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Erik & Smisty's Florida Oddventures


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Ay, chihuahua, that is a fairly big check for an ice-cream parlor meal for two... but the grub does look pretty damned appetizing, especially the "Death by Chocolate/Chocolate Suicide Sundae" (brought to you by the Dept. of Redundancy Department).

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I LOVE JAXSONS! I went there about 2 years ago....one thing I want to point out is that they also make all of the sodas, ice cream and food home-made!

 

Yes, of course! I should have made it more clear that they make their own ice cream. (Though hopefully it was implied by my "best ice cream in Florida" declaration.) Honestly, I wouldn't have gone out of my way to visit them if they didn't.

 

And for those that don't already know it, my number one ice cream anywhere is Toft's, in Sandusky, Ohio.

 

/Ice cream nerd.

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I love Jaxson's! I was there a few years ago. The food portions are pretty big and the ice cream is great! It does happen to be down the street from the best wooden roller coaster in Florida...not that there are very many in this state.

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I would like to mention about the soda. The only type of soda they offer is what they make: Jaxson's cola, root beer, lemon-lime and a diet cola. Their sodas are all caffeine free. I had the cola which I thought was good. It tasted to me more like a cherry coke than plain cola. I don't think Erik liked his root beer that much but he usually favors water any way.

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Yes, just down the road from Jaxson's Ice Cream Parlor is Boomers of Dania Beach, home to the best wooden coaster in Florida, the Dania Beach Hurricane.

 

Now here's the weird part: Boomers isn't anything special. It's a Family Entertainment Center--a bit bigger than average, but no better than any other. And yet, somehow, this (s)crappy little FEC manages to keep their 10 year old wooden coaster running great, when they can't even keep the majority of their mini golf courses open or their arcade games working.

 

Don't get me wrong, the Hurricane is a bit rough in spots, and it squeals a bit around the turns--but I've been on much, much worse coasters at much, much better places.

 

Boomers!, Dania Beach

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Yes, we're here for the coaster. But we like mini golf, too. So this should be a good day.

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They seem to be making plenty of money.

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Uh-oh. This is the line to buy tickets. To everything. (You know, you'd think they could manage to keep the counter that takes peoples' money properly staffed. I'm just saying.)

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I stared at this the entire time in line, and still couldn't make heads or tails of it. I ended up buying the 250 for $50 and two unlimited coaster wristbands for $12 each (since the coaster isn't included in any packages).

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So, there's an arcade, a snack bar, and a really sad carousel.

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Ooh, a coaster game!

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We're not too into Laser Tag, so I can't comment beyond the fact that they have it.

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Indoor rock climbing.

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Venturing out one side of the building, we find some small family rides...

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...some odd-looking (yet still tiny) thrill rides...

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...batting cages...

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...a really big bumper boat pool...

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...and a rather dull-looking oval go cart track.

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Heading back in, we spot this mini bowling alley thing. We attempt to play (since none of the stuff we just saw really appealed to us), but find that it's not working.

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Wow, an FEC with a bar. Awesome.

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To get to the mini golf and the Hurricane, you must go through the birthday party room.

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Hey...this looks pretty nice!

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First up, mini golf. There are five(!) courses. Here's number 1.

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Number 2.

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Number 3. Um...uh-oh.

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And over there, blocked off and closed without even the sign that number 3 got, are courses 4 and 5. So, as I was saying, there are two mini golf courses. (According to an employee, the others have been closed "for a long time now.") But, hey, we can at least play the two!

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"I'm sorry, sir, all we have are children's putters."

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We tried to play a few holes anyway, but the putters were just too small, and we gave up on the mini golf idea in fairly short order.

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So, really, we should have just bought the coaster wristbands and been done with it.

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The ride rules. Pretty standard, though "no casts of any kind" seems a bit more strict than most theme parks.

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The controls operator has a laptop, no doubt tied into the safety system so he can monitor what's happening anywhere on the ride. He's not just goofing off on his own laptop he brings to work with him, no sirree. High tech stuff there, Boomers!

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And now, a ride on the Dania Beach Hurricane.

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Wait, this ride has a transfer track??

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Oh, no it doesn't. It just had extra bits of track back there. I'm confused.

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Wow, look at that go cart track! We didn't see that! How do you get over there?!

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Well, we'll worry about that later!

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Wow, this is actually a pretty good coaster! Lots of airtime, not too rough (mostly), and a pretty interesting layout.

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I never got to ride Thunder Eagle in Pigeon Forge (it was long gone by the time I moved up there), so this was my first experience with Coaster Works. Kind of a shame that they're not still around, based on this.

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This shot makes it look like an out-and-back, instead of the twister it really is.

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Squeal!!! (Oh well, nobody's perfect.)

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I'm going to go ahead and go on record here: This is the best wooden coaster at an FEC anywhere. :oP

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Exiting the station. Hey...the new operator doesn't have a laptop. Hmmm....

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What the heck is that? I mean, I know what it is, but why is it there? Is there something in it? Well, it's blocked off, so maybe it's just...um...theming for the coaster?

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The gift shop stand thingy.

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Hi, Barry!

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So, at this point, we still had lots of "points" to spend, so we burned 'em up on Skee-ball and the bass fishing game. There were some other things we wanted to try, but (shockingly) they were out of order.

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Ooh, I want a cotton candy maker!

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Oh. (Okay, okay, that's just a joke. Misty got some good stuff.)

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Oh, right, let's go try to find that thing.

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Yes, it's "just across the street." And, well, down the street. A bit. And there's no crosswalk or sidewalk or anything, but you'll figure it out.

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This...doesn't look so good up close.

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Oh my. Um...are those port-a-potties? Are there not bathrooms in the arcade?

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Oh.

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I guess putting "arcade" on the sign is better than "abandoned building."

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No long hair! These go carts ain't for hippies! (Seriously, there are like 20 of these signs around the entrance. I guess they've had some problems.)

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Boy, would I! Let's get the heck outta here.

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Hey, that looks fun. Let's go back over there (before we get stabbed!)

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This coaster being here is like seeing a homeless man wearing a Rolex. (Actually, that would make *more* sense.)

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We sure will, Hurricane! Oh, wait...will you still be at Boomers?

Edited by Electerik
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I will never understand how the Dania Beach Hurricane stays so well maintained and produces such a consistantly great ride, especially at the hell hole known as Boomers Dania Beach.

 

To be honest though, the FEC portion actually looked much nicer than our last visit there a couple of years ago.

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Great photos! I haven't been on the Hurricane in a few years. I should head over to the East coast to check it out again.

 

That Florida Coaster Club sign is getting old! It says the "3rd annual Dania Beach Hurricane party." That was about 7 years ago!

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Wow, the place is really turning into a dump now. A few things:

 

- I used to know the story behind the caboose, but I've forgotten it.

- The laser tag is pretty decent.

- The go-cart track/arcade used to be the only thing at that site. It was called Grand Prix Race-O-Rama, and that arcade was the place to be back in the day. I'm happy you got out of their with your lives.

- I'm glad the coaster still runs good.

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I just drove by The Dania Beach Hurricane yesterday and today and so wanted to stop. I already had the credit and tried to talk my girlfriend in stopping in so she could gain another credit. However after a long day of fighting with Miami traffic we were ready to get out of South Florida. From what I remember it was a decent ride a few years back. I felt like it needed some TLC.

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Hey Erik and Smisty, want to say I loved this update, it brought back so many memories for me. I rode the DBH last September nine consective times one night during a visit to the Ft Lauderdale area. Three times in front, three in the back and last in the middle. I found the back seat to be the most volient; it did it's fair share of throwing you around a bit, but it was so much fun none the less.

I also got the 12.95 pass for the day witch I feel was a waste since my friend and I didn't get to Boommers until about 9 pm that night. It was the only time we were able to get over to park and the coaster being able to run finally after the string of bad weather during the day. But I figured that if I rode it so many times that the pass would pay for itself; I feel I got my money's worth. I loved this coaster and it was even better at night; I'll never forget that view you get after reaching the top and seeing Miami off in the distance. Great pictures and nice job with the flow of the update

Derek Wilson

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Brings back some scary memories from November...I drove down with my roommates to ride DBH and I can't believe we didn't die. It was like 10 pm when we got there, but first we got lost like 10 times in the ghetto before finding Boomers on the end of a street with hookers and weeds growing like crazy. Then we encountered the same ride op on his laptop, lap bars were locked at our nipples, and creepy people would sit next to us with a wide open train. That being said, the rides were absolutely amazing, smooth, and deadly ejector, sustained airtime filled. We rode like 6 amazing times then ran for our lives!

 

Thanks for sharing!

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^ I still like Graeters, made right here in Cincinnati, although Tofts is amazing.

 

I want to say that I saw Graeter's in a grocery store or something once, but didn't realize it was supposed to be anything special, and thus didn't try it. I will make a point of it next time I'm in an appropriate area of the country.

 

According to their website, they'll ship anywhere in the continental US--but at $80 for 6 pints, I may have to hold off until I've tried it first.

 

 

Erik, while in the area, I hope you two journeyed down to Ft. Lauderdale to visit Uncle Bernie's.

 

According to their website, they weren't actually scheduled to be open any time while we were there. Still thought about driving by, but never got to it. We definitely want to do it at some point, though.

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While there's no way I'd pay $12.95 for their cheeseburgers, I'd definitely like to check out Jaxson's ice cream. Their sundaes look great.

Edited by cfc
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I always make an effort to stop at Boomers whenever I'm in that area. For such a crappy looking run down place it really is a great wooden coaster, which makes absolutely no sense. That thing was in my top 10 at one point. How can Cedar Point not maintain Mean Streak or Carowinds not keep up the Hurler, but Boomers keep The Hurricane running top notch, year round, in some rather extreme weather conditions? Makes no sense but thats part of what makes it so great!

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