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Showing content with the highest reputation since 03/24/2023 in all areas

  1. I think this is a great, valid, and topical question. I have many of the same feelings as posters above but will add something else that we've done in the past and will continue to do. OFFSET! You know when you buy airfare and they tell you that if you pay a little more you can offset your carbon emissions for the flight? I do that for some of the places we visit! In the past I have donated to Women's and Gay Rights organizations when visiting the Middle East. The LDF, ACLU, and NAACP when in certain US States. And now will probably add Abortion Rights and LGBTQ+ orgs in our US Visits as well. Like others have said, I will not let stupid laws and rules that most of the public doesn't even support stop me from doing something I love and making me happy, but I absolutely can choose to spend the bare minimum in certain places or with certain brands. Everyone who does our trips know that I will go out of my way to avoid Chick Fil A and try to stop the bus at food stops where that's not even an option but I'm not going to ban someone from eating there, I'll just try to educate them on either better options or the offset theory that I use! We have been very vocal since before it was a thing that we don't support JK Rowling but Kristen loves Harry Potter and I'm not going to deny her something she loves because of that horrible bitch! I'll just continue to be vocal about it so people can at least know that she's terrible! Hope this helps and makes sense!
    7 points
  2. well . this happened today. (and to quote @coasterbill.. it really does explain why "Disney hasn't bothered to fight it") https://nordot.app/1013893337012584448?c=592622757532812385 here's the headline from the Orlando Sentinel "Gov. DeSantis’ new Reedy Creek board says Disney stripped its power" CNN picked it up now too: https://www.cnn.com/2023/03/29/politics/desantis-disney-board-control/index.html
    6 points
  3. Vote with your wallet, and do NOT feel guilty about it. but it's going to come down to your decision. *if* I were to ever go back to Dollywood - and I'd very much like to. I'd spend a lot of $$ there because Dolly is and always has been an ally, therefore I would support something she's involved with, even tangentially. But I would not spend $$ elsewhere in the area (ie: I'd stay at Dreammore, wouldn't eat downtown in Gaitlinburg, etc) unless I was certain I would feel comfortable supporting the individual business. it's basically the "rules" I follow myself now..I choose to never eat Chick-Fil-A, or Cracker Barrel. ultimately, you do what you want to do, and if you want to justify it, you can justify just about anything. but don't ever feel "guilty" about your support of something when you agree with what they do. (another perfect example: SeaWorld I really don't give a shit about what the Blackfish activists, or PETA activists try to tell me about the park. I've seen the good they do for the animals they rescue, and I'm just fine giving them my support and money). hope that input helps?
    5 points
  4. If I decided to only visit places where the government has never done anything shitty or to only support businesses that have never done anything shitty or donated to anything shitty then I would never leave my house. Brit and I are both politically engaged but this is not something that we worry about 99.9% of the time.
    4 points
  5. Someone finds this every couple years. It's an element specifically designed to increase capacity and reliability...
    3 points
  6. I absolutely expect it to go over Iron Dragon. I honestly expect enthusiasts to mostly hate this and complain about the weaker launch and how much better it used to be or whatever and I'm so here for it.
    3 points
  7. I'm not extreme. I avoid certain products if it's convenient enough. Entertainment wise, I choose what aligns within the best interests of our child related to our personal values. I avoid businesses and destinations who promote the causes that go against our values, but not at the cost of raising "the weird kid." Maybe we wont avoid most popular destinations all together, but I'll certainly avoid loading up on merchandise or buying their products elsewhere. It's a compromise. I gave exponentially fewer shits about the political environment before I had a child.
    2 points
  8. Here we justify things of that nature as "We don't allow bad people to take away what we love". A big example is we are fans of Harry Potter and our family is full of every letter of LGBTQ. So despite JK not wanting my nephew to exist, we still went to Universal Orlando and enjoyed those sections of the park, because we weren't going to let her shittiness take that away from us.
    2 points
  9. The speculation has been a reverse spike behind the station and a swing launch. The photo posted shows it at the very top (best angle to show how inline it is with the old launch). Here is a closer look at the pilings and cofferdam built in the disassembled Iron Dragon area. Very curious to see how this plays out.
    2 points
  10. We’ve frequented SWO’s Food Festival for many years so the themes at SWA definitely resonate. Having just been at SWO the other day, I will say the a la carte items at the Orlando park are all at least $3-4 more. Then again, we noticed that San Antonio was cheaper than Orlando in general, but perhaps that was the case before post-COVID inflation too.
    2 points
  11. Possibly good news for Mindebender fans, the coaster is currently being taken down carefully. They are dismantling it piece by piece and not cut up. Some parts of track are already stacked nicely.
    2 points
  12. They've had such good luck with RMC that it's no wonder they hired them to do the track work on BF.
    2 points
  13. So after going 3 days this week I have to say they don't seem to have the staffing issues they had the past 2 years. More restaurants are open, all rides were running except ones down for maintenance. Even the kiddie areas the rides were all up where in the past some were down due to low staff. Even barnstormer was running both sides which I haven't seen in awhile. Lots of trams running all day long. Overall the staffing levels seemed pre-pandemic. Also, Lightning Rod was up all day today.
    2 points
  14. This is something I've thought a lot about, especially with the shenanigans in Florida and Tennessee. Back when Mike Pence was governor of Indiana, he did some pretty awful stuff that caused a bit of an uproar. Holiday World was pretty quick to say "They don't speak for us" and still support basic human decency, and though some of that is obviously out of not wanting to lose your customer base, I think it was genuine. There are a lot of good people in Tennessee and Florida. Disney has been done wrong by DeSantis, and I don't really quite understand what he's going for there. Just really seems like he thinks hating vulnerable people will win him votes, and he's willing to harm his state's biggest source of income to do it. Just bonkers. But DeSantis is not Florida, and from what I understand, he's not actually very popular there. As for us, we've spent a lot of time and money and effort getting ourselves to a safer place to raise a family, and a lot of it had to do with the political climate in Missouri becoming more hostile to folks like us. I think the next few vacations will probably be around the Great Lakes area, but that's more because things up here are easier to get to than they used to be than it is out of a desire to spend money in states that are aligned with our politics. Minnesota is a good place full of good people, but it's got its wackos too. Everywhere does. We'll probably get to Florida eventually. We were going to in 2020, canceled it for obvious reasons, and really haven't seen a good opportunity to reschedule yet. It'll happen when the time is right. I guess that's my long winded way of saying do what you feel is best. Whatever you decide, if you decided with good intentions, then you did all right.
    1 point
  15. ^Very very helpful information. Won't count on being able to hop in line for things before park close. That's definitely an element of the Tokyo Disney parks that is unfortunate compared to the U.S. parks where you can just get in line 5 minutes before close and extend your day a bit. That, coupled with seemingly earlier close (9:00 PM) might make it difficult to get too, too much done. But we will keep our eyes peeled on how the parks are operating closer to our visit.
    1 point
  16. Honestly Amy, I won't be much help here. All my parks travel for a good ten years was done through TPR and Elissa and Robb's planning and scheduling. I think they would be better at commenting and advising. Along with pretty much everybody else you mentioned here. And "all of the above" looks pretty good, from what I'm seeing, so far. Hope any or all of this helps you.
    1 point
  17. I wondered if the rest of the entry plaza would get love after the new entrance went in and apparently it is.
    1 point
  18. People have already said I didn't like wicked twister so I wont like this! I think this will be awesome
    1 point
  19. A couple drone videos online have some really good pics and videos. It is a very large footer. The clearance under iron dragon seems very tight when the track gets put back on.
    1 point
  20. I thought that this theory was dumb a few months ago. I was wrong. It lines up perfectly. (I don't know the photo source. If you do, let me know and I'll update the post)
    1 point
  21. 1 point
  22. Sometimes manufacturer recommendations change, and therefore Six Flags added it (almost) park wide. I'm pretty sure all of the S&S drop towers have them now chain wide.
    1 point
  23. Can confirm from an eyewitness that lives in my house; Dragon's Wing AND Excalibur are no more, pictures were not allowed but everyone can see for themselves in 6 days. RIP.
    1 point
  24. That place is great too! I usually eat at the one in Burbank... didn't know they had one in Valencia!
    1 point
  25. I'm really excited for this! Yes, it looks to be a smaller water coaster and it does look to have a weaker layout, but even a weaker water coaster is still better than 80% of waterslides. With the Six Flags additions being made for this year, I think it is important to remember that Six Flags originally said they weren't adding anything at all for this year so... If anybody watched the full livestream, they also made sure to highlight the attention being given to the park's landscaping, overall appearance, and atmosphere. They are bringing in a new landscaping company to improve the park landscaping, they are going to be repainting buildings and rides throughout the park, they are adding new shading structures and seating areas, they have created new shows and they are improving current park events as well as adding some other new festivals. I know that this park has a long way to go to be a GREAT park, but any improvement is good to see at this park. I went back in June on a layover in DC, and I enjoyed the park the day that I was there. The new park president has been at the park for nearly 30 years, and his Facebook page seems to indicate that he is dedicated to improvements around the park.
    1 point
  26. Serengeti Flyer now has 2 different ride modes, a milder version and the standard version. I got to the park around 30 minutes too late to try the new milder ride but hope to try it soon as the original version made me dizzy. For this time of year crowds were really low. Iron Gwazi was only a 2 train wait when I got to the park and had a posted 5 minute wait when I left. There were also multiple breakdowns today. Sheikra was closed when I walked past it but did reopen later, Kumba closed a little after 2:00 and never reopened. Cheetah Hunt was closed when I was going to stop at the ride before leaving. This was my first time riding the Log Flume since it reopened after the refurbishment and I think they did something to cause less of a splash. You used to get soaked and both times I rode today, I barely got any water on me almost like Coal Cracker at Hersheypark.
    1 point
  27. Since 2018, they have been opening new rides around Memorial Day weekend. The exception being Candymonium with the park not opening until the end of June/beginning of July that year.
    1 point
  28. The skyline sure looks different today than it did yesterday...
    1 point
  29. Yesterday Raglan Road hosted TPR and other outlets for a preview of this weekend's Mighty St. Patrick's Festival. This annual festival has been running at Raglan Road Pub for 17 of the 18 years that the Pub has operated at Disney Springs, and each year the offerings expand with new acts and new food and beverage options, all on top of what already makes Raglan Road a special place to visit year round. The Mighty St. Patrick's Festival takes place this year between March 16th and March 19th! One of my favorite places to eat and drink in Orlando! We had an opportunity to sample some Raglan Road favorites as well as new menu items, starting with the Berry UnIrish (a non-alcoholic drink featuring muddled blackberries, fresh lemon juice, rosemary & honey syrup and sparkling lemon Pellegrino) and the Misty Irish Eyed (a mixture of Irish Mist honey, Grace O'Malley gin, Italicus, lemon sour & prosecco). While a normal visit to Raglan Road is filled with entertaining musical and dancing acts, during the Mighty St. Patrick's Festival, the schedule is filled from end to end authentic Irish entertainment! In what I could best compare to a savory cupcake, the Truly Scrumpet Goat Fig features caramelized (torched!) goat's cheese with a fig & port jam on a chive scrumpet with walnuts, pickled beets & poached figs). This was easily the most unique and standout taste of evening! "That Salad with Seared Beef" was a surprising combination of flavors, textures and perfectly prepared ingredients. I'd happily order a plate of this during my next visit! A staple on the Raglan Road menu for many years, the Dalkey Duo is a perfect Dalkey mustard beer battered Cheshire Heritage pork sausage served with Dalkey mustard mayo and buffalo apple sauce. These battered sausages are heavy and filling but the rich batter and unique sausage make them perfectly addicting bites that you'll definitely want to keep digging into. There's lots to see and hear while dining at Raglan Road! The center of the restaurant gives guests an up-close chance to experience all the fun of the pub. The Seafood Sharing Board offers a selection of sesame crusted tuna, smoked fish cakes, "The Pink Panko" (panko crusted seared salmon) and the "Kiss Before Shrimp" (a garlicky-bathed set of shrimp bites with toast). It is always a pleasure to hear from the owners of Raglan Road Pub. The restaurant along with the attached shop, bars and Cookes of Dublin quick service venue are all owned an operated independently of any larger corporation. The venues operate out of scratch kitchens so you know everything is served at its freshest. Much of the staff and entertainers are Irish and the menus offer authentic tastes of Irish heritage with modern flair. Clare Sands (pictured right) is a 6ht generation fiddler, bilingual singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist who is performing daily along with her sister (pictured left) during the Mighty St. Patrick's Festival before moving on to perform in New York, Washington D.C., the United Kingdom and Europe. We capped off our tasting experience with the Guinness Chocolate Cake, made up of dark chocolate, soda bread ice cream and a whiskey caramel sauce. There is no better place to experience authentic Irish step-dancing than at Raglan Road Pub. Defying gravity. Step-dancing isn't reserved to the main stage, with a center stage to put guests in the center of the action. A truly unique experience! Thanks again to Raglan Road for hosting us for another fantastic evening! Be sure to check out the Mighty St. Patrick's Festival this weekend, or if you can't make it before then, don't hesitate to add the Pub to your future Orlando plans--you won't regret it!
    1 point
  30. Holy crap those clearances. I know it's been discussed before, but it's pretty wild that they are building a coaster from the ground up in 2023 that you'll have to be careful not to reach out to the sides. I'm sure the trains will have arm guards to prevent this. It's such an old school design and I love it.
    1 point
  31. Its possible but very unlikely. Planning trips early in the season to parks with new attractions opening is always a risky move, especially when its not a B&M they are building. As far as how long RMC takes to complete a full conversion? Georgia Cyclone closed on July 30th, 2017 and opened as Twisted Cyclone on May 25th, 2018. (9 months) Robin Hood closed on October 28th, 2018 and reopened as Untamed on July 1st, 2019. (8 months) White Cyclone closed on Jan 28th, 2018 and reopened as Hakugei on March 28th, 2019. (1 year, 2 months) Roar closed on August 16th, 2015 and reopened as The Joker on May 29th, 2016. (9 months) Mean Streak closed Sept 16, 2016 and reopened as Steel Vengeance on May 5th, 2018. (1 year, 8 months) Cyclone closed July 20, 2014 and reopened as Wicked Cyclone on May 24, 2015. (9 months) Iron Gwazi, Storm Chaser and Twisted Timbers are bad examples since they all sat SBNO for a while before RMC actually started work. But it would seem the medium sized conversions comparable to Wild Cat seem to take about 8-9 months from close to reopening. If we go by that, then this would likely open closer to late-May. However, who the hell knows what they're going to do to this thing. I have a theory they're going to install a giant truss-style lift ala Gwazi/Zadra and go for that wtf/wow factor since WildCat basically sits right along Hersheypark Drive. The other thing to consider is what this coming winter is going to be like weather-wise.
    1 point
  32. Though many think the infamous Bat at Kings Island was the first modern suspended coaster, that wonderfully violent machine was preceded by the equally bizarre and short-lived Alpen-Flug. Designed by German aircraft manufacturer Messerschmidt with calculations supplied by Werner Stengel, Alpen-Flug premiered at the 1975 Oktoberfest in Munich. Utilizing five 6-car trains, Alpen-Flug was an incredibly thrilling ride experience, performing far better than anyone expected. But at the end of the fair, it was found that the ride suffered from severe structural damage, especially in the area around the turns. This design flaw was a direct result of the deliberate under-banking of the track on the turns – a cost-saving measure chosen by Messerschmidt and vehemently condemned by Werner Stengel. So upset by Messerschmidt’s decision to ignore his very specific advice to bank the track per his calculations, Stengel left the project. During my interview with Stengel, when he supplied these images from his personal collection, he described the ride as very, very thrilling and intense … particularly in the lateral swinging in the transitions. Still, he knew the ride couldn’t survive since Messerschmidt ignored his instructions on track banking. Alpen-Flug, along with a duplicate that was already under construction, is another strange ride lost to history. I wish someone would come forward with film of this intriguing ride in operation. It must exist somewhere … Until then, enjoy these beautiful images of one of the oddest roller coasters ever created. Train #2 struts its stuff! Train #2 showing wheel assemblies and connectors. How minimalist is this? Did IKEA build these trains? Train #2 with headlights blazing plows into an unbanked turn. Hang on!!!!!!!! Train #2 ascends lift. Note lower fin guide rain has been added. Train enters unload platform. Test train (sans roofs) heads toward lift. Note fins beneath cars that will be propelled by friction tires (bottom left) onto lift. Train # 2 awaiting more sandbags ... err ... passengers. From the construction crane, unload platform is on the left ... main station is dead ahead.
    1 point
  33. RIP Lighting Rod single rider line.
    0 points
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