Earlier this summer, I took a day trip to Maine to hit all the parks that I had to skip in 2020 due to covid. I had a goal of visiting Aquaboggan, Funtown, and Palace Playland in the same day since they're all within 15 minutes of each other. However, I made one critical error.
I visited on a Monday. As I would later find out, this is the busiest day of the week for Aquaboggan and Funtown. Aquaboggan does a half off promotion on Monday, so that made sense. However, I was confused why Funtown was so busy. The line for Excalibur stretched back to the Camelot bridge and the park had to close the line for it early. In my past visits, I've never had to wait more than 1-2 trains for Excalibur. And many of those visits took place on summer Saturdays.
This is a fairly small water park, but the rules are far more lax than corporate parks. The park allows you to ride backwards down most slides if you so choose, which is one of the reasons their halfpipe slide (Stealth) is one of my favorite slides out there. Those halfpipe slides are downright freaky when you go down that steep drop backwards.
The park's other slides are located on a hill. For 2021, the park added a new addition in Yankee Ripper. For this slide, you lug this heavy sled atop the hill, travel down this relatively steep drop, and then skim across the water. If you don't keep your balance, you will comically wipeout in the water at the end.
If I didn't get to Aquaboggan at opening, I would have had difficulty riding everything in a short period. But because I got to the park a half hour before opening, I was able to ride all the major slides in about 90 minutes.
Excalibur received a lot of trackwork this past off-season and I'm happy to say the ride is running better than it has since the early 2000s. In 2019, the turn under the lift hill was brutal. Now, it's very smooth and the ride carries more speed through the rest of the layout. Excalibur is a great coaster when it's running like this. The ride has an excellent setting in the woods, some strong airtime in the first half, and powerful laterals in the second half.
I spent most of my time waiting for Excalibur, but I also took rides on the park's best non-coasters. Astrosphere was a spectacle as always. Dragon's Descent is still one of the most forceful S&S drop towers. Thunder Falls is a great log flume, but you have to watch out for the geysers at the end. And then the kiddie swing ride still has Donald Duck on top pumping gas.
The one weird thing with this park is that it's impossible to get free water unless you're pregnant or a veteran. That was especially annoying with the water fountains turned off. In the past, water cups cost 25 cents but now they charge as much as a soft drink.
But at least Funtown doesn't charge to use the bathroom like Palace Playland.
My visit to Old Orchard Beach was more about getting the food on the boardwalk. The Shack makes amazing lobster rolls and Pier French Fries makes (you guessed it) amazing fries.
I did intend to take a few laps on Sea Viper, but the park's signature coaster was closed. The park's kiddie coaster was also in pieces. I'm unsure if that ride ran at all in 2021 and I wonder the ride is on the way out now that they have the SBF Visa spinner for kids.
I did ride Power Surge, which is still one of my favorite flats in New England. The base no longer spins on this one, but it runs a pretty long cycle and offers a disorienting experience with plenty of flipping.