When the carnival for the 2019 NIBROC Festival rolls into town next week, it’s going to be bringing with it an exciting new addition.
Paradise Amusements, which has partnered with the NIBROC Festival for roughly 50 years, will be debuting a new ride to its lineup and it’s called “Speed.”
The towering 138-feet-tall behemoth will strike an imposing figure on the downtown landscape for the duration of the festival.
“Oh yeah, it’s a thrill to be sure,” said Paradise Amusements Vice President Patty Sweet. “You go upside down. It’s fast and it’s tall and has almost 4 G’s of force. It’s pretty amazing, to be honest.”
The ride was just being unloaded at port this week. It was manufactured KMG Machine Construction, a specialty company located in the Netherlands.
The ride has two, long rotating arms. At the end of each arm hangs a gondola for four persons. The arm revolves at a speed of 13 rpm, in which the passenger experiences 3.5 G. About 240 people an hour can ride “Speed.”
“It’s going to make an impression when people see it,” Sweet said. “It’s very tall. You could take Vertigo, which is our swings, and set it on top of our Ferris Wheel and this would still be taller.”
Normally, Sweet said there is an extra cost to ride “Speed” over and above what carnival goers pay for armband. But for NIBROC, it will be just like all the other rides.
“We want people to experience it without having to pay more,” Sweet said. “It’s almost a million dollar ride. I think people are going to really like it.”
Sweet said all the company’s rides are inspected for safety before the festival begins. Company representatives will be on hand to train Paradise Amusement employees on operation of “Speed” since it will be used for the first time at NIBROC. The ride has appeared at other locations around the United States, but it will be the first time Paradise Amusements has used it.
Bruce Carpenter, Executive Director of the Southern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, said the organization has had an excellent working relationship with Paradise over the years, and he’s happy with the addition of the new ride to the festival.
“They always do things to try to keep the carnival fresh and interesting, and this is just evidence of that,” Carpenter said. “I hope people really enjoy the new ride and enjoy the rest of the festival as well.”