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Michigan Adventure TR

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So I was up in Michigan (for the 1st time ever) to help out two friends. On Friday night I helped a friend with an event his club was doing in Detroit so I rented a car and drove up there. Credit #1 was the Detroit People Mover (hey it has hills). The next day I drove over to help my friend with his booth at Kalamazoo Gay Pride. The Festival was hugely impressive for a city with only around 75K people (metro area 325K) - bigger than Cleveland's and Buffalo's put together!


Sunday I drove up to Michigan Adventure. I found it odd that the park just sort of appears. You're driving down a country road, you past a clump of trees, and poof there's Shivering Timbers. I'm used to Kings Island and Cedar Point - which you can see quite awhile before you actually get to them. Upon paying $8 to park (ridiculous!) I noticed that the parking lot was mostly empty! Yeah! I should mention that I had originally planned on arriving at the park's opening time; however, as I stayed with my best friend in the universe the night before and this is someone I don't get to see quite often enough - it took awhile for me to leave his house Sunday morning. Anyways- I arrived around 1pm.


I paid my admission and tried asking the ticket agent: "This is my first time here, what should I do first?" She responded with "I don't know" and then started doing something else in her booth. I entered the park and headed towards Shivering Timbers. I had been interested in this ride since it opened. It always looked like so much fun. I really wanted to like this coaster! I liked the fact that there was no wait whatsoever! They had two trains and 3 ride ops and no line. I will say that I liked the ride for the first hill or two and then I stopped. I could feel the upstops slamming into the under track and then the wheels slamming back down and at other times rapid combinations of the two. The purpose of "trick track" is beyond me. I was a bit bummed that I didn't like the ride I tired riding later in the day in a different part of the train and still did not like it. Oh well.


I then went over to ride Wolverine Wildcat which sounds like a coaster with a split personality disorder! One train and only 2 ops translated into the longest wait of the day (about 15 minutes) the first time I rode. I LOVED this coaster! It had three of my favorite things on wooden coasters: Three-bench cars (so I don't have to sit on the wheel); a double-up AND a double down! I didn't re-ride right away because of the line; however by the end of the day I had ridden this wonderful gem 3 times. I would even go as far enough to say that it is definitely in my Top 10 Woodie List.


Next I hit the Log Flume which I thought was fun - even with only one drop. I walked over to hit Mad Mouse next. Its operational style seemed odd to me. It took almost as long to get off the ride as it took to get on. They had a back up of four cars at any given time and they only loaded and unloaded one car at a time. I noticed two other cars on the transfer track- how would they ever get those on? There was rarely more than two cars actually moving on the tracks at a time.


I then went to got rise the Corkscrew. Big mistake- could have cost me my life! I'm not kidding!


I got up to the load platform with no line and had the gates closed on me right before I tried to board an empty seat. Once I finally did board the coaster (which was again only one train) I sat in the back of the 2nd to last car. Again only 2 ride ops on the ride. The guy on the platform never made it back to the last two cars before signalling that the train was "all clear" and we were dispatched. The people in the car behind me started screaming and I saw them lift their harnesses. Sure enough I unbuckled me and it lifted as well!!!!! Before the situation was rectified I heard the girl at controls tell the platform host (That's the 2nd time you did that)! We were rechecked (the full train) and sent out. Keep in mind that the op at the controls should have checked to see that the "pedals" were all up before sending the train so I hold her equally to blame!


Upon exiting I saw someone who looked like a supervisor and I tried telling her what happened but she ran off as she "half-apologized." I walked over to Guest Services which was in actuality just their stroller rental. I told them what happened and they got a Park Manager to come talk to me. He radioed the Ride Manager and said he needed to come to the front of the park and talk to me. He said it was going to be awhile even after the Front Manager told him it was a serious matter. I went over to one of the smoking areas to wait. Eventually the Front Manager came over and asked if I wanted to walk with him to the Ride Manager's location. We did and the Ride Manager for one- never apologized and two- all he said is that the male ride host had already been removed from the ride (apparently another guest on the train had already complained). I tried telling them that I felt both ride ops were to blame (having worked on similarly operated coasters in the past) but both managers left before I could say this. No compensation and anything!


I was tempted to leave- but I had only been in the park about an hour (and 15 minutes of that time was spent on this issue). I decided against leaving and went over to ride Zack's Zoomer. I asked the ride op who Zack was and she didn't know. This was yet another wooden coaster that I liked more than Shivering Timbers! It was a fun junior wood. This is when I doubled back and hit Shivering Timbers and WoWiCat again. I then rode the train back to "Grand Rapids Junction" and rode Thunderhawk. I was mad at Thunderhawk because now I have to say that I liked a Vekoma hang and bang better than Shivering Timbers! It wasn't that bad. I was however trying to figure out why it wasn't built over the water instead of removing part of the lake to put ground in for the coaster to sit on. I rode the train back to the front and rode WoWiCat again. I saw someone eating mini-donuts and got excited- it turned out that they weren't the "freshly made" ones I am used to (riding the donut rapids ride) but just heated up.


I then began my "flat rides" circuit. I rode Sea Dragon (FUN), Thunderbolt (too short), Trapeze (fun), Tilt-a-whirl (never stopped spinning, ride seemed to short), and Trabant (is this a smaller then normal model? Also too short). I was confused overall why the ride cycles were so short - especially considering how slow the park was. I wanted to end my day on the Ferris Wheel however the ride ops were not going to let me ride because I was a single rider (BULL-CRAP!)- luckily a couple already seated said I could sit with them.


I left at 4 feeling as though I had seen everything (didn't notice any shows- something I usually enjoy) also feeling a bit ripped off. Seems as though the park should be cheaper for its size (comparable to Fantasy Island in NY). At one point on the Ferris Wheel I had the thought "If this is largest park in Michigan- that is really sad!" I hope Cedar Fair lets this park expand and doesn't run it into the ground like GL. I went back to Stroller Rental err Guest Services to get directions because I wanted to go over and see Lake Michigan before heading back to Cleveland.


I would HAVE to be with a few friends to visit this park again unless they got something VERY unique-


Sorry I have no photos but my camera has not been working and I don't know why...

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I'm not defending the ride ops in any means, but on the arrow looper that I worked when a pedal was left down when it left the station it triped a flag which stoped it on the lift. Not sure if all arrows are that way but its a simple saftey system, it was only built a year after corkscrew and is owned by the same parent company.


Is the control person on the same side as the pedals at corkscrew?

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I'm not defending the ride ops in any means, but on the arrow looper that I worked when a pedal was left down when it left the station it triped a flag which stoped it on the lift. Not sure if all arrows are that way but its a simple saftey system, it was only built a year after corkscrew and is owned by the same parent company.


Is the control person on the same side as the pedals at corkscrew?


Yes. The control panel is on the same side as the panel as seen in the pictures.


I just went to the park last week, and had no issues what so ever(other than the high food and drink prices). Not bashing you or anything, but it looks like you were just looking for negative things.


The controle panel is on the same side as the pedels.


A look at the station.

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