End the ride with some quick turns. Photo by Savannah Hayes
End the ride with some quick turns. Photo by Savannah Hayes

A ride fit for a Chief… ArieForce One

There's a new roller coaster in Fayetteville - it boasts the Largest Zero-G Stall in the USA

Apr 20, 2023

On Fri. March 31 members of the McIntosh STEM program and STEM teacher Seth Bishop set out on a field trip to Fun Spot Atlanta, located in Fayetteville, Georgia, to learn about the engineering and participate in the grand opening of the ArieForce One Coaster. A few McIntosh Student Media members were invited to join to cover the event.

Funspot Atlanta is located about twenty minutes from McIntosh by car and is technically located in Fayetteville rather than Atlanta. Bishop drove the bus and picked up students from Whitewater and Sandy Creek that were also attending the roller coaster opening.

“I am going to go into the field of environmental science and engineering, which deals with some principles of mechanical engineering related to the trip,” senior Emily White said.

Included in the ceremony were comments by Fayetteville Mayor Mitch Colvin, Roller coaster designers, park owners, and singing of the national anthem. Immediately following the speeches guest were surprised by the fireworks surrounding ArieForce One and first responders were honored with the first ride.

STEM students enjoyed a conference with both a roller coaster engineer and an astronaut following their riding experience. They were given the chance to ask whatever they wanted to learn more about the ride or how the men gained their positions.

“My favorite question that I asked the engineer was what was his favorite roller coaster, and I explained that mine was a twisted colossus at Six Flags, Magic Mountain, in California. He explained that he loved the ‘top gun’ moment in the ride and I agreed,” senior Jayden Kypri said.

“I asked the engineers why they chose their careers and what their favorite physics principles were, and they both responded that they had loved planes since they were little, which inspired them to continue in their careers. They also said that their favorite physics principles had to do with flight as well,” White said.

ArieForce One ride time is about 100 seconds with a maximum speed of 64 miles per hour for the 3400-foot track length. The ride includes not only one but two zero-G rolls, and the first drop is 146 feet at an 83-degree angle.

“The second question I asked was to the astronaut [it] was if he had seen ‘Interstellar.’ Everyone laughed, and he did explain that he thought it was super cool, and it was kind of relatable to what he had been through,” Kypri said.

Other rides across the park include a smaller roller coaster, carnival rides, kid rides and many go-kart attractions. Not only do they have a good bit of other rides, but they also have an arcade and some food options in case a guest might want to grab a quick snack.

As of Spring Break, Fun Spot has been hiring workers 16 and older. Starting salary is based at 13.25 and the summer bonus can be between 50 cents to two dollars thus wage including the bonus can be 15.25. Some benefits include career development, two raises a year, discounted park passes and food, and a birthday paid time off.

“It was absolutely amazing to be one of the first people on the roller coaster. It was particularly great for me because I was so proud to see such a famous engineering marvel be installed in my hometown,” White said.

OPINION: Is FunSpot a “fun spot”?

Members of the McIntosh Trail were invited to accompany the MHS STEM program to cover the unveiling of the park and ArieForce One. In an interview, Editor-in-Chief Rebekah Bushmire and Staff Writer Ava Flores give their reviews of the park. 


AVA: “Going into our trip, I had very low expectations, but I ended up very pleasantly surprised. I hadn’t been to Fun Spot before, and all the people I asked about it said that it was not very nice. The park was clean and the ride, Aerie Force One, was awesome. The staff seemed well organized and everyone knew what they were doing.

REBEKAH: “Before the field trip, I had never been to Funspot. I didn’t know much about it at all, I had heard things about it but never read into it that much. So I was pretty neutral opinion-wise. Once we got there, I was pleasantly surprised.”

AVA: “Due to the information I heard before I went to a Fun Spot, I am wondering if they cleaned the park more than usual knowing that they had reporters coming. Pictures of the park that we saw on the website did not look as clean as the park did in person.”

Editor-in-Chief Rebekah Bushmire speaks with a FunSpot employee before the opening ceremony (Savannah Hayes)

REBEKAH: “Entry was very smooth. They have a small metal detector you walk through and you hand off bags to be checked. I do really like the precaution and safety aspect that it gives us. The MHS STEM kids attending were given ‘Guest’ passes, I believe, but those of who were attending as representatives of McIntosh Student Media, we received “Media” passes. They had our names and publication names on them. After that, we were taken to a room where they had pastries for us. We stayed in the room for maybe ten minutes and then we went to where the opening ceremony was being held. Once we got to the opening ceremony, we watched the introductions and the information said to us and then they set off fireworks. One of the coordinators actually came and talked with me because he had heard we were from a high school media team.”


AVA: “On the ride there is a seatbelt that you connect and then you put a harness over it. The harness locks right before the ride takes off. This feature freaked many participants out.”

Grace Lovejoy

REBEKAH: “Once you sit in the seat, there is a sort of seatbelt type of buckle that you clip over your lap. Then, you pull the big harness thing over your lap and that will lock to keep you in place. It took a while for it to actually lock in place and it made me freak out a little because I thought it was broken.

AVA: “The first few seconds of the ride, you go down a hill and then on a bunch of little hills quickly. This followed by going up a large hill that leads to a big drop. After the large drop, the ride doesn’t lose speed until the end. You go upside down, sideways, and over many small hills. The ride is a zero-g roller coaster. This means that the roller coaster goes 360 degrees throughout the ride.”

REBEKAH: “The ride was so unimaginable. The speed and turns and everything were crazy. It was, I think, the best roller coaster ride I have ever been on. It was like one thing after another and the first big drop was insane. We got to the top and I genuinely thought I was about to pass out. I am definitely a screamer on a roller coaster because I didn’t stop screaming the entire ride. Everyone ended up laughing at me when it stopped because I screamed so much. When we got back into the little docking station and unloaded off the ride, my legs were all jelly and numb. I went to talk and my voice was hoarse and all broken like I had been to a concert and lost my voice. That was a big cause of laughter among the McIntosh kids.”


AVA: “I definitely recommend the AireForce One to anyone who enjoys roller coasters and definitely go check out Funspot.”

REBEKAH: “We ended up riding a few more times before leaving and it was so much fun, Savannah Hayes and I actually went back after we returned from the field trip when the park actually opened to the public.”

FunSpot is open to the public Fri. from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., and on Sat-Sun. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Their calendar is here.

Slideshow: ArieForce One Opening

On Friday March 31, Funspot America Atlanta opened a new ride the ArieForce One Rollercoaster.

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About the Contributors
Photo of Savannah Hayes
Savannah Hayes, News Editor

McIntosh High School senior Savannah Hayes is serving her second year as the McIntosh Trail’s news editor. Hayes has been on the Trail staff since 2021...

Photo of Grace Lovejoy
Grace Lovejoy, Features Editor

Grace Lovejoy is serving as the Features Editor for the McIntosh Trail this year. Lovejoy is a sophomore this year and ia McIntosh Ambassador and a Gold...

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