Carowinds to add winter festival, vintage rides

Interested in some thrills and chills?

Carowinds says it has you covered.

The Fort Mill-area amusement park will open a holiday event called “WinterFest” in November 2017 to cap off other upgrades and additions throughout the coming year.

A visit with the Sugar Plum Fairy, feeding Santa’s reindeer and holiday-themed live shows are expected as Carowinds looks to transform into a “spectacular winter wonderland.”

A version of WinterFest was previously at the park in the mid-1980s and mid-2000s, according to Carowinds public relations manager Laresa Thompson.

“We want to create a family tradition,” Thompson said. “We want people to come back every year and make Carowinds part of their celebration.”

Meanwhile, the park is debuting four vintage-themed thrill rides inside a county fair-themed portion of the park, scheduled to open this spring.

In the new section, the park will sell classic foods, and experiences will be designed to give patrons a “step back through time.”

The section will be located near the Carolina Cobra ride, close to the waterpark, Thompson said.

The cost of admission to WinterFest is included with the purchase of a 2017 Platinum or Gold Season Pass.

David Thackham: 803-329-4066, @dthackham

New rides

Here are the four vintage rides guests can expect to see at the county fair portion of the park in spring 2017:

▪  Do-Si-Do is a spiraling adventure that will send visitors flying through the air – gliding up, down and around as three giant arms rotate riders in different directions.

▪  Electro-Spin will give riders a sense of being airborne in free-rotating, floorless gondolas while being suspended and flipping upside down up to 63 feet above the ground.

▪  Rock ‘N’ Roller, a staple of any county fair, is a fast-paced circular ride that will send guests round and around, up and down as high-energy music and spectacular lighting round out the experience.

▪  Zephyr, a classic family swing ride, will suspend riders as it rotates in a circular, wavelike motion, providing elevated views of the park.

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