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Six Flags Great America (SFGAm) Discussion Thread


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Check out this photo from sfgamworld.com's facebook page of the extended queue set up for tomorrow/this weekend/this summer's crowds.

 

I'm having Ragin' Cajun line flashbacks, only like ten times worse. With its capacity and how many people are going to want to ride it, that's like 4-5 hours boiling on the blacktop without shade... dear god, I pray for you people.

 

The line should have began at loggers run and i've been saying that all along!

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Going tomorrow for opening day since my flight leaves back to California in the evening tomorrow so it's my only chance.

 

I've never been to an opening day for a ride before so I'm not really sure what to expect. Would arriving 1hr 30mins before park opening to get in line be a good idea or just unnecessary?

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http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-80553658/

Cool review by Chicago Tribune with some interesting bits of information in it, like that Great America had RMC sign a non-compete clause so that they couldnt produce a taller faster steeper wooden coaster that would unthrown Goliath for a specified number of years.

 

Im working on a review but in the meantime, lets play a game and get this convo rolling. Lets call it "overheard at Media Day" or "leaks from media day." If you overheard something interesting and informative we havent heard yet while at media day, please share. If you had a great conversation / interview/ picked the brain of any RMC designers or leadership, please spill the beans! I dont expect to hear something that hasnt been announced-like a colossus story. But i think we would all appreciate any interesting facts regarding the designers, the ride, the design process, the elements, inspiration, engineering, etc.

 

 

I asked Fred 2 questions while we shared a ride. 1. Is RMC working on incorporating other "steel coaster" inspired inversions and 2. Will we see a launch coaster in the future. Both question were answered with "Those concepts are currently on the drawing board."

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That is excellent news and a great contribution!

 

^I was talking to them and asked "mind if I get a picture?"

I should have been clearer, I was asking where and how you got the photo that you posted from? It looks like it is from the maintenance road, I was just wondering about the picture you posted.

.

That's just the exit ramp with the camera facing vertical I assume. There is no other access. The station and line are all behind the lift and dive loop so there arent many great photo angles and thus no reason to post a massive media day photo album. We have seen all the angles already with the test runs and construction pics. Here is one from the station though. image.thumb.jpg.c6f31198ea2a374b6026a6a5b9acb014.jpg

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Going tomorrow for opening day since my flight leaves back to California in the evening tomorrow so it's my only chance.

 

I've never been to an opening day for a ride before so I'm not really sure what to expect. Would arriving 1hr 30mins before park opening to get in line be a good idea or just unnecessary?

 

Think "running of the bulls" when they drop the chain. It's fine to get there early so you can be at the chain when it drops but if you don't keep up with the stampede you'll be a long ways back in line in a hurry.

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Think "running of the bulls" when they drop the chain. It's fine to get there early so you can be at the chain when it drops but if you don't keep up with the stampede you'll be a long ways back in line in a hurry.

 

Oh wow, it works like that! Thanks for the response, I think I'll definitely wanna get there early then.

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^Hadn't watched those, thanks.

I would really like to know what that zero g feel like given how everyone has been praising it. I guess the only way to know is by riding it.

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http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-80553658/

Cool review by Chicago Tribune with some interesting bits of information in it, like that Great America had RMC sign a non-compete clause so that they couldnt produce a taller faster steeper wooden coaster that would unthrown Goliath for a specified number of years.

 

Im working on a review but in the meantime, lets play a game and get this convo rolling. Lets call it "overheard at Media Day" or "leaks from media day." If you overheard something interesting and informative we havent heard yet while at media day, please share. If you had a great conversation / interview/ picked the brain of any RMC designers or leadership, please spill the beans! I dont expect to hear something that hasnt been announced-like a colossus story. But i think we would all appreciate any interesting facts regarding the designers, the ride, the design process, the elements, inspiration, engineering, etc.

 

Here's one. Very Screamscape worthy. I was waiting in line with a high up member of the maintenance staff yesterday. He did a bunch of the electrical work on Goliath and rode it before everyone else, does ride maintenance, etc. He was talking to his wife and kids about the building of the ride. His (nearly) exact quote was "The Eagle's next. First we got Goliath then we have these guys redo the Eagle. It's a major investment but that was the long term goal."

 

Now, why maintenance personnel would have access to the long term development strategy of the park is beyond me, but within organizations people talk and it's actual conversations with actual employees that can create a change in the organization/give the organization direction. We don't often get the chance to hear the back-door musings of the park personnel and it was funny to hear him say this.

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For those wondering about the restraints, I was on the first train of media day and the person next to me was able to get the belt buckled after a significant struggle, but could not get the lap bar down far enough. The ride ops did not do much of anything to help get the lap bar down either (not that that is their job, but just wanted to give you the information). The gentleman that was unable to ride, mentioned that he was able to fit on Outlaw Run, though I actually find that hard to believe given his current size, so maybe he was bigger now than then, but maybe Outlaw Run's restraints are a bit more "forgiving" than Goliath's, but I would tend to think that they are pretty much identical.

 

I don't think anyone from Media Day has mentioned this yet, but there was zero signage about a single rider line, so I would be shocked if Goliath opened with a single rider line. Also, the Flash Pass entrance basically spits you out right in the middle of the station, much closer to the air gates than any other Flash Pass I've seen on any other coaster in the park.

 

Speaking of the station and queue, there is very little shade in the queue. There is a large-ish queue block behind Thrillseekers that has cover...and that is it. The temporary queue is completely unshaded, and so is everything from the queue block mentioned above through the main part of the station. The station modifications are very welcomed. It is much easier to move around inside the station and the queue places you into the station in the middle as opposed to the front like Iron Wolf. I really wish they would have torn down the roof of the old station and built it to fit Goliath, but they did not. They did a decent job extending the back part of the station to accommodate the last few rows of the train, but they did nothing to the roof on the extension of the gates. All in all, nothing terrible, but it could have been done much better if they would have torn down the old roof.

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I'd echo one other thing you said, there were some real whiners amongst us and I'm happy to say none that I heard were wearing TPR shirts. Yes, it can be frustrating but you have to come into media events with the right mindset and to always expect the unexpected. Some people still seem to think it's ERT time. Nope, never really has been that way at any events I've attended.

 

I can't wait to get back to ride some more! Thankfully I have two passes that will at least make for a couple shorter waits. For those with those passes, a reminder that on a ride like Goliath that has a FlashPass line...You have to use that line. It's not a true "exit pass" for rides with Flashpass according to what the PR folks said.

 

For those that were there....Might be nice to drop a note in the mail to Katy Enrique and her staff to say thanks.

 

Having spoken to Hank at the beginning and near the end of the Media Day I have to say that he was decently upset with how it went. Technical difficulties and weather aside he specifically told me after the first train of the day that he wanted to give us some rides. I don't think anyone anticipated how much downtime the media was actually going to create, least of all the park president. His quote to me at the beginning of the day was, "Once we get done with this media filming I want to get things moving really quickly so you can all get in as many rides as you wish." At the end of the day he didn't say much to me. He gave a very distraught "Well I'm glad you guys could come out and ride it." type of response.

 

Think of the X-Flight media day. It was two trains just cranking out rides. This was also a Hank Salemi installation. Think of how many more rides people were getting on the Banshee media day. I don't want to be ungrateful; just riding Goliath once would have been worth an entire day of waiting, and because of this I am personally grateful to the park and to the coaster clubs for extending the invitations to us. But lets not pretend that this day was anything that even the more experienced among us were expecting, and that in general the enthusiast community was disappointed with how the event was organized.

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I'd echo one other thing you said, there were some real whiners amongst us and I'm happy to say none that I heard were wearing TPR shirts. Yes, it can be frustrating but you have to come into media events with the right mindset and to always expect the unexpected. Some people still seem to think it's ERT time. Nope, never really has been that way at any events I've attended.

 

I can't wait to get back to ride some more! Thankfully I have two passes that will at least make for a couple shorter waits. For those with those passes, a reminder that on a ride like Goliath that has a FlashPass line...You have to use that line. It's not a true "exit pass" for rides with Flashpass according to what the PR folks said.

 

For those that were there....Might be nice to drop a note in the mail to Katy Enrique and her staff to say thanks.

 

Having spoken to Hank at the beginning and near the end of the Media Day I have to say that he was decently upset with how it went. Technical difficulties and weather aside he specifically told me after the first train of the day that he wanted to give us some rides. I don't think anyone anticipated how much downtime the media was actually going to create, least of all the park president. His quote to me at the beginning of the day was, "Once we get done with this media filming I want to get things moving really quickly so you can all get in as many rides as you wish." At the end of the day he didn't say much to me. He gave a very distraught "Well I'm glad you guys could come out and ride it." type of response.

 

Think of the X-Flight media day. It was two trains just cranking out rides. This was also a Hank Salemi installation. Think of how many more rides people were getting on the Banshee media day. I don't want to be ungrateful; just riding Goliath once would have been worth an entire day of waiting, and because of this I am personally grateful to the park and to the coaster clubs for extending the invitations to us. But lets not pretend that this day was anything that even the more experienced among us were expecting, and that in general the enthusiast community was disappointed with how the event was organized.

 

You dont sound unfrateful at all. The takeaway from your post is a good one. The park president wanted an amazing event and he is a nice and generous guy and he is grateful for the fans. I heard people talking about the night and day between Banshee media day and six flags media day(s). If the park could improve upon their logistics and clarity and organization of events and their handling of the press both in organization and in how they are treated, thats something that can be accomplished and something Hank and the team can address. Its a much better problem than "six flags doesnt care about their fans or the press and will never change." Clearly they want to please and strengthen their relationships with enhusiasts and the press as they grow the park. If you were at media day, please send a thank you email/letter to your primary contact thanking them for the opportunity and attach whatever review you may have written or video you may have been in as they will appreciate the coverage.

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http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-80553658/

Cool review by Chicago Tribune with some interesting bits of information in it, like that Great America had RMC sign a non-compete clause so that they couldnt produce a taller faster steeper wooden coaster that would unthrown Goliath for a specified number of years.

 

Im working on a review but in the meantime, lets play a game and get this convo rolling. Lets call it "overheard at Media Day" or "leaks from media day." If you overheard something interesting and informative we havent heard yet while at media day, please share. If you had a great conversation / interview/ picked the brain of any RMC designers or leadership, please spill the beans! I dont expect to hear something that hasnt been announced-like a colossus story. But i think we would all appreciate any interesting facts regarding the designers, the ride, the design process, the elements, inspiration, engineering, etc.

 

Here's one. Very Screamscape worthy. I was waiting in line with a high up member of the maintenance staff yesterday. He did a bunch of the electrical work on Goliath and rode it before everyone else, does ride maintenance, etc. He was talking to his wife and kids about the building of the ride. His (nearly) exact quote was "The Eagle's next. First we got Goliath then we have these guys redo the Eagle. It's a major investment but that was the long term goal."

 

Now, why maintenance personnel would have access to the long term development strategy of the park is beyond me, but within organizations people talk and it's actual conversations with actual employees that can create a change in the organization/give the organization direction. We don't often get the chance to hear the back-door musings of the park personnel and it was funny to hear him say this.

 

PLEASE please be true!

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^^I completely agree. At Banshee's media day, they were just having the stations pop in their GoPro and record the footage of them riding not live. The thing that screwed Goliath over was that the stations were waiting for a spot on their channels so they could record live.

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Half an hour til opening. I hope to see some pictures of the crazy lines! (And of the actual ride of course )

 

As for the unshaded and endless switchbacks set up, i really believe six flags should bring in a DJ and speakers/lights and turn the area into a dance party to entertain diring the several hours people will be standing there. Also, two large tents might be enough to cover the queue semi-permanently. I was at a wedding this past weekend and there was a backyard rehearsal dinner one night with a heavy duty tent, pictured below. It was staked into the ground which tey couldnt do here but they could weigh it down instead. There were tornado sirens one night for extreme winds and the tent didnt budge!

image.thumb.jpg.528670bb9b52359178d976f87a90bb3d.jpg

Edited by Goooose
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Half an hour til opening. I hope to see some pictures of the crazy lines! (And of the actual ride of course )

 

As for the unshaded and endless switchbacks set up, i really believe six flags should brung in a DJ and speakers/lights and turn the area into a dance party to entertain diring the several hours people will be standing there. Also, two large tents might be enough to cover the queue semi-permanently.

 

So basically do what Magic Mountain did for Full Thrott!e last year, which is a good idea. Last year Full Thrott!e had a canopy for the switchbacks (Which they still have) but they had a DJ come in and had those weird dudes/ladies on stilts walking around.

 

For you people about to get your first ride on Goliath today I challenge you to do this: when you enter the zero-g stall instead of looking forward look straight up. The sensation of just watching the world float by horizontally when you're upside down at that height and speed was incredible. Every time I ride Goliath I will do this.

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Check out this AMAZING back seat pov. Really captures the ride experience well! You can see the negatives in the hair in front of the camera, the choppers, the whip lash out of the zero g stall, the air into the breaks. Bravo. Im confident this cam was head/helmet mounted and thus safe.

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Going tomorrow for opening day since my flight leaves back to California in the evening tomorrow so it's my only chance.

 

I've never been to an opening day for a ride before so I'm not really sure what to expect. Would arriving 1hr 30mins before park opening to get in line be a good idea or just unnecessary?

 

Think "running of the bulls" when they drop the chain. It's fine to get there early so you can be at the chain when it drops but if you don't keep up with the stampede you'll be a long ways back in line in a hurry.

 

Exactly what we experienced this morning. It's a free for all. It helped to be 1st at security.

 

Great news for taller riders. The shin bars are much more accommodating.

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Sounds like a great opening all things considering. I think it's fantastic that the park invited enthusiasts, but keep in mind, it was a Media Day first and foremost. Anything to do with media, TV in particular, guarantees a lot of downtown while they do their job to promote the park and the ride. Unfortunately, anyone not there to "work" isn't priority. That shouldn't stop an enthusiast/ blogger from having a great time getting at least one ride in and getting to see how a PR event works behind the scenes.

 

Not having been on Outlaw Run or Goliath yet, I can't wait to try out one of these hopefully later this summer or in the fall. The trains remind me a bit of Lightning Run, less the shackles

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