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Posts posted by CardCraze

  1. The menus are online for this year's Food and Wine Festival. Many returning favorites, of course; of the new stuff, I'm most intrigued by the Mushi-Gyoza and Ginger and Lemongrass Custard at the Eastern Asia booth.


    You can sample Scotch this year, too.


    What are other people looking forward to at Food and Wine?


    Food and Wine is quickly becoming my favorite . I'll be 21 this year for it to so I guess I'll get to experience the wine side of it. Last year my top three favorite were probably the Chocolate Lava Cake from American Southwest, the Halloumi from Greece, and the Cheddar and Lager Chowder from Canada.

  2. Member Preview Day is quickly approaching and we can't wait to welcome our Busch Gardens® Williamsburg 1-Park, 2-Park and Platinum Annual Pass Members. Be sure to come out and enjoy all your favorite rides and shows, plus:


    - Be one of the first 750 Members at the San Marco Theatre by 11 a.m. for a special announcement by Park President, Carl Lum, and Vice President of Design & Engineering, Larry Giles.


    This could be the official, official announcement, right? It's hard to see what else it could be.



  3. The media can talk about amusement parks being unsafe all they want, it's not stopping people from pouring through the turnstiles, and it certainly didn't stop me from having to wait 45 minutes for Verbolten Sunday.


    The end result of all this is; It's an accident. Are ride ops probably going to be a bit more careful when getting restraints down on larger people? Yes. Are parks going to start adding seat belts, and sensors, and making people suck in their gut and do push-ups before boarding? No.

  4. I don't know if I'd say Six Flags will keep it hush hush as the article seems to suggest. Incidents like this are so rare, that they capture the nation's attention. Six Flags is going to have to do some damage control and point out "Hey, our ride is safe" because even though that's apparent to us (and many logically thinking people), there are a lot of people right now running around in circle screaming about how airtime is dangerous and roller coasters are "rickety death machines".


    I'd fully expect Six Flags to come out and say "We screwed up, she was too large to ride and we didn't catch it, but here's how we're fixing it." Because if they keep it quiet, the only ones releasing findings on the ride are the GP, who think the restraints click, and the ride ops laughed and smiled deviously as this poor woman begged for her life.

  5. I'm on vacation in Rhode Island, done SFNE too many times now, and I'm looking for a new park. I can do either Lake Compounce or Canobie Lake Park. Distance isn't a factor. One's 2 hours, one is 1 hour 50 minutes from the house I'm staying at.


    Given the option to choose either/or (not sure if both is an option, so I'm planning for worst case scenario) which park would you choose, and if you could would you please say why?


    Thanks so much for your time!

  6. http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/07/02/structural-stability-in-doubt-at-coney-island-astrotower/


    NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Fire crews were dispatched to the amusement parks of Coney Island Tuesday afternoon, amid concerns about the stability of the iconic Astrotower.


    Luna Park was evacuated as a precaution during the 5 p.m. hour, CBS 2 has learned. The Cyclone roller coaster, the Wonder Wheel, and the entirety of Luna Park will be closed until crews determine the tower is safe.


    The tower, which is no longer in use as a ride, stands about 270 feet high right in the middle of the amusement section of Coney Island – near the Wonder Wheel and the Cyclone roller coaster.


    The FDNY was keeping watch at the base of the tower, and extra barriers had been put up, CBS 2’s Joe Biermann reported.


    The Office of Emergency Management said structural integrity of the tower was in doubt.


    Earlier, Luna Park remained open and rides near the tower were operating as usual despite the concerns. But the park was later evacuated as the tower swayed left and right, the FDNY said.


    Fire crews entered the tower through access routes to examine the tower, Biermann reported.


    The Astrotower is a gyro tower, in which a rotating platform rises up in the air for overhead views of the amusement area below. It was constructed for the Astroland amusement park, which operated at Coney Island from 1962 to 2008, and has been out of use since Luna Park supplanted Astroland in 2010.

  7. I'm going to the park for the first time on July 31st... Is the wristband or tickets a better option? The hotel we are staying at gives $20 worth of tickets for free, so should we just get more tickets instead of a wristband?


    It depends on the people in your party. My family has 2 people who don't ride too much of anything, and I'm the only one who wants to ride everything. So books of tickets end up being a better option for the four of them, and I get the wristband. Bear in mind, the wristband doesn't cover everything. Black Diamond and Haunted Mansion (which is a MUST do) are both tickets only.


    Abrupt Airtime_____________________________,y,y,1

    Floating Airtime___________________________,y,y,2

    Lateral Forces_____________________________,y,y,3

    Out of Control Feeling/Directional Changes_,y,y,4

    Positive G's/Loops_________________________,y,y,5

    Sensation of Speed_________________________,y,y,6

    COASTER NAME PARK LOC <--Please leave this

    My Favorite Steel Anypark Anywhere **,y,y,1

    Phoenix Knoebel's PA,y,y,2

    El Toro SFGAd NJ,y,n,3

    Cyclone SF New England MA,y,y,4

    Wild One SF America MD,y,n,5

    Comet Great Escape NY,y,n,6

    Cyclone Luna Park NY,y,n,7

    Comet Hersheypark PA,y,n,8

    Twister Knoebel's PA,y,y,9

    Lightning Racer - L Hersheypark PA,y,n,10

    Lightning Racer - T Hersheypark PA,y,n,11

    Rebel Yell Kings Dominion VA,y,y,12

    Thunderbolt SF New England MA,y,y,13

    Wildcat Hersheypark PA,y,n,14

    Roar SF America MD,y,n,15

    Rolling Thunder SFGAd NJ,y,n,16

    Woodstock Express Carowinds NC,y,y,17

    Thunder Road Carowinds NC,y,y,18

    The Grizzly Kings Dominion VA,y,y,19

    Ghoster Coaster Kings Dominion VA,y,n,20

    Gwazi-Lion Busch Gardens-Tampa FL,y,n,21

    Hurler Carowinds NC,y,y,22

    Hurler Kings Dominion VA,y,n,23

  9. Deno's posted a link to an article in the NY Daily News on their FaceBook. Spook-A-Rama is lost and will have to be rebuilt with all new props, according to the park.




    Sandy even messed with my childhood.


    Walking through the wounded streets of Coney Island a couple of weeks after the hurricane was to re-edit my highlight reel of memory. The way the tornado turned Dorothy’s Kansas into Oz, Sandy distorted the Coney Island of my mind into a living horror.


    Gazing around at the last stop on the subway by the sea, something wasn’t just wrong with the picture. The picture was of a different place, as if Sandy had literally washed pieces of my youth into the sea.


    The hurdy-gurdy music of the arcades was replaced by the deafening cacophony of banging sledgehammers, scraping shovels and whining power tools as demolition crews fed the insatiable crunching hunger of sanitation trucks.


    Meandering along Surf Ave., the Coney air smelled of moldy plaster, dirty cellars and dried sewage instead of the hypnotic aroma of boiling corn, frying onions and that alluring Coney Island scent of sizzling Nathan’s hot dogs that has wafted through the decades on the salty sea air since 1916.


    At the corner of Stillwell Ave., my feet just stopped moving when I saw that Nathan’s was shuttered.


    Todd Maisel/New York Daily News

    Sandy cooked Nathan’s goose. The famous eatery needs extensive repairs to reopen.


    All the sliding doors of this pacemaker of the Poor Man’s Paradise that has fed everyone from Presidents to sports legends to working stiffs to the housing projects’ poor were closed and locked.


    “We gotta replace all the electric and plumbing and sewer lines,” a worker inside explained. “Big, big job.”


    And so in the wake of infamous Sandy, Nathan’s Famous sat there on Surf Ave. like a yellow-and-green crypt, sealed for the first time in my Brooklyn memory. Oh, I’m sure it has closed many times over the decades, but for me Nathan’s was always open, a symbol of the city that never sleeps. Always open for business in the Coney mornings when we would arrive early with blankets and coolers to get a good spot on the hot sand on July 4.


    It was still serving Brooklyn’s hungry when we made the dash for the subway home — long after the sun went down and the last firework fizzled. Open when the Cyclone froze on the rails for the season and the Wonder Wheel stood still like time itself and the carnies migrated south with the ducks for winter.


    Nathan’s was open all night in my beery college years when we would rumble down from the Park Slope saloons after last call and order gangs of hot dogs, fries and raw clams at 4:30 a.m. when our stomachs were still made from the secret alloy steel of youth.


    Now seeing it shuttered in the middle of Sandy-ravaged Surf Ave. was like a Londoner seeing the hands of Big Ben frozen in time. Like seeing the leaning Tower of Pisa topple, the bulls of Pamplona go lame. Like seeing our 24-hour subways stop and our blinding Manhattan skyline go dark.


    Wait. Sandy made those last two things happen, too.


    And so my heart continued to sink as I passed the Coney Island Museum, where Dick Zigun lost his gift shop, restrooms, his entire bar area and part of the stage where the freak show performs.


    It sank lowest when I drifted into Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park, where forlorn owner Dennis Vourderis showed me the 5-foot floodwater mark Sandy had left in his magical machine shop where he and his brother Steve and nephew DJ service all the heart-stopping summer rides.


    Todd Maisel/New York Daily News

    Dennis Vourderis of Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park stands inside the trashed Spook-A-Rama attraction.


    “All our specialized tools were ruined,” he says. “Spare parts — irreplaceable. We’ve been power-washing with fresh water everything that was contaminated with the corrosive saltwater that came down from the Coney Island creek, not up from the ocean.”


    Then he led me like a funeral director into Brooklyn’s heart of darkness, into the demolished Spook-A-Rama that has scared kids like me spitless since it opened in 1955.


    “In all the years my father and my brother Steve and I ran Deno’s, we never had a drop of water in Spook-A-Rama,” says Vourderis. “Or in the machine shop. We didn’t have flood insurance. Never needed it. Now look: Sandy even dragged Spook-A-Rama to hell.”


    Todd Maisel/New York Daily News

    Storm damage inside Coney Island's Spook-A-Rama


    This was the very first spook house I ever rode through, a tunnel of unexpected horrors — monsters leaping from doorways, zombies springing from crypts, ax murderers attacking from the shadows — that prepared me at age 5 for real life in New York City.


    Vourderis picked up a once-terrifying Devil, now spongy and salt-bloated, all its mechanics short-circuited, and said, “Sandy even drowned the Devil himself. The cylinder that controls its movements is shot. Same with this werewolf. Even the Big Bad Wolf wasn’t safe from Sandy.”


    A sinister-looking, piano-playing puppet salvaged from defunct Rockaway Playland, a true carnival antique, was now a waterlogged hunk of junk.


    “All these creatures had a real life,” Vourderis said. “They lived inside everybody that ever screamed and shrieked at them as they rode through Spook-A-Rama as a kid or a teenager. Now they’re dead. Even the undead zombies are really dead. Sandy killed them all.”


    Outside the flapping exit doors, a fortune-telling machine housing a mystical character named Zoltar is flooded, the soothsayer’s severed head now resting near his hands.


    “Even old Zoltar didn’t predict this one coming,” says Vourderis, fighting for humor amid the sadness.


    Walking through ruined Spook-A-Rama was like attending a wake for childhood memories that had been drowned and sucked out to sea.


    “It’s not just the money,” Vourderis said. “We took a good hit. But we’ll rebuild a new spook house, state-of-the-art, all computerized. It’ll be great. But the Spook-A-Rama that we all knew as kids and our kids and grandkids knew as kids is gone. Dead. Forever. Irreplaceable Coney Island history died here during Sandy. That’s sad. That hurts. That’s a real shame.”

  10. 1. Phoenix - Knoebels

    2. Bizarro - Six Flags New England

    3. El Toro - Six Flags Great Adventure

    4. Intimidator 305 - Kings Dominion

    5. Apollo's Charriot - Busch Gardens Williamsburg

    6. Superman: Ride of Steel - Six Flags America

    7. Verbolten - Busch Gardens Williamsburg

    8. Cyclone - Six Flags New England

    9. Montu - Busch Gardens Africa

    10. Comet - Great Escape


    Honorable Mentions - Wild One (SFA), Storm Runner (Hershey), Nitro (SFGADV), Revenge of the Mummy (USO)

  11. If there's one thing America loves, it's a good underdog/comeback story. These piers are getting more attention then they ever have before, because the media, the gp, they all see "roller coaster in the water" and start begging for it to be rebuilt, discussing memories that they had in the same state that roller coaster happened to be in. It could have been El Toro that slipped into the ocean (albeit, physics make it more difficult) or it could have been a dragon wagon, the GP will react the same.


    The park will be back, and when it is, people will throw money at it to come experience the amusement pier that rose from the waves.

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