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About scooterdoug

  • Birthday 11/23/1976

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    Alameda, CA
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  1. Thank you all for the great advice. I especially appreciate the advice about hotels near Dollywood. Since I typically pay attention to reviews and don't go for the cheapest, I think I'll be ok. I'll still be a little more careful when I look for hotels there. Thanks again!
  2. Hi everyone, I'm planning southern US coaster trip this summer (with a fellow TPR friend, but solo if he can't make it). I'll be booking stuff soon, but wanted to reach out to this fine community to get some advice. I posted a similar thread a couple of years ago, and you all came through in fine form. So, I figured I'd try it again. So, here goes... To start, here's the itinerary: Sunday, July 14 - Fly into Atlanta, Georgia and drive to Austell, Georgia Monday, July 15 - SFOG (drive to Atlanta that evening) Tuesday, July 16 - Spend a couple of hours at Fun Spot, then drive to Dollywood Wednesday, July 17 - Dollywood (stay in local hotel that night) Thursday, July 18 - Kill a couple of hours in Pigeon Forge, then drive to Charlotte, NC Friday, July 19 - Carowinds Saturday, July 20 - Fly home out of Charlotte I've only been to SFOG, the other parks are new to me. Here are my questions: 1. Any hotel suggestions? This isn't a huge deal, as I enjoy searching for hotels. However, if anyone knows of any hotels that are particularly good (or should be avoided), that would be useful. I don't need anything fancy, just clean and comfortable. I prefer a hotel that offers complimentary hot breakfast (eggs, meats, waffles, etc.). I prefer to stuff myself and avoid park food, then having dinner at the end of the coaster-riding day. 2. Any food suggestions? I enjoy sampling local/regional specialties. I love southern cooking, so I'm very excited to eat my way through the south. From what I understand, Dollywood has some pretty good food. I also plan on eating at Vortex Bar and Grill in Atlanta after the SFOG day. Any restaurants near parks that are good? 3. Any park strategy suggestions? The goal is to ride lots and lots of roller coasters. I'm fully prepared to purchase top-level skip-the-line-passes at each park. However, any strategies you could recommend would be much appreciated. 4. Any advice for the travel days (Tuesday and Thursday)? In Atlanta, I'm really only interested in Aerie Force One (and getting any other one-and-done credits). Would 2-3 hours be sufficient to get multiple rides on the RMC at Fun Spot? And, before driving to Charlotte, I plan on exploring the Pigeon Forge area for a few hours. Any suggestions on fun things to do (I understand there's a mountain coaster...I haven't been on one of those in many years)? Thanks in advance for any advice you all can give. -Doug
  3. Quick question: Is there any discernible difference in crowds on different days of the week (excluding Saturday and Sunday), or is it more or less equally crowded any summer weekday (mid-July, specifically)? Starting to plan for next summer already. Thanks!
  4. Goliath @SFOG a couple of weeks ago. Actually ended up being my 200th roller coaster. It was my first time visiting the park, and I really thought about what I wanted to be #200. Glad I chose Goliath, it ended up being my favorite B&M hyper (I've ridden Goliath, Nitro, Diamondback, and Apollo's Chariot).
  5. I'm not doing this to advertise this trip or to get attention. Aside from Cedar Point, I've never been to any of these places. I reached out to the TPR community to get advice from people who have been to these places. The advice I've received has been really good, and it'll help me plan the trip more effectively. I'm pretty grateful that this community exists, and that people are so open to sharing their wisdom and experience with me. Yeah, I used to plan trips without getting this type of input in advance, but that frequently resulted in all sorts of "I wish I knew this beforehand" moments. I created this thread to avoid that.
  6. Thanks. While this makes sense, we're thinking that we'll want to avoid walking and crowds that day. Lounging a couple of hours by the Breakers pool sounds just about right. If there happen to be any tourist traps that pique our interest on the way, we might do that. Oh, I didn't realize the lack of hotels (and most other things) in Santa Claus, IN. Thank you for that. A quick Kayak search showed that there are plenty of options in nearby Ferdinand. Thanks for alerting me to that very important fact (and the time zone one as well). Thanks! I'll definitely check out the TRU hotel. Tofts has also interested me, so a stop there might be in order. Yep, we were definitely thinking of hitting HW's water park. We'll have a full day there, so it only makes sense. And, I do lean towards your sentiments regarding Skyline chili. I've had it once. I didn't think it was bad, just very mediocre. Now I'm in the mood for Subway Thanks, everyone, for the really useful advice. Oh, we were also thinking of having a meal at Bay Harbor at CP. Anyone dined there and have opinions? Thanks again, all. -Doug
  7. Thanks, Bert! We absolutely plan on getting FL+ at both KI and CP. Thanks. I appreciate the words of wisdom from a local. Wow, this is a ton of great advice. Super helpful, thank you. This is a good point. The plan was to sleep in, have a late brunch, and slowly meander our way up to Sandusky. We want to use the day to recover a bit before our 2 days at CP. We'll still likely have a few hours to kill, so I'll amend my original post to include Sunday. Thanks, everyone. All of your advice is really helpful. Ill take all the wisdom the TPR community has to offer. -Doug
  8. Hello everyone, So, my TPR friend (JJlehto) and I are planning a long-overdue coaster trip this summer (our last trip that we had planned to Cedar Point for summer 2020 got derailed by some pesky virus or something). To make up for that disappointment, we’ve gone bigger. We finally pulled the trigger and booked plane flights and a rental car. So, in preparation, I’ve got some questions for you fine, knowledgeable TPR folk. Any advice you all can give would be greatly appreciated. To start, here’s our itinerary: Wednesday, July 20 – Fly into Louisville Airport and drive to Santa Claus, IN Thursday, July 21 – Holiday World (drive to Louisville, KY at night) Friday, July 22 – Kentucky Kingdom (drive to Mason, OH at night) Saturday, July 23 – Kings Island (stay in local hotel that night) Sunday, July 24 – Drive to Sandusky, OH Monday & Tuesday, July 25 & 26 – Cedar Point (staying at Hotel Breakers) Wednesday, July 27 – Fly home out of Cleveland Airport All of these parks are new to me, except for Cedar Point (I’ve been there a half-dozen times). JJLehto has been to all these places before. Here are my questions: 1. Do you have any suggestions for park strategies? Our goal is to ride roller coasters…as much as we possibly can. We’ll purchase skip-the-line passes where they are offered (which seems to be only KI and CP). We’re also curious to try the water parks at HW and KK (though, coasters are the definite priority). Any suggestions on maximizing our coaster rides? We’ll be gate-crashing all the parks. And, yes, we plan on waiting for a front row night ride on Beast at KI. 2. Any food suggestions? I’m a culinary traveler, and love to sample local cuisine. Are there any regional specialties and/or restaurants that you’d recommend? Do the parks offer anything tasty (I’ve got a soft spot for fudge)? 3. Any hotel suggestions? This isn’t as big a deal for us. I enjoy searching for hotels and putting the trip together. We aren’t looking for anything fancy, just clean and comfortable. We do prefer, however, hotels that offer substantial a breakfast (think eggs, meats, waffle iron, etc.). The goal is to stuff ourselves so that we’re not hungry until dinner (avoiding park food). While I’ve got no problems searching for suitable hotels, are there any suggestions or hotels-to-avoid to be aware of? 4. Any advice for our travel day on Sunday? Our plan is to use the off day to sleep in, enjoy a late breakfast/brunch, and take a leisurely drive up to Sandusky. However, since the drive isn't even 4 hours, we'll have some extra time in the day. We'll be either travelling on 75 north, or going through Columbus. Are there any attractions or interesting places (park or non-park) that you could suggest to kill some time? Thanks in advance for your advice. -Doug
  9. Well, thanks for the replies, everyone. It looks like FL+ works well on a Saturday (unlike Cedar Point). So, it looks like our upcoming trip is solidifying. Here is our current itinerary: Wednesday, July 20 - Fly into Louisville, KY Thursday, July 21 - Holiday World Friday, July 22 - Kentucky Kingdom Saturday, July 23 - Kings Island Sunday, July 24 - Drive to Cedar Point Monday & Tuesday, July 25 & 26 - Cedar Point Wednesday, July 27 - Fly home out of Cleveland, OH This leaves the two parks that don't offer skip-the-line passes on Thursday and Friday (so, hopefully, that gets us relatively low crowds at KK and HW). I'll start another thread with questions about details for this trip in the coming months. However, in the meantime, if anyone experienced with this sort of trip see any glaring issues with this schedule, could you let me know? Thanks again for the advice, everyone. It's much appreciated. -Doug
  10. Hello everyone, I'm planning a long-postponed coaster trip with another TPR user (JJLehto) this summer. We're trying to figure out logistical details, and I was hoping that some of you could help me out with a question we have about Kings Island. We plan on visiting the park on either Friday, July 22 or Saturday, July 23. We plan on picking up Fast Lane Pluses when we visit. I was wondering about the effectiveness of the FL+ on either of those two days. What kind of Fast Lane waits can we expect for rides on Friday versus Saturday? A Saturday visit would fit into our schedule easier. However, if FL lines would be long on Saturday and more reasonable on Friday, we'd opt to go Friday. (I remember how long FL lines were at Cedar Point, and I'd prefer to avoid that kind of situation if possible) Thank you for the advice. I always appreciate the collective wisdom that the TPR community offers. -Doug
  11. Hi everyone, I'm in search of some quick advice. I'm planning on going to SFMM with my family on either 12/24 or 12/25 (it's open both days, and we don't celebrate Christmas). I went once on Christmas eve (12/24/2019), and found the crowds to be pleasantly low. Weather might make the decision for us (it's supposed to rain on Friday, 12/24). However, if weather isn't a factor, can anyone advise on which of the two days (Christmas eve or Christmas day) would be more likely to have lower crowds? Thanks in advance! -Doug
  12. I emailed the park and they confirmed it: Tatsu's paint job is paused until 2022, and the ride will be running until then. I'm absolutely thrilled about this. While I'm not happy that people are falling ill (I hope it's not COVID), I'm really happy that the ride will be open. I'm going with my family (including my daughters, who hit the 54" mark since the pandemic began and haven't been on a roller coaster since that time). So, my wife and kids will get to find out just how crazy that pretzel loop is.
  13. I'm one of those oddballs who actually enjoys X2. However, it is rough and requires some strategy. I always ride the front row, inside seat. In addition, I go to it right away, first thing in the morning. It's smoothest (or, more appropriately, the least rough) at that time. Afterwards, it just gets miserable. Typically, I head straight to X2 and ride it once first thing (maybe twice, if the line is super short). After that, I avoid it for the rest of the day. Hope this helps! -Doug
  14. Hello all, I’m currently visiting LA, all Pfizer’d up, and ready to take advantage of SFMM with no COVID restrictions. I’m very excited to ride my first coasters since the pandemic started. Before I go next Tuesday, I have a few questions. I emailed guest relations, but they haven’t responded, so I figured someone who has been since the lifting of restrictions might be able to help me out. My questions: 1. Are they loading all rows on trains, or every-other? 2. Is there still a separate member entrance with 15 minutes early entry? 3. How much does the Flash Pass phone app drain the battery? (I have a relatively ancient iPhone Thank you in advance. I can’t wait to finally ride again! -Doug
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