Cheap Ways to Check Out 4 New Thrill Rides This Summer

Carowinds 2010
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Theme parks and amusement parks across the country are enjoying what could be a record season of turnstile clicks. The improving economy is helping, but many attractions are making their own luck by rolling out new rides to woo thrill-seekers.

Let's go over a few of the notable rides debuting across the country, and while we're at it, let's talk about ways for you to score deals on cheaper admissions.

Fury 325 at Carowinds -- North Carolina

One of the largest coasters to open this season is Fury 325 at Cedar Fair's (FUN) Carowinds park that straddles the border of North Carolina and South Carolina. True to its name, Fury 325's signature element is a chain lift that takes riders up 325 feet before reaching a top speed of 95 mph.

Discount tip: You can save $15 by going on a weekday and ordering your tickets online through the Carowinds website.

Thunderbird at Holiday World -- Indiana

A perennial winner of industry awards for being the cleanest and friendliest park in the country, Holiday World has been a staple for coaster enthusiasts who favor wooden coasters. It has three thrilling woodies in its arsenal, but this year Raven, Legend, and Voyage are joined by Thunderbird.

Holiday World's first steel scream machine is also a wing coaster, with riders sitting on floor-less seats on both sides of the track. There's also a launch element that catapults thrill-seekers from zero to 60 mph in a little more than three seconds.

Discount tip: Holiday World prides itself on its value, offering guests complimentary soft drinks and sunscreen throughout their stay. It also discounts late arrivals. Show up after 3 p.m. on any operating day and admission drops to $34.99 at the gate, a $10 discount to what folks arriving earlier have to pay.

Wicked Cyclone at Six Flags New England -- Massachusetts

Six Flags (SIX) has decided to dress up a pair of its coasters, rebuilding the track to provide some pretty extreme elements. It did this at Magic Mountain in California, turning Colossus -- the wood dueling coaster that became a Hollywood star with a pivotal role in the original National Lampoon's "Vacation" movie -- into Wicked Colossus. It also worked its track-twisting magic at Six Flags New England with Wicked Cyclone.

The rebuilt coaster packs a lot of the airtime that the original offered, but introduces some twisting inversions and a rich storm-themed queue leading up to the experience. It's also the first coaster to offer a 200-degree stall loop, taking riders upside down between a pair of banked turns.

Discount tip: You can save up to $15 if you buy your tickets online ahead of your visit. According to coupon aggregator RetailMeNot, if you click on the "Promo" tab and enter the word COKE -- Coca-Cola (KO) is a Six Flags partner -- you may shave another dollar off the discounted online price. The promotion is expected to run all season long.

Laff Trakk at Hersheypark -- Pennsylvania

The new ride at the self-anointed "sweetest place on Earth" doesn't pack the same mammoth drops and inversions as the attractions already noted, but Laff Trakk gives a family-friendly coaster a new tweak by enclosing the entire ride in a fun-house setting with glow-in-the-dark props to provide a jovial family-friendly experience.

Discount tip: Most amusement parks team up with area grocers and fast-food chains to offer coupons or marked down admissions. In Hersheypark's case, stop by an area Giant supermarket to pre-purchase discounted tickets to shave $15 off the regular $61.95 admission price.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. He spends his summers chasing thrills, and has ridden 175 different coasters at last count. The Motley Fool recommends Coca-Cola. The Motley Fool has the following options: long January 2016 $37 calls on Coca-Cola and short January 2016 $37 puts on Coca-Cola. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days, and click here to check out our free report for one great stock to buy for 2015 and beyond.
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