By Leah Koch

About a month ago, a coworker (Hi, Andrew!) tried to get me to share what we’re building in 2015 (yes, it’s top secret; most members of our full-time staff don’t know all of what we’re doing).

Of course, one of his many guesses (like so many of you out there) was a steel coaster.

After he guessed, he stopped a moment and added, “Probably not, right? Is it true that your dad said he’d never build a steel coaster because it wasn’t family-friendly?”

The answer is yes. My dad probably told me that every time I requested a steel coaster (after conquering my fears, I requested one rather frequently). So I probably got that excuse daily.

Honestly, I don’t think he ever meant it. That response really meant I needed to shut my mouth (it only took me until now to realize that — sorry, Dad!).

Through the years, my requests became less frequent and my argument pro-steel became structured and more complex. His arguments against did not.

One day, he came home with drawings.

I believe the time was circa 2006, after The Voyage had opened. I can’t forget him laying those drawings down on our kitchen table.

I jumped in place and squealed. He told me he was planning on building in ’09 or ’10.

Since I was graduating high school in 2009, I decided it was a graduation present for me.

It would have been a truly unique ride—Dad liked to build really great things, often the first of their kind.

By now, you’ve figured out that design never came to fruition. My graduation present was nice, but certainly not a steel coaster.

In 2010, we did get an amazing first-of-its-kind coaster, the Wildebeest water coaster. It definitely was not what I was expecting, but aren’t the best things always unexpected?

As much fun as it would be to resurrect the designs he showed me that day, he had already moved past that technology and was dreaming of something different by the time of his passing.

With the promise still lingering out there, I have only this to say: if he were here, I’m certain what we’re building would be his dream.

And I’ll add to his promise: what we’re building is going to be truly unique.

The first of its kind.



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7 Responses to “A promise kept”

  1. Penny Burke

    We love Holiday World! Have been there at least 6 times and we will keep coming back! The staff are all very nice and Holiday World is very clean.

  2. Chr

    If you are going to build another coaster that is wooden please make it as bada** as the Son of Beast was at Kings Island but make it faster. If it is a steel coaster, which I hope it is, please make it the fastest, tallest and longest coaster in the world. I will ask that you do not make another water coaster. I hope you all are listening. Have a great weekend.

  3. Vince Kadlubek

    oh my goodness. This is a beautiful tribute and this is a tantalizing tease. I can’t wait.

  4. Ryan Maddox

    The personal touch to this amazing ride is making me die every second I don’t know what this ride is!!!! Can’t wait!!!! (And I’m pretty sure it will be a launched B&M coaster, hopefully a floorless one

  5. Kim Craig

    Thank you to all at Holiday World.You have made dreams come true for us and so many others.My 10 year old says he wants to work there learning all about roller coasters to eventually design and build one some day.He also thinks like you that a steel coaster , fastest, tallest, longest would seperate you and put you at the top rated places to go.As for me I would like to see a big no huge no gigantic ferris wheel.It would be family friendly.Thanks for a great clean, friendly, affordable, memorable place to vacation.Season Pass Holders