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parkjunkie

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Everything posted by parkjunkie

  1. My first stint at SFSTL was in the mid to late 90's... those were the days. This was when they still had the "themed" uniforms. I worked in Britannia, so I wore the oversized baggy Robin Hood shirt. We were issued 2 shirts, 2 pairs of shorts and or pants. Anything besides that you had to buy. There may have been a refundable deposit on coats, but not fore sure. Anyway, that's when we had an entire wardrobe department, complete with locker rooms and showers. The locker rooms are underneath wardrobe. Here too you had the option to wash your own uniform or turn in dirty to get new/ fresh.
  2. Do you think the GP cares about a small flat and the model it is?? Not... One.... Single... Bit!! I see what you are getting at, but in this case it doesn't mean anything. The refurb for Excalibur wasn't as costly as you'd think, and of course they'd want to refurb it, its the only one of its kind in the world. Look, the park has potential, we all know it, we are just sick of getting the shaft.... trust us, many of us work or have worked there and know how it all works.
  3. Trying to pinch every penny they can, sounds harsh, but just the truth
  4. I have always thought the same thing, but corporate unbelievably actually had plans for the 50th, but that has all been scrapped. Unfortunately due to Covid, the amusement park industry as whole is going to see side effects from this for many years to come
  5. Its true, Cat Woman's Whip is being pushed off til 2022. 2021 is SFSTL's 50th Anniversary, and we're getting nothing.
  6. Don't forget SFSTL maintenance workers are union, so don't forget about the 100's of hours in labor at about $30 an hour lol
  7. Yes, the majority of these are from the Shapiro days when Shapiro was brought in to get the parks back in shape. His short stay was all planned ahead, then once he got things to where they needed to be, the new top dogs would then be brought in to continue building on what he started... instead, they demolished what he started and put them further behind than what they were before he came in. He went to each park before the start of the season for a conference with all the dept managerial teams, I was there, and he said "EVERYTHING IS GETTING FRESH PAINT, TULIPS ARE COMING BACK, LIGHTS WILL BE ON, COASTERS WILL BE RESTORED... WE WILL BRING SIX FLAGS BACK TO THE TOP!" He was a man of his word and really pushed for all that, but sadly, the new corporate bigwigs after him had other thoughts in mind....
  8. Easy explanation, because corporate Six Flags just doesn't care about anything anymore unfortunately
  9. Heres some of many other pics I took from over the years. These are all from 2006-2009
  10. Holy crap, I never paid any attention to those... Here's some more pics that I took from that day. GOD it was an awful paint scheme
  11. I spotted Quimera/ Triple Loop on the move from Mexico to Indiana today headed north on I-55 in southern MO.
  12. A lot of the maintenance vehicle damage is from driving OFF the main paths.... in the woods, tight restricted areas, paths that they wouldn't use for a drive thru event, and from being banged up when loading and unloading equipment. When a worker hits something in the park, reports are filed, and there is only a very small amount filed each year.
  13. I don't even know how to say this because I just can't even believe it... It is with heavy heart to say that Josh (HWFan) passed away today after a lengthy battle. This young man was such an amazing person, not just in the amusement industry... for anyone who had ever met him, he was so incredibly smart, kind, warm, and enthusiastic. Please keep Josh's family in your prayers.
  14. Hey everyone, its been awhile since I've done much more than browse the board, but I wanted to ask everyone here for some deep hard prayers for Josh (HWFan)... Some of you may already know whats going on, but I'm not going to get in to specifics out of respect to Josh and his family, just asking for prayers. So big prayers to you Josh and your family
  15. What about the part where he says the camera man is holding the 20 LB camera!!! They don't even want you holding a cell phone when riding... can you imagine riding that with a 20 LB camera on your shoulders!!!???? Great video, thanks for sharing
  16. Thats just it, we dont know. It could go another month, it could take a year... the numbers or time frame I stated were just an example. I was trying to get at what kind of ramifications this could have on the industry for years to come
  17. Its been quite a while since I've posted on here. I've read through this whole thread, but I may just have missed it... or maybe I'm just illiterate. Anyway, this pandemic is obviously nothing to take lightly, ad I feel most people are trying their best so we can get past this mess, but I feel these closures are going to be much longer than most realize. Things are going to get worse before better. Lets just say it take another month for new cases, then another month for it to level off and then decrease, then another month for there to be no known cases anywhere, then another month of a "just to make sure: period.... THAT'S 4 MONTHS!!!! So best case scenario could be July. I hate thinking that way, but I'm just being a realist... hell, it could go on all year On another note, that could be brutal for many parks' futures.... smaller parks may go out of business, the next 2 or 3 years, additions to parks may be smaller or none at all. In the long run, this is going to take a major toll for the next couple of years on the amusement industry... hell, ALL industries. And the longer it takes to get back to normal, the more of a toll its going to have.
  18. Exactly, if he had such a problem, how come he didn't say anything about Mystic Timbers when it opened. He may have dug a hole for himself though, legal fees won't be cheap
  19. 1989 - Ninja - SFSTL 1995 - Batman - SFSTL 1995 - Cyclops - Big Chief Carts And Coasters (now Mt. Olympus) 1996 - Pegasus - Big Chief Carts And Coasters (now Mt. Olympus) 1997 - Zeus - Big Chief Carts And Coasters (now Mt. Olympus) 1998 - Mr. Freeze - SFSTL 1999 - Boomerang - Elitch Gardens 2000 - Boss - SFSTL 2000 - Flying Unicorn (now Flight of the Hippogriff) - UIA 2005 - Backlot Stunt Coaster - Kings Island 2006 - Goliath - SFoG 2006 - Voyage 2007 - Dive to Atlantis - Mt. Olympus 2007 - Tony Hawk's Big Spin (now Pandemonium) - SFSTL 2007 - Deja Vu - SFGA 2008 - Behemoth - CW 2008 - Ravine Flyer II - Waldameer 2008 - Evil Knievel (now American Thunder) -SFSTL 2009 - Diamondback - KI 2014 - Firechaser Express - DW 2014 - Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster 2015 - Thunderbird - HW 2017 - Rowdy Bear Coaster - Rowdy Bear Mountain
  20. Thanks, definitely picked the perfect day to go. Because of the quietness that day, it made me realize how nice of park it really is
  21. So last week I ventured on quite the park trip journey. I went from 90* weather in Orlando at BGT, Universal, and SeaWorld to 30* weather at Silver Dollar City. Kind of weird to be doing amusement parks days apart with over 60* temperature differences. Crowds were light in Florida, Universal a tad heavier than the other 2. Silver Dollar City was dead as hell, but it didn't matter because barely any rides were open due to how cold it was, so no Time Traveler . It makes me wonder with how cold it has been if HITP at SFSTL will do good this year. If it stays cold, crowds will be far less. Anyway, I posted a trip report of BGT, here's the link... http://themeparkreview.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=53855&start=7910
  22. Thanks. We got VERY lucky, longest wait was 5 minutes all day, and that wasn't even on Cheetah Hunt
  23. Trip report from my visit last Monday, November 5th. We made our way from Orlando and timed our arrival perfectly. We arrived 10 minutes before the gates opened and we had already purchased the Busch Gardens Sea World combo ahead of time. There may have been 35-50 people waiting at metal detection, if even that. As we went through metal detection, we unfortunately came across a rather unhappy security officer. He had a bad attitude, talked in a loud mono tone voice, and was snapping at everyone for every little thing. He told one man to move quicker, was getting exasperated with a woman that CLEARLY had a child with special needs, was putting his hands in people's bags, and then gave me hell because I started taking my items out of the basket even though he pushed it towards me, but then decided he wasn't done checking it yet. I understand everyone has an off day here and there, and I BEYOND know the struggles of working a metal detection/ security checkpoint in a large public place, but he his attitude was uncalled for, but of course we didn't let it ruin our day... luckily this was the only downfall to the day. First thing first, off to Cheetah Hunt. It had been 12 years since I was last at the park, so of course this was our main excitement for the trip. But we couldn't be more excited that it was a walk on. There were 2 people waiting for front row, so we decided to go for front row for first ride. I haven't been this excited to ride a ride in quite a while. I was slightly surprised by the weak first launch and then creeping through the turn, just expected a little more oomph through there, but of course the second launch was perfect. Overall, great ride, not top notch, but definitely one hell of a good coaster. The one other surprising thing was that for an Intamin, I thought it was a tad tame, I expected a little more punch. IMO, it just seemed that it lacked a good punch or snap here and there. Anyway, we got right back in line, only for it to still be a walk on, so this time we sat back row. Of course back row gave it a tad more snap in a few spots and a little better airtime on the hills, but still not what I expected. But as I said, by no means a bad coaster at all, definitely one of my new top 10 favorites. We rode one more time, back row, and then headed for Montu. Couldn't be happier arriving at the station to see yet another walk on. 2006 being the last time being here, I expected Montu to really have aged and given a rougher ride. I'm not saying it was smooth by any means, but not as bad as I thought. Still has good force and packs a good punch. The one thing we did notice though, and I may just never have noticed before, but there was a loud clacking noise throughout the entire ride, kind of like a train on railroad tracks. I’ve never heard anything like it before, and it wasn't a faint sound, actually pretty loud. Anyway, I'm not a huge fan of inverts, but for some reason, I really like Montu, such a great layout. I'm not sure if its the dips in to the ditches or what, but I this is tied in my book with Banshee... yes, call me crazy. We only rode once more before heading to Cobra's Curse for the fact that getting old makes this ride harder to be rerideable lol. Cobra's Curse... again, walk on. Now, I know it’s a family ride and I didn't expect much going in to this coaster, just a fun little ride. I thought the first part was good with the tilting through the first turn before going in to the first drop and tight little layout elements. The second half, backwards half, was a tad slow, but again, I understand they didn't want it to be too intense. As far as the third part, I was a tad disappointed. Our car barely spun. And then the 3 same 180s was a bit boring, but I think that was because we didn't spin. Normally I wouldn't ride a coaster like this a second time, but since it was still walk on and we were only 40 minutes into the day, why not, right!!?? The second ride was better for the fact that we spun on the third part of the course and that made the 180s much better. Overall, a great little addition. We then jumped on the train at Nairobi station for a ride through the Serengeti. We were a tad let down for the fact that all we saw were a few rhinos and an ostrich. The Congo station was closed, so we got off at the Stanleyville station. Of course there’s priority when in this area… Sheikra. This is the only drop coaster I’ve ridden, but loved it 12 years ago, so I was stoked to finally get to ride her again. Front row was a 2 train wait. All I can say is I can’t get enough of this coaster. I’m all about coasters with air time, so for me to love this coaster this much is untypical. It just makes me want to plan a trip to Cedar Point and Canada’s Wonderland next year. We ended up riding Sheikra during this time frame 3 times, once in each row. Then it was time to find something to eat and check out some animals. We aren’t picky and don’t expect much from amusement park food and we also going cheap and don’t like wasting time, so since we were in the area, we settled for Sheikra eats. We both had the chicken fingers and fries… both fresh from the fryer, it wasn’t Raisin’ Cane’s, but surprisingly good. During lunch, just as many other parks, it’s expected that the local wildlife likes to be scavengers. Of course the Ibis’ were all over, and of course the occasional squirrel, but what I WASN’T expecting was to be minding my own business, enjoying my Busch Gardens chicken fingers, to suddenly feeling needles in my legs. Turns out a squirrel hadn’t quite gotten my attention enough, so it decided to climb up my leg and sit on my lap. Easy fix, I’ll just throw a fry on the table… nope! It wanted to be hand fed. After numerous attempts to get it to its rightful place on the ground, it finally exhausted itself enough of begging to settle for what was on the table and ground. Off for a little walk to explore some of what separates BG from other parks, the animals and the great landscaping and scenery. We made our way over to the Orangutan exhibit, and we couldn’t have arrived at a better time. They just let out a male and female, and the female was carrying a very small baby. We made our way to the indoor viewing area just in time for the male to be right up at the window as a trainer was dropping apple slices into a box for him to retrieve. So awesome to see this up close and personal, especially his facial gestures when she wasn’t giving him his food fast enough. Mom and baby were in a rope hammock under the floor glass, but too eventually made their way over to the male, right up to the glass. Such an awesome experience. Our walk then took us over to Stanley Falls. I don’t know exactly what it is about this flume, but I just love it. I know it’s nowhere near the best, I guess it’s just the layout and scenery around it. We then made our way to Kumba. I’ve ridden this beast many times over the years, but for some reason, this is one of only a handful of coasters that gets my heart pumping even before getting on. Couldn’t believe it, yet another walk on, not even full trains on this one. But as I was settling in my seat, I had worry on my mind. I mean, she’s one of the oldest B&Ms out there, and all the others that aren’t even as old as her are just BLAH now… has she lost any of her punch, how rough has she gotten, has she slowed down?? Well, all I can say is wow. The old girl still has it. The forces, the speed, not that rough at all…. She is just one bad mama!!! We ended up riding 3 times in a row, 2nd row, last row, 1st row. I wanted to ride again, but I guess I’m a wuss, she was starting to kick my a$$, needed a break. The only thing that kind of sucked, and I know this is kind of dumb to whine about, but since Congo River Rapids was drained and closed, the Cobra Roll path was blocked off… took away from getting some great pics. Now it was time for a quick recovery period from the ol’ girl and we decided to take it all in on the Skyride. We stopped and filled our souvenir cups with our free refills of Icees (such and awesome perk) and then arrived to the at the Jungala Skyride station. I love these rides, but especially here. Such a great way to get aerial views of the park, really take in the Serengeti, and just relax. The one thing I was also looking forward to was the great views and interaction of Cheetah Hunt. They really did a great job with interacting these 2 rides, makes both that much better. And that’s saying a lot considering its almost impossible making a skyride better. Anyway, we debated if we should ride back and go straight over to Pantopia or walk back… after a few seconds of deliberation, it was a no brainer to walk to go see more exhibits. We went to see the cheetah’s but none were out, just one in its small glass enclosure, was hoping to see the speed test demonstration. Then we made our way to the Gorillas. As you can see in the picture posted, this one particular Gorilla was feeling very photogenic and was quite the exhibitionist. Next was the animal care center, where there were quite a few sloths… who doesn’t love sloths, right!?... or is it just me?? They also had some baby penguins, a tortoise, and a lemur currently inside. Jumped back on the Skyway to venture through Pantopia. Now, my past 3 visits to BGT, Scorpion has been down every time. Twice for maintenance/ mechanical, once due to storms most the day, so I’ve never ridden it. Crazy as it may seem, I’ve only ridden 2 Schwarzkopf coaster, Mind Bender and Greezed Lightnin’, so I was a little pumped about this. This was actually our first wait of the day, 2 train wait, nothing bad at all. What I WASN’T expecting was how much oomph that double helix had. I thought it was a great little coaster, a tad rough, but nothing major, overall a good little Schwarzkopf with a kick. Next was Sand Serpent, no wait, and nothing else to really say for a typical Mack Wild Mouse… mehhh Now it was time for Falcon’s Fury. I absolutely LOVE drop towers, so I was pumped about this one. But had disaster finally struck on this visit??? Yup, she was down for maintenance. Normally I wouldn’t it sweat it too much, but there were 5 maintenance workers there, never a good sign with that many. Well, easy fix to this solution, Kumba!!!! Again, NO WAIT!!! As we exited though, we saw that Falcon’s Fury was in test mode and running. We rushed our way back over, for what I’m not sure because it was still early in the day. As we got there, they were letting the first batch of riders on and we managed to get on just as they were about to close the gate. I have never had the anxiousness for a flat like this before. As we reached the top, seats retracted, heart was racing. Then the drop. I enjoyed this drop over any other. The one thing that made this ride different than others, besides dropping face first, was the lack of losing your stomach for a few minutes. I guess it’s because you’re stomach has nowhere to go where on a typical drop tower, it ends up in your throat. We definitely wanted to ride again, and it was amazing that in 2 short minutes the line grew to a whopping 5 minute wait lol. At this time, it is only 3PM, and we want to make the most of the day. We made a slow walk to the bird garden area, cutting back through Jungala and Stanleyville and just took in the sights and sounds. The one bad thing about a dead day at a park is the people watching just isn’t as good. But that was ok, it gave us more time to really take in the beautiful landscaping, get some good pictures, and not get mad at stupid people. As we made our stroll, we ended up back by Cheetah hunt for yet 2 more rides, 2-3 train waits. We then took the Skyway back to Jungala and then back to Cheetah Hunt. Final stop was to go see the kangaroos. I never got the time to be up close and personal with these guys on past visits, so I had to take the opportunity to do this. I never realized how soft these little guys are. Was able to get some good photo opps with them as well. It was now 5PM, so we did a little shopping and then made our way to the car. Overall, this was by far my best trip ever to this park. The no waits, not having to fight crowds, not having to be elbowed out of way trying to see the animals. The downside to BGT IMO is the lack of a few more good flats. Just 2, maybe 3 would really make this an all-around solid park. Food options are good, not a huge, but good variety of animals, great landscaping and atmosphere. The other nice change I noticed about this park was the more upbeat and friendly employees than in the past… well, all except for the security guard at the beginning of the day. We were always greeted with smiles, upbeat attitudes, thank yous, and helpful staff. We couldn’t have asked for a better day! Also, Gotta love the new maps and what it says where Gwazi is... hmmmm.... The great exhibitionist Who doesn't love penguins?? The one shot I was able to get without the Ibis's horning in Sexy beast... such a great drop on these My uninvited lunch partner Green is the new sexy Drop it like its hot!!! "hey, can I have some more?... PLEEEEAAAASE!" Too damn cute I'm ready for my close up! SLOTHS!! Sorry, not the greatest shot Nap time I could say so much here... Local residents Can't wait for 2020!!!!!!
  24. First teaser poster has appeared. Numerous sites posted this yesterday with short articles talking about the announcement being in early 2019 and still leaning towards the theming being of Hagrid's motorcycle and the Forbidden Forest.
  25. Visited HW yesterday and it was that perfect dreary type of day to be there. The forecast had been calling for a lot of rain Sunday, but last minute, forecast changed and we made the trip over. Multiple rides on the 4 coasters, and rode almost all the non kiddie rides, and the longest wait we had was about 5 minutes, but pretty much everything was walk on. Park looked great with the Halloween theming as usual. Even though I've been going to HW for 15 years, I just can't get over how great of a park this is.
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