I have been a fan of Carowinds for as long as I can remember. There really has not been a time when this special place wasn’t in my life. I grew up right next to the park, and I have shared some of my favorite memories here with family and friends over the years. Early on, however, I had one small problem…I was terrified of roller coasters.
I remember so many Monday mornings at school when one special roller coaster ride was the talk of the town: Afterburn. My friends couldn’t stop talking about how they went to Carowinds that weekend and braved the 62-MPH, 2.7-minute, six-inversion thrill of being a fighter pilot!
On a vacation in California my uncle encouraged me to build up my courage on a few roller coasters and before long I was hooked! When we got back home I immediately planned a visit to Carowinds to ride every single one I could. I was saving the one at the top, gunning for the biggest thrill in the park. Afterburn was definitely a coaster rite of passage for me. But, when I finally got the chance to ride, this iconic coaster definitely did take my breath away.
Twenty years later, Afterburn continues to take flight squadrons to the skies. In honor of its birthday we put together a special time capsule. This collection of items from the past and present will remain by the coaster for the next 20 years! Here are the items placed inside:
- Afterburn Button
- 2019 Park Map
- 2019 Gold Season Pass
- 2019 Peanuts Shirt
- Associate Name Tag
- Fury USB Drive with Photos and Videos from Afterburn’s history
- Afterburn Postcard
- Copperhead Strike Sticker
- Copperhead Strike Nametag
Since this is the place where the Carolinas come together we wanted to include our fans in this special piece of history. We posted three polls on our social media channels for you to decide what should be placed into the time capsule.
- A song of today: Baby Shark or Old Town Road? You choose Old Town Road. This was placed on the Fury USB Drive.
- A hat representing a coaster of today: Copperhead Strike or Fury 325? You chose Fury 325!
- A retro magnet: Coaster Tracks cassette tape or classic Carowinds pennant? You chose the Coaster Tracks cassette tape.
We didn't limit the celebration to the time capsule. What’s a birthday without some cake? Pilot Snoopy made a special appearance and brought with him a fighter jet full of cupcakes to complement morning exclusive ride time on Afterburn. Fun was had by all!
Afterburn truly is the coaster that brought Carowinds to new heights. It laid the foundation for so many attractions, experiences, and memories that have made our hearts soar. I am so honored to have the chance to help tell the story of this iconic coaster. And that 10-year-old boy who nervously gripped on tight and made his first big flight? He still has the need for speed.