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September 19, 2005

Magic Springs To Build X-Coaster Ride For 2006

Hot Springs, AR -- Magic Springs & Crystal Falls theme park announced today that they will open X-Coaster, a new roller coaster ride that will feature the highest inversion in the world. The new attraction built by Maurer Rides will debut in April 2006.

"The X-Coaster will be the latest thrill ride added to Magic Springs' great lineup of attractions," said Dan Aylward, president and chief operating officer of Themeparks, LLC, which operates the park.

This new $4 million attraction will bring Themeparks, LLC's total investment in the park to more than $39 million.

X-Coaster is based on innovative technology developed by the ride's manufacturer, Maurer Riders of Munich, Germany. This technology makes it possible to experience inverted ride elements without over-the-shoulder restraints.

"This exciting new ride will feature an upside down inversion at 150 feet, the highest in the world," added Aylward.

Magic Springs will be only the second park in the world to feature this type of ride and the first in North America. Maurer's first X-Coaster is operating at a park outside Munich, Germany.

"The ride features a three-level safety system that will hold the rider in position throughout this high-intensity experience," Horst Ruhe, managing director of Maurer Rides, said. "This ride is definitely not for the faint of heart."

Describing the X-Coaster experience, Aylward said, "When the riders leave the loading platform, they are taken for a vertical ascent of 150 feet, at which point the car performs a thrillingly slow quarter-loop backwards, which has the riders hanging upside-down. Then the riders are sent on a 360-degree corkscrew roll, followed by a plummeting vertical drop at more than 65 mph."

He continued, "At this point it appears that the riders will return to the starting station, but instead they rocket past the station, stop on the lift hill, drop backwards through the station at high speed, stop upside down and rocket forward through the station again." Aylward said. "Then, just when you think you are ready to return to the station, you are picked up on the lift hill and taken over the top for a second time."

"The unique design of this ride guarantees that each row of seats provides a different ride experience," Aylward said. "The slightly elevated back seats in each car give an excellent view and the backwards motion of the train provides additional thrilling experiences."

The single 12-person, two-car train can accommodate about 500 people an hour, Aylward said.

The ride, which is being built in Germany, will be transported to Hot Springs in January and February of 2006, and installation will begin immediately upon its arrival. The ride is scheduled to be finished in April.

While the new X-Coaster is the name used by the ride's manufacturer, Magic Springs will not use it and instead will conduct contest to name the new attraction. Details of the contest will be announced in the next few weeks.

For more information, see Magic Springs & Crystal Falls and X Coaster or visit www.magicsprings.com.

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