Kings Dominion broke records once again this year by creating the new Bigger, Better Planet Snoopy. The Peanuts themed kids area has been at the park since 2010, but only included a few rides and very little theming, that is until now. In 2013, Planet Snoopy took over the parks seconds kids area, KidZville, to create a single coherent area for children and their families to play. With the expansion of Planet Snoopy, we saw the addition of 8 brand new rides, as well as 6 re-themed rides. The area also includes one of the first Sweet Frogs to open in a theme park. Now let’s get down to it and compare the new and the old!
As you entered KidZville from the Grove/Congo entrance, you were greeted by a clock tower pointing you in the direction of some of the featured attractions. Now you will be greeted by a stunning Snoopy topiary surrounded by smaller Woodstock topiaries.
Up next is the lost parents building. The old building had a sole purpose: reuniting kids with their families after taking a wrong turn. The newly expanded building still servers this purpose, however you can now sit and relax in 1,100 feet of air-conditioning. The building has room for children to take a nap during a tiring day in the park, as well as an area for mothers to feed and change their infants. The renovated building puts the comfort of guests in the fore front.
The Swing-A-Round, a ride that has been at the park since the beginning, has unfortunately been removed. However, not all is lost as Kings Dominion has replaced it with a fantastic attraction families can ride together. The Swing-A-Round could only accommodate children, but Woodstock Whirlybirds can accommodate children and their families to ensure everyone can experience it!
Although we did lose a swing ride, we gained a much more efficient one! Jeep Tours made its final spin last season to make room for Charlie Brown’s Wind Up. This new ride is a larger swing attraction, that unlike The Swing-A-Round can accommodate larger guests. Charlie Brown’s Wind Up is sure to thrill the pint sized thrill seekers, and give their parents a chance to experience it with them.
Kings Dominion brought a truly unique ride to the Mid-Atlantic with Linus Launcher. Children and their families ride lying down as they soar through the sky. This is a much welcomed change from the old Hot Rods ride, which included spinning at a leisurely speed. Linus Launcher is sure to excite children as they get the chance to fly!
Everyone loves bumper cars, but sometimes children are too small to drive. That is not the case with Lucy’s Crabbie Cabbie! Kids can take the wheel as they smash into each other on on this wild ride. The cars have been painted and the building has been given a new look replacing its’ old stone age looking facade.
A family favorite, the Red Baron, has been given the Peanuts makeover as well. Now called Snoopy vs. the Red Baron, kids can take flight in their own aircraft and help Snoopy fight off the Red Baron. The remodeled ride looks fantastic with Snoopy sitting on top of it all!
Another welcomed change is the addition of Flying Ace Balloon Race. This high flying ride has much more thrills to offer than the old Spaceport attraction that once sat in its’ spot. Children and their families can pick a country and soar up to 43 feet in the air as they spin their balloon out of control! It is definitely one of the best additions to Planet Snoopy and is sure to be a family favorite!
One of the more depressing changes has to be the removal of Treasure Cave. Although Treasure Cave has been removed, we did receive a great train ride for families to enjoy together. Lead by Snoopy and Woodstock, families make their way around a set track on Snoopy’s Junction. Although one of the most memorable attractions of what once was has been removed, new memories can now be made!
Overall, Planet Snoopy is a fantastic and much needed addition to the park. KidZville had become outdated, but the Bigger Better Planet Snoopy area creates one of the best kids areas at any theme park!