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Everything posted by defrocker

  1. All for One is a really good show. However, I was really looking forward to this, seeing that it is their nighttime "spectacular." The stunts were very good, but the show was a little bit busy to watch, and sadly a little bit of a disappointment. Chalk it up to anticipointment for me, but I would have rather been getting night rides on Griffon (which you are staring at the entire show.)
  2. I really enjoyed Cirque Imagine at Carowinds. Also, Celtic Fyre and Mix it up are both favorites at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.
  3. I dunno. It's beating itself up too much, or so the story goes... Like I said, I don't think it's the type of layout that seems like it would beat itself up, and GCI doesn't have a record of building rides that need to be trimmed.
  4. I've been hearing some vicious rumors going around about how Mystic Timbers may be trimmed this off-season. I found that to be a strange rumor as I don't know of any GCI's that have been trimmed and it doesn't seem to have the type of layout that would beat itself up. Anyone heard anything?
  5. While I have plenty of experience at this park, I've never been to Bier Fest. I was contemplating going on Sept 3. It's the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. Has anyone been on Labor Day weekend that can speak to the crowds?
  6. We had two weekends ago, everything in the building worked with the exception of some of the lights. Once we pulled up to the drop track only the sounds were playing and the big face in front of the train did not illuminate at the drop. That had to have been an anomaly because I've never seen that not light up. But the show scenes at the drop track really seem to be lacking from what they were. Either that, or I keep getting the same shows. Does the wolf show still work? That's the only one I haven't gotten this year.
  7. It's not your imagination. Many of the lights and effects do not work how they used too. Sometimes there isn't even a "show" before the droptrack. You simply sit in dark silence, then drop.
  8. I wouldn't call it more noticeable, but it may be noticeable in that area. Most of that ride is butter smooth though whereas Verbolten has some rattling throughout its course, but here's the difference; Apollo is 18 years old. It's 13 years older than Verbolten.
  9. I'm right there with you, it definitely rattles, though it isn't a deal breaker. A couple weekends ago when I was there all of the TV's were working, even though it was a station wait. You may have caught an "off" day. It's certainly not my favorite in the park, probably 5th for me. I like the B&M's and InvadR better. But that's just because of how good those are, not a not on Verbolten.
  10. I'm still trying to understand what that sentence is supposed to mean. Can you elaborate? In recent history, BGW had pretty much exclusively gone with coaster designers and designs that have been proven. They never were "early adopters" as it were. Zierer, to my knowledge, had not built any major headline attractions at the point that Verbolten was built. I think it was on a scale they had not dealt with at that point, and I think it shows. Now I will say, replacing BBW was going to be filling some big shoes, and regardless of what they did, some people were not going to be happy. But to me the bottom line is, from what I've heard they spent $50 Million on this thing. Think about some of the coasters we've seen for half that price. I know a chunk of the cost was removal and theming, but still. Now I will say, I really like Verbolten, but I don't $50mil like it. That being said, it has not aged as gracefully as I would have thought, being only 5 years old. I will add that during the behind the scenes coaster tour, they say that it has the highest ridership in the park. So it may have been a better investment than I give it credit for. This is correct. I was referring mainly to coasters. When you look at Mach Tower, it is a much better example of what I'm getting at, though I don't know its price tag.
  11. I loved Big Dipper as well. Especially that one major pop of air was one of the increasingly rare "oh crap" moments. I would have loved to ride again, but I don't think there was going to be any convincing my wife to join me. The park, no doubt had some charm. It was just a... different kind of charm.
  12. This past weekend we took a brief trip to Indianapolis to visit my in-laws. Since we were driving within such close proximity of Camden Park, I figured we would tempt fate and make a quick stop. My wife generally rolls her eyes and goes along with what I suggest, but after this home run, I don’t know that she will be so trusting in the future. As you are driving through Huntington, WV it becomes readily apparent that you are not about to find a Cedar Fair Park, Knoebels, Kennywood, or even backwoods county fair. Then there’s the clown… Yes, pulling up here is possibly one of the most terrifying experiences to ever be had at an amusement park. Any time a clown says “Fun for All!” the universal translation is “Run the other way, and don’t look back.” At this point my wife is really laying on the “what the heck have you done now?” But, we turn in and pay the $5 to park in the parking lot that is better maintained than most Six Flags parks I’ve been to and stroll up to the outhouse with a register in it, aka the ticket booth. For those interested in visiting Camden Park, their website and ticket booths both show ticket prices at $19, although you can buy them online for $16, or you can pay at the gate for $22. There is no way to pay $19 for a ticket, but that’s ok because hey, you’re at Camden Park. We strolled right in and noticed the park looked... well, it looked like a park you would find on the back roads in West Virginia. I couldn’t remember exactly what my track record was sitting at but I knew it was 248 or 249 and I was thinking it was 249. I figured that getting on the classic 1950’s Big Dipper was going to be as good a way to hit 250 as any so we went straight there. As we approached the station I told my wife we should sit in the second to last row. As it turns out, that was exactly where we would get, but even if we wanted to sit in the back seat, it would not have been possible as the back seat of the train was entirely missing and was just an empty compartment. We sat down and lowered the buzz bar and my wife said – I don’t like that you can see the ground through the floor… Holy hammer, she’s right. The floor of the train is literally like 3 2x6s with rather large gaps between them. No mats or anything on top. Oh well, the ride op took the safety rope off the manual brake, and the adventure was under way. I will say, this is actually a pretty fun woodie, albeit sketchy. There is one rather crazy pop of airtime early in the ride and a couple decent moments. It was fun, and I’d ride again. We did see, after riding, there is a trim brake that is powered by gravity… lol. Meaning the “power” for this trim brake is a rope tied to the brake on one end and a cinderblock hanging through the structure that is attached the some other scrap metal and concrete on the other end. After getting off, my wife declared that was as scared as she has ever been on a rollercoaster. I happened to check my coaster count after the ride and noticed that Big Dipper was, in fact, #249 for me. So the honors of having my #250 slot would go to none other than… Hawnted House. Heck yes! So, Hawnted House a wooden floor with a steel rail in the middle. They then purchased some 2-seat office chairs and fixed them to the track. You jump in the car, then the ride op pushes your chair onto the chain lift. At the top of the hill you make small dip, then roll through the dark-ride-wild-mouse portion of Hawnted House on your office chair seeing all sorts of terrifying sights such as a bird, a cat, and a pig roast. At the end of the ride (and I know it was the end, because out office chair went under the illuminated EXIT sign) the next ride op physically caught our desk chair and stopped it. He made a remark saying “This is one of a kind using gravity and all.” Then he flung our car down the station which careened into the occupied group of cars waiting for dispatch. It was, an experience. We then rode Slingshot, which appears to be the only ride in the park built this side of the Cold War. It was fine. I don’t know what else to say – it’s a figure 8 spinning coaster. We wanted to finish our credit whoring but to my dismay, Little Dipper was not staffed so we turned around, only to be accosted by the ride op for the whip who was desperately trying to get patrons to ride his ride. We declines and instead went on to ride the chairlift. As we waited to board the chairlift we were told to wait until the chair after the one coming now. It didn’t take long to find out the reason for this. There was no chair... there was only the metal frame hanging from the cable. Ok, next chair it is. Our chair was nice and comfy, with no locking restraints; it was literally a ski lift with a rusty creaking hinge on the top. The chair went over and gave wonderful views of, the mini golf course. I also was very close to stubbing my toe on a street lamp in the middle. This may actually be one of the slower chairlifts I have ridden. I’m pretty confident I could’ve walked faster. It was fairly relaxing though, even though there was no shade. After we got back we decided we needed to head towards our destination, but I couldn’t help by be intrigued by a food stall that offered “Hot Dogs and Pronto Pups” I then decided that 4 rides was pushing our luck as it was so we left without a pup. Total time in park was in the ballpark of 50 minutes and a good chunk of that was our mini-golf tour. Can I recommend this park? It’s not worth any kind of drive, but if you’re driving I64 through Huntington it’s worth a stop, sure. Certainly know what you’re going for though. There was more to do here than what we did, but we were on a tight schedule and I was already pressing my luck with the wife. Side note, the town west of Huntington was adorable and actually a pretty nice town for WV. It also contained the nicest Taco Bell I’ve ever seen. It looked closer to the likes of an El Rodeo than a fast food joint. Go figure.
  13. I've kinda been along this line of thinking as well. Also, if you consider the fact that BGW hasn't really had a major investment since 2012 with Verbolten, it seems that could use it. They've seen Tempesto, which is a fairly inexpensive addition, and InvadR, which recycled many of the pricier parts from Gwazi and has a pretty small footprint. Both of these were easy-on-the-budget additions. If you look at SeaWorld as a whole, weaker numbers is not exactly a new phenomenon, yet they still are pumping money into their parks. Mack launch coaster, Intamin launch coaster, B&M hyper, GCI woodie... these are just over the last couple years. It's not out of the question to have the plans in the works for a major investment into, arguably, their best performing park a few years from now. Also, BGW and KD have different target markets and a major coaster addition would let BGW reach over into some of who KD appeals to and steal some business. Again, all of this is purely conjecture, however, I don't think the company having a rather poor 2016/17 is an excuse for one of their parks to not get an investment in 2020. The question should be, if their market research team sees potential ROI, why would they NOT do it?
  14. I would think and hope that BGW would have learned from Verbolten that they tend to do best when they stick to the manufacturers for proven products. If it's a coaster, I can't see it not being B&M.
  15. Ok, so KD had 4. I'm aware of that. I'm also aware that CP has 3. That's not what I said though. I said it's rare. There can't be more than a handful of parks with more than 2. And yeah, whatever it is, it won't be an Intamin. But it will be big. So if were talking coasters here, it's almost guaranteed to be a B&M. Not sure who else would go that big.
  16. I certainly never say never, but I can't see BGW ever going the route of an accelerator. For one, they have added 2 launched coasters in the past 5 years. It seems pretty rare for a park to have more than 2 launchers. Also, and it may just be me, but that type of really really doesn't seem to "fit" the type of ride that Busch would build. Then again, they seem to have stepped away from "typical BG" especially with Tempesto. Also, how much marketability do big top hat coasters have at this point in the US? We haven't really seen one in the past decade. I honestly think that any park that would want to spend $25 mil+ would likely be better off with a giga than an accelerator, especially when you factor in reliability and maintenance. I don't know, and I've certainly been wrong before, but I would say there's not much of a chance of that happening.
  17. I went to the park yesterday and had a fantastic day at the park but I had an interesting experience on the way home. DISCLAIMER: I am not the type to spin rumors and I almost hate to even mention it, but this did happen and I don't even know what to think. Take with a large grain of salt. On the tram while leaving the park last night, the "guide" said to make plans now to come back in 2020 when they would be building a rollercoaster about twice the size of Apollo made by the same people. I don't know if the tram man has more or less credibility than the dippin dots guy, but it was still worth a mention. The guy was kinda funny and joking around, as many of the tram guides tend to do, but he said this seriously. Either way, coaster or not, I don't know that it was entirely appropriate to discuss it the way he did.
  18. The only pattern that I've been seeing is that stupid upside down T. It's only been in a word with 2 t's back to back and it's always been the first one. Sure, I've noticed a pattern, that isn't the problem. The problem is I have no flippin' clue what that's supposed to mean.
  19. Looks like Cedar Fair didn't have the strongest of questers, earnings wise. Revenues seem to remain strong. According to the call they don't seem to be concerned, although shareholders didn't seem to agree. It seems the overall outlook is not too bad, and I'd imagine some announcements here in the next couple weeks won't hurt the situation. Cedar Fair misses by $0.52, misses on revs 4:04 AM ET 8/2/17 | Briefing.com Reports Q2 (Jun) earnings of $0.55 per share, $0.52 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus of $1.07; revenues rose 1.2% year/year to $392.8 mln vs the $405.78 mln Capital IQ Consensus.Attendance for the month of July was up 2%, or 106,000 visits. The Company declared a quarterly cash distribution of $0.855 per Limited Partner unit payable September 15, 2017, consistent with its annualized rate of $3.42 per LP unit.Cedar Fair remains confident in its long-term business strategy and expects 2017 to be another record year.Co also announced the declaration of a cash distribution of $0.855 per LP unit, which is consistent with its targeted annualized distribution rate of $3.42 per LP unit. The distribution will be paid on September 15, 2017 to unitholders of record as of September 6, 2017.
  20. Thanks for the heads up. I am considering taking a friend and a good chunk of the reason for me to take him would be Ka and Toro. I may see about early September, aside from that I doubt that I would be able to make November work.
  21. I'm considering going up to the park at some point this fall. It would likely have to be on a Saturday. At what point in the season do crowds thin out to try to plan a weekend trip?
  22. Storm Chaser blew me away. That and Wicked Cyclone are my only RMCs so I'm really glad to get more in this part of the country next year. I fully expect this to be my favorite ride at KD. Speaking of Storm Chaser, I'm also leaning toward seeing an inverted drop here. Seems to be RMC's MO when they have a 180 turnaround at the top of the hill.
  23. Maybe it's just me, but that lift doesn't seem to be near as steep as many of the other conversions have been. It could just be the perspective of that picture.
  24. One thing you can't deny though is Apollo's setting is second to none when it comes to hypercoasters. I love the racing through the trees, down by the river, through ravines. Definitely gets some bonus points for that. Funny thing is, it is essentially a "parking lot coaster" but they left enough trees to disguise that.
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