Centennial Screamer was one of two rides installed at Lagoon in 1987 to celebrate the park's 100th operating season. It opened in April 1987, and was manufactured By: Huss Maschinenfabrik, Bremen, Germany. It is located in South Midway next to the Musik Express.
The ride consists of 20 cars around a wheel. When you first enter the ride the wheel is in a horizontal position. Once the doors are shut and the latches checked the ride begins to rotate in a clockwise direction gaining speed until riders are held in place by centrifugal force. At this point the arm attached to the wheel begins to slowly raise to a vertical position (87°) sending riders upside down.
While the ride looks very repetitive and nauseating, the ride experience is very different. Most passengers find the ride very enjoyable and smooth.
One of the most interesting aspects to this ride is the lack of safety harnesses. A couple of bars on both sides helps give the feeling of being "locked in", but there are no seat belts or lap bars. Through some well designed engineering, a persons body weight and the centrifugal force in motion are almost equal creating a feeling of weightlessness while ensuring that you remain in your seat.
The ride is commonly called just "Screamer", "You've got to be kidding me", and "No way, I'm not riding that!".
In 2008 Lagoon repainted the space backdrop adding the name of the ride to it and a spaceship. They also removed the lighted Screamer sign that used to sit on top of the backdrop.
Although Schwarzkopf is probably better known as a roller coaster manufacturer, the company also made a variety of flat rides. One of these was the Enterprise, introduced in the early 1970s. Soon after, Huss started making its own Enterprise that became very popular.
The Enterprise is like a fast-moving Ferris Wheel that loads riders while on its side. As it begins spinning horizontally, the gondolas swing outward and a hydraulic arm raises the wheel to a near-vertical position. In the late ’70s, Huss developed the concept further with the UFO . On this model, riders stood facing the center of the wheel in gondolas that didn’t swing. Lagoon had a Huss UFO east of Jet Star 2 for a single season in 1982. A larger, higher capacity Enterprise called Sky Lab was designed by Huss in the ’80s.
Lagoon’s Enterprise was the sixth and final Huss ride¹ to open at the park. It arrived in 1987 when the park celebrated its centennial year. In honor of that milestone, the ride was dubbed the Centennial Screamer. A Zierer Wave Swinger named Turn Of The Century also opened later that season. The Screamer took a spot next to Musik Express which had been occupied by the Space Scrambler from 1982 to 1986. It was at that point that the Scrambler was moved to its present location.