WASATCH FRONT NEWS: Salt Lake, Summit, Tooele, Utah, and Wasatch counties

‘White Roller Coaster’ at Lagoon turns 100

Wasatch Front

Courtesy: Lagoon

FARMINGTON, Utah (ABC4) – Lagoon Amusement Park in Farmington has announced they will be opening back up on March 20, 2021.

As the park gets ready to open back up they announced they will be celebrating the 100th Birthday of what you might know as the “White Roller Coaster.”

Adam Leishman, Spokesperson for Lagoon tells ABC4, Lagoon first opened in 1886 as a park on the shores of the Great Salt Lake as a place to dance and have a picnic.

After a few years the Great Salt Lake reseeded and left the resort “high and dry,” Leishman shares.

In 1896 the park was moved to Farmington where it remains today. When they first moved the park to Farmington there was a body of water located on the park land named “Lagoon.” So owners decided to name the amusement park Lagoon.

On May 21, 1921, the “White Roller Coaster” was finished at Lagoon. Though it is known by many as the “White Roller Coaster” that has never actually been its name. Leishman says it was nicknamed the “White Roller Coaster” due to its appearance. The coaster was originally made of wood painted white to preserve it from Utah’s elements.

Leishman tells ABC4 the original name of the coaster was the “Lagoon Dipper.” From there it was changed to “Silver Coaster.” It has also called been called the “Giant Roller Coaster.”

“The official name today is “Roller Coaster.” Leishman shares.

In 1953, a fire destroyed the front of the coaster. It was rebuilt the following year, and sections of the roller coaster are rebuilt from year to year.

Over the years a lot of work has been done to the coaster. Leishman says the boards on the coaster were all replaced over the years and in 2018 all of the coaster’s trains were completely replaced.

Now, Lagoon uses pressure treated wood that “withstands the elements much, much better,” Leishman adds.

Through the trains are not original, Leishman says “the design and track is original to the designers.”

“It is a 100 year old ride but the safety and mechanical elements of the ride are modern,” Leishman says.

To ensure the safety of the coaster, inspectors walk and thoroughly check over the tracks in the early morning of each day before putting them into use for the public. The Coaster was designed by John Miller, who also designed coasters for Coney Island.

All rides at Lagoon go through three safety checks a day. The white roller coaster goes through four because it is made of wood, says Leishma. The coaster might look old and sound creaky due to the wood but “it is as modern as anything out there,” Leishman tells ABC4.

The “Roller Coaster” is among three other rides at Lagoon that are on the National Historic Registry. According to Leishman, the Flying Aces and the Carousel at Lagoon are all on the registry.

The amusement park will be open on Saturday from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.

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