ProSlide Technology

Last updated
ProSlide Technology
TypePrivate
Industry Manufacturing
Founded1986
FounderRichard D. Hunter
Headquarters2650 Queensview Drive
Unit 150
Ottawa, Ontario
K2B 8H6
Area served
Worldwide
Products Water slides
Number of employees
100+(2016) [1]
Website www.proslide.com

ProSlide Technology, Inc. is a Canadian designer and manufacturer of water rides and water park resorts. [2] They design and manufacture both traditional slides and innovative rides such as water coasters, funnel-shaped TORNADO slides, and Bowl slides. [3] ProSlide has received attention for being the first water slide manufacturer to build a water slide using linear induction motors and for designing the Mammoth watercoaster which was named the world's longest watercoaster by Guinness World Records in 2016. [4] [5] Since 1986, ProSlide has developed and designed water rides for water parks in over 40 countries around the world. [6]

Contents

History

Corporate history

After being a member of Canada’s alpine skiing team from 1969 to 1974, Richard D. Hunter founded ProSlide Technology Inc. in 1986. [7] [8] In 1990, Hunter purchased Mont Cascades, a ski area and waterpark in Quebec. [6] Mont Cascades has since served as a research and development area where Proslide tests new ride ideas. [9]

In 2007, ProSlide purchased a 100-acre plot of land in Ottawa where it has been developing the Alottawata waterpark. [9] The park was expected to open in summer 2019 and would have served in part as a research and development centre for the company. [1] As of August 2018 however, the park has been put on indefinite hold. [10]

Attraction history

ProSlide debuted three types of water slides in 1987, Twisters, Kidz, and Plummets, which are all types of body flumes. The first Twisters opened at Mont Saint-Sauveur in Quebec and Adventure World Theme Park (now known as Six Flags America) in Largo, Maryland, United States; both parks opened 4 Twisters that year. [11] Plummets consist of a vertical drop only, followed by a long, flat segment to help riders decelerate. The first Plummets opened at Aquapar Magog in Quebec and Six Flags America, respectively. [12] ProSlide also debuted their children's water slides (ProSlide Kidz) in 1987, which are miniature versions of Twisters designed for young children. Initially, they were installed more frequently than the full-size Twisters. [13]

In 1989, the company's PIPEline water slides opened at several locations. The Pipeline is a water slide that carries riders on 1-to-3 person inner tubes and is ProSlide's second most common style. [14] The Pipeline has both open and enclosed sections; many have water curtains at the beginning and/or end of their enclosed sections. The first Pipeline rides using inner tubes opened at Fantasia de Agua in the Dominican Republic and Waldameer Park in Erie, Pennsylvania. [14] Throughout the 1990s, several large park chains started opening new ProSlide Pipelines, including Cedar Fair, Six Flags, and Wet 'n Wild.

In 1991, the Mammoth waterslide debuted and was the first ProSlide slide that riders rode in 4-person tubes. The Mammoth is a larger-scale version of the Pipeline. [15] Wet 'n Wild in Orlando, Florida, opened the first ProSlide Mammoth.

The first ProSlide RACER opened in 1994 at ProSlide's Mont Cascades Waterpark in Cantley, Quebec. Racers consist of one wide slide with dividers between the lanes and are designed that riders can "race" to the finish if ride operators send all of them down the slide at the same time. [16]

Beginning in the late 1990s, ProSlide began manufactures four kinds of Bowls: ProBowls, CannonBOWLS, BulletBOWLS, and BehemothBOWLS, all four types consist of an enclosed flume that terminates in a bowl; riders travel in a spiral around the bowl (using centrifugal force to stay on the bowl's wall initially) before dropping into a splashdown pool. [17] ProBowls are enclosed body flumes which end in a bowl with an open top. CannonBowls and the larger BehemothBowls accommodate 2- and 4-person inner tubes, and have a common exit in their centers. [17] [18]

Sky Drop, at Plopsaqua, a slide with SkyBOX. Plopsaqua (C34).JPG
Sky Drop, at Plopsaqua, a slide with SkyBOX.
Aerial view of the Tornado at Darien Lake. Tornado water slide at Darien Lake.jpg
Aerial view of the Tornado at Darien Lake.

The first ProSlide Bowl, a ProBowl, opened at Golfland Sunsplash in 1999. [15]

In the early 2000s, ProSlide gained recognition for its TORNADO, a 4-passenger, 50- to 75-foot-tall enclosed slide which ends in a large, often multicolored funnel. Riders travel back and forth in the funnel several times before exiting into a splashdown pool. The first Tornados opened in 2003 at Six Flags New England, Mountain Creek Waterpark and Holiday World and Splashin' Safari. [19]

In 2005, ProSlide debuted its waterslide version of a roller coaster, the Rocket, an uphill water coaster. Proslide's first Rockets opened at Noah's Ark Water Park, Six Flags New England, and the Great Wolf Lodge. [20]

ProSlide opened a LIM-propelled Rocket at the Great Wolf Lodge near Kings Island in 2006; in 2007, LIM-launched Rockets opened at Naju Lake Waterpark in Korea and at Kentucky Kingdom. [20] [21] Super Tubes Hydrocoaster at WhiteWater World in Australia, have used the ProSlide HydroMagnetics system of Linear Induction Motors placed throughout the ride to launch riders up the uphill sections. HydroMagnetics uses Force Engineering LIM technology, which first gained recognition in the amusement park industry as the power behind launched roller coasters such as Flight of Fear and Speed - The Ride. ProSlide HydroMAGNETIC ROCKETS are the first waterslides to use this same technology, which allows for more flexibility and efficiency in running the waterslides' uphill sections than the previous conveyor-belt system did. [22] In 2012, the company's Mammoth was recognized as the longest water coaster in the world when it opened at Holiday World. [23]

The Super Tubes Hydrocoaster (a LIM-powered ProSlide Rocket) and The Green Room (a ProSlide Tornado) at WhiteWater World. Super Tubes Hydrocoaster and The Green Room at WhiteWater World.jpg
The Super Tubes Hydrocoaster (a LIM-powered ProSlide Rocket) and The Green Room (a ProSlide Tornado) at WhiteWater World.

Awards and recognition

During the early 2000s, ProSlide manufactured the majority of the water park industry's award-winning rides. In 2005, three of the top five Golden Ticket Award winners for Best New Ride for 2005 (Water Park) were rides manufactured by ProSlide. [24] [25] ProSlide also had two of the top three winners for Best Waterpark Ride in 2004, 2005 and 2006. [24] [26] [27] From 2010-2017, ProSlides Wildebeest watercoaster at Holiday World and Splashin' Safari was named Best Waterpark Ride. [28] [29] [30] In 2017, the company earned an additional Golden Ticket Award for Best New Water Park Ride for the Thunder Rapids Water Coaster at Six Flags Fiesta Texas. [30]

ProSlide is a 15-time IAAPA ‘Best Water Ride’ winner as well as a three-time recipient of IAAPA’s ‘Industry Impact Award,’ given to the top attraction in the entire industry. [31] The company has also won several IAAPA Brass Ring Awards: Best New Product Exhibitor Awards which recognizes the best new product or service in the amusement parks and attractions industry. [32]

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