GURNEE, Ill. — Six Flags Great America in Gurnee has confirmed that two attractions will be closing forever.
Revolution, the spinning pendulum ride located in the County Fair section of the park, will be removed after this season. The ride’s fate was pretty much sealed when Great America announced Sky Striker, their new addition for 2024. Sky Striker is a much taller and faster pendulum ride and will be located just steps from where Revolution sits now. You can find a full preview of the new attraction here.
Mardi Gras Hangover is also being removed from the park. Hangover is a Larson Loop attraction that was billed as the largest ride of its kind when it first opened in 2018. It takes riders back and forth in one giant loop. Here’s a video of me riding the attraction LIVE on WGN Morning News on opening day.
Great America visitors will be able to ride both attractions one last time this weekend. On a post on their website, the park announced that October 28th and 29th will be the last dates both rides will be available. Legacy members of Great America will have exclusive ride time on Hangover on Sunday from 11am-12pm. The general public will have access to the ride outside of that time.
So … what’s next?
In the same web post, Great America says, “While we will miss these attractions, it’s time to plan for future expansion!”
What could that mean? Let’s speculate!
We know what is happening near Revolution. Sky Striker will be a massive presence in the County Fair section in the park, swinging back and forth more than 170 feet in the air. But what happens in that spot where Revolution sits now?
Let’s go back to Mardi Gras Hangover. The ride doesn’t have a very big footprint in the Mardi Gras section of the park. We could see another flat ride of some kind installed in its place. However, the Big Easy Balloons are just a few feet away from where Hangover sits. What if the Balloons were moved to where Revolution sits now? Suddenly you would have a larger section of land open in the Mardi Gras area to fit something a bit bigger.
These aren’t the only open spaces at Great America, either. The Buccaneer Battle ride remains closed and fenced off. If you coupled that portion of land with the Go Kart track just east of the backstage area, you could have plenty of room for a major thrill attraction of some kind.
Great America hasn’t added a new roller coaster since Maxx Force debuted in 2019. In a recent interview with the Coliwood Studios YouTube channel, Six Flags CEO Selim Bassoul had this to say about the company’s plans for new rides across the chain in 2024 and 2025.
“We are spending money on ‘hero rides.’ We want rides that are unique, very exciting and do not exist two hours down the road at another park,” Bassoul said. “The next few years are all about big rides. We are bringing some amazing rides that you are going to be so excited about and we’re going to be going back to truly being the capital of thrills around the world.”
Bassoul also added that Six Flags would like to expand kids’ areas with attractions designed for families with younger children. He also said the company is planning to invest in theming for their attractions, so guests can have a more immersive experience while waiting in line for rides.
So what does all of this mean for our home park of Six Flags Great America? We don’t know that yet. Great America is due for another major thrill coaster at some point. It appears that they are making room for something, possibly in multiple spots across the park. Will we see a new coaster in one of these areas? What would it be and where would it go?
Let the speculation continue!