The Greg Brady Project

Welcome to the official Barry Williams' blog

My friends call me Barry. From time to time I also hear the name Greg. Yeah, as in Greg Brady. The Brady Bunch represents a fun time in my life. But it’s only part of the story. There’s more to say and that’s what The Greg Brady Project is all about – a place to say it. So, I’ve invited some friends to join me and share their perspectives on the Brady’s, the 70′s and just about everything else. Now, I’m inviting you…

06 Jul
Bob Hunt

King’s Island Daredevils

written by Bob Hunt in Blog | 1 comment


Looking backward. Some people think it’s a good idea, while others believe the opposite. The folks at King’s Island near Cincinnati seem to be simultaneously embracing both sides of the argument this summer. They’ve been celebrating their 37th season by inviting the descendants of daredevils to recreate the feats that their ancestors performed for park guests in the 70′s. On May 24, Robbie Knievel, son of legendary stuntman Evel, jumped over 24 Coke Zero trucks to beat Dad’s old record of 14 Greyhound buses in 1975. Rick Wallenda honored the 1974 1,800-ft. tightrope walk of his late grandfather, Karl (who fell from a highwire to his death four years later), by completing a 2,000-ft. walk high above King’s Island last Friday. In another nod to history, the park is now running both sides of its Racer roller coaster in the original front-facing orientation for the first time since they flipped one set of trains around in 1982. So much for looking backward.

As for me, I can’t help but glance in the rearview mirror. It was 35 years ago this summer that the cast and crew of The Brady Bunch descended upon King’s Island to film what would become one of their most memorable episodes, The Cincinnati Kids. According to the fan site King’s Island Central, the famous football toss is still there, along with an unchanged administrative boardroom where Mike was seen unfurling Jan’s poster instead of his architectural plans. You can still stand before the signature International Street Fountains and gaze up at a one-third replica of the Eiffel Tower. And of course, the Racer is still racing. Nearly everything else has changed, however.

Back in 1973, the Racer was a force to be reckoned with. Now its top height of 88 feet, the 50-degree angle of its initial drop, and its maximum speed of 53 mph exist in quaint contrast to the intimidating stats of modern coasters. Even so, it’s no kiddie ride. As Barry recalls in Growing Up Brady, were it not for the uncompromising intervention of Robert Reed, your complete series DVD set of The Brady Bunch might be a season short. It was Reed who insisted on clearance measurements and trial runs of the Racer with its mounted camera rig before the cast would be permitted to board. It soon became clear to all involved that not having taken this precaution would have been disastrous, as the empty coaster returned to the platform devoid not only of passengers but the camera as well.

So here’s to the 37th season of King’s Island, the 35th anniversary of The Cincinnati Kids, and the memory of a pesky Shakespearean actor whose thrill-ride prudence was as responsible as the character he portrayed. And here’s to the Brady Bunch, the original daredevils of King’s Island.

 

1 Comment

    [...] and provide memorable meet-n-greet and autograph opportunities for Brady fans of all ages.  As we reported previously, King’s Island has been steeped in nostalgia this summer, what with classic park stunts of [...]

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