory.com allows folks like me to dig deep into the history and nostalgia of Six Flags Great Adventure, with thousands of photos and in depth posts on every ride the park has ever unveiled.

 

"Great Adventure has always been a park that keeps its ride assortment fresh," Harry Applegate, who runs the site, told me in an email. " Since 1974, it has removed 13 roller coasters and over 40 other rides, not including more than 15 kiddie rides, Applegate said.

 

For Applegate, documenting the rides of yesteryear is an outgrowth of his passion for the park. A former ride operator during the mid 1980's, he has been a season pass holder at the park for nearly 40 years.

 

Earlier this year, Applegate and pal Tom Benton published their second book about the park entitled, "Images of Modern America: Six Flags Great Adventure". Their first, entitled "Images of America: Six Flags Great Adventure" came out a decade ago.

 

"Personally, the most rewarding part of sharing all this historic information is hearing people's reactions when they are reminded of something they recall from their park visits when they were younger," Applegate said. "I love it when they have some old day trip photos to share or a story or two they can tell because it always seems to help fill in the missing pieces of the Great Adventure history puzzle."

 

Applegate was gracious enough to share a selection of his photos with us, which you can peruse in the gallery atop this post. To go deeper, click through to his blog and take yourself on a wild ride through the past.

 

Brian Donohue may be reached at bdonohue@njadvancemedia.com Follow him on Twitter @briandonohue. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

 

 

 

You can visit the gallery from the article HERE.

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Nice write up.

 

We appreciate your work. I have had the "WOW I forgot about that ride" a few times when I looked through the galleries after joining you.

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