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CP Photo and Video Trip Report

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Finally took at trip out to Sandusky and Cedar Point this summer! I'd never been to Cedar Point before, so it was all new to me. And boy, it was a lot of fun.


We flew into Cleveland and spent two entire days at Cedar Point before we flew back out. It was plenty of time to do most everything. We stayed at the Hotel Breakers, and while it was a nice hotel, it was really weird. Did the hotel use to be much larger or something? The layout was really funky and it seemed like maybe it was a much larger hotel originally and they had torn parts down leaving only one wing that was converted into the whole hotel. The entryway is a long hall that seems like it used to connect parts of the hotel or something. It was strange. Also, there were some rooms that were marked with different numbers, like "23" instead of the "3505" hotel type rooms. I saw inside one, and it looked like a dorm, with posters up and everything. There were also common hallway bathrooms despite the hotel rooms having their own bathrooms. Do some of the employees live there in the hotel?


The weather was hot and sticky, but the park was a whole lot of fun. Rode most of the coasters and enjoyed them thoroughly. Dragster is just amazing! Wow! The park was clean, the employees were mostly friendly, and I really enjoyed my trip. It was also weird for a west-coast person like myself to see Amish teenagers wandering around the park! I kept wondering, is there a horse and buggy parked out in the big parking lot with the cars?


The big suprise of the trip for me was Gemini. I wasn't really expecting much from this ride, but it turned out to be one of my favorites. I don't really know why, but I just loved riding that thing! Of course, I also loved the super-scary rides too, like Dragster and the Antique Cars.


The only complaint I would have is that the park policies are really camera unfriendly. If you're looking to take a trip to take photos or videos, look elsewhere. First, I started out videotaping my trip. The park has a "no loose articles" policy on their rollercoasters which is understandable since you don't want people getting hurt by flying objects. But they also have a "no photos or videos on the rides" rule in addition to the no loose articles rule. Apparently they're afraid I'm going to steal the souls of my fellow passengers using my magical picture-box. I'm able to secure my HandiCam to myself with a clip and strap so it can't go flying away, so I went ahead and videotaped a few of the first rollercoasters I rode. Then, when I was exiting Dragster, the Unload Op saw me with my HandiCam and ran off the platform and over to the photo booth to check out if I had been taping the ride. (Hey, who cares if the next trainload of passengers safely egresses anyways? ) When he saw that I had indeed been taping the ride, he followed me out onto the midway (since I had already left) and confronted me, chastizing me about taping on the rides. I confirmed with him that taping wasn't allowed even if the camera was secured, thanked him for the info, and went on my merry way.


I decided to ride Millenium Force next, and rented a locker to put my camera in since I now knew I couldn't take it on the rides. After a 45 minute wait, I got belted in the train and was waiting to leave the station when three ride ops approach me. "Excuse me, do you have a camera?"


"Um, no. No camera." I raise my arms for them to see.


"Well, we've had a report of a man matching your description that has been videotaping rides." (I kid you not, that's exactly what she said.)


"Well, as you can see. No camera." I again raise my arms for them to see. They stand there for a few seconds staring at me, not sure what to do. Then, the lady gives me the "no photography or videotaping on rides" lecture and dispatches the train. Of course, the three ride ops focusing on me completely missed the guy sitting next to me with a hat and strapless sunglasses on, but hey, who am I to criticize? You also realize of course, this means that the guy from Dragster had to have followed my all around the park until I decided to ride Millenium Force, then gotten a ride op from there and pointed me out to them. There's no other way they could have just picked me out of the crowd of tens of thousands of people.


After that, I traded in my HandiCam for my traditional, still camera and equipment. It was starting to get dark, so I headed over to Dragster to take some dusk photos of the sign/ride with my tripod. (You need a tripod to take night shots of big things like rollercoasters.) I was wondering if they'd give me any trouble about my tripod as I walked over there. Every park I've been to allows tripods as long as you're staying out of the way and not blocking traffic or creating a trip hazard, but you never know. As I walked up, I saw another photographer taking the same shot I wanted to take, using his tripod. I was about to walk up and say "hi" when he was confronted by two security guards. They spoke for a few seconds, but I couldn't hear what they said since I was too far away. They then had him grab his tripod setup and escorted him out of the park through the exit by Magnum XL. I was stunned! More importantly, I decided taking tripod photos would be a very bad idea, so the only night shots I have here for you were taking outside of the park.


All that being said, don't get the wrong impression since it sounds so negative. I had a really great time at Cedar Point and would love to go back again. There were a lot of fun rides there and it was a neat experience for me, having never been to Ohio before. I really enjoyed Gemini a whole lot more than I expected I would for some reason, and I miss Dragster already. I'll definately have to go back again sometime.




How Cool is This Hotel View? Dragster at Night!




Ahh, Corkscrew. Haven't seen you in years!




The Dual Hills of Millenium Force




Just Like the Sign Says




Wicked Twister Running up the Spire



Closeup of the Wicked Twister




I love Stand-Up Coasters!




It's Tought to Shoot a Train Going 125mph!




And Finally, a Night Shot of Millenium Force.



Oh well, that's about it for my trip report. I had a great time at the park and can't wait to go back sometime soon. Hopefully you enjoyed the report. Here's a link to the trip video I made. Enjoy!



Oh yeah, and you can see my entire report with a few more photos here:



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That video was great. Sounds like some of the ops are on a power trip with the camera issue. I understand that if park policy says no cameras then they felt it was neccessary to say something but to have someone follow you and then tell ops at other rides really sounds ridiculous.

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I totally take in my dads huge tripod all the time, no one has said a thing.


In most cases I get people asking me to show them my pictures and in some cases, some ask me what editorial or magazine/website I work for. No one has ever said a thing to me and I can only suspect he took pictures in an area he wasnt supposed too. Tripods are allowed and as long as you stay in the normal areas, no one says anything to you.


Half my websites photos for CP are turning into nighttime because they look so great.


Jeff Putz lives up to his name.

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Cedar Point's camera policy is really screwed up. Sure, I understand not taking your camera on the rides, but last time I was there I stood taking a picture of Magnum with my FujiFilm FinePix A340 (a small camera, mind you), and a security guard asked me to put my camera away and that photography was prohibited. Same thing happened again five minutes later near Power Tower, so I walked back out to my car, put the camera away, and enjoyed the rest of my day.


Seriously, they need to decide on one policy and make sure that's the one EVERY employee sticks to. This is why I love independent parks so much, because their rules are simple, safe, and to the point (Go Knoebel's!)

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Jeff Putz would have your head if he saw that video!

Well, it's a good thing he doesn't rule the world, isn't it?


Great vid. Haven't seen an updated Cedar Point video (or update, for that matter...) for quite a while.


We posted one a couple of months ago during the video contest!


Seriously, that was a really great video! Enjoyed the music, enjoyed the footage. The park has been really strange about their camera policy both off and on ride in the past few years. I can remember 'back in the day' at Cedar Point when no one seemed to care if you had a camera on rides, off rides, still or video, etc.


And then once Dragster opened they seemed to want to hunt down anyone who had footage on the internet, even if you were given permission to film! It almost seemed like they wanted to control EVERY FRAME YOU TOOK!


As a stock holder in Cedar Fair, I have to say I haven't been very pleased with their operations or their earnings in the past few years. I do hope it improves, but I can say that we have visited far fewer Cedar Fair parks in the past couple of years due to the way the parks have been operated.


It just seems like that "hassle free" attitude of Cedar Point I remember from 1995 just isn't quite the same anymore.


I really think a lot of their aquisitions has caused them to lose some focus. Before the days of the Knott's purchase, and their focus was what, only 4 parks (CP, Dorney, WoF, and VF) all of them seemed top-notch, and hassle free. But now, when they have several more parks to deal with (Knott's, Geaugua, Michigan's Adventure, and the water parks) I really think the company has lost something. Not saying that CP is bad, but the last two visits I had there weren't what they used to be.


It's really too bad, because in 1995, 96, 97, etc, I would praise Cedar Fair like you wouldn't believe. It is good to hear, though, that a first-time visitor came away with a great experience.


--Robb "Who hopes for improvement in the upcoming years." Alvey

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I wouldn't say that I hate Cedar Point, but I'm far from a fan of the place. I enjoyed my day there, but that kind of gestapo-like employee attitude turned me off a lot. It may just be from the perspective of a person who also carries cameras to parks, but that's just dumb to me that they would go that far out of the way to enforce the rules. Why not make guests pop their trunk when crossing the causeway to make sure they don't have a camera, outside food or beverage or worse yet, intentions to have a fun day at the park?


I actually enjoyed Dorney more. At least they have only partially been Cedar Fair-ized.


Great photos and a nice video though!!

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Im still baffled by people taking pictures inside the park and getting told to stop?


Are you in restricted areas? In queue areas?



Ive been taking my monster sized tri-pod in all year with no comments made to me except workers/guests alike wanting to see what Im shooting and whats on the card. Maybe Ill try it this Friday or something.

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^ Nope. The guy I saw kicked out was just in a public area taking his photos. Like I said though, I didn't hear what they said to eachother. Maybe they had previously told him not to use a tripod or something.


I think any given park's tripod policy is going to be as strict as how bored the nearest security guard is. I've been hassled myself in several parks that completely allow tripods. I actually had to go to Guest Services at DCA once to get a security guard to stop following me around and hassling me.

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Yea, youd think if it wasnt legal that the people at the gate wouldnt let you in with one. Its pretty clear because I always walk in with tripod out and read with camera already on it. They take my pass and swipe it or check for handstamp and Im in.


I am checking with the park just to see what the actual policy is but I think you are right about the bored guards. Though thats ridiculous and I would go to GR first before walking out, idiots.

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