KIDS AND COOL COASTERS: If you're passionate about theme parks, and you know your roller coaster history, down to the early designers and neato innovations and biggest wooden loops and highest drops, you can be a tad eager, to say the least, to have others join you in your enthusiasm. And while you likely do have some compadres, maybe via the internet or locally, who love to go riding with you, wanting to loop in your family or friends is a drive that every coaster maven has at some point or another. If you want to spend a weekend a month, or more, pursuing coasters you haven't yet tried, what joy to do it with loved ones who share your interests. The only issue a coaster-loving parent sometimes faces, though, is waiting for their little ones to grow big enough to surpass the "you need to be this tall to ride" marker outside of various roller coasters, the better to introduce the kids to what is typically a theme park's best-known attraction. That's where kid-focused theme parks come in, those places that put the emphasis on fun but less intense rides, and families riding together. The kind of places where the "you need to be this tall to ride" marker is rather lower, given the tot-centered design of the attraction.
ADVENTURE CITY... in Anaheim is such a destination park, and the self-billed "Little Theme Park" is about to unveil "the First Family Shuttle Coaster in North America" on Saturday, June 6. Surely you know shuttle coasters? Surely you do, if you're a ride scholar. They're the kind of coaster where the train goes goes goes goes.... and then reverses. Rewind Racers gives away its forward-backwards motion in its very name, and it "stands at 40 feet and travels up to 28 miles per hour." Just right for full-family riding. Oh, and the height requirement? Thirty nine inches (the rider, note, must be accompanied by an adult). The ride is described as both smooth and gentle, so call it a good way to give an aspiring coaster fan a chance to know what a shuttle coaster is all about. As for the other attractions? The two-decades-along Adventure City includes a Drop Zone, an Express Train, and rock climbing.