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Six Flags Great America (SFGAm) Discussion Thread


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I had to make a late decision to go to the park since most of my upcoming weekends filled up. I went Sunday and was excited even though I knew it was going to be a rough day. My reservation was for 1:00 pm and planned on riding Maxx Force first. It was down with mechanics in the station so I headed to Demon. I waited 20 minutes and the slower speed due to half filled trains was really noticeable after the loops. It crawled through the straight section and had some nice hang time in the corkscrews. I went to American Eagle next and waited an hour. It ran well and is still my second favorite coaster in the park. After that was Goliath and I expected a long wait and it was painful. Running half filled or less trains and slow dispatches made it a 2 hour wait. I had a good ride on my favorite coaster in the park. Maxx Force opened up while I was in line for Goliath so I headed there next. The line wasn't that long, but 4 or 5 breakdowns and running nearly empty trains made it over a 2 hour wait. It's fun and it looks like a crowd pleaser. I think I enjoyed the argument in line more that the cops needed to get involved in. I had a few minutes left before closing so I squeezed in a ride on Whizzer. Good classic family coaster. On the way out employees were giving ticket vouchers to everyone as a courtesy. Because of that I'm going back next Sunday with my sister. I got on all the coasters I prioritized so I call it a win. Hopefully I can get on a bit more next time since I won't be able to go back for a few months.

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More details on the food festival that starts tomorrow have been released on their website.

Taste of Six Flags Food Festival

May 8-9; 15-16; 22-23

Rides, Tastes, and Brews!

Spring is in the air and the thrills are back in action! All that screaming on the roller coasters is going to work up an appetite. The new Taste of Six Flags Food Festival will bring the best bites from around the Six Flags family of parks right to you in Hometown Square. With treats for all ages, this is an event you won’t want to miss!

The Taste of Six Flags Food Festival will occur the following operating weekends in May:

Saturday, May 8 & Sunday, May 9

Saturday, May 15 & Sunday, May 16

Saturday, May 22 & Sunday, May 23

Scheduled event hours of operation are Saturdays 12pm – 8pm and Sundays 12pm – 7pm.  

To experience the Taste of Six Flags Food Festival, you will need a reservation and valid form of admission to the theme park – just like any other day you plan to make a visit. This can be with your Six Flags Membership, Season Pass, or one-day admission ticket. 

Once inside the park, the specialty food and beverage items will require an additional fee. Punch cards featuring 12 credits will be available for purchase at Sidetrack Soda for $29.99. All-Season Dining Pass Holders receive 3 bonus credits with a punch card purchase!

Punch card credits can only be used to purchase items at Taste of Six Flags booths and cannot be redeemed at locations outside of the Taste of Six Flags special event. 

 

Buy Punch Card

Menu - Food Offerings

Desserts

Fried Dough (2 credits): Fried dough topped with powdered sugar

Liege Belgian Waffle (3 credits): Waffle topped with powdered sugar, hot fudge, or strawberry

East Coast

Fried Green Beans (2 credits): Crunchy green beans

Grinders (3 credits): Italian sausage sandwich with peppers

Philly Cheesesteak (4 credits): Beef steak, onions, peppers, and nacho cheese on a sandwich bun

International

Tostada (3 credits): Tostada topped with beans, sour cream, lettuce, and pico de gallo

Poutine Fries (3 credits): Fries topped with gravy

Jamaican Street Food

Jerk Chicken (4 credits): Grilled chicken with jerk spices

Festival (2 credits): Fried dough sticks

Midwest

Mac & Cheese Bacon Hot Dog (4 credits): A classic hot dog topped with macaroni and cheese and bacon bits

Italian Beef Sandwich (4 credits): Sliced beef topped with peppers and onions served on a sandwich bun

Texas

Corn in a Cup (2 credits): Corn topped with mayo and spices

Fried Pickle Spears (2 credits): Pickle spears with a fun crunch

Brisket Nachos (4 credits): Tortilla chips smothered in brisket, cheese and sour cream

Brisket Sandwich (4 credits): Smoked Southern brisket on a fluffy bun

Bub’s Smokehouse Fav (3 credits): A bratwurst topped with sauerkraut and spicy mustard

West Coast / California

Roasted Corn (2 credits): Choose original or fire

Loaded Mini Corn Dogs (2 credits): Pint-sized corn dogs topped with chili, cheese, sour cream, salsa, and jalapenos

Not Yo’ Loaded Fries (3 credits): Tator tots loaded with cheese, sour cream, salsa, and jalapenos

Beer Trailer

**Must be 21 years or older

Beer sample (1 credit)

Full cup (4 credits)

Retail Offering

Tajin Cherry Apple (2 credits): A sweet cherry candy apple sprinkled with chili lime seasoning

 

Nothing really stands out to me but we'll probably give it a whirl since we'll have Six Flags gift cards and nothing to really spend them on.  Anyone have experience claiming their gift cards from their unused membership months?  

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Couple questions:  We will be in a group of 6 visiting SFGA this weekend.  

 

1). Any tips of Flash Pass for that many people?  If we are all Diamond Elite (at another park), do we get a free upgrade from Gold to Platinum Flash pass?  Also, is the park very busy nowadays?

2).  Does Superman Ultimate Flight seems safe for people of different heights and weights for the most part?

3).  For Whizzer, do they prefer or is there any signage for us to sit "two per seat" or do we need to each line up on a row and take up literally 6 lanes?  Any tips?

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 5/11/2021 at 6:27 PM, dkepler said:

Couple questions:  We will be in a group of 6 visiting SFGA this weekend.  

 

1). Any tips of Flash Pass for that many people?  If we are all Diamond Elite (at another park), do we get a free upgrade from Gold to Platinum Flash pass?  Also, is the park very busy nowadays?

2).  Does Superman Ultimate Flight seems safe for people of different heights and weights for the most part?

3).  For Whizzer, do they prefer or is there any signage for us to sit "two per seat" or do we need to each line up on a row and take up literally 6 lanes?  Any tips?

It's probably too late, but I'll do my best.  

1)  My understanding is that you'll pay the Gold price for the Platinum Flash Pass.

2)  It seems perfectly safe to me.  I'm not sure if there's any height or weight limit.

3)  I believe you can ride however you want.  I rode by myself, so there's certainly no "two per seat" rule.

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  • 1 month later...

Way too early planning a trip out to the park on Saturday September 25. Primary concern is new credits since last visit in 2009. All questions assume pre-Covid standards.

Does Fright Fest usually start by this time? No dates currently set, but auditions are scheduled for FF.

Is FF a separate-ticket event? Read: do they kick out the day guests and re-open an hour later for FF?

Are any major coasters excluded during the event?

Which Flash Pass level is recommended? I'm assuming Platinum.

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The weekend of Sept. 25 should be the first weekend of Freight Fest assuming that we are back on the "traditional" schedule.

Fright Fest is just a single admission for the day, open to close.

All major rides should normally operate except for water rides.

Flash Pass would need to be either Gold or Platinum.  FF is the one time where having a Platinum can be a bit more efficient than a Gold.  You also will have Maxx Force on Platinum.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just a quick FYI:

Like all customer service industries in Illinois right now, Great America is fully open, but not fully staffed.  I didn't get to the park for my first visit this year with my Membership until July, but I have now been there a few times this month.

Yankee Clipper is SBNO.  Logger's Run has limited hours.

Demon is SBNO  (according to the staff, it is in need of some hard to get mechanical part) but "may" reopen later this year.  It only operated at the beginning of the season, but intermittently even then.

Roaring Rapids is sometimes running, sometimes not.

Mardis Gras Hangover is largely non-operational.

American Eagle is only operating with the Red Side running.  Blue trains are not even on the track.

Approximately 30% of 'snack stands' are not operating.

No Single Rider Only line on Goliath, but the one for The Joker is now open.

Flat rides are anyone's guess.  I have seen them all operational at one point, but on most visits, there are at least two that are not running.

The Train is back!  I believe it has way more throughput than Superman.  (Ugh, I hate that line though I like the ride.)

Waterpark has been super-crowded every visit.

That's it for now.

 

 

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Hi folks,

I am thinking of making a day trip to the park while on vacation in Wisconsin. Will probably just be me, maybe one other person. Not interested in the water park, just in those cool rides with tracks and wheels that we all seem to like around here.

  • Any advice? Order of operations, good places to eat, etc? Will be my first time.
  • Will the dry side of the park be über crowded in the middle of next week?
  • If I have two opportunities to visit – one next week, the other next year in late June / early July – which would you pick?
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Can someone tell me why all flash passes are grayed out for this week?  I can't get anyone on the phone and I cannot get anyone on chat.  They were there early yesterday, but in the evening, all five days went POOF!  Are they sold out or do they not let you buy the week of?

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1 hour ago, Carrie said:

Can someone tell me why all flash passes are grayed out for this week?  I can't get anyone on the phone and I cannot get anyone on chat.  They were there early yesterday, but in the evening, all five days went POOF!  Are they sold out or do they not let you buy the week of?

Can't say for sure, but when I was there a couple days ago they were only offering Flash Passes for a handful of rides, apparently because they didn't have staff to have someone just working the fastpass entrance.  Given the temper tantrums that people were throwing over getting fastpasses and not being able to use them on every ride, it might be possible that they're just not offering them right now.

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5 hours ago, Carrie said:

Can someone tell me why all flash passes are grayed out for this week?  I can't get anyone on the phone and I cannot get anyone on chat.  They were there early yesterday, but in the evening, all five days went POOF!  Are they sold out or do they not let you buy the week of?

You can try leaving the question in a comment on one of their FB posts; they seem to be pretty responsive to those.  Or try calling them first thing in the morning when they open.  Use this number: (847) 249-1776.

 

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45 minutes ago, tndank said:

Looks like they are using wristbands during the week due to staffing. Works like Cedar Fair. Buy when you get there. 

 

 

Does that mean you can't buy them online? Every day is grayed out. 

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6 hours ago, Rai Fox said:

Can't say for sure, but when I was there a couple days ago they were only offering Flash Passes for a handful of rides, apparently because they didn't have staff to have someone just working the fastpass entrance.  Given the temper tantrums that people were throwing over getting fastpasses and not being able to use them on every ride, it might be possible that they're just not offering them right now.

How are the crowds this time of year?  Would Flash Passes be highly recommended? I can handle 20-30 min wait...I cannot handle an hour or more. LOL  

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2 hours ago, Mike240SX said:

You can try leaving the question in a comment on one of their FB posts; they seem to be pretty responsive to those.  Or try calling them first thing in the morning when they open.  Use this number: (847) 249-1776.

 

Thank you! I will try both!!! :)

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34 minutes ago, Carrie said:

Does that mean you can't buy them online? Every day is grayed out. 

We get it, every day is greyed out.  Obviously that means you can't buy it online for those days.  No one here, no matter how many times you multi-post or post in other threads, will be able to provide a solid answer to your question of "Why?" unless they work for the park or know someone who does.  I think if either of them were the case you would've had an answer by now.

@tndankgave you probably the best possible answer anyone will be able to provide - they're using wristbands, so get to the park early and buy it on side.

37 minutes ago, Carrie said:

How are the crowds this time of year?  Would Flash Passes be highly recommended? I can handle 20-30 min wait...I cannot handle an hour or more. LOL  

Queue-times.com predicts that crowds on that day will be moderately heavy, but not crazy.  Crowd levels at every park in the country this year are unpredictable, and yes the wiser minds on this board will recommend whatever skip-the-line system a park offers.  You really just need to make a decision for yourself - do you want to take a chance and get to the park right at opening to give you a chance at an on-site purchase, or do you want to schedule your trip for a different day?

Oh, and see what I did there?  That's called a multi-quote.

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2 hours ago, Carrie said:

How are the crowds this time of year?  Would Flash Passes be highly recommended? I can handle 20-30 min wait...I cannot handle an hour or more. LOL  

Like Mike said it's hard to predict this year.  I just did a week long tour of 7 parks ending with that one and crowds were all over.  Worlds of Fun (Sunday) was moderate, Silver Dollar City (Mon) was practically abandoned, Six Flags St Louis (Tues) was fairly crowded, Holiday World (wed) was painfully crowded in the morning, before crowds moved entirely to the waterpark later.  Kentucky Kingdom (thursday) had almost no one in the park at all, Indiana Beach (Friday) was very quiet.  On Saturday, unfortunately, I made it to Great America, and on top of them not fully using fastpass (and being sold out before the park opened), most of the park was /packed/  I was able to get in a decent number of rides by racing to the back of the park while everyone else was queuing for Maxx Force, but most of the day was hour plus waits for anything at all.  It doesn't help that almost no flats are running right now to spread the crowds out.

If you're getting there on a weekday I imagine it PROBABLY won't be that bad, but, again, it's unpredictable.  On a weekend, 20-30 minute waits would be asking for a near impossibility, I think.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey everyone,

I just took an opportunity to plan a trip to Chicago/SFGAm for pretty cheap, looking at visiting a partial day Sept. 25 and all day Sept. 26. The last time I was at this park was 10 years ago, and I was a 13 (with that timeframe & higher pain tolerance, you can maybe guess where my username came from), so very much looking forward to getting back as an adult. X-Flight, Goliath, Joker, Maxx Force, and Little Dipper will all be new to me as well. I definitely understand the park has been a bit of a mess this year in terms of staffing & what smaller rides have been open, but I'll mainly be going for the coasters, and according to Queue-TImes it seems there hasn't been any major ones down for a long time.

For my full day at the park on Sunday, I'm planning to get the Flash Pass. Does anyone know if the cordoned-off area before rope drop includes the Flash Pass office, or if usually rope occurs before actual 11am opening so that I may be able to get my FP before coasters start accepting guests? After I get it, I may try to wait out the normal queue that's accrued for Maxx Force already so that I can use my one-time (Platinum only) FP entrance later in the day, but I know the line can hit an hour+ pretty quickly.

I know this year is, of course, going to be different than the past, but how/when do crowds usually arrive for these Fright Fest days? It seems for at lot of parks (my local Elitches for example), crowds start to build up later than usual as many guests don't like to show up too early before the Haunts & nighttime activities during FF. Along with that and it being a September Sunday, anyone think it may not be too packed for the first few hours at least?

For the 25th, I'll probably just be there for the last 5 or so hours of the day, and definitely expecting Fright Fest Saturday night lines. Really just gonna try and get the non-FP coasters Dark Knight (just a maybe since I've been on it), Little Dipper, and American Eagle before possibly Demon and finishing with Raging Bull.

Again, really anticipating this return, so any tips y'all can give would be super helpful!

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Bro, I'm not trying to discourage you, but this isn't the year to go. Like it or love it, Pritzker is very strict on COVID mandates. A lot can happen between now and the end of the month. We're one surge away from another full lockdown, with little warning.

I wouldn't distort your fond memories. Busch Gardens Tampa might be a better choice this year...

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 ^I'm saving any more big trips for next year myself.  After a week in California back in May, I'm keeping it local.  Plus, I hate wearing a mask at a park (but do follow the rules).

Great America (my home park) was closed all last summer.  On August 20th, nearly every single flat ride was closed.  We have  a LOT of flat rides (a well rounded Six Flags!)  In my experience, SF parks are NOT the parks to go way out of my way for.  Consistent inconsistency in everything and unpredictable changes.  And that when it's not a pandemic.

Busch Gardens Tampa!?  Yeah, go.  I'll take a spin on Whizzer for you, take a ride on Scorpion for me.

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I'm definitely keeping my eyes open to expectations, a potential shutdown, visitor regulations, etc., and fortunately have trip insurance for my flights, which were already very cheap & bought with prior flight credits. Nothing else would be bought until I was already there, so no big loss in canceling if there's a shutdown. 

To be fair, SFMM hadn't had the greatest year either under their Covid regulations until those were loosened to what I believe is very similar to what SFGAm is currently operating at, and I managed to make my two trips out there work very well. Though I don't think they've had as bad of staffing issues as SFGAm. Even with the mask rules and occasional distancing I've had a blast at many parks this year, so if it's only mask requirements and many flats being closed by the time I'm going, I should have fun. Would love to visit BGT, but pretty much saving trips to all the SEAS parks until their delayed projects open (aside from SWSA which I visited in March). 

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