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Photo TR: Scott Does Beech Bend

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Prior to this visit, I had actually been to the park twice. The first time was for the announcement of the Kentucky Rumbler, and the second time was this past December for their Christmas festival where they decided not to open the rides on the day I came. So, despite having been to the park multiple times, the only ride I had been on was the Wild Mouse.


Well, on my way home for the Indy 500 this weekend, I thought I'd stop by. After all, it's just ten to fifteen minute drive from I-65. I've been fairly embarrassed that after two years, I still haven't ridden Kentucky Rumbler.


I was slightly worried the park might not actually be open again. It was a Friday in May, I wasn't getting there until mid-afternoon, and I've been at parks before where they have actually closed early due to small crowds. Fortunately, that was not the case. The park was dominated by a few elementary school field trips, with emphasis on "few." Lines were non-existent. I was able to get all three of my missing credits, as well as Shock Tower. Didn't really care to do anything else, given the small amount of time I had.


As for Rumbler, it didn't disappoint. My first ride in the back seat was actually a little bit of a let down. It didn't have nearly the amount of airtime that I have come to know for GCI coasters. However, the first drop in the back was completely awesome and it was still a great ride. Then, I gave the front a try, and found everything I was looking for. It was rambunctious and filled with pops of strong airtime. Completely awesome. I still have to give Thunderhead the edge, but Rumbler gave it a run for its money.


As for the rest, you'll just have to check out the pictures! Enjoy!


Sing it Gulmer! Hope you all enjoyed it. If you're lucky there might be a slightly interesting TR in the random section in the not-to-distant future.


Quite possibly the worst store name ever... right in the heart of Louisville.


Ok, so I stopped for gas at a truck plaza in the middle of Kentucky. As I was leaving, I noticed a horse just stand between the station and the on-ramp to the interstate. I sat utterly confused for a few seconds before I finally noticed the group of Amish folk selling quilts out of there buggy.


If I didn't know any better, I'd think it is March and I'm out West again.


Ahh Beech Bend... quite possibly the only park where you will see a tractor, a late model bomber, and an operating coaster all within forty feet of each other. That's not stereotypical at all...


But wait, before I headed off, I took a quick walk around to Rumbler to snap a few shots. Now that I am outside the park, I envy those people in the front seat. No matter how awesome the drop is in the back seat, it's totally a front of the train ride.


I was pleased. Yes, Beech Bend isn't your average park, but as I mentioned, it still has its own charm to it.


I'm running out of captions for this ride. Did I mention that it's awesome and you all need to find yourselves in Bowling Green, KY soon?


The Rumbler train rolls right by the queue on its way to the turn before the lift hill.


Yes, I'm aware that the Looping Star photos now out-number Rumbler photos. I'm just fascinated with the thing. Speaking of which, I campaign that Beech Bend invests in a Fascination game room.


Lift hill shot! I find it funny/bizarre/sort of scary that Pinfari opted to go with a wooden lift hill walk, despite the entire ride being made of steel.


Next time you're at the park, thank Charlene for convincing Dallas to invest the money into this. And thank Jeff Pike from GCI for convincing Dallas into doing the Aeroplane drop, instead of a straight drop like he originally wanted.


I assume that one of the rides they bought from Wild West World will be planted here.


They had a nice looking mini-golf place, but like everything else that isn't a coaster or named "Shock Drop," I passed up because of time.


SCAT 2 looked pretty crazy, but empty stomachs and crazy spinning rides don't go together for me, as backwards as that might sound...


I gave it a few courtesy photos, but no courtesy rides. I already had the credit and there were Rumbler rides to be had.


It's easy to forget about Wild Mouse. It wasn't until I was on Dragon Coaster that I even remembered it existed.


Shock Drop fans, get to Lake Winnie. Oh! Zone > Shock Drop. Practically the same thing, except Oh! Zone is at least twice as tall. To hell with stand-up gyros, we need more Oh! Zones in this world. I give BB their credit though. It gives a nice fright. The name is appropriate.


Most Starship 3000s/Gravitrons play techno or dance music. Beech Bend opted for "Sweet Potato Pie" by James Taylor.


This thing was brutal for a kiddie coaster! I was ready to get off after one spin, but they gave us four!


The last credit left on the list was the Dragon Coaster.


Ok, so yes, it was a death machine and I feared for my life, but despite its jars and ready-to-collapse appearance, I actually enjoyed the ride.


I can't lie, after hearing stories and seeing it in its rickety glory, I was quite terrified of this thing.


The park got new trains for this in '06. The old ones are sitting in Beech Bend's boneyard, which lies in a field just beyond Rumbler.


Looping Star! I can't lie, I've always had a weird fascination with these things and have been desperate to try one. When I was here in '05, this was sitting partially de-constructed where the Rumbler Cafe now stands.


Beech Bend has a little portable log flume, which I passed on. You can't tell in the picture, but the water was extremely blue. I don't know if they color it or if its just an effect from the blue trough.


Here's one for all you Millennium Flyer enthusiasts. As you glance around the station, you can see the lines I was up against.


A train full of happy riders hops over a speed bump.


Like most GCIs, this thing maintains a fast pace and whips through most of the course.


The first drop was awesome! The train really picked up a lot more speed than I expected on the pre-drop wrap around.


The last time I stood this close to Rumbler, it looked like this.


Let's do this... but wait... how about a flash back...


Beech Bend is more or less a glorified permanent carnival. Nevertheless, it has its charm.


I'm in! I'm in! It's open like they said they'd be!


Kind of feels like a county fair, doesn't it?


Mhmm... Power Surgey goodness. I still need to enter the park though.


Yes, finally...


And as you crest over the hill, you spot the main attraction!


Beech Bend is kind of in the middle of nowhere. This is the drive up to the park...


I picked up a pamphlet at the Kentucky welcome center in hopes of finding a coupon. No luck. However, I noticed something interesting on the cover. The owner and his family are riding Rumbler. I thought that was nifty, but then again, maybe I just have a massive dork side that is extremely suppressed.


Sorry, Alabama Adventure... maybe one day. Beech Bend takes priority though.


Hey Colin.


My phat whip... already filled with go-go juice.


Part 1: Accomplished


Owned!! Time to go grab my junk and head out...


English Lit... fun stuff.


The day started out at the University of Alabama. I had an exam to take before I could head north.

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Great photos and TR!


Despite its (current) size and quality, I really do like the park! And I think it will continue to expand into a true amusement park in the future.

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Nice photos Scott!


Beech Bend has a really nice atmosphere. All the staff are really friendly and they take a lot of pride in what they do. Sure, most of the rides aren't that special, but when the people working there are that nice it really doesn't matter. And they have an awesome caster in Kentucky Rumbler.

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Awesome TR! Your humor is uncanny, and the photos were awesome. Thanks for sharing, looks like you had a lot of fun!


Count me in as wanting to get credits on both Looping Star and Kentucky Rumbler. As well as Starship 3000 (they had these at a local OC fair, but I never got on it and always wondered what they were like).



Hot dogs 2 for $1 at a gas station? Count me out!


Thanks for the photos and TR, hope that test went well too.



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Awesome TR dude! I don't know what it is about the new school GCI's, but they just rock so hardcore from the front, and this is coming from the type who usually prefers the back seat on most coasters.


Have fun at the Indy 500!

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I enjoyed your TR! By the way, for others passing through Nashville on your way to BB, there are discount coupons at area McDonald's.


I think the round concrete pad is where the new carousel is going.


I love my lil "home" park.

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By the way, for others passing through Nashville on your way to BB, there are discount coupons at area McDonald's.


thrillerman1, thank you. This is a good tip, especially if I can work out a run to BB and SFKK. I also should've said hello while at Opry Mills not long ago.


Yes, further good reasons to go back to Nashville and hit up BB. The place looks fun.

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Thanks for the comments everybody! Glad you all enjoyed it!


And now to address some comments:


Did you not ride Power Surge? That's my favorite flat! Oh well, you can ride one again this fall at the the Tennessee State Fair, which has a credit but is mostly culture credit.


Nah, I skipped out because the program looked weak and I was short on time. I opted for an extra ride on Rumbler instead of a ride on Power Surge.


Was the Shock Drop similar to the drop ride we rode at Castles N Coasters? Speaking of that ride, I need to edit the video for that park.


Yes and no. We could actually feel skydiver slow down at the top so there was a little bit of a warning. Shock Drop is more like Oh! Zone where there is virtually no warning at all. It never slows on the ascent and suddenly drops at the top. The drop is too brief for it to really scare though.


Beech Bend has a really nice atmosphere. All the staff are really friendly and they take a lot of pride in what they do. Sure, most of the rides aren't that special, but when the people working there are that nice it really doesn't matter. And they have an awesome caster in Kentucky Rumbler.


YES!!!! I feel bad because I completely forgot to mention this in my TR! The staff was great! They were all having so much fun with their job and seemed to really take pride in what they were doing. They were extremely nice all day! I was very impressed.


Oh really Tyler? NO coaster enthusiasts in Huntsville? Perhaps you should look again.


Ha, well in his defense, you did mention that you couldn't go on Rumbler because of your stomach.


I don't know what it is about the new school GCI's, but they just rock so hardcore from the front, and this is coming from the type who usually prefers the back seat on most coasters.


You and I both! I almost always prefer the back seat but the front on all of the recent GCIs blow me away. I think it has to do with the way they engineer their turns. The track will ascend up to a turn and then suddenly level off as the train negotiates it. So pretty much, the front of train gets launched into the turns, which creates crazy pops of airtime. That is what I love so much about Thunderhead. Anyway, that's my theory.


You had a Norton Anthology for English Lit. didnt you...I had one for AP Eng, I can spot that dreaded thing from ANYWHERE.


You are correct. I'm impressed, Tex. That thing sucks!! One more week!


Thanks again for all the comments! For those of you that are interested, I will hopefully have an Indy 500 TR up late tonight or sometime tomorrow if I find that I can make an entertaining TR.


Thanks Andrew and Tyler, I had a blast! It was an incredible race.

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TheRapidsNerd wrote:

Oh really Tyler? NO coaster enthusiasts in Huntsville? Perhaps you should look again.



Ha, well in his defense, you did mention that you couldn't go on Rumbler because of your stomach.


True, however I enjoy them just as much, albeit in a little different way. Any time you guys would like to talk shop the door is open. Always up for hanging out with other coaster enthusiasts. No worries, eh?


Back to point, you've got a good TR here and agreed that Kentucky Rumbler is a cool coaster. Beech Bend is definately on the do list, and this TR shows exactly why.

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The Scat 2 was to be replaced last year, but its nice to see it has returned.. and a nice shade of orange, too.


Last year they replaced the Sizzler and the Tornado.


This years other new addition is supposed to be a Carousel, but Im not sure if they are going to put it under one of the already exisiting pavillions or if that concrete pad will be the home for it.


I would love to see them replace that little Eli wheel with a larger new one.

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