Santa Clara’s California’s Great America has been delivering attractions and thrills to residents and visitors for over 40 years. Throughout its history, the theme park—owned operated by Ohio’s Cedar Fair Entertainment Company—has invested in 14 rollercoasters to enhance the experience of guests. On Aug. 16—fittingly on National Roller Coaster Day—Great America announced the addition of its 15th coaster to debut in the spring of 2018.
In the first step of a multi-million dollar plan that includes park renovations and an entertainment district located outside of the park’s front gates, Great America will build a revolutionary steel coaster, RailBlazer. The coaster, which lifts riders to the height of 106 feet before plunging them forward at a 90-degree angle, will cover 1,800 feet and travel at 52 miles per hour, giving guests the thrilling experience of three inversions and a zero gravity roll.
“RailBlazer is a revolutionary roller coaster concept that will be an intense and exhilarating ride experience for our guests,” said Raul Rehnborg, vice president and general manager for California’s Great America.
Designed by Rocky Mountain Construction (RMC), RailBlazer offers a unique train, seating only eight at a time, that positions riders in a single file line. “The trains will pay homage to the eight riders of each train as they accelerate, dominate and perhaps even intimidate in this truly revolutionary experience,” said Rehnborg. “I’m also pleased to say that this state-of-the-art coaster will feature a silent anti rollback system that will help to reduce and eliminate sound as the train ascends the 100 foot lift hill.”
Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Council Members Debi Davis and Kathy Watanabe attended the announcement and groundbreaking, with Gillmor speaking and pointing out her first job was at the theme park, noting its special place in her heart.
“We are really excited that Great America will be able to move forward with their plan, which includes coasters two-and-a-half times larger than currently exist, an expanded water park an entertainment district in the front of the park to entertain our residents 365 days a year,” she said. “Through working with our community business leaders and the residents of Santa Clara, Great America fans will be able to enjoy the park with all of its new developments and as part of the ever-changing innovative Silicon Valley the City of Santa Clara is excited to see continued growth of our community’s amusement park California’s Great America. Visitors to the park and its new entertainment district will fill our hotels and nearby restaurants generating a surge of transient occupant tax and sales tax for our general fund, which we really love. Visitors in the area will be able to shop locally and enjoy local entertainment venues to benefit our local and regional economy. We are so excited for California’s Great America’s new developments and appreciate Cedar Fair’s vested interest in our community of Santa Clara.”
As Great America’s Public Relations Manager Roger Ross said, the announcement of RailBlazer is “just the beginning” of the plans to reinvent the 100-acre amusement park.
Great America recently announced the sale of its 2018 season passes, which include the remainder of the 2017 season and access to Gilroy Gardens, Boomerang Bay and special events throughout the year. For more information, visit www.cagreatamerica.com.