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Kennywood (KW) Discussion Thread

P. 150: Kangaroo, Paratrooper, Bayern Kurve and Volcano being retired

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Nice to see someone else has met the Kennywood magic. Many PA parks seem to have that kinda of atmosphere. And an Idlewild visit!

 

These pics remind me how much I need to go back; I only was able to go for four hours and just barely snagged the main woodies and Phantom, including that insane night ride. That shot of Phantom at night, with the moon in the back, is pretty awesome. Cool TR!

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oh look. . I got a survey from Kennywood asking me what type of "events" I'd prefer they do to get me coming to the park most often. luckily, there's a space on the last page to give some feedbac

This has been standard operating procedure for years. It's not like if they recover costs they'll stop doing every possible thing to run their parks as poorly as possible and remove as many rides / be

Bayern Kurve is indeed my favorite flat ride... so naturally was disturbed about Kennywood's actions. It has come full circle since I "lost" my Kurves at Cedar Point, Kings Island, Geauga Lake, Canada

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Thank you for the report and photos. I haven't been to Kennywood in about three years despite it being a short 2.5 hour drive for me but your photos are making me want to possibly plan a trip soon. While the park has a lot of solid attractions the only reason to go is for Bayern Kurve. What a wonderful ride that is!

 

I have never done night rides on Phantom as I never do a full day there but I've heard it is even more fantastic at night (plus the whole park supposedly looks great overall). You did not mention Ghostwood Estate, which is my favorite interactive shooting dark ride.

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The Kangaroo is a ride I wouldn't mind seeing making a comeback at other parks like Larson Scooters have in recent years. Probably my absolutely favorite flat ride at Kennywood!

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What great feedback, glad you guys enjoyed! I do agree that PR totally outclasses SFNE SROS and, for me personally, MilF. While they are quite different rides, I'd probably put it on par with Fury.

 

The Kangaroo is a ride I wouldn't mind seeing making a comeback at other parks like Larson Scooters have in recent years. Probably my absolutely favorite flat ride at Kennywood!
Agreed!

 

You did not mention Ghostwood Estate, which is my favorite interactive shooting dark ride.
The line was pretty long each time I passed by, so I kept skipping it. Will make it a priority for a return visit, as I do like dark ride shooters.

 

I never do a full day there
I only was able to go for four hours
Not wanting to spend only a partial day at KW is much of the reason I hadn't visited until now. And after seeing how many truly great rides there are, I totally recommend a full day visit!!
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We're planning on making our first trip out on the 15th. Any particular order to avoid lines? We're figuring a Monday in the middle of August won't be too busy, but you never know.

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^^Thanks for the trip report, ejot...I always enjoy reading your reports and commentary.

 

We also missed the crazy looking wild mouse at Idlewild due to it breaking down right as we were getting in line for it. The good news is that we were able to ride the Mister Rogers train ride before they re-themed it a couple of years ago!

 

I REALLY wish that they would have kept it the way it was because it was so trippy and weird. I recall laughing until I hurt and the extremely effeminate man that was our tour guide just made it even funnier. And that certainly isn't a slam against effeminate men...I think that he was just perfect for that job - he was awesome and you can tell that he was making some of the more "masculine" men uncomfortable which made me laugh even harder!

 

I was wondering if you had the actual classic Primanti sandwich with the burger or did you try one with pastrami or corned beef? I didn't like the burger one, but holy crap was the pastrami and corned beef one the bomb!

 

And I agree with you on the fries at Kennywood - definitely overrated. The rest of the park however, is awesome...we need to get back there just to ride Black Widow and of course, visit the new beer garden that wasn't there the last time we visited.

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Here is a little trip report on my first visit to Kennywood on Friday.

 

Overall I had a good experience. Nice park with good variety of rides. Food I had was good (recommend the soft serve strawberry ice cream...YUMMY!)

 

Now the bad part. What is the deal with operations, especially on the coasters?!!! I thought Six Flags was slow, but they take the cake here! I know I'm spoiled being Cedar Point is my home park, but really, how slow and how much screwing around can you do? The lines could have gone much faster if they would put some effort into their job. For instance, on the Racer, there was only ONE person checking BOTH trains and they took their sweet old time. Maybe the other operators were on break, but still they should have at least one person on each side especially as busy as the park was.

 

Weeds! This park could look so much better if they would do a better job on the landscaping and a little paint wouldn't hurt either. Yes I know it's a small park, but I've been to small parks like Holiday World and everything there is pristine!

 

As for the rides/coasters....here is my take on the ones I got to ride. I only got to ride them once due to time constraints (would have been able to do multiple rides if operations were faster).

 

Sky Rocket....Had a fun ride! The second half a bit ho-hum.

 

Garfield's Nightmare....It was ok. More for the kids.

 

Kangaroo....LOVED IT! I haven't rode one of these since I was around 12 (over 30 years ago). Brought back great memories.

 

Jack Rabbit....Not bad for old coaster. Got some nice pop of air on the double-down.

 

Racer....Probably my favorite of the woodies.

 

Ghostwood Estate.... One of the better shooting dark rides I've been on.

 

Thunderbolt....Good ride. Was a toss up between this and Racer for favorite woody there.

 

Noah's Ark....Always heard about it and wasn't disappointed. Great!

 

Ice Age 4D....Cute movie. Pretty typical of the rest of the 4D types out there.

 

Phantom's Revenge....OUCH! Sat around the middle of the train and those bunny hops about killed me. The big drops are great, but when he hits those bunny hills it jarred me pretty good. I was pretty much done for after that.

 

Would have loved to have done more, but needed to be heading out. Maybe one of these days I'll get back there and operations will be better and I'll get on the things I didn't get a chance to ride.

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Strange you didn't have the best experience. Outside of Thunderbolt running one train when I visited, I didn't witness a single instance of stacking on the woodies or Phantoms Revenge. And I found Phantoms Revenge to be incredibly intense and comfortable, like what B&M hypers are supposed to be.

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Kennywood's operations will more often than not make you want to bash your head into a concrete wall. What is really strange about it, is that almost every ride operator seems to move in the exact same slow manner. Almost like being incredibly slow was trained.

 

The rides themselves are pretty awesome overall which kind of makes up for it.

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Kennywood is always full value. Got to head back a few weeks ago for the first time in a few years and loved it. Sure it was odd and annoying that rides just opened whenever throughout the morning, but they eventually all opened. Sky Rocket is still a lot of fun and Phantom's Revenge is just as good and intense as ever. Thunderbolt is still crazy. Oh and got to ride my first Giant Discovery and loved it way more than the one we have at Canada's Wonderland. Being in seats that felt more open and a longer/ higher cycle makes a huge difference. Of course, the double cone ice cream with a cherry on top ended the day.

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For those who have ridden Phantom, what are the restraints like? I've been having a hard time finding an up-close photo of the seats. From what I can tell, they look similar to the S&S Screamin' Swing/Powder Keg lap bars? Is that true? If so, holy crap, I can't even imagine the airtime!

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It's basically just a padded ratcheting bar that lowers from the outer edge of the train. You can definitely get some good air. However, there is the pesky seat belt as well...

 

124395142_PhantomRestraints.thumb.jpg.b736fa095eab2d31b7ba89a20bcf84d3.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

Made our first trip out to the park on the 15th, overall, pretty good day, but I don't really feel the need to go back.

 

Black Widow is the best pendulum I've ridden, absolutely fantastic. Outclasses KD Delirium by miles.

 

The woodies are good examples of classic designs, but are overall "meh." In my opinion, each of their woodies have very good moments, but the single moments that made me go "WOW" weren't enough to make up for the rest of the ride being lackluster (See: double down on Jack Rabbit, drop out of the station on Thunderbolt, and the one hill on Racer you actually get airtime on)

 

Exterminator was the biggest surprise of the day for me, we managed to get the car perfectly off balance, tons of spinning, and that ride absolutely hauls ass! (Maybe the high speed spinning distorted my sense of speed, but it sure felt like it was booking it!) all in all, a fantastic spinning coaster. Surprisingly intense!

 

Kangaroo and Bayern Curve were both just hilariously fun! The airhorn towards the end of the cycle on Bayern Curve scared the absolute shit out of me, and had me giggling the rest of the ride. Kangaroo was the most ridiculous ride I've been on, honestly I'm shocked what people have come up with in regards to rides, in the "I can't believe this is a thing" sense.

 

Sky Rocket was pretty fun, the 2nd half of the ride seems pretty pointless though. Altogether a forgettable* ride.

 

Phantoms Revenge was very good, but not a destination coaster in the same vein as Fury 325 or Skyrush. Loads of airtime, but it's too short! It felt incomplete to me, it just needs /more/ in my opinion.

 

All in all, a decent day, other than getting pulled over for going 8 over the speed limit on the turnpike on the way in, and the beer garden being closed all day because of the schools at the park. If you've never been, and you're in the area, Kennywood is absolutely worth a stop, would I go again? Maybe in a few years, I don't feel the need to head back anytime soon.

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Has anyone ever had experience with a "Nationality Day"? I want to head over this weekend...Labor Day...and Sunday is the best available for me. It is Latino Day and I was wondering about crowds....I was planning a weekend out of it since it is also our anniversary wit a stay possibly at Extended Stay America West Mifflin. Any thoughts on this whole adventure?

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Has anyone ever had experience with a "Nationality Day"? I want to head over this weekend...Labor Day...and Sunday is the best available for me. It is Latino Day and I was wondering about crowds....I was planning a weekend out of it since it is also our anniversary wit a stay possibly at Extended Stay America West Mifflin. Any thoughts on this whole adventure?

 

When I was a kid, Italian Day was notoriously one of the most crowded days of the season at Kennywood. Pittsburgh isn't quite like it used to be, but there are still lots of gestures toward ethnic pride and cultural heritages throughout the city, and ethnic days at Kennywood have long been a part of the scene. Having said that, Pittsburgh still has a relatively small Latino population. Latino Day was only established in 2011 (compared to 1910s & 20s for others!), so it looks like more of a foward-thinking move on Kennywood's part as it evolves with population changes in the city. I doubt the park will get particularly slammed like it usually does on Italian Day. If the weather's good, I'd go!

 

Might I also suggest looking into North Shore/Cultural District things to do and places to stay if you need some extra itinerary oomph for your anniversary! West Mifflin-to-Kennywood is a relatively hassle-free way to get to the park, but unless you're determined to avoid the city, you'll miss out on a lot of the iconic sights and good restaurants, museums, and attractions that make Pittsburgh memorable. There are lots of nice places to go and things to do, depending upon your interests. Not all of the areas near the park are "bad," but the neighborhoods are certainly more downtrodden than not in that part of town. Feel free to PM me if you'd like some ideas!

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One of the coaster podcast owners (not sure if I'm allowed to name them here?) said they spotted Alan Shilke, Fred Grubb and some executives from KW walking around the Thunderbolt area today. Could this be the next Iron Horse conversion?

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^^That is one of the most awful rumors I've heard, and that's saying a lot. I know it's harsh, but that's what it is. Thunderbolt is Kennywood's most well-maintained and most thrilling wooden coaster, and probably the signature attraction for the entire family to ride. And an Iron Horse treatment on Thunderbolt could be the first time where the original coaster ends up being better than the RMC coaster. It would really harm Kennywood's reputation of preserving classic rides and wooden coasters, too.

 

^A ground-up RMC coaster would be a more realistic option. It seems a bit large for this kind of park, but it seems like the park has been planning something important with other rumors (still not great rumors) and some land expansions a few years ago.

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^^That is one of the most awful rumors I've heard, and that's saying a lot. I know it's harsh, but that's what it is. Thunderbolt is Kennywood's most well-maintained and most thrilling wooden coaster, and probably the signature attraction for the entire family to ride.

 

actually with a 52" height requirement, it's really not. Meanwhile Jack Rabbit the Ejector is only 36" with adult. Even Phantom is only 48". Thunderbolt is thrilling but not a family ride.

 

I don't think it's such a bad idea. A conversation would be cheaper than a ground up RMC. And for all we know Thunderbolt might be insanely costly to maintain. Would be pretty cool having an RMC in and out of that ravine and around Phantom. I like this idea.

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Man... As much as I love RMC, and think every park should have one (and think they could do amazing things with the topography in that particular part of Kennywood), I'm really not sure I like the idea of Thunderbolt being touched by RMC. Same with Jack Rabbit... Now, Racer, I'd be totally down with having an RMC conversion, especially if they do something like TC, where it retains the racing element! It'll be very interesting to see how all this RMC rumor progresses into reality, because KW is already an awesome, and very well rounded little park, and an RMC would be icing on the cake!

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