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coasterbadboy

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Posts posted by coasterbadboy

  1. Thanks for all the kind words. It didn't cross my mind until I read your comments that, like me, lovers of roller coasters and theme parks might also love trains and models. I didn't post all the pics the first time (for fearing of trying your patience), so here are a few more...

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    And I leave you with a sad shot of these unloved donkeys. No particular reason.

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    Now I've rammed plenty of Bumper Cars in my lifetime but never in front of a mirror. Fun? Yes. Kinky? Maybe. A blatant opportunity for TPR antics? Definitely.

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    Cool effect here. These Indians were attached to some hidden mechanism that made them bounce up and down like they were performing a rain dance, or celebrating their casino profits, or they had to go the bathroom really, really badly.

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    Out-of-Scaleville, where every gauge is welcome!

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    The cast of Junior High School Musical: The Awkward Puberty Years was on hand to perform a few songs, including "That Not-So-Fresh Feeling" and "The Socks at the Bottom of the Hamper."

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    Lego models! These rivaled the ones at Legoland in terms of detail. There was even a fun game to find all of the hidden items. A scavenger hunt, if you will.

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    A patriotic shot. Sing with me now: America. Spread your golden wings. Sail on freedom's wind, across the skyyyyy-ai-ai-yyyyyy.

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    Neil Patrick Harris showed up for the festivities in a firemen's uniform. It really doesn't surprise me.

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    "The Mary Blair Express. Now arriving for a complete trip around Walt Disney's Magic Kingdom, with stops at New Orleans Square, Mickey's Toon Town, and their new home in it's a small world. Boaa-AAAAAAAAARD!"

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    This is part of the Fullerton train station. A beautiful building.

  2. Howdy all! Mike and I live across the street from the Fullerton train station, which hosts the annual Fullerton Railroad Days. It's a fun event with greasy food, games, and trains, trains, TRAINS! In every shape and size.

     

    On to the photos...

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    Well folks, this concludes our show. So thanks for bearing with us to the bear end and barrel around to see us again. Don't forget to gather your belongings... And your husbands too.

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    "Phfzzzzt."

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    Fiddle with the right knob and you will totally turn this thing on.

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    Slow train to China.

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    In honor of Earth Week, this train stopped using coal for its fuel, and instead ate all of these people. Stupid hippies.

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    Hey Elissa! (And a little IKEA humor)

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    CREDIT!!111!1!

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    Moments later, Derrick and Heath were seen entering this establishment. They must heard the buzz about the Model Train IPA.

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    That's better. Hey Big Mike. How's Mexico treating ya?

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    This "lady" was the original settler of Model Train Town (not related to Thomas Town). But something is just not quite right...

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    TPR approved. Whew!

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    Half-naked man in water. Hey Hector.

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    TRAIN POV!!11!!!1!

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    Not quite as hot as, say, X2's wheel assemblies, but mildly erotic anyway.

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    More artsy-ness.

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    This thing was enormous and would totally eat your babies and Jahan.

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    Train version of a Wacky Worm? You know if it were bigger, you'd ride it for the credit. Whores.

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    Don't worry, folks. Manta's supports have left Ohio and are on their way to Florida.

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    Adorable.

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    Uhh...nothing like a little plastic man on plastic man action to spice up a trip report.

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    Elevated railroad. Not quite a monorail. Sorry, Scott.

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    Disneyland Railroad logo.

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    Artsy and stuff.

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    The line to get in this thing was insanely long. And they had already run out of FastPasses.

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    The Fred Gurley!

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    The dream that started the park...

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    The American. Built in 1902 by the American Fire Engine Company in Ohio. It was found rusting away in a barn in 1991 before the California State Fire Association saved and restored it. It has been seen in several Rose parades in Pasadena and sneaking out of Casey Jr.'s engine house in the wee hours of the morning.

  3. and lastly I hardly remember the first Journey to Imagination ride, why was it changed and what is the story behind Figment?

     

    Why did they change Journey? Hmmmm...well, I suppose the meeting could have gone something like this...

     

    Suit 1: Ridership is dwindling on Journey. Let's revamp the whole story, remove the dated parts, and give it some new effects.

     

    Imagineer 1: I don't think we need to re-do the whole story. It's about journeying into the imagination. That's its story. It doesn't need one of those 'Something goes horribly wrong' overlays. Let's re-do some of the audio-animatronics, use new technology to 'plus' the scenes, make it look really cool.

     

    Suit 2: Hey, I got it! Let's turn it into the Imagination Institute! People LOVE institutes, right?! Institutes sound fun and whimsical, don't they! Like a tour of an imagination factory! A factory! Isn't that the coolest idea?

     

    Imagineer 2: Uh no. That sounds incredibly boring.

     

    Imagineer 1: A factory might work for something like a space pavilion, where we could show how rockets and shuttles are made. That would be--

     

    Suit 1: No! The factory/institute idea would be great for a creative pavilion dealing with imagination. Doesn't an institute just scream color, sound, whimsy? I love it! We could show how spreadsheets can be done in all these fanciful colors. People would dig it! It relates to today's audience, who are more sophisticated.

     

    Suit 2: And let's rip out that weird red-headed dude and his little purple friend. They don't really go with the institute back story. [picks up phone, dials] Hey Eisner, we're gonna re-do Journey by turning it into a tour of an institute. [pause] I know! Isn't it great! [pause] I came up with the idea. [pause] Okay, I will. [hangs up phone] Sorry about this Imagineering guys, but you're fired.

  4. I always thought that if they gutted it at some point to replace all of track that they should replace one side exactly as it is now (with new trains/sound/effects/etc.) and then do a whole new second side that was more along the lines of Space Mountain at Paris (launching/inversions/high thrills/etc.) That way you could have two rides with different intensities, one for the family and one for the thrill seekers. And market it as such with names like Space Mountain: Galaxy Quest (family-friendly version) and Space Mountain: Hyperspace Blastoff (thrill-seeker version). Or something. The building is certainly large enough to support two different versions.

     

    They already have two loading and unloading areas.

  5. ^Agreed.

     

    For me, what makes something 'Disney' is the fact that 99-100% of the population cannot experience something in every day life that they can at a Disney theme park. Ghosts, pirates, rockets in outer space, submarines, teacups, runaway trains, forbidden temples, and castles. Disney all the way. You can't drive down the street and experience this stuff. You HAVE to go to Disneyland.

     

    The new Walt Disney Plaza for DCA is beautiful. No denying it. But I certainly can drive around Southern California and experience this particular setting at many outdoor malls.

     

    Paradise Pier. No matter what you do to it, there are still boardwalks all over the globe. Nothing Disney about that.

     

    Condor Flats has the most promise of the fantasy element that's so important to Disneyland's success. But they aren't touching that area at the moment.

     

    I guess when it comes right down to it, the changes/enhancements look like quality work. But that being said, the whole concept of DCA is flawed from the start. It lacks the premise/thesis/unique value proposition that makes the Magic Kingdom and Islands of Adventure so successful in terms of theming. DCA promises 'Adventure' and doesn't deliver. (There are a few notable exceptions.) But I'm just not all that interested in a 'theme' park that lacks escape from the daily grind. Do people from out-of-state and other countries feel the same way? Not sure. But I'd much prefer going to a park where I can journey to the center of the earth or sail with Sinbad or goof around with a certain cat in a certain hat.

     

    I do have great hope for the Cars ride. It seems to fit my rule. 99% of the population can't/don't race cars in the desert. It should provide a unique experience for most people. That it's themed to Cars can be looked at as a bonus or not, but I do like the concept behind it.

     

    The changes will finally make DCA a fully-realized 'theme' park in terms of quality and detail. I just don't like the theme.

  6. Did anyone else see that TV show "How Do They Do That?" which featured roller coasters in the second segment? It showed quite a few moments of Maverick construction. And while they were in some Cedar Point office, talking about coaster design, the camera panned across a blueprint for Maverick. In the very next shot, they showed another blueprint--it was an Intamin Ball Coaster.

     

    Now, I'm not speculating or saying it's a rumor, but it made me go, "Hmm." Anyone else catch that?

  7. Yes, 3 was directed with grand mastery.

     

    "The first true Harry Potter movie -- the first to capture not only the books' sense of longing, but their understanding of the way magic underlies the mundane." Salon.com

     

    "For the final hour of the two-hour- and-21-minute Azkaban is the closest any of the films has gotten to capturing the enormously pleasing essence of the Potter books." LA Times

     

    "Not only is this dazzler by far the best and most thrilling of the three Harry Potter movies to date, it's a film that can stand on its own even if you never heard of author J.K. Rowling and her young wizard hero." Rolling Stone

     

    "The third Harry Potter movie is the first one that actually looks and feels like a movie, rather than a staged reading with special effects." New York Times

     

    And I happen to agree wholeheartedly. (And it has a much higher rating/review average than 5. 89% vs. 77%.)

     

    But no one is right or wrong here. We just each have our preferences for what we like in movies.

  8. I really didn't want to like HP5 more than 3, since 3 has been the most masterful in terms of direction. In 3, every scene was filled with magic. (Like the camera flying through the clock tower backwards when Harry and Hermione travel back in time, and then the camera flys forward through the tower when they are arriving back at the present. Brilliant! And of course, the addition of the clock tower as a symbol was a stroke of genius, considering that the whole book/movie is about Harry struggling with the events of his past, his immediate present, and Professor Trelawney's prediction that the Dark Lord will rise in Harry's future.)

     

    So I didn't think 5 would surpass that level of detail (because 4 didn't even come close).

     

    But I LOVED 5. It had the same level of detail. The same care with the direction. But it had much more. It was more real, but at the same time, more magical. It perfectly balanced the grim realities with the humorous moments. Pacing was great. Some things were left out from the book, of course, but the movie certainly didn't suffer because of it. My brain just filled in the missing things. Professor Umbridge--SPOT ON! She rocks! (I loved that she was literally torturing Harry while little kitties are mewing behind him. The ultimate innocence and the ultimate evil at the same time. Brilliant.)

     

    Book 5 was so completely bloated with unnecessary junk, that the first 500 pages or so are almost unreadable. (They don't even arrive at Hogwarts until page 200!! And what happens in that 200 pages? Harry fights two dementors and visits the Order's headquarters to learn that Voldemort may or may not be after something. AND THAT'S IT. Dull, dull, dull. Oh yeah, and he's mad at Ron and Hermione. Whoopee.)

     

    Movie 5? Two thumbs up!

  9. Unfortunately, Theme Parks Magazine didn't offer anything that would make it required reading.

     

    Want construction and park photos? You'll find more on TPR.

    Want trip reports? You'll find those here as well (and some pretty darn funny ones).

     

    I got three issues of Theme Parks Magazine. The photos were very well done and the articles were...uh...fine. Nothing special. No 'behind the scenes' stuff. They read like long trip reports. You are WAY better off just reading up on things here.

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