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Editions

Whacky worm meets whacky tourists

03 May 2011

Whacky worm meets whacky tourists Image

A group of 41 international roller coaster enthusiasts descended on Docklands’ humble Whacky Worm ride at Wonderland Fun Park last month.

The US tourists made a special arrangement to ride the worm as part of a rollercoaster tour of Australia.

Organiser Robb Alvey said it was the ambition of some within the group to ride every rollercoaster in the world.

“A lot of people with us want to ride every roller coaster in the world,” he said.  “It doesn’t matter whether the coaster is 100 feet tall or not.  If there’s a roller coaster out there then we have to ride it.”

Mr Alvey runs roller coaster tours all over the world but this is the first time he had brought coaster fans to Australia.  He has run tours in the US, Europe, Japan and China and is soon to venture to Dubai and Brazil.

The business started about 10 years ago from his own personal interest in trying to visit all the US roller coasters.

“People said, ‘that’s sounds really interesting, can I come on your next venture,” he said.

He said many of the enthusiasts worked in theme parks or related entertainment fields.

So how does he characterise the group of tourists?  “They are all insane! That’s how I characterise them,” he answered.

The group arrived by bus directly from Melbourne Airport and were going on to Luna Park.  The Australian tour lasted 11 days.

Wonderland Fun Park purchased its Whacky Worm about a year ago, importing the modest ride from the US.

In a technical sense, it is characterised as a “family” roller coaster and can be easily dismantled for road transport and reassembled in a short time.

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