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A couple of weeks ago a fellow enthusiast and friend wrote a blog that I strongly agree with. There is an underlying toxicity in the enthusiast community. However there is also a underlying element that if you take the time to look for it is very rewarding. A true acceptance and sense of family!
I have been riding (loving) roller coasters for over 40 years, unfortunately I was basically alone with my family and friends. I mean they all like roller coasters for the most part, but I was the only one that truly had an enthusiasm for them. We would all go to Cedar Point together regularly, but whenever I would say “Let’s go to King’s Island,” or “Let’s go to Great America,” they would look at me like I was out of my mind. The response was, “Let's just wait until Cedar Point gets a new coaster.” Very frustrating to say the least, however I was able to talk them over the years to go to Kings Island ONCE, but that was it. There was even a couple of family vacations to Florida, but that was it for my coaster travels.
Over the years the internet became my way of finding new coasters. Several websites materialized in the late 90’s and early 2000’s and I was enthralled at the vast amount of coasters not only in North America but the world. Then when YouTube came along. Oh my was I overwhelmed at the amount of content that was now available to all. Still it really wasn’t completely gratifying, I would still go to Cedar Point and Michigan’s Adventure regularly, my home park. We stretched our wings with a trip to Holiday World, but something was missing.
Then about three to four years ago by accident I came across an episode of COASTER-net Uncut. Well like the classic line goes, “You had me at hello.” I couldn’t get enough of it, I started watching all the of the previous episodes it was fantastic. I wish I could tell you why exactly it just clicked with me. After that I started to follow the website and found the forums. I participated in them but sparingly, it was closer to what I was looking for but it was still lacking something.
Then six months ago I came across The Ride Warrior Discord. As the late great Harry Caray would say, “HOLY COW!” Words are not enough to say how awesome my Discord experience has been. It is special and unique and all other kinds of superlatives. I had no idea how this community would effect me in such a positive matter. I do admit I look forward to talking to the other Discord members. Whether they have over a 1000 credits or 10. I know I have made lifetime friendships. After thirty years of searching I found my coaster family.
Is COASTER-net (Ride Warrior Discord) the right place for you? I do not know. Each individual is different. Take your time, look, and get a feel for what you are truly looking for. Find your coaster family and new lifetime friends. I leave you all with a verse from the bible. John 11:35 is the most meaningful verse in the bible for me. Jesus Wept for his best friend. For me it shows how important friends are in one’s life. And man they most certainly are. Take care my friends and God bless.