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Everything posted by grrt

  1. A Stroll Through the Park - 1982 With the movement of Troika, there is now this neat little overlook into Kiddieland which I happen to really love. Families have started to reappear at the park, with the Kiddieland seeming to fill a niche demographic for what is largely a shrinking family population as well as a shrinking Pittsburgh population. The region as a whole has been on a downward trend which is only stabilized by a local population which returns to the park year after year. The park has done well to stay relevant by following suit of Kennywood and growing their nationality days and school picnic intake. Surprisingly, most of the parks business is done by the 4th of July. The park has been working towards getting a fireworks show on the 4th to boost attendance though safety issues and permits have been an issue in years past. Other seasonal projects in the works include a Christmas lights walkthrough and a Halloween haunt, though these are still many years out. In the meantime, the park is still working to boost attendance with an influx of new flats and attractions to get guests here and keep them here longer. New rides include this Enterprise ride from Schwarzkopf, who's supplied many rides to the park in the past. Crowds are light today, something not uncommon for a weekday at the park. A very pricy venture, the Whip has brought the park good praise amongst the preservationists. With Charles Jacques book on the history of Kennywood being published this year, the public seems to have a renewed interest in these sort of living museums. East Side's collection of classic rides has made it a popular place for enthusiasts to come and enjoy. The park hopes it can ride this wave of public support towards being a staple in the community hopefully keeping it safe from the volatile trends in the economy. Though you shouldn't fear, the park has been doing just fine and has been largely able to avoid most of the pitfalls that caused a wave of closures in the 60's and 70's.
  2. 1982 - Welcome Back! Pt. II A look at the ice cream stand. It's had a lot of success especially being adacent to the kiddieland. Kids always love their ice cream. The success of Pirat in the last few years has convinced the park to add more flat rides. They added an Enterprise this year which you will see a little later. Last year, the park added back in Hornet across the lagoon. This hasn't brought attendance back up tremendously, though it has kept people already here in the park longer with more stuff to do. The park opted to keep the same name and color scheme for now, which seems like it may not have been their best move considering the lack of attendance boost from it last year. The Troika was moved over here which means they might be considering expanding around the lagoon more in the future. They have fenced off this area, again probably meaning more expansion will be coming here soon.
  3. 1982 - Welcome Back! Hello again! The park has went through some big changes in my year off. I apologize for not getting you any updates last year but I was not in town for the summer. So we now fast forward a year to 1982... Cyclone hasn't changed much, though the paint is fading. I got to the park early today. Many rides were still going through their testing cycles before opening to the public. The first big change is over in the old pool area. It's been largely overhauled yet again. This time with a de-emphasis on rides. A games building has been added in front of Scorpion per the parks long term plan of increasing the number of buildings and places that can make the park money. Stage seating was added in front of Bobs this year, which I can assume means that at some point Bobs is going to be replaced by an actual stage. Also notable is that the Troika has been moved and fenced off, presumably for a new attraction coming soon there. A new refreshment stand has also been added behind Cyclone. It sells the standard fare of fries, chicken fingers, and pizza. It's got a nice little seating area next to it as well. Unfortunately you don't get a great view of the windmill with Cyclone running right past and the fence. Next time I'll move into the rest of the park.
  4. Wow, that ticket booth is so detailed! One of the neatest little details on the whole model. It's things like that which are really setting this model apart. The whole station is coming together really nicely.
  5. East Side Lagoon - Closing Time Pt. II Many newcomers to the park think the windmill is an old relic from the 20's but it's only about 5 years old. Crowds do not come over here and the area feels unfinished. Long term plans indicate that more food areas and rides will come byt eh end of the decade though the size and scope is not yet fully known. Kiddieland has cleared out for the night and rides are finally beginning to shut down. Plans to expand the area indicate major change up into the 90's. Again, details aren't known but the park seems to be pushing for gift shops, food, and games over new attractions. Much of this area is not very old as a result of the constant tweaking and rapid expansion into the back of the park. It appears that things will stay unchanged for the immediate future. Hiring better park planners and a more qualified management crew have cut down on changes and upgrades that have needed to be made. The front of the park has become more of a leisure and food area than a ride area. More infrastructure updates and added things like gift shops are planned to be added by the end of the decade here as well. The entrance was upgraded in 1975 and holds up to capacity for now. Added booths for special ticketing services and offices for employees are planned to be added in the 80's. The older offices have become a bit crammed and more space is needed for the added management departments. The park hasn't said exacts on these 'plans' other than that their ten year plan includes adding x amount of y to areas a, b, and c and so on.. So speculation is still there and no major attractions have been announced just yet. Food and service building seem to be the area of impact. Until those plans come out we still have a hell of a park to enjoy now.
  6. East Side Lagoon - Closing Time Pt. I So with the late curfew I've taken it upon myself to document as much of the nighttime as I can. With that comes a lot of pictures.. Scorpion is still thrilling guests 5 years later and an exciting nighttime ride is a perfect end to any night. I prefer my final ride on Cyclone, its brilliant white structure lights up the sky. Of course there's others in the camp that the Carousel is the ride to end the day with.. And some who just wanna relax and soak in the experience for a few minutes with an ice cream cone before heading out. There's rides you may not get a chance to ride late unless you have secret access.. The flume is typically closed before sundown, but every once in a while you'll catch the closing mechanic willing to boot the ride back up before he drains the lines. Maybe he's a little too easily convinced! Unfortunately for the ferris wheel crowd, the ride was on the fritz today and was shutdown midday. Dragon Coaster has had a rebirth in recent years though its popularity hasn't been significant since the 50's. Not too many venture over here to ride this late. The bumper cars are another classic in the arsenal of East Side and its building's architecture shines bright at night. As crowds start to filter out things calm down for now..
  7. 1980 - End of the Year Well.. with the 80's came loads of insurance changes.. and that means lots of light! A lot of the dimly lit charm of the old park has been washed out in bright lights to keep out fears of nighttime crime in the park. This has meant that the park can stay open a bit later though. The previous closing time of 9:00 PM has been extended to 10:00 PM meaning that you can enjoy the pretty lights for an extra hour. The park is peaceful back here. Drowned in light! Attendance is always slow towards the end of the season anyways, so it's hard to see where things are money wise. The park has marked off a section near the lagoon for what is presumed to be some new expansion for next year. No word yet on details. See you next time!
  8. I read every update! Been following this thread since day one. I think many have interest though don't comment. I feel the same way on my park sometimes, it's easy to get discouraged though the final product is always worth it! You should try crowdfunding, I'm sure tons of people who don't get to see this thread would have tons of interest.
  9. Yeah, that's a great way to put it. It wasn't a giant coaster but a necessary one. With Scorpion now at the park, it's not as crucial of an attraction. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1980 - Yikes! So the last 5 years or so have looked good on the surface, but beneath that lie some dark secrets that the park has done well to hide. The park discovered something very important in the 60's. Infrastructure is crucial. Every dollar you spend fixing a broken bulb or board pays back double in the long run. The park was able to outlive the string of park closings in the late 70's in Pennsylvania mostly due to buying up the lost assets of failing parks at dirt cheap and refurbishing them. Nearly all of the parks profits got dumped into fixing things up and that went a loooooong way. For a few years anyways. The beginning of the decade brought many great choices.. New themed areas, impeccable upkeep, new mascot, uniformed staff, and a mass influx of new technology helped the park keep up in the face of stiff competition. Last year was particularly volatile for the PA park industry. Bad weather, gasoline rationing, a rumored polio outbreak among the amish, and the Three Mile Island disaster deterred travelling, especially to amusement parks. Like many other parks around this time, dwindling profit margins meant that many assets had to be sold off. Luckily, the park was smart enough not to sell off its priceless old attractions like the carousel. They seem to have made a huge error in dismantling Hornet though.. Replacing a thrill ride with a kiddieland in a time with an aging population that is craving thrills has caused attendance to drop heavily. Families have not quite taken notice and no new thrill this year has driven them elsewhere or to stay home. Attendance is, as of now, very mediocre and limping along. What seems to be keeping the park alive though, as it always has, is the appearance of cleanliness and reliability of the park. Looking at how much the park has grown, it is still comforting to know that the park has tons of capital to support itself and is slowly becoming a tradition in the area.
  10. 1980 - New Kiddieland! The Scooters fly right out over the paths providing great path interaction. The eatery here has a nice patio balcony that runs up next to this approach ramp. The old site was not as level as you would think and lots of issues and concerns came up about how steep a path kids would want to walk up to get to a Kiddieland. We'll see in the coming year how things work out with that. The rockets love their comfy new home and get plenty of riders, something they weren't quite getting in their old spot adjacent much more thrilling rides. I'm taking these pictures as nighttime sets in. Crowds and families loved the new area and they are still pretty heavy even this late in the day. Another ride that has been relocated from another spot in the park is the slide. It was given a prop giant tree stump made mostly of plaster and paint that guests enter through before going up the slide. A light rain had started to set in over the park, though rides stayed open throughout the night with a few exceptions. Another notable attraction which has stayed is the teacups. The park had originally meant to replace them with a newer, larger model, using the old ferris wheel queue cover as the housing. Size and budget concerns meant that the original from the 50's still stays put and I don't mind much. I always like this little ride. Another little stand here selling ice cream in this little nook by the rockets. Oh right! The rest of the park.. that still exists after all. Another fan favorite has returned from storage and heavy refurbishment and occupies the old spot where the Rotor once stood. Many may be sad to hear that the Rotor has been officially retired for good and was sold off to a fair. Another ride that is forever gone was an old sea storm ride from the 50's which didn't find a place in the new land and no longer fit in where it once stood in the shadow of the Cyclone. A new ride is presumed to be installed here very soon. A look under the bridge finds a rare quiet area in the park that I hope can stay put in such a valuable area. The Diner is probably happy to finally have some breathing room with Hornet finally gone. Initial inspection is showing that the families the park has attracted is offsetting the crowds lost by the teenage crowd that like rides such as Hornet, but down the line without a quick replacement or relocation, the loss of Hornet seems very risky.. Another ride finally pulled out of storage this year after being refurbished is the Octopus. It used to sit roughly where the Scooters sit now and has a new home where the planes used to be. I have no good picture of the planes, but they did find a new home in the Kiddieland. The park considered building the lemonade/ice cream/whatever stall that sits outside of Kiddieland here, but thought that it obstructed the views of Scorpions loop too much. The same problem has plagued any possibilities of a new dark ride in this area for quite some time. When Scorpion replaced the perfect dark ride spot, the park simply couldn't find a new place for one and four years later, all plans for a dark ride have been scrapped. The Kiddieland was another nail in the dark ride coffin and it may be a while before another one finds its way into the park.
  11. 1980 - New Kiddieland! So as you all likely know, the park has torn out its longtime favorite steel coaster Hornet, which now sits stowed away in a storage shed somewhere, awaiting its unknown fate. It has been replaced with a 'new' kiddieland. This new land consists of mostly old attractions that were moved from other areas of the park as well as a few new rides. The entrance! The first new attraction is a kiddie sized ferris wheel which sits at the centerpiece of the land. It is actually brand new and wasn't bought used from anyone which was a rarity through the 70's and will likely be the exception and not the rule going forward until some new revenue can be found. The park opted for a very simple midway style land knowing that the impulsive nature of kids and what they want to ride would make for hell with parents if they had to be going back and forth. It also is the best arrangement for packing lots of attractions in a small space. The rockets were moved a few hundred feet down the road and replaced by these Scooters. They are infact Bisch-Rocco scooters used from a park in Denver but were heavily refurbished to meet the maintenance needs of the park. The rockets fit better inside the kiddieland than in their previous spot. Notice the little kids trashcan in the bottom left! Just outside the gates is this summer treats stand that sells everything from lemonade to ice cream. With all the rides being cleared out over here this area is pretty bare. That may change soon, though plans are not set in stone. Another new stand in the area serves the standard amusement park fare.. chicken fingers, fries and things. The park plans on ramping up on concessions in the coming years, and may bring in some specialty foods to get people excited to come to the park and stay there all day. That concludes part 1, there is much left to see!
  12. I will be soon hopefully! I am dealing with some file instability at the moment so once I can get that sorted out I should have some new progress. Also, thanks a bunch for reading through! It's been years of work and it's appreciated when people take real interest.
  13. That is a Reverchon Quasar ride! CFH Rides has created it along with most of the other flats. A quick Google search would show you his massive catalog of CFR's! Ah, true! The Racer has been removed for exactly such a reason. All signs have indicated that doing so balanced the budget for the 70's. The 70's were not great for parks and a lot of great rides were lost in this decade. Though it is unlikely the exact ride will be reborn due to its shear unmanageable size, it lives on in spirit with the flume station, and there is always the opportunity for another similar racing coaster to arise at one point or another. The park does make a point to salvage dying rides, but size also becomes an issue, as the park is running out of room already! But I will say that you will likely enjoy whatever new coasters will make their way into the park. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1980 - New Decade, New Changes Well the park looks to be starting the 80's off with a bang. Hornet is currently dismantled and sitting in storage while this massive plot of land sits empty. Rumors are abound on what will sit in this spot come next year, Everything from a new coaster to a dark ride to a petting zoo. Curiously enough, the kiddie rides have also all been torn up and await new homes, or we hope so at least. In the coming weeks I expect this site to be even further transformed as the park gears up for what is sure to be a turbulent decade.
  14. Night Is Great Pt. III Well I said I wouldn't have anymore photos, but I do. Night is my favorite time to be at the park. There's far less people here and the lighting is just amazing to look at. The front of the park has a red glow to it that isn't present anywhere else. One of the most changing areas of the park, virtually nothing here is original except for the general shapes. As you creep out from the central areas of the park it becomes even more unrecognizable with the parks old structure even more foreign. The park has not looked back from its rapid expansion since, and still continues to push its borders further and further. None of this was here 20 years ago. It seems like East Side is constantly refurbishing old rides and I hope that idea doesn't stop. This Paratrooper has been refurbished at least once, and most rides have gotten the same treatment at some point. Another favorite tactic is strategically buying up old rides from failing parks and giving them new homes here. It brings in crowds from the failing park as well as attracting new more local guests who may not even know it's old. Seems cheap, but it's all in the name of preserving old gems. The entrance has been fixed up a few times as well. Here is the new ride finally! The park is closed now, and the lights have begun shutting off, but you can see how it fits in. It's quite a fun ride! The most important addition this decade has without a doubt been the most important. The park has luckily been rewarded by the investment and has grown because of it, unlike some other parks who were unable to keep up. One of the worst things to happen this decade was the loss of the Racer, which was replaced by a measly little Log Flume, a very expensive replacement which many feel was not worth it. Though regardless, the park treats the ride well, taking care to remember what used to sit in its place. One thing is for sure, regardless of what we like and don't like to change, the park must if it is to survive.
  15. Your research is pretty solid! You're pretty close on a lot of things but not exact. While there's certainly many overlying themes to what generally happened to amusement parks vs. theme parks, nearly every park has a different tale that differs significantly from the general trends. While there's giant parks such as Disneyland that take big crowds and certainly pushed out a lot of the parks that attempted to compete, you can't neglect local crowds that are more than able to sustain family parks as long as there isn't much other huge local competition. I don't know if you've seen my park East Side but I'm immensely interested in park history and have been giving this style a shot for years. It's tempting to stick to the timeline that history has laid out in a timeline park, but it's much more exciting to go about things as if you don't know what's gonna happen next. You get so much more freedom in your storytelling and can really play with some interesting conflicts.
  16. 1979 - Night Is Great Before I show you the final update of the season, this sprawling scene should hold you over. This area was recently converted into a primarily rides area, and the whole park has opened up because of it. This will be the last time I'm at the park this year on unofficial business. There's been a new ride added this year, though I never got a good picture of it! I promise I will in the offseason. It's a Reverchon Quasar that's been added in front of the ferris wheel where its entrance used to be. I can confidently say that after 3 tries the park has finally got the entrance right. It was renovated once in the 30's after the Depression, though with a limited budget it never realized it's full potential. I hope this architecture can stand recognizable for decades to come. Reinventing architecture is a favorite thing of East Side to do. I can't count how many buildings have received top down facelifts and now stand as park symbols. The bumper cars.. the Snack Shack pictured here.. the Carousel building.. entrance building.. the Racer.. Dragon Coaster.. Nearly every building in the park has been done over at least once. It's worth noring that East Side has always tried to keep the original structures integrity and has never fully torn down a building and replaced it. Though we have lost many classic structures such as the old owners house and the restaurant across the lagoon. Cyclone has served the park well and still holds its impressive stronghold over it. The lift hill can be seen from nearly everywhere in the park. Thanks to some creative use of terrain it sits atop a small hill which looks over the entire park. A rare look up at the structure.. Though many rides are easy to spot, the park has plenty of overgrown corners with hidden secrets of their own. The rowboats never get that much attention, but is a favorite to take dates on at night. This seems to be exactly what is happening here as two young lovebirds look like they're the only two in line. I'm sure the operator will let them have the boats as long as they want.. This little candy stand is becoming popular at the park mostly for its chocolate truffles which are simply incredible! The windmill in the background was long a wish of the old owners but never came to realization until 1975 when it was purchased from a nearby dying kiddie park and transplanted here. The blades do spin and photographers can be granted access to the platform with special permission. One thing is pretty clear, there will likely be many more of these changes throughout the years, some small, some large, and hopefully some new traditions that can be preserved by caring owners
  17. 1979 - Overviews Scorpion at nighttime stands over the park. The interesting use of terrain makes it rather imposing. The station is pretty clean cut. The feature here is wood. There's lots of it. The park spans a lot of acres. You can see the variety of rides here. More is sure to come soon! The staple of the park is the hand dug lagoon. Initially meant to be more integral in the original design of the park, a few building cuts including a third casino style restaurant where Hornet stands caused the park to shift much more towards the entrance. The bumper cars building became the substitute for that original structure. We'd for sure be looking at a much different park if that building was there instead.
  18. Thank you! I always enjoy hearing that people have actually read through the story. No details yet, but there will be some wonderful things coming! Thank you! You will surely see the park change even more throughout the 80's. Thanks! The 80's will bring some new things and some old as well. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1979 - Sunset The sun sets yet again on another summer day.. While this ride is popular among most, it tends to give me some severe nausea. It is pretty though. Cyclone looms over all.. The new station gives the ride the character it's always deserved. As the sun really starts to go down people love to flock to these rowboats for a nice romantic view of Dragon Coaster. Though for those not fortunate to have a significant other, or who just prefer a good thrill, Scorpion is always an option. I had to make a quick run to the car for some Advil and decided to take this lovely sunset view of the entrance that is so often missed. The Whip totally changes this area. I took a little break to just sit and soak in the view. The new sign really adds an odd glow to things.. And now we wait till nighttime really sets in!
  19. 1979 - Opening Day Welcome back to another year! All in all it's a pretty standard year, a new attraction and some infrastructure updates, but we're all very proud of how it's all turned out this year. Minor changes can go a long way. The long standing Snack Shack has finally been converted to a full scale restaurant that serves mostly pizza and other assorted things. There's a new covered seating area next to it. It gives an interesting blend of traditional architecture and a more modern style. You also can see that the Dodgems finally have a sign discerning the ride from just a regular old building. Also it is visible all the way down the midway. The public has loved this ride since it was added in the 60's. It's becoming a staple among the flat rides. Of all the things that have changed, I'm very happy this area is one of them. What was once kind of a wasted area of trees has become a central bridge between all the corners of the park. Here's a better look at that covered seating area. It gives a nice look at a nice turn on Cyclone. A little noisy, yes, but it's a cool view. The Falls got an extreme makeover and are now built to last for the next 40+ years and beyond. Basically better everything. Water pumps, improved excavation in the reservoir, the final drop has been completely retracked etc.. An interesting thing is that the queue runs right along the final curve, something not typically found on other log flumes. It provides an interesting interaction between waiting guests and those in the queue. Back towards the entrance things get a little more boring. The area next to the Whip is slated for expansion soon, but is currently very bare, only hosting the restrooms and the Whip. In the next 10 years we hope for things to be almost completely filled in. The entrance is heavily shrouded in vegetation, hiding the park from incoming guests. And keeping the experience contained once you're inside. Yeah we've got some great trees here too. These ones are pretty ancient and fill the entire midway with shade, an excellent thing on the hot days.
  20. Thanks! Nah, nothing set in stone yet, just setting up some long term Thanks a bunch! I based all my decisions around what other PA parks were doing so it's got a lot of the same feel to it. My passion in amusement parks stems from me visiting local PA parks as well! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ School has made it nearly impossible to find any time to play the game, though luckily I had a few spare hours today to get an update prepared, so here ya go! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1979 - Back From the Dead We're coming close to a new season, and the 80's are almost upon us, but before that, we've still gotta finish some things up. The area around Cyclone has been stripped back to some open landscaping rather than so much constricting concrete. They also added a little cherry tree overlook to admire the new facade. This brick area is still pretty inorganic.. but it is a high traffic area. More open space here, but this traffic is finally under control and the queue is finally in order for the flume. They made some serious infrastructure improvements here to the reservoir and pump system. Being one of the first flume rides technology hadn't quite caught up yet, but we are now finally able to maintain this system with fairly low maintenance. The Whip has finally been completed and awaits its first customers. Rebuilding a classic ride with new parts has some serious challenges.. Some new landscaping here. We're finally trying to fill in the place in get some shade. And the biggest addition for this year, we've added a Quasar ride in front of the Ferris Wheel. It fills the space quite nicely with just a few site changes and queue re-arranging. We hope to see you at the park this year!
  21. 1979 - Blast From the Past The final changes are settling into place and the new Cyclone station has finally been unvelied along with new landscaping. It's finally all tidied up. The pavilion finally got rid of those obscene tables and replaced them with much more suitable ones. And the Falls finally got the attention it deserves. New station, new queue, new water systems, new boats. It all looks very fresh and rejuvinated. Working infrastructure to keep this drop intact. Still awaiting a booth to watch for troublemakers standing up and what not. The station is an obvious tribute to the original Racer station. It cost a pretty penny to replace the old one but if we're spending all that money to redo the area it needed that centerpiece. It's a strange theme and if the Falls ever goes at least we've still got a perfectly good station left. At sunset it is magical along with the rest of the park. It finally has that vastness that this area has been striving for. Little details like signage still remain, though much of it is done.
  22. 1978 - Another Year Down So the year's over and the park has begun laying the foundations for next years additions, there's quite a lot happening! There's not much happening here. There's gonna be a little retracking as usual, but the layout will remain the same. And this little cove is ognna remain intact as well. Something new is going here next year. The Dutch pavilion shading the queue will be re-used, though what for is a secret for now. Here's the big one! Cyclone is getting a full facelift for its station. It will finally be state of the art and cohesive. No more fragments from different time periods and renovations. Should look grand when it's done. The park manager has been contemplating what exactly should be done with midway games. No final decision has been reached. There's another big change coming, but we aren't ready to show you that just yet!
  23. 1978 - The Rain Carries On So I went into work today and the rain didn't let up until the late afternoon. It's gonna make for another rather depressing update. The park still stayed open as it was mainly scatterred showers that would stick around for about half an hour or so. All these photos are from my lunch break! We've been discussing the final details for what we're doing in this area next year. It's become suprisingly rundown in the last decade, and can expect big refurbishment. Unfortunately, the Whip, which was slated to open up mid-season coinciding with Cyclone's 50th anniversary, has been postponed, along with the 50th celebration. Cyclone's station is in bad need of a full repair, and while that was supposed to happen this year, it has also been postponed. The bathrooms have been refurbished and moved, sporting a more French look, and they should be getting some more company over here soon. Also, water rides are the first to shut down in the rain, and this ride will sit dormant until it stops. Shutdown as well. Closed. People much prefer to flock indoors. Unfortunately for all these folks, the diner is at full capacity. This pavilion is awaiting the impending lunch rush.. The old Dentzel gets pretty popular in the rain, and despite a poor angle here, there's a pretty solid crowd waiting to pour onto this 75+ year old ride.
  24. Thank you! I actually cheated a bit and modified a few of the hills under the coaster, but most of it is just as I had crafted it 4 years ago when the map first began. I've always wanted to do POV's, and you will get them eventually, but I've never been able to find the time to record them! Plus I'd like to get the loop sorted out on Scorpion first. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1978 - Late Night Rainstorm Despite great weather all day, the skies decided to open up as the night rolled in. I took the family to the park today on my day off. Rain clouds closed the park up around 9:00 PM, but not before I got some excellent nighttime shots. I've never seen the sky like this. There's a wonderful glow from the full moon tonight. My son saw the opportunity for this picture.. He's been into photography lately. Daughter was admiring the view from the bridge and voilla! Maybe someday my son will have the duty of bringing you these updates. He's done photos for a few of them, coincidentally it's usually the ones with the best photos! I never had much of a background in the stuff, but I manage. Anyways, the lagoon here is another one of his shots. The reflection is dazzling in person. The skies started to open up while there were still boats on the lagoon. Most of them were unable to get back to dock for an hour or so. Must have been a terror for parents with kids still out there. Yepp, here's some parents! Luckily they weren't stranded too far away, but I'm sure it wasn't the romantic row they had planned on! This one's a bit unfortunate! Pirate decided to break down only minutes before the rain really started coming down. Guests were stuck on the ride for about half an hour before mechanics were able to fix the ride. The rain delayed the repairs quite a bit. The park had begun emptying out around 9:30, though tons of people chose to wait it out indoors hoping for a break. The Snack Shack looked wonderful with the moonlight coming through the clouds. Well I'm sure you all know now, but I am infact a high ranking official at the park, so they let me up the Dragon Coaster after it closed with proper protection. I caught a brilliant photo of the tree lines and Paradise Falls. My clothes were soaked and so were the rest of the families, so we decided to pack it in and head home. I was surprised at the number of people still attempting to wait out the rain indoors. It was about 10:00 now. There's a little hilly road that we drive out on that gives us this final view of the park. I can't quite remember ever having such a strange combination of weather and timing.
  25. Scorpion - 1978 This Schwarzkopf looper is one of 3 Looping Racer models built in the US. This one is the medium length one. They weren't built mostly due to costs, and lack of a fitting terrain, but this one has got a great location and provides for some great reveals such as this one. You get a great unbroken view to the lagoon. It's magnificent in person. The ride is hard to decipher, and is a surprising choice of rides for a park that is attempting to get a skyline. But the revenue it brought in makes it not a worry. The lift is an interesting piece, and is angled right along the hill. A typical Stengel move. Stengel is of course the mastermind behind tons of rides, and crazy twists like this are exactly why he's considered so good, and the main reason we chose him for this design. And past the ride design, Schwarzkopf was great at making rides that simply work right. A simple control panel is all this ride needs, and virtually no down time make this a perfect ride for the park. It dives right back into the woods and eventually back to the foreground. This is the stretch of track heading into the loop. Unfortunately, the loop hasn't quite been perfected yet, so a shallow approach was the only option. As well, the loop had to be placed at the lowest point in the layout for better speed control. In a few years, it's very likely that these loops will be much more refined, this was one of the first in the world. I'll leave you with some happy guests just moments away from traversing the loop!
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