Crews at Cedar Point work through the winter cold to get new rides ready for park's May 10 opening

SANDUSKY, Ohio - The deep cold of winter seems that much harsher when its glacial grip clamps down on such a place of summer like Cedar Point.

It is in this weather that construction crews annually find their window of opportunity to make the tweaks and adjustments that will greet visitors come May.

It's work that starts literally as the last guests are leaving the park on the final "Halloweekend" in October. "After the park closes that evening we started doing some of the demolition on the Gemini Midway because it's such a tight timeline," said Cedar Point's new General Manager Jason McClure.

Crews are in the process of making a number of changes including the addition of two new rides for the family.

"We hear a lot," McClure said of visitor feedback. "Everybody wants a new roller coaster but then we hear a lot to about those in between rides you know my kids want to move up from the children's rides but they're not quite tall enough yet for Millennium Force."

And that is why next season's new rides will fit the bill starting with "Pipe Scream" a combination flat ride/coaster that runs up and down along a 300-foot long.

"Parents are going to love to ride it with their kids, adults that don't have kids are going to want to find a kid to ride it because it's just really an exciting ride," McClure said "40 mph - 40 feet in the air, kind of like being on a skateboard."

"Lake Erie Eagles" is the other ride under construction. It's a circular throwback but one with a twist. "You control your ride experience there's a flap on the front and depending on how you move it you know how high you go, how low you stay and how quick you move between the two," he said.

McClure is also new to the park this year taking over as general manager full time in January.

"That first time driving across the causeway and seeing the park out in front you... it is an impressive moment, it kind of sinks in a little bit at that time," he said.

While he's anxious to get the season started he's also comfortable with using this quiet time to make sure all cylinders are go.

"I'm happy to have some time to get to know the team," he said.

Adding the rides is just part of the process in tackling the Gemini Midway.

"When we address an area, we really address it completely, we want it to be a nicer place to spend time.

"We're adding more shade, more lighting, more atmosphere in the park.  We always want to strike that balance between legacy and history."

The park opens to the public this year on Saturday, May 10.

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