Boldy's Beer and Airtime Adventures

UPDATE: July 4th Fest @ Great Adventure w/ Fireworks!!!
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Boldy's Beer and Airtime Adventures

Postby boldikus » Wed Apr 04, 2018 4:07 am

So in keeping my reports tidy and in one place I've decided to just keep them all in one thread from now on. Welcome to Boldy's Beer and Airtime Adventures. Scroll down to the first trip of the year - opening day at Kings Dominion featuring Twisted Timbers!!! If you're just joining us here are some links to a few of my greatest hits:

Maiden Voyage to SFA (Six Flags America, Sept 2014)
Boldy Does Dorney (Dorney's Haunt, Sept 2014)
Pilgrimage to the Point (Cedar Point & Kennywood, May 2015)
Coasting For Kids (Dorney Park, June 2015)
Back for Haunt (Dorney Park, October 2015)
Coastin' In the Deep South (Six Flags Over Georgia, April 2016)
Cape May Brewery & Mid Summer Riding (Moreys, July 2016)
Now We're In The Blue Period (Coasterbill & Brits first visit to Moreys, July 2016)
Breakfast In The Sky! (Moreys, Aug 2016)
Virgin Visit to Virginia (Kings Dominion & Busch Williamsburg, Oct 2016)
The Gang Hit Hershey! (Troegs Brewery & Hersheypark, Oct 2016)
A Return to Six Flags Armpit (Six Flags America, Nov 2016)
Opening Day (Great Adventure, Mar 2017)
A Wicked Fahkin Weekend (Six Flags New England & Lake Compounce, June 2017)
Oktoberfest @ the Jersey Shore (Moreys Piers, Sept 2017)
Boldy's Birthday Bash (Seaworld, Funspot and Busch Tampa, Dec 2017)
Holiday In the Park (Great Adventure, Dec 2017)
Kings Dominion Opening Day, March 2018 (see below)
Busch Gardens Williamsburg Opening Weekend (March 2018)
Food Truck & Craft Beer Fest (Great Adventure, April 2018)
Mudhen & Mariners (Moreys, May 2018)
Philadelphia Chinese Lantern Festival (Franklin Square, June 2018)
July 4th Fest (Great Adventure, July 2018)

You'll also find countless reports by myself in the Moreys and Great Adventure threads. Enjoy.


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*** KINGS DOMINION OPENING WEEKEND 2018 ***
So here we are. A new year, a new season and now a new trip report. The planning for this particular trip probably started during my last visit to Virginia in 2016 with Coasterbill and his bride-to-be Brittany, only the plan involved returning as a foursome/double date type of thing sometime last season. However, life happens and we weren't able to sync up a weekend good for all of us. As you all know we did get to meet up and hang out a bunch last year, just not in Virginia.

Fast forward to the opening of Kings Dominions all new Twisted Timbers fast approaching, Bill informed me late last year of his and Brit's plans to make another return trip to Virginia's wonderful playlands (with a stop at Busch Gardens as well) in early March - opening weekend in fact. I was welcomed to tag along and began my quest to convince the missus to join us. Unfortunately a wedding prevented her from doing so, but she assured me she was OK with me heading down to get my much needed fix.

As the off season dragged on, I got further hyped for this roadtrip, not only to check out the shiny new RMC, but also to get into some other quality riding at the Virginia parks. At some point in our planning our good pal, and mild enthusiast Imri decided to join us for the day at Kings Dominion.

Weather, always a risk when planning a trip this early in the season in this part of the country, was all over the place in the weeks leading up to it - spring like days trading barbs with multiple obnoxious snowstorms. Even the week of, the forecast for opening day jumped from freezing rain to sunny skies to snow and back again. In spite of this, a week prior we hesitantly booked a couple rooms. Being the cheap asses we are, opted for two Econo Lodges, one for Friday in Ruther Glen, VA, about 10 minutes north of Kings Dominion, and a second for Saturday night, right in Williamsburg, less than ten minutes from Busch Gardens.

Neither of us are hotel snobs and both Econo Lodges had decent Trip Advisor reviews/ratings. As long as its reasonably clean and there's hot water and no bugs, I don't mind budget hotels since on a park trip I'm literally only sleeping and showering there, and in fact find it silly anyone would splurge on a hotel for a park trip unless its pricey due to proximity and convenience (I.e. Breakers, Dreammore).

Fortunately the weather turned throughout the week, with a nagging little snowstorm popping up a few days ahead of the planned media day and passholder previews, originally scheduled for Thursday and Friday, respectively. We purposefully booked hotels with free cancellation policies but by Friday morning we decided we didn't have to worry about that and all systems were go.

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Just a short drive.

As I was leaving work Friday, just before 5pm I got a text from Bill that they were on the road and should reach Philly a little before 8, and that we should arrive in Ruther Glen a little before midnight. I hurried home from work, stopping to hit a few last minute errands, home to pack, and they arrived right on time. Great to see them again, I hopped in the back of Bills' Honda and we were off. The almost four-hour trip down was uneventful, but seemed to fly by. Between nerdgasm coaster talk by Bill and I, sports chat between Bill and Brit, and life, work and general yapping among the three of us its amazing how fast the time flies. Noteworthy: we actually didn't hit any DC traffic. Its an opening weekend miracle.

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On the road again...

Leading up to this I've been eatin' good and stayin' active, keeping the drinking to a minimum, and slowly dropping some pounds. However on the car ride down I declared all of that would stop since I was now on vacation for 2 days. Somewhere after DC, our stomachs growling, we abandoned the highway and found ourselves a good ol' Mickey Dees. I know its awful and probably not even really food but I eat it a few times a year. Somehow at 10:30 at night this McDonalds was busier than it probably is during lunch rush, nevertheless we got our grub to go and were back on 95 as fast as possible.

Not before long we arrived at our lodging, all of us completely beat after working all day, followed by a very long drive. Bill and I checked us in to our respective rooms and with barely a 'good night' through our yawns, went our separate ways on opposite sides of the hotel, agreeing to be ready to go by 9am. The park wasn't opening for passholders til 11 (11:30 for the general public), but we had a Waffle House just down the street from us and goddamn it, its a Virginia road trip tradition.

So... the Ruther Glen Econo Lodge. Holy shit. Looks fine on the outside, but what a dump. I'm not even gonna get into it here cause I'm over it but if you feel like looking you can find my reviews on Trip Advisor/Yelp. Gross.

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Most important meal of the day.... is bacon.

The Waffle House was as awesome as every other Waffle House is, I don't know if I'll ever wrap my head around how it is they have your food out so quickly. I had a "lighter" breakfast of just eggs, some toast, bacon and coffee, Brit struggled to find anything remotely healthy on the menu, while Bill kept it traditional and went in on some waffles. The highlight of our visit was while walking in - Bill spotted a woman walking out holding a bottle of syrup, her friend asking her if she paid for it. The lowlight was a creeper enthusiast spotting Bills Dollywood hat and interrupting our conversation to yell about how he could tell we were headed to the same place as he.

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So glad we didn't cancel on account of the weather.

Once we finished up we headed out and had a quick drive over to the park, arriving 45 minutes early. We got right through the parking lot booths and managed to find a spot very close to the gate. There was a marching band playing at the main gate, and some folks had lined up, but it didn't seem particularly busy for the opening day of a new coaster.

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photo by Imri

The whole national anthem thing at Cedar Fair parks in the morning is so forced and weird and as usual I obliviously continued my conversation over top of it like a jackass until I realized everyone else was silent and turned around to face the flag. America is strange.

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Since I am not a Cedar Fair passholder (and Bill, Britt and Imri are), during the presidents Day sale last month I snagged a great deal on admission and Fast Lane + ($70 all told!), figuring even if opening weekend fell through, I still had all season to use it. However this meant they all had to buy FL+ if they wanted to keep up with me. Being opening day of a new RMC, everyone was on board. Upon entering we darted to the right and found no wait and plenty of helpful employees at the "upgrade your day" counter.

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We headed down the wooded path next to the turnpike cars and wondered if we never walked through this path when I was here in 2016. Nicest area of the entire park. That they are piping in a soundtrack of crickets and wild animal sounds is the best.

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11am and already 100 people lined up. photo by Bill

As we made our way back into the refreshed southern end of Candy Apple Grove and came upon the shiny new RMC, we couldn't help but note how long the line already was. The ride looks great, with the twisted barrel roll drop front and center as you round the corner to the entrance.

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The theming is very basic, but there are some nice touches around the ride and queue.

FL+ wristbands proudly displayed we walked right past that growing line, right into the FL queue, and right up into the station where we'd enjoy our first encounter with one of the best groupers ever (and also a Kim Davis doppelganger), her giddily asking where we wanted to sit and sorta-granting our wish by giving us the second-to-last car (we asked for the back).

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Hype! photo by Bill

Bill and Brit in front of me, Imri hadn't show up yet, I got paired with a budding enthusiast no older than 16 who immediately asked if we were enthusiasts. I asked him what he meant, to which he responded "If you don't know, then you're not" while we all gave each other the look. Youngbuck then proceeded to practically bust a nut on the queue gates while describing how excited he was for this moment.

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I wished we had walked back through the regular queue just to check out some of the themeing.

While waiting to board we also caught a walk of shame, me hoping my recent run of healthy eatin' was going to pay off. Finally the gates opened and we boarded, fastened my belt and pulled down my lapbar with maybe a half inch to spare, figuring the ops would push it down further if need be. When we got to me he just pulled on my seatbelt and lapbar and soon enough we got the all clear. Not only did I fit, I fit comfortably!

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Up the loudass RMC lift we went, and crept over the edge before picking up speed as we rounded the corner and errr - barreled down that ridiculous barrel roll drop. Bill and Brit had ridden Storm Chaser so they had an idea of what to expect but this was new to Imri and I. What a way to start off a ride.

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But ain't nobody got time for that.

In the back of the train, its a true zero-G moment as you get absolutely whipped down it, gaining considerable speed as you hit the first speed hump giving a tiny pop of ejector air before soaring around that first overbank into a second tiny speed hump popping you out of your seat. Then, what I consider the highlight in a ride full of the them - the three straight "El Toro" hills. Good god. If you've ridden The Bull you understand what sustained ejector airtime feels like: popping out and staying out of your seat. And while these hills are considerably smaller than Toros massive humps, its made up for by having three of them.

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The signage and station look good.

When you get through those, it doesn't let up - another speed hump with a bit of some laterals provided by the slight turn to it which leads into the inverted cutback at the far end of the ride. In the back seat it takes this element so fast and furiously you blink and you miss it - nevertheless its glorious. For a brief flash you're looking at the park upside down before manically flipped right side up again, the train relentlessly tearing into the run back toward the station: a pair of sharp ejector hills that lead into the trick-track/double up (that is just straight f*#ked up) and into another ejector hill before the most ridiculous part of the ride.

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The turn into and out of and the outward banked hill under the lift is the absolutely bonkers. Another pop into the ground level zero G roll and around the two final turns, which by that point offer a welcome breather in the form of some twistiness to offset the buffet of airtime you just experienced. As you line back up with the brake run the train hits one last sharp hill, savagely tossing you out of your seat one last time before you float up into the brakes.

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photo by Imri

Lucky for us the FL queue never built up as our awesome grouper was doing a fabulous job of pairing people up and cranking through both sides of that line. Of course after finally linking up with Imri, we walked around for lap two in hopes for the very back or front, and wound up going for another ride all the way in the back. Absolutely incredible. This ride is a ground level airtime assault. My only other RMC is Wicked Cyclone and while I could find a few parallels, that ride feels like its got a lot more tricks up its sleeve and feels more "all over the place", meanwhile Twisted Timbers has just a small handful of twisty moments buried in a ride focused on providing an overabundance of airtime. Don't take that as a complaint.

We spent a bit of time in the area getting a few more laps as the FL queue remained virtually a 1-3 train wait for us. While queuing up for a second lap who did we spot in line but JRice92 who had Password121 with him, as well as ElToroRyan, with a whole crew of pals.

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Impromptu TPR Apple Zapple takeover. photo by Bill

After that lap we all met up at the rides entrance and decided that since Apple Zapple was being completely ignored by all other park guests, its was time for a takeover. Snapping a quick group selfie, we headed into the queue and had some laughs while we waited to ride. During my last visit in 2016 the closest we got to this area was Windseeker, so this was a credit for me. The new paint looks great, and to be honest - this is a great mouse! Funky layout, no brakes, lots of crazy laterals and a pop or two of air.

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Awesome mouse!

I'm a big dude so wild mice scare the sh*t out of me - I'm unreasonably convinced my weight is going to cause the wheel assemblies to fail on those hairpin turns, and Apple Zapple with no brakes definitely put that fear in me. We never made it back on AZ the rest of the day, but its a good little ride.

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Photo by Imri

Of course upon exiting we couldn't help but jump on Twisted Timbers one more time before we left the area. We split off from the group in search of suds, heading around towards the section of the park where the Intamins are. But getting a fistful of rides on a brand new shiny RMC is a tremendous way to start the day.

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Photo by Imri

On the way we couldn't help but notice how nice and 'ready' the park looked for opening day. I've said it many times before, but Kings Dominion is so far my favorite Cedar Fair park on an aesthetic level. It's quite lush save for a few open areas like around Dominator and I305. I don't know how to describe it but this park has this sorta old school grit to it that I find to be a contrast to the clean lines of the other CF parks I've visited (Dorney and Cedar Point).

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The singing mushrooms refused to perform for us. Or somebody forgot to turn them on.

So in 2016 I had an all-day dining thingy and could only use it at certain places, and one of those was Outer Hanks, located just behind The Crypt. Food selections are fried things: fish and chips, chicken fingers, other fried things. And they also have beer. Last time they wouldn't accept my totally legit State of Pennsylvania ID for some dumb reason (even though they accepted it elsewhere in the park later that day) so we had Bill buy my beer that time. This time we were preemptive and I had Brit, who was not drinking, buy me a beer. If I recall correctly they did have an issue with Imri's legit driver license here and it took like 4 of them to finally ring up a couple of beers for us, but that's opening day. We got sorted and had a seat in the courtyard out front where we had a nice view of a consistently running Volcano.

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It's beer o'clock!

They had four taps, all of which were different Center of the Universe brews. I forget what everyone else had but I tried the Slingshot, which for my first beer in over a month, was rather tasty.

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We shot the sh*t for a while, figuring out a game plan for the next few rides, before finishing up our beers and heading over to Volcano, figuring we should get a certain old cranky Intamin launcher out of the way before it inevitably goes down at some point.

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Every Kings Dominion trip report should feature Brit saying hello to her elephant friend. Also of note: someone didn't consider the cold air when dressing for the day. Photo by Bill

Once again our FL+ blessed us with the ability to skip passed a sizable line, and we were dumped right into the station, lining up for rows 2 and 3. Imri really wanted to ride in the front but the rest of us didn't feel like waiting an extra 5 or 6 trains. Vetoed! I learned in 2016 Volcano is a fantastic ride in the front but its also great really anywhere in the train. While I was a tiny bit concerned about the lapbars on Twisted Timbers, my main reason for dropping some pounds was due to the a fact that during my last visit the OTSRs on Volcano, Griffon, and Alpengeist were all a very tight squeeze. I managed - I've actually never gotten a walk of shame for any ride somehow, but I was hoping I wouldn't have similar issues today.

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Time to blast off. Photo by Bill

We boarded and I was elated to discover I fit with room to spare! The launches on this ride are astonishing, I always forget how intense that second one up the inside of the Volcano is. Even still, the trains were really crawling on this cold morning, as evidenced by the *almost* rollback we got when the train practically stopped at the top of the element with our feet pointed toward the sky. A very strange sensation hanging upside down up there for what felt like a few seconds (though was likely much shorter), and the rest of the run around the top of the volcano we took extremely slow, with some serious hangtime through the barrel rolls. It was a completely different ride, but was more neat than lame. Even though it feels a bit anticlimactic, I still love that final drop down into the brakes.

In 2016 I missed Flight of Fear since they were using its queue for a Haunt, and as a big fan of Jokers Jinx @ SFA, I was really looking forward to riding this indoor version of the same coaster. As we approached it started to feel like this ride just doesn't like me as we found it closed with the greeter turning folks away. Dang!

While that stinks, a massive, completely ridiculous Intamin was right next door and waving hello to us from 305 feet in the sky. We'll try Flight Of Fear again later, it's time to start our engines.

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Face the intensity. Photo by Imri

Of course we anticipated absolutely no need for Fast Lane on Intimidator, as it seems it truly intimidates the masses (or they just won't ride it again) and the line stays virtually non-existent. I found that on a busy Haunt night in 2016, and again today we walked up to a half empty station. Of course we still used the FL queue because we're lazy. It is really strange that the biggest/fastest/craziest ride in any park would never have a line. But that's I305. And I'm not complaining.

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"Black Out Stunt Coaster"

Of course the front had a little bit of a wait so we happily jumped in the last two rows. This ride is absolutely insane. The drop off the lift in the back seat provides incredibly good airtime, and I grey out every time on that first turn. We jokingly said we were gonna try all the remedies - breathing exercises, clenching our buttholes, etc but when you're in the moment its hard to concentrate on any of that. So seeing stars it is. Every. Single. Ride.

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The rest of the ride is relentless in its intensity. The cold air bit at my face as we raced around the track at mach speeds. What more is there to say about I305? It's like nothing else. Once again, I got off in amazement of its actual existence. Like... someone designed this. Someone approved this. Someone paid for this. Contracts were signed. They actually f**king built this ride. It blows my mind.

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Check out ElToroRyans' newest Youtube video, all offride footage shot the day of this report.
If you look closely you can spot us in it (no, really!)


Upon exiting we walked right around and hopped on again toward the front, noting on the way how the park basically ripped out the entire gift shop and replaced it with a crapton of fluffy, fluffy bunnies filled with medicine and goo. After, we did check on Flight of Fear but found it to still be closed, and we asked Imri if he had ridden Avalanche, since we skipped right past it earlier and the other three of us enjoy it, and he hadn't.

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Photo by Bill.

Still having never been to Knoebels (don't shoot me!), the only other bobsled style coaster I've ridden was Sarajevo Bobsled when it was @ Great Adventure and I was like 8 and don't really remember it. We did Avalanche in 2016 and I got to ride front row, and ended up really liking it, especially the last speedy bit. This time we queued up for the back few rows, and I loved it even more back there. It's a strange sensation to be on a coaster not attached to a track. Not top tier, but definitely a must ride @ this park.

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Actual snow on on the mountain, how appropriate. Photo by Bill.

So yeah I don't give a rats A$$ if you think I'm on some credit whore sh*t but I really wanted to ride Woodstock Express. I missed it in 2016 as we naturally avoided it all day and when we finally tired of doing all the good stuff, the Snoopy area of the park was shut down due to our visit happening during Haunt. Well, now we were in the area and having hit all the mandatory machines, and with the crowds being so thin, I declared I wanted to give it a go. Not that I should have to justify why I rode, but it's a perfectly respectable family coaster, as well as the parks oldest operating coaster. Imri and Brit scoffed at the idea of riding but good old Bill was in the game!

The line was very short but with one train running (as always, from what I understood) we waited 10 minutes. While we did so, we discussed how hilarious a ride it would be if we each tried to climb in next to each other but ultimately decided that would make our lap on this junior woodie much more cringey than simply being the only two adult dudes riding this coaster without a child. A really small train, I fit with my legs crossed, we sat toward the front, and found it to be a fun little ride with a few tIny little pops of mild airtime in a spot or two. No photos, no evidence of our indiscretions.

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This brought us around to the one and only Dominator! I love this ride. We walked right into the station here and agreed to give Imri the magic seat (back row, left side), since he had yet to sit there.

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The ride was absurd as always, feeling a bit more like a hypercoaster around those two turns after the giant hangtime-producing vertical loop. The pop off the midcourse gives the best air I've felt on a floorless, and it takes the finale/corkscrews so smoothly. I wish they somehow squeezed in a zero-G but I'm OK without it. It's so perfectly paced.

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Having now hit all the other 'must-dos', and having not really used our fast passes, we decided we needed more beer and more Twisted Timbers, so we headed that way.

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Such a nice area of the park. Photo by Imri.

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Photo by Imri.

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Photo by Imri.

I should note we hadn't seen Drop Tower move all day, a bit of a bummer since its so good but for opening day they had the majority of the large attractions operating without issue. Also closed was the Eiffel Tower. Lame.

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We were stoked to run into Josh and the gang again, and found a fairly short fast pass queue so we decided to very nicely ask the flabbergasted young girl now assigned to grouper if we could queue for the front row, and after some hemming and hawing, she said OK. All of us lined up for the front, and though we wouldn't be able to ride together but we'd at least all be able to give the front a shot. I know I talked crap on the 'rust' look of the trains but seriously how awesome are they?

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I was probably talking sh*t about the 'rust' right before this was taken lolz
Photo by Brit (shout out to Kim Davis bombing!)

As mentioned in the Kings Dominion thread I stumbled upon this guy Zach Clarkes photostream on Flickr while trolling for TT opening day shots hoping I might find some of us since we rode it so much, and was thrilled to find a few photos of myself and Imri, Bill and Brit and Josh and his friend, all riding in the front row. I reached out to Zach and was able to get his permission to use his excellent photos in my trip report. Check out his Youtube and Flickr. And thanks again Zach!

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Imri and I in row 1. photo by Zach Clarke.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/zachclarke2/

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Bill and Brit. photo by Zach Clarke.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/zachclarke2/

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Josh aka JRice92 + friend. photo by Zach Clarke.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/zachclarke2/

The ride was nice and warmed up now and took the second half considerably faster. It certainly wasn't sluggish in the morning but by now it was really ripping. Riding in the front provides quite a different experience, the airtime is equally amazing and I don't know if I'd pick one over the over. I feel the same way about Wicked Cyclone. Its a push into the hills as opposed to a yank over them, but just as forceful and equally enjoyable.

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Photo by Bill

So if you've been following along you know that in 2016 I rode the parks woodie-in-the-woods (aka Grizzly), and cracked a rib on the side of the train. As any ride warrior would, I soldiered on and continued in spite of the pain, thanks to a bunch of beer. The first of these rides was the ride formerly known as Rebel Yell. It seemed to provide a smooth, air-filled ride that caused me to wince in pain every time my butt slammed back down on the seat. Dejected upon exiting, I vowed to return when I wasn't broken.

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My ulterior motive for riding was that we only rode it once last time so if it was in fact racing (as it was supposed to with its recent panty-twisting name change to Racer75) I could get the other side.

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Geeks photographing geeks

The ride was actually totally awesome. I got a glimpse of that before but now I could truly enjoy the thing. Imri and I sat in the front with Bill and Brit behind us, and we all found it to be running really well. We got tons of really good airtime all over the ride, they were racing and it was running really smoothly. I believe they'd recently done work to it and it shows. Absolutely a surprise highlight of the day.

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Photo by Imri

Moving along in search of more ride-induced delirium, we had a stop at the parks giant frisbee. My issue with this ride is that the restrains lower automatically and were very tight for me last time. I also found the rides cycle to be very short. This time around the ride provided a longer cycle, and I didn't feel as trapped which allowed me to get a few moments of great air.

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I just love how huge these rides are. If you're lucky enough to be facing down on a full swing you just kinda float there looking straight down and it feels like time slows down.

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The park has a decent set of flyers and apparently the ride ops never give a crap if you snap/attempt to snap. Imri is a thrill guy and at first kinda scoffed at the idea of riding them, calling them a kiddie ride. We explained the whole snapping thing as best as we could and convinced him to try it. Fast Lane came in handy here, we jumped a whole bunch of little kids because we're A$$*les. :lol: I was getting some really good swings but never snapped, though someone was, because that sound is loud and honestly sounds like the ride is breaking. :lol: Flyers are a good laugh.

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No photos of the flyers, but here's a great photo of that awesome pathway again!

After working up an appetite, we stopped at a much recommended nacho/burrito bowl spot near the front gate. The line was long and slow moving and the register was more brand new employees completely winging it. Such an ordeal to buy some beers. Made up for by the fact that they had summer shandys. The food was OK, about the same level as Macho Nacho. We sat outside for a while, and took in the tranquility of the fountains of International Street.

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Photo by Imri

After we ate, Imri and I popped out to his car so he could grab gloves and we pounded a couple beers he had in his trunk. While we did this, Bill used the opportunity to satisfy his flume lust that had brewing since he learned Shenandoah was running. He and Brit also stopped in Dinosaurs Alive.

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Photo by Bill

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Don't let anybody tell you how to live your life

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When we texted them on our way back in, they said they were at Windseeker and headed back to Twisted Timbers. We texted them back to wait at the entrance, and picked up our pace. We found them and hurried into the queue, managing to quickly board and get another lap toward the back of the train. Excellent!

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With the sun retreating we wanted more rides on I305 and had hoped to finally get on Flight of Fear. On our way we stopped and had a quick ride on Backlot. We didn't have much of a wait for the first two rows, and while waiting we noticed it was was running reeeeally slow, almost not making it up the helix. The ride is fun. It meaners a bit during the first half but the tunnel section and drop out of it under the queue is a fantastic finale to a zippy little ride. I wouldn't wait long especially in this park with the heavy hitters they have, but its not a bad ride by any means.

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Photo by Imri

Coming around to Flight of Fear and finally! Success. Brit sat this one out while Imri, Bill and I rode. We dipped in through the fast lane line which merges with the regular line just outside the station. So unfortunately I didn't get to see much of the queue but I thought the station was pretty cool, and really dug the music/sound effects. Also unfortunate was that the ride went down not once but twice while we were a train away from boarding, but we stuck it out. As I said I'm a fan of Jokers Jinx, but this was neat to do it in the dark. The Premier trains are such a b*tch to get in and out of, and those seatbelts on the side of the lapbars is weird. Love the lapbars though. Loved the loudass old school launch, and the spaghetti bowl in the almost-dark was ridiculous. That last corkscrew always gets me. So good.

With it now getting pretty dark outside we headed back to I305 for a sunset ride, the trains nice and warmed up now. That ride is ludicrous. Had to walk around for another lap. After not buying any on ride photos all day I finally went and bought this one. It was just too good.

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Wheeeeeee

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With a half hour left of park time (booo to early season 8pm closings!) we headed back to the Grove to make the most of our fast lane bands, getting two final laps on Twisted Timbers in the dark, the last ride of the night in the front row. What in the actual f*ck. These were some of the most insane rides I've had on any coaster ever.

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It didn't feel like we were rolling, like there was no resistance or friction between the wheels and the track. We were just gliding along at light speed while being repeatedly ripped out of our seats. What a way to end the day.

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The ride is phenomenal and perfectly rounds out the parks lineup. They have two classic and still awesome launch coasters, a speed/intensity monster, a huge and perfect looper, and now an airtime machine. With the setting this park has, its a wonder some enthusiasts seem to rank it a second-tier Cedar Fair park. I certainly don't. And after this trip I consider it one of my favorite parks overall so far.

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Photo by Bill

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Photo by Imri

On the way out, we took our time, admiring the tower and fountains. We never made it up the tower as it was closed all day. Never did hit Grizzly up again as it was up and down all day. We got some nice photos on the way out. We stopped at Starbucks and to send Imri on his long drive home. Bill, Britt and I were headed onward further south to Williamsburg, for another day of fun, at another amazing park.

Ride count:
Twisted Timbers x7
I305 x4
Volcano
Dominator
Avalanche
Racer 75
Delirium
Apple Zapple
Flight of Fear
Woodstock Express
Flyers
Back Lot Stunt Coaster

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Since it was so early when we got to Williamsburg, before we even headed t our hotel we stopped at Amber Ox brewery, one of the only places that serve alcohol in Williamsburg after 5pm. What's up with that? In our planning we found this place and saw they'd be open til midnight and had a good looking menu.

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It wound up being a little on the hipster/stuffy side of things but who cares - it was open. The only other place on the block that was open was a piano bar that wound up being closed by the time we left Amber Ox. We sat at the bar, Bill and I had a couple rounds of beers, while Brit had some tea. Bill got a burger and Brit and I both tried the poutine w/ short rib, which was delicious. Regretfully, none of us took pictures of the food. Booo.

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The urinals at Amber Ox are repurposed kegs.

The place cleared out pretty quickly after 11, and we finished up, settled up and jumped back in the car through a deserted Williamburg, to yet another Econo Lodge, our hopes that it was better than the last one.

Thanks for reading. Comments appreciated. Subscribe and stay tuned for part two @ BGW, coming soon.
Last edited by boldikus on Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:57 pm.

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby Hilltopper39 » Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:35 am

Allegiant Air just added a direct flight from Jacksonville to to Norfolk, VA and.........I probably need to make this trip in the future.

Also, GET OFF THE THEMEING!
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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby cfc » Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:55 am

The Amber Ox is very good. Were they serving their Cyborg Assassin Kittens IPA that night?
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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby coasterbill » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:20 am

Great report!!!

Hilltopper39 wrote:Also, GET OFF THE THEMEING!


I haven't had my coffee yet but I mean... are you serious? She's standing next to an elephant. It's not like anyone's climbing on things or doing anything they're not supposed to do. We would never do that.

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby steamedturtle » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:24 am

boldikus wrote:The whole national anthem thing at Cedar Fair parks in the morning is so forced and weird and as usual I obliviously continued my conversation over top of it like a jackass until I realized everyone else was silent and turned around to face the flag. America is strange.


Right?!?!?!?!? It's f**king eerie! I got there right right before 5PM on the 23rd, and I was minding my business, strutting towards the opening gates, when I noticed everyone was stopped in the tracks, staring at the flag. I slowed my gait, until I eventually felt like a big enough asshole, and awkwardly stopped until the song was over.

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby Hilltopper39 » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:29 am

coasterbill wrote:... are you serious?


Not really, it was just a joke, now go have that coffee...

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby CoasterAuditor » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:34 am

Excellent report Boldikus. Your reports are always so entertaining and congrats on the particularly restrictive coasters being less restrictive!

I also find the national anthem cedar fair practice to be odd. I first encountered it at Cedar Point in 2005 which I already knew about it but was in middle school and gave absolutely no f*cks about it but as a grown adult I just think it's weird to do at the opening of an amusement park. Sports games sure it somewhat makes sense there but at the opening of Kings Dominion I just want to go ride coasters. Imagine if at work everyday you open your office or store or whatever that your job made you go through the national anthem everyday before the start of the work day.
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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby coasterbill » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:34 am

^^Lol okay, thank god ;) . I've apparently spent too much time on the internet lately and nothing would surprise me.

Anyway, I just saw that Allegiant route expansion yesterday and it's cool news for sure. You should definitely make this trip (though you might want to wait a year and see what BGW is doing). Both parks are phenomenal.

PS: Don't stay at the Econo Lodge in Ruther Glenn (well... unless you like freezing cold showers). :lol:

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby Hilltopper39 » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:43 am

coasterbill wrote:^^Lol okay, thank god ;) . I've apparently spent too much time on the internet lately and nothing would surprise me.

Anyway, I just saw that Allegiant route expansion yesterday and it's cool news for sure. You should definitely make this trip (though you might want to wait a year and see what BGW is doing). Both parks are phenomenal.

PS: Don't stay at the Econo Lodge in Ruther Glenn (well... unless you like freezing cold showers). :lol:


Yeah, I've been to BGW way back in the day but never to Dominion, next year looks like a nice time to hit em both.

And with the elephant picture, just be careful out there man, first it's a harmless step into the mulch to pose next to a beloved elephant and next thing ya know you're breaking into defunct roadside attractions to take pictures for your alias urban explorer instagram page. It's a slippery slope, and the danger is real. ;)

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Re: Photo TR: Opening Weekend Odyssey in The Old Dominion

Postby boldikus » Wed Apr 04, 2018 7:04 am

cfc wrote:The Amber Ox is very good. Were they serving their Cyborg Assassin Kittens IPA that night?

I'm not 100% sure but it sounds super familiar so I'm going to say yes. I had the Twisted Mirror? I think it was called? It was a sour saison and was delicious. One of the best beers of the weekend. I really liked that place and would go there again. Though I don't know if I'd have a choice considering nothing in town is open after dark haha.

CoasterAuditor wrote:Excellent report Boldikus. Your reports are always so entertaining and congrats on the particularly restrictive coasters being less restrictive!

Thanks! This report took me a while, in fits and starts since last weekend. Hopefully part two won't take as long, we had a great day @ BGW.

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