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About Jackdude101

  • Birthday 11/30/1982

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  1. End-of-year/end-of-decade update to the Attraction Rankings Top 50. I will also take this moment to state that due to the very high amount of manual labor that these spreadsheets require, combined with the fact that no one besides me has replied to this topic in the past five years, it's unlikely that I will continue to update them further. Working with these spreadsheets just isn't as fun as it used to be. Perhaps I'm finally maturing (...nah, that can't be it). Peace be with you.
  2. End-of-year/end-of-decade update to the Roller Coaster Rankings Top 50.
  3. Steel Curtain is now the king of the roller coaster spreadsheet.
  4. An interesting development happened related to the Roller Coaster Rankings spreadsheet this weekend. For the first time since I created it in May 2009, Cedar Point (thanks to the opening of Steel Vengeance) overtook Six Flags Magic Mountain.
  5. Here's the Attraction Rankings spreadsheet showing only the Average Weather Ranking for each state/province.
  6. ...and here is the latest Top 50 on the Attraction Rankings Spreadsheet:
  7. Long time, no see. I did not touch any of my attraction ranking spreadsheets for almost all of 2017, and now I revisited them and made some new updates. With the carousels, I removed all of the ones with only molded metal figures; and with the steam railroads, I removed everything with a track gauge less than 15 inches (minimum gauge). The most significant update, however, was with the roller coasters. First, I removed the rule that any operator running more than one roller coaster gets included, regardless of the size of the roller coasters. Under this rule, many operators running nothing but crummy, rusting carnival roller coasters got included (Wacky Worm city, basically). Second, I lowered the thresholds for height, length, and speed that a roller coaster needs to be included. Those new thresholds are 64.35 ft. tall or more, 1,930.44 ft. long or more, and 43.87 mph or more. These new thresholds revolve around the acceleration of gravity, which makes them feel a lot more logical than the old ones. Specifically, the height and speed stats revolve around how fast an object in free fall travels after exactly two seconds, while the length stat references how far an object will travel on an incline starting from 64.35 ft., if the time it takes to reach the ground is 60 seconds. When you look at the height and speed stats in metric form, they are about 19.6 meters and 19.6 meters/second, respectively. This seems to a natural dividing line between junior and kiddie roller coasters, and bigger, more noteworthy roller coasters. With the combined mass removal due to the first change and the mass addition due to the second change, and general updates from not having updated it for a year, there was a net loss of around 500 roller coasters on the spreadsheet. Again, almost all of the ones removed were garbage from places that most people have never heard of, so they won't be missed. Also, here are the new averages: 62.29 ft.; 1,738.85 ft.; 34.95 mph. As far as the one roller coaster that comes the closest to the new thresholds, where all three of its stats are greater than or equal to the thresholds, that award goes to White Lightning at Fun Spot America Orlando (69.67 ft.; 2,032.00 ft.; 44.30 mph). I have thus determined that this roller coaster is the "perfect" roller coaster, in that it's size is almost exactly in the middle overall compared to all other roller coasters, and hence appeals to the widest audience possible (not too big to scare away squeamish people, but not too small for thrillseekers to dismiss, and so forth). Plus, it's in Orlando, yet it's not in one of the big parks, so you don't have to pay for parking, travel a mile from the parking lot to the gate, or have to deal with giant crowds to get to it. Here's its POV video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8eAFfv-aLzg. So, without further ado, here is the latest Top 50 on the Roller Coaster Rankings Spreadsheet:
  8. My wife, two kids, and I went to Magic Kingdom today (Memorial Day). I was expecting the worst in terms of crowds, but there were actually moderate-sized crowds today. Thanks Pandora and Volcano Bay!
  9. Let's talk about Tarpon Springs, Florida, shall we? It's a small city north of Tampa and it's famous for being a center for the natural sponge harvesting industry started by Greek immigrants over a century ago. They have several boat tours available, but the St. Nicholas Boat Line (in the pic) uses the older wooden boats and has a guy that does sponge diving demos in the old-timey diving suit. Also near the boat tours are several Greek restaurants and of those, Hellas is the original one (don't forget to visit their bakery). There are also seafood restaurants like Rusty Bellies, which harvests its own seafood via a little boat dock behind it. There is also a VERY small aquarium, the Tarpon Springs Aquarium, which is a great place to kill some time while you wait for Rusty Bellies to page you that your table is ready (the restaurant and aquarium are one block from each other). There are also several neat, old historic buildings in the Downtown area south of the Sponge Docks area.
  10. In Largo in the Tampa Bay Area there is the Armed Forces History Museum with tons of weapons, tanks, and other vehicles with a focus on major 20th century american wars. One of my favorite parts was the full-scale World War I trench you can walk through. It has mustard gas attack demos, as well.
  11. Another notable Florida state park that used to be a small theme park/roadside attraction is Rainbow Springs. It's one of the largest springs in the state, and its most notable features are its man-made waterfalls, which are surviving elements from its theme park days (in its heyday, it also had paddle wheel boats, a small zoo, a rodeo, mermaid encounters, submarines, and even a small monorail). It's near the city of Dunnellon, whose name I believe is derived from a French word meaning "ass end of nowhere".
  12. I've heard of that place. You think Six Flags is impressive? This island had EIGHT flags.
  13. The South Florida Museum in Bradenton (southern edge of Tampa Bay) is home the Snooty the Manatee, and at 69 years old this year, he is believed to be the world's oldest manatee.
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