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Kings Island honored with Golden Ticket Awards for Best New Ride and Best Kids’ Area

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Amusement Today’s 20th annual Golden Ticket Awards, honoring the best of the best amusement and theme parks around the world have to offer, took place September 9 at Lake Compounce in Bristol, Connecticut, with Kings Island taking home two awards and placing in the top 10 in two other categories.

Readers of the international trade publication awarded Kings Island with the Golden Ticket Award for Best New Ride in the world for Mystic Timbers.

Built by Pennsylvania-based Great Coasters International and themed to an abandoned lumber company, the 109-foot-tall wooden roller coaster traverses 16 airtime hills along 3,265 feet of track through wooded terrain and over water at 53 mph with a mystery: What’s in the shed? More than 1.1 million guests have ridden Mystic Timbers since the ride opened in April.

For the 17th year in a row, the kids’ area at Kings Island has been named the best in the world.

Planet Snoopy features an elaborate collection of PEANUTS-themed rides and attractions for every age, including four roller coasters specifically designed for children, character meet-and-greets, gift shop and a petting farm.

Additionally, Kings Island had two of its rides ranked on top 10 lists: The Beast sixth among wooden roller coasters and Diamondback eighth for steel. Mystic Timbers debuted at No. 11 on the wooden coaster chart.

The Beast is one of only two roller coasters that have been on every top 10 list Amusement Today has published since the inception of the Golden Ticket Awards in 1998. (Phoenix at Knoebels Amusement Resort is the other.)

The annual Golden Ticket Awards are the amusement industry’s equivalent of the Oscars, with amusement park owners and managers, ride manufacturers, and other industry officials gathering to salute the industry’s top parks. Winners are selected by hundreds of well-traveled amusement park enthusiasts, voting from around the world.

A list of all the 2017 Golden Ticket Award winners can be found at

Kings Island’s summer season has come to an end, but the park reopens Fridays through Sundays in the fall starting September 22 when Halloween Haunt begins.

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Don Helbig

As area manager, digital marketing at Kings Island, I manage the park's social media efforts. My Kings Island career began in 2007 as the 364-acre amsuement and water park's public relations area manager. I grew up visiting Kings Island, which makes it incredibly special to be part of the team to celebrate 45 years of providing world-class fun, thrills and quality family entertainment.

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