Skip to Main Content

Carowinds

Skip to Next Section

Like Father, Like Daughter

Lisa Stryker

Director of Communications

It was decades ago, but Lucas McFadden remembers it like yesterday. He was nine years old, it was Christmas day and he was on a scavenger hunt.

“My parents said there was something on the tree for me and my brother, but we had to find it," McFadden said. "We scoured that tree and when we finally found the gift I got so excited – it was Carowinds season passes! A few minutes later it occurred to me that it was Christmas and Carowinds wouldn’t be open for months. The countdown began.”

McFadden, anchor/producer of the Emmy Award-winning CN2 news team, said trips to Carowinds are a highlight of his memories growing up in Fort Lawn, a small town in Chester County, S.C.

Lucas and his daughter, Collins

He remembers the first time he went upside down on a coaster, the Carolina Cyclone. “It was in middle school. I was so nervous, and didn’t want to try it but my cousins said if I didn’t promise to go on it they wouldn’t take me to Carowinds. So of course I said I’d do it,” he explained. “After that ride I was hooked. I couldn’t wait to go on again. I've been a coaster lover since then.”

McFadden visited the park regularly through high school, as often as three times a week. “It was the thing to do!” he said. “I have so many vivid memories from Carowinds – ride openings, blue ice cream from Gargamel’s Shack, the ferry, the monorail…”

Carowinds fun took a back seat for a while during college, marriage and his transition into the career world. But McFadden is once again a season pass holder - times three. He and his wife Kati, also a Carowinds fan, welcomed daughter Collins six years ago and couldn’t wait to start enjoying the park with their little girl.

“I still remember bringing her to the season pass processing center for the first time when she was three – it brought me right back to when I was a kid there with my parents,” McFadden said.

Collins looks forward to Sundays, as the McFaddens often come to Carowinds right after church. Some of her favorite rides are Woodstock Express, Camp Snoopy Balloon Race and Do-Si-Do. She recently added Kiddy Hawk to that list, and that’s often her answer when Dad asks her to choose one more ride at the end of a visit.

Lucas and his Collins enjoy a ride on Camp Snoopy Balloon Race.

“She has her eye on Intimidator,” McFadden said with a look of pride. “She can’t wait until she’s tall enough – and neither can I!”

Share This

Lisa Stryker

Director of Communications

Post a Comment

Skip to Next Section

Carowinds Announces Plan to Hire 2,000 Associates for 2021 Season

To prepare for the amusement park’s May opening, it will host a virtual National Hiring Day event on Saturday, March 13, 2021. Candidates can register online at Carowinds.com/hiringday.
Read More

Making a Big Splash Through the Years: The Changing Current at Carowinds 

Carowinds’ water park has been constantly evolving since its debut in 1982. As Carolina Harbor opens for its 5th anniversary later this season, we're taking a look at the history of the water park.
Read More

Making a Big Splash Through the Years: Water Worked at Carowinds' Waterpark 

Our waterpark history series continues as we learn about the next evolution of Carowinds' waterpark into WaterWorks and Boomerang Bay.
Read More

Happy Valentines Day, Love Carowinds 

You'll love these PEANUTS coloring pages! They are the perfect Carowinds at home activity for the special ones in your life.
Read More

Making a Big Splash Through the Years:  The History of Carowinds Water Park 

Though not an original park attraction, Carowinds’ water park has been constantly evolving since its opening in 1982. Take a look at the history of the water park and how it grew from humble beginnings into the “largest water park in the Carolinas.” That history begins with the water park’s first years as Ocean Island and Riptide Reef in Part 1 of this special series.
Read More

Carowinds Crossword Puzzle 

Start off your year with at-home fun! The Carowinds Crossword Puzzle will test your Carowinds rides knowledge in this printable family activity.
Read More

Make Your Own 3D Ornaments

Looking for a unique at-home holiday activity? Grab some scissors, markers and a glue stick and make your own 3D holiday ornaments.
Read More

"Snow" Much to See and Do at Taste of the Season 

There is “snow” much to see and do at Taste of the Season! At this limited- time outdoor holiday experience, you will have the chance to enjoy the 30 different food items we have to offer with a Tasting Card. However, that's not all! You can delight in special holiday décor, spectacular live entertainment, and special activities throughout the event.
Read More

The Foodie's Guide to Taste of the Season 

‘Tis the season to be scrumptious at Taste of the Season! With 30 tasting items available, food is the star of the show at this limited-time event. Plus, you can delight in a selection of seasonal alcoholic and non-alcoholic sips and brews. This is your guide to this outdoor food-tasting extravaganza.
Read More

Your Guide to Taste of the Season

With all the uncertainty we've faced in 2020, here's one thing you can count on: You will have an AMAZING time at Taste of the Season, our all-new outdoor holiday experience. Here's your guide to the fun.
Read More