SIX FLAGS OVER TEXAS
& Six Flags Hurricane Harbor
Dallas / Ft. Worth, Texas
Six Flags Theme Parks
Park News - (1/8/22) Screamscape had heard the rumor a couple of days ago, but now others have confirmed it. Apparently Six Flags over Texas Park President, Ron McKenzie is leaving the company.
If the departure seems a bit sudden after they just announced the addition of Saturday night fireworks through to the end of February, you would be right. According to the early rumors sent out way previously this week, the announcement of his departure was only sent out through internal corporate communications, and not something released to the public. Given the massive restructuring of the company’s ranks that has been happening since December by the new CEO, many are wondering if this was some kind of falling out between the two.
I hate speculating on the reason behind this kind of thing myself, as it is too easy for false information to spread that could affect someone’s future career path. Let us also keep in mind that there have been a lot of major management shifts throughout the US amusement sector’s big players like Six Flags, SeaWorld Entertainment, Palace Entertainment, Premier Parks and Cedar Fair. Also remember that throughout the nation over the past two years there has been a non-stop trend of people from all industries leaving their jobs in favor of starting new career paths elsewhere, simply because virtually every company is now in need of filling empty positions. So until someone hears something directly from Ron McKenzie, we’ll just leave at that.
(1/6/22) Six Flags over Texas has made some slight adjustments to their schedule for January and February. According to a press release from the park the “return of Ice Carving with Reverend Butter will bring chilling live entertainment to the stage in the GOTHAM CITY. The award-winning ensemble will show off their ice carving talents by slicing and dicing 300-pound blocks of ice into amazing sculptures using chainsaws.”
Look for Six Flags over Texas to also have a fireworks show each Saturday night through the end of February at 7pm, shot from the top of the Oil Derrick tower. The operational schedule of the park has changed to accommodate the fireworks by now staying open an extra hour (Noon to 7pm) on Saturdays, but they also shortened the hours on Sundays by an hour to make up for it (now closing at 5pm instead of 6pm).
So seriously now… with the park only open 5 hours (Noon to 5pm) on Sundays, is that even enough time to make a visit worth it?
(12/30/21) Six Flags over Texas will host a New Year’s Eve celebration this Friday, with the park open from Noon to 10pm. (So sorry, not open until Midnight as you might expect…) SFOT will however put on a fireworks show, launching pyro from the top of the 300 foot tall Oil Derrick tower at 10pm.
(12/27/21) Six Flags over Texas has updated their schedule to include the first part of the 2022 season with hours now posted throughout all of January and February. In addition to no mention of the previously advertised Fire & Ice event, the majority of hours for the park over the first two months is restricted to just weekend days, with park hours only from Noon to 6pm. These are hardly the hours to allow for the Fire & Ice event, so it looks like the 2022 cutbacks have begun.
For comparison’s sake, Six Flags Fiesta Texas also also posted hours for this same time period, but with days offering a 10:30am to 6pm schedule and moving to a 10:30am to 7pm schedule on select dates in late February.
On another interesting note for Six Flags over Texas, I’m told that last Friday a sign with a QR code was spotted over at the Texas Giant coaster that would apparently offer guests the chance to purchase a one-time use FlashPass for the coaster. If your a Disney parks fan, this may sound very familiar, like Six Flags possibly testing out the idea of adding their own Lightning Lane style system to some of their most in-demand roller coasters.
For those not in the know, Disney shut down their free FastPass program at the parks when they first closed down for COVID in early 2020. Over the past couple months they replaced the free FastPass program with options to purchase access to a new line-jumping system called Disney Genie+, but also added the ability for any guest to purchase a one-time Lightning Lane pass to the front of the line on select rides at a cost of anywhere from $5 to $20 per person. So I can definitely see Six Flags looking into ways they can try to add a similar profit generating program to their own parks for the upcoming season.
(11/26/21) In a video posted to YouTube by a reader, they came across the park president of Six Flags over Texas during a visit and was able to ask a few questions about new attractions next season. Follow the link to watch yourself, but according to Ron McKenzie the plans to to try and open the new Pirates of Speelunker’s Cave attraction as early as March 2022, and the new Aquaman Power Wave attraction will likely be ready around Memorial Day Weekend 2022.
A lot can change between now and then of course, so wait until these dates get closer before making any travel plans of course.
(10/26/21) A few quick notes about operations at Six Flags over Texas were sent in anonymously. While the park is open daily through to Halloween, I’m told labor issues will likely have an affect on operations that could result in a limited number of rides open through Thursday, more open on Friday and a mostly full lineup over the weekend.
There are a few exceptions however:
Titan is currently closed after the lift hill chain broke and it isn’t known how long it will take to get a replacement installed.
Mr. Freeze also down a bit ago, so they have begun to repaint it, but the hope is to have it back open in time for Holiday in the Park.
(9/12/21) Six Flags over Texas was apparently forced to close early last night during the park’s first night of Fright Fest due to fights breaking out between guests in the park. The fighting even continued as guests were forced out into the parking lot, as you can see in a video clip embedded below.
I haven’t seen an official news report on this yet, but there are several different videos online on social media talking about it, some reporting 50+ arrests or detainments made by the police due to park-wide fights that are said to have broken out. Early word is we may see some major operational changes at Six Flags going forward with Fright Fest as a result. I’m not sure what this may be, though one thought is that they could switch to a reservation only system for Fright Fest as they are currently doing at the park in New Jersey as a form of crowd control. We’ve also heard that the park has cut back on the hours starting TONIGHT, and will close Fright Fest at 8pm instead of 9pm.
As for Fright Fest itself, this year’s event to be held on select nights features six haunted houses (3 new ones - Labsics: Classified, The Do Drop Inn: Dead and Breakfast and Killer Theater, along with returning favorites: Piggy’s Blood Shed, Curse of Ra and Art of Torture) alogn with three scare zones and six shows.
(8/8/21) A tweet from Roller Coaster Nerdz shows that a small section of red track on Pandemonium at Six Flags over Texas has been repainted a light purple color. Usually this is done when the parks are planning to repaint rides and want to test the look of new colors before committing to use the color across the whole ride. It doesn’t look bad with the dark grey colored support under it, where it appears that the support may have also gotten a fresh touch-up too.
While red shiny coaster tracks always look quite stunning when brand new, those same red tracks always have a tendency to fade rather quickly, losing their luster and shine, and before you know it, they transform from shiny red to a dull faded orange-ish looking tint.
2022 - Aquaman: Power Wave - (8/8/21) Good news, a reader sent in a picture from the Aquaman construction site where you can see that the old station track section has now been removed to make way for the new turn-table loading station.
(1/10/21) Six Flags over Texas released some official information yesterday at a special ACE Winterfest event at the park, confirming that the delay of Aquaman: Power Wave to 2022 will indeed see the addition of a second boat and a turntable loading station for increased capacity.
(1/9/21) While Six Flags over Texas has not said much officially about why AQUAMAN: Power Wave has been delayed until 2022, a reader did send a tweet my way that they posted, responding to a fan complaint about the issue that says, “our team is working to create the biggest and best water coaster experience for our guests. Stay tuned for more details!” So while nothing is promised, perhaps this is a hint that some of the rumored changes or upgrades to the ride hardware may be in the works after all, such as the desired turntable loading station.
Another thing that I’ll mention now is that when you click on the ride listing on the website to see more details, the official site clearly says that AQUAMAN “Goes upside down”. I’ve since ignored bringing this up in the past, as this is clearly an error on the Six Flags over Texas website, as EVERY attraction on the page also says it goes Upside Down currently. So the site is in dire need of fixing.
(12/13/20) Sorry Six Flags over Texas fans, it seems you are going to have to wait a lot longer before you can ride the new Aquaman: Power Wave ride. Despite the fact that all of the ride’s track sections were already fully assembled by Summer 2020, Six Flags website now states that Aquaman: Power Wave is now “Coming in 2022”.
This also has me a bit concerned about the state of all the other attractions that Six Flags previously announced as being on the way for 2020 before COVID-19 struck the global landscape. While a handful did manage to open, many others went through their construction paces over 2020 towards what we assumed was going to be an opening in 2021. But if a ride like Aquaman that is nearly complete is being delayed until 2022, I do have to wonder about what new rides may open in 2021 at all across the chain. And I’m just talking about rides where construction had started, and not about some of the rides announced for 2020 that never even started construction that could possibly be canceled entirely.
So at this point, best to stay cautious about what new attractions may be coming to all the Six Flags parks in 2021 because our ride on the COVID train isn’t over yet. There is a possible bit of good news that could come from this, as one possible rumor about the extra delay for Aquaman may be that Six Flags is addressing one of the big concerns over the concept in terms of capacity. The original Power Splash ride concept from Mack Rides that opened as Pulsar in Europe featured a unique turntable system in the loading station that would allow for two-vehcile operation. While one vehicle was on the track, the second was attached to a turnable which spun it around into a side-area for loading/unloading, thus allowing for the second car to be loaded and launched on the track as soon as the first arrived back to the turntable section.
When Aquaman was announced as coming, but without the turntable and only one vehicle capacity, many questioned why this feature was cut from the attraction, as surely Aquaman was destined to be a popular addition to the park, especially in those months under the hot Texas sun. We can only hope that perhaps Six Flags saw the light and will seek to correct this misstep by 2022.
(7/31/20) A reader sent in some new pictures of Aquaman at Six Flags over Texas. As you can see the ride’s structure and main hardware is complete, but they still have to install the station and complete the splashdown pool area.
(7/23/20) Six Flags over Texas has revamped their Aquaman Power Wave page and animation to now confirm that the ride will now open in 2021.
(6/21/20) Six Flags over Texas is now open again and thanks to the tweet below we get our first good look at the status of Aquaman. While it appears that all the ride track and major hardware is installed, construction was reported to have looked like it had all stopped, and no further work was taking place to finish the area around the ride, no concrete pours, and no station or other theming to be found.
As previously reported, Six Flags had essentially removed all information about the previously announced ‘New for 2020’ attractions from all of their park websites during the mandatory shutdown and announced that some of these attractions would be delayed until 2021. While construction work is active on some new rides, such as DareDevil Dive at Six Flags Fiesta Texas, but no work is taking place here, there is a good chance that the opening of Aquaman could possibly be delayed until 2021. Add in the fact that this is a water attraction that will mostly appeal to guests during the hot summer months. With at least a month or so of solid work left to go to finish it, including the likely need to get reps from Mack Rides in Germany into the country to certify and sign off on the ride, the likelyhood of Aquaman opening in 2020 may be very slim at this point as the summer window closes.
(8/29/19) Just as rumored, Aquaman is coming back to Six Flags over Texas, but in a new and improved form, using the Mack Power Splash ride system to bring the hero to life again, bigger, better and faster! I believe this will be the first such version of this new ride concept to open in North America, combining the best elements of a magnetic launch shuttle coaster experience with the experience of a big boat splash ride. According to the press release the water coaster will hit speeds up to 63mph and after the backwards launch, will suspend riders at a 90ļ angle on the backwards spike before dropping them down into the big splash at the bottom. Aquaman: Power Wave will also count as a coaster, making this the park’s 15th.
(3/28/19) I heard an interesting rumor about what could possibly replace Aquaman at Six Flags over Texas in 2020… and if true, the good news is that this would be considered both a new coaster and a water ride. I also wouldn’t be surprised if this new attraction also attempted to carry the Aquaman name once again, but taking the form of a Mack PowerSplash attraction. Adding to the rumor is the fact that Six Flags was asking guests about this very attraction concept in a guest survey not long ago.
The Mack PowerSplash is really a launched shuttle coaster with a spike on each end, built to ride just above a body of water, and dip into a “splashdown” section which is flooded with extra water just before the boat arrived to create the classic “big splash” moment. The attraction system also features a turntable at the station to allow for one boat to load while the other runs through the course.
Check out the video from Mack featuring the first PowerSplash ride called Pulsar that opened at Walbii Belgium in 2016 below.
2022 - Pirates of Speelunker Cave - (8/6/21) Six Flags over Texas has announced a second major new attraction is coming to the park in 2022 other than the delayed Aquaman: Power Wave. The former Yosemite Sam’s Gold River Adventure may be closed for good, a new dark ride will rise on the site called “Pirates of Speelunker Cave”. Guests will find themselves in the middle of a pirate treasure hunt by the resident Speelunkers, which is a great throw back to the park’s original dark ride on the site, Speelunker’s Cave that ran from 1964 to 1990 until Yosemite Sam moved in for the 1991 season.
“An all-new entry plaza will welcome adventurers with coastal theming and an open vantage point of the ride’s first descent into Speelunker Cave. Once aboard their six-passenger boat, riders will experience 17 brand-new scenes that combine state-of-the-art cinematic projection with immersive sets and animatronics.”
The new ride will feature 26 six-passenger boats, state-of-the-art animatronics throughout the attraction and “Cinema-style, wide-projection technology to fully immerse riders with high-tech digital and physical sets.”
If you know me, you know I love dark rides, and a park can never have enough in my opinion. What makes this one special is that finally, after 60 long years, Six Flags is starting to embrace the nostalgia of their own custom creations from their early days, and is now able to reimagine them for current and guests to enjoy. You don’t always have to go out and pay to use someone else’s IP (like Looney Tunes characters) when park’s can embrace their own history and custom creations from over the years.
(7/25/21) An interesting photo posted to Twitter which appears to be from a construction wall at Six Flags over Texas in reference to a “Spee-Lunker” brings up the question about the fate of the closed Yosemite Sam and the Gold River Adventure ride. The Gold River Adventure flume ride closed in 2018 after suffering extensive damage from a flood, but it was also a replacement for the park’s original Speelunker’s Cave ride that ran on the same site from 1964 to 1991.
It’s been said that the park is working on renovating the ride for a new replacement, and with the park celebrating a 60th anniversary this season, finding a way to bring back the Speelunkers for a new adventure would be a nice touch. It’s possible this may be our first hint that this may actually be taking place.
(1/10/21) In a surprising bit of news Six Flags over Texas officials confirms at the ACE Winterfest event that the closed Yosemite Sam and the Gold River Adventure dark flume ride would actually be reopening at some point in the future.
No timeline was given, but the news came as a bit of a shock as the dark ride has been closed since late 2018 when it was damaged by rising flood waters during storm. Screamscape sources at the time said that the interior of the attraction suffered from extensive damage due to the flood waters and that it would be a serious undertaking reopened it ever again. With no major details about the HOW and WHEN this will take place, we don’t have much more to say at this time, other than that this is indeed a very welcome piece of news to see the park reviving this classic family attraction for future generations.