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Photo Trip Report: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom


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This time, I had to head up to Northern California for a wedding so I decided to make a side trip to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. Last time I visited this park was 10 years ago when they had a wooden coaster, elephants and still had Killer Whale Shows. I think the improvements to the park made since my last visit have been pretty amazing. They've added a couple kid areas for the family, re-done the Killer Whale Arena to now include the dolphins, added a kick @$$ RMC coaster that was a sleeper hit on this trip and so much more.

 

This first part will focus more on the rides and then Part 2 will focus on the animals experiences the park has to offer and then Part 3 will be a special surprise that you'll all have to wait for...

 

Superman Ultimate Flight - This was my first Premier Impulse coaster of this type and I was certainly lucky because I got to sit in the front row for 3 straight rides. There was no one in line when the park opened and the ride ops were great and let the people stay on the coaster. This thing was a ton of fun and really kicked it into high gear on the last launch up and over the top. Great Ride!

 

Joker - HOLY SH*T! This was my first RMC Coaster and it was amazing! I don't think I could explain how great this thing was. I got to ride in every row because there weren't many people at the park and the back row was insane on the first drop. This thing was just an all around awesome ride and I can't wait to ride more of their rides in the future.

 

Wonder Woman - Opened this year and it is now "Officially" the fastest ride in the park. Your typical Giant Swing that hauls butt and they really made her fit in a tight spot!

 

V2 - Same as 10 years ago but I like this version without the vertical spike in the front.

 

KONG - Kicked my butt...or my head...seriously painful.

 

Medusa - This is still one of my favorite Floorless Coasters and I love the layout. That first loop is HUGE and the weird wannabe Cobra Roll Medusa Snake Head Inversion backflip awesomeness is still a great inversion!

 

Great Park that didn't have huge crowd. Part 2 will follow shortly!

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Breakfast of Champions!

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The best view of LA...covered in SMOG!

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After waking up at 3am to get a 5am flight from Tucson to LA and then LA to Oakland and then rental car and then drive to the park...I arrived at 9:45am at Discovery Kingdom!

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I think it's going to be a light crowd today.

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Great view from the Parking Lot.

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I'm already tired but I'm here and I'm gunna make the most of it!

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Time to head into the Ocean of Rides down at the front of the Park.

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Anyone who has been here, knows that they jam pack the rides in this area. Now add Wonder Woman and it's even more crowded.

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Superman Ultimate Flight...but it's not a flying coaster like the other Ultimate Flights around the world...

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It's a bird...it's a plane...no...it's a train exploding out of the sun and flying through the course of the ride!

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To quote the famous Robb Alvey..."Twisty!!!!"

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Great ride!

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Down the pathway lies a Woman that is Wonderful!

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I think I'll just wait here until Gal Gadot shows up!

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This thing swings really fast...really high...and I wish they spun more.

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It really does tower over this section of the park....

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...And it towers under this section of the park....with a footer in the Parking Lot Area where the Tram drives.

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Wonder Woman is a great addition to the park.

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This beast kicked total @$$! My first RMC and it was amazing!

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I loved the theming and the creepy carnival soundtrack with the Joker laughing hysterically

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HA HA HA

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The very calm left hill and then things get crazy

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This first drop was insane.

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This was my first "What the hell is this inversion" moment of the ride.

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"Through the Trees"

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V2...Vertiacl Velocity but only one spike is vertical so it should really be called V1?

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Velocity through the station!

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This inversion is way better than a vertical spike!

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There was a nicely themed Penguin ride where everyone got soaked. It got 101 degrees the day I was there.

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Another ride to get wet on. Did I mention it got 101 degrees the day I was there.

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Daffy Duck!

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Time for lunch...

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Hey look...a bar!

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Lunch time.

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With Wonder Woman on the other side of the park, I have a feeling this little guy may be gone in a few years.

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I guess we are headed into the Sky now.

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Games area. The carnies...ugh...employees were really trying to get people to play.

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SHARK SHARK SHARK

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Yeah...rode this back in 2007 and I don't need to ride it again. This was not one of my favorite rides back then because it hurt like being bit by a shark.

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What the heck is this thing? I guess I'll check it out.

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There's some great theming of Monkey Destruction.

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Now, I'm headed into a dark building and I still have no idea what this thing is.

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Oh look...I'm going to be doing this all by myself.

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This thing hauled @$$ the entire ride. Great ride and it makes my not miss ROAR at all!

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It ended up being one of those motion 5d theaters but it wasn't in 3d but it still moved and had water effects so does that make it still 4d? I confused myself.

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Time to head down to the other section of the park with rides.

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Kiddie Credit!

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Cobra is a fun ride for the families and it's so damn LOUD!

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Oh look! A "coaster" according to Six Flags.

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KONG!

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Yeah...OUCH!

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Time to ride a hot looking lady with snakes on her head.

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HUGE LOOPY LOOP!

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Great Floorless Coaster.

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Anyone know the actual term for this inversion? What ever its called, it's awesome!

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Giant Swing ride was another addition and offered a great view of this area of the park.

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Anyone can have Harley Quinn $1,299 a night!

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Boomerang was closed when I was in this area of the park....darn!

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Now it's time to head back to the front of the park and rest in the hotel across the street before I continue the rest of the day.

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Time to Freestyle!

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Hey Superman...want a Coke?

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And here's the lake that runs along the park. Part 2 will be coming shortly!

Edited by JimmyBo
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Part 2 - Animals and Family atmosphere.

 

What some people don't realize is that Six Flags Discovery Kingdom has a great zoo portion of their park and has some great animal experiences and shows. Since the stupid movie Blackfish came out, California basically made SFDK get rid of their Killer Whales (which are actually down in Sea World San Diego according to a ride op) so they are focusing their park around "Cupid" the Dolphin. The Dolphin show is now the main attraction and "Cupid" is the star. They also have a lot of other shows throughout the day, like the Tiger Show, Sea Lion Show, Reptile Show, "Wild" animal show, etc.

 

Since the last time I was here, they have added a lot of areas for kids and families to enjoy together. I think it's a great addition and a great set up because they have most of the thrill rides on a couple areas of the park and then the kiddie areas are scattered throughout. Me having 2 young boys and they are totally into Thomas the Train, I thought it was hilarious walking through the old "Thomas Land" and seeing what Six Flags had to do to keep that area.

 

Below are the pictures so enjoy.

 

Part 3 will be coming up later and it's a total surprise that no one will be expecting....unless you follow me on Facebook...

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We are still here at SFDK and now it's time to check out the animals and family stuff around the park.

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Theming

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The Dolphins are the main attraction here now...poor Killer Whales. Anyone remember the name of the Killer Whale?

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The new Dolphin Arena

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They do lots of tricks and the trainers interact with them a lot during the show.

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Is that a Jet Ski of dolphin racers?

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YAY CUPID! The star of the show!

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You can also swim with the Dolphins.

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Now it's time to check out the animals that eat dolphins!

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SHARK SHARK SHARK!

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It may seem like it's sleeping...but it'll bite your hand off if you get near it.

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This eel is hiding from the sharks...smart eel.

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Steve Irwin's final resting place.

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These guys were pretty big and they feel like slime.

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Jacko the Walrus....Jack - o - k - what's with the name?

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Walrus loving under the sea

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Time to feed some Seals

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Mine? Mine? Mine?

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Time for the Sea Lion Show!

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Themed around water. Well that's great since it's 101 out today.

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Fun Fact...Sea Lions are not Lions

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That damn otter kept stealing the wrench and bad stuff kept happening.

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Perfect form! Is that a Sea Lion or a Trainer? You decide.

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Perfect form! Is that a Sea Lion or a Trainer? You decide.

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Wannabe dolphin.

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Ridin the Sea Lion

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Penguins! After going to Antarctica, none of these penguin exhibits do anything for me anymore.

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Especially since they still stink and waddle everywhere.

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Bugs Bunny sighting! Where's he going?

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He's going to his themed kiddie area for some play time!

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Wouldn't Elmer try and pop balloons

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Pepe Le Pew's tea cup's of romance.

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Kiddie swings go really fast!

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I found where Bugs went...silly wabbit!

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Play area. I showed my kids these pictures and they have no idea who the hell Looney Tunes are. They would much rather watch Mickey and Donald than Bugs and Daffy. Oh well...at least there's an area for them to run around in.

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There's also a coaster! I got this credit last time I was here so I didn't have to be that creepy old guy riding a kiddie coaster by himself.

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Adios Bugs and Looney Tunes area!

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Wait...this used to be something else....

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On the Map they literally just took the faces off of the rides at Thomas Lan...err...Seaside Junction. Everything still has the original colors from the Thomas brand.

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Hey look it's Thomas the Trai...err...Big Train. Big Train? No joke...the name of the train was Big Train. Totally original!

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Time for a ride on Thoma...er...Big Train.

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Hey look! It's the Red Engine and has name is James...oh wait...never mind...it's just a train.

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Hey look! It's Tidmouth Sheds...err...never mind...it's just a place where trains sleep at night.

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Hey look! It's Sir Topham Hats Office...err...never mind...it's just some place where there was a ton of Christmas lights hanging around. WTH?!

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Hey look! It's Bertie the Bus...err...never mind...it's just some school bus now.

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Hey look! It's Cranky the Crane...err...never mind...it's just some crane in the middle of the walkway.

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Hey look! It's Harold the helicopter...err...never mind...it's some repainted penguin helicopter. Nice Six Flags...I definitely couldn't tell this used to be a Thomas Land at all!

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They have mutant butterflies here too!

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Welcome to Butterfly. What...that's the name of this place? Butterfly? Not Butterfly Garden or Butterfly exhibit? It's just Butterfly?

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Well, at least there''s butterflies here.

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Why did I take a picture of this tree? Oh well...moving on...

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Aquatrax coming soon! You heard it here first ladies and gentlemen!

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Taking a stroll around the backside of the park you get a nice view of the lake!

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Time for the Tiger Show. Odin is World Famous as the first Tiger to jump into the water and for people to watch.

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Frozen Coke and Tiger Show time!

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Let's feed them milk? Sure! Why not?

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This show was more of showing what they do in their natural habitat and not jumping through rings and stuff. This guy climb a tree.

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And then they jump in the water several times after food. Food meaning trying to get the kids in the front row.

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Time to check out the babies.

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The backside of water!

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Tiny Ferret Faucet

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What's in the bag? Seriously? What is it?

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Take a guess on what this thing might be...you might win a prize!

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The old elephant exhibit is now a giant kids play area.

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They had some great play structures for kiddos to run around in.

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Here's the Food Court. I was impressed with the options. They had Pizza, Burgers, Fish and Chips, Sandwiches, Asian Food, Beer...great selection.

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After a giant Burger and Beer filled lunch I decided to go light on Dinner.

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Thanks Discovery Kingdom for a great day! Even though it was hot, there were no crowds and the employees were fantastic.

 

Part 3 will be up shortly....

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Part 3 - The Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa, CA.

 

If you are a fan of the Peanuts Comic Strip and all the movies and books associated with them, then you will love this place. If you are a kid (or adult) looking to meet Charlie Brown and Snoopy and the rest of the Gang, then don't come here.

 

Santa Rosa is where Charles M. Schulz lived and wrote most of his comic strips for Peanuts. This Museum was a really cool experience because it had a ton of original comic strips that he made. The size of the strips was a lot larger than I expected and the way that he mailed them to the Newspaper Company was that he folded up the strips and put them in an envelope and sent them in by mail. Then the Newspaper would send them back when they made their prints.

 

The museum also had a recreation of his office with the actual desk and drafter's table that he used (kindly donated by his wife). This was a place I could have spent all day in by just reading the amount of Comic Strips everywhere but I had to get on my flight back home.

 

There was also an Ice Rink, Cafe with Fire Place, and a giant Gift Shop just across the street from the Museum.

 

Enjoy the pictures!

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Surprise Visit! Charles M. Schulz Museum!

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Charlie Brown wants you to make sure you have your tickets!

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Once you walk in, there's already Comic Strips on the wall.

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Original Strips everywhere!

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Down the hallway, this was on the entire wall. Can you guess what it is made of?

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You get closer and it's a ton of comics. So cool!

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This room had the more original strips. They rotate the strips they show in this room about once a month (so i was told) so you are sure to see different ones. See how big the originals are compared to what you see in the newspaper?

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So cool!

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Everyone loves Snoopy!

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My sons love Snoopy's cousin Spike because he's from the desert.

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Spike is pretty funny!

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An original sketch and idea before it was made into a Comic Strip.

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"Of all the Charlie Brown's in the world...you're the Charlie Browniest"

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Old school Charlie Brown and Snoopy!

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Alright...time to move into the next exhibit...

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I'm not allowed to post every picture I took in here...but it was pretty cool seeing the transformation of the comic strip that eventually became a book. Also, everyone loves the World War I Flying Ace and his battle with the infamous Red Baron.

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There was a section where you could write on an actual typewriter. I'm sure some kids don't even know what the hell a typewriter is these days...

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Some Snoopy Toys and Typewriters you could get.

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It was a really well done exhibit.

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The temporary exhibit when I was there was a tribute to "It was a dark and stormy night"

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I'm sure some people didn't realize that it became an actual book...but here it is...

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Even the former Governor of California enjoyed the book!

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On my way to the next exhibit I saw this thing...

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What?!?!

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You look inside the holes and there were little characters inside

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Pretty cute for the kiddos

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They had an education room upstairs.

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This is where you could learn to draw Peanuts characters and they had movies on all day. Great place to drop the kids off while parents could walk around the rest of the museum.

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Peanuts all over the World!

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Sparky's Studio!

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Here it is...a re-creation in all it's glory.

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They even placed the bookshelves around the area and placed the typical book he would have in them.

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If you haven't seen the original cartoon, I recommend it because it's pretty funny and entertaining.

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Time to head outside and see what's out there.

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Under Construction Charlie Brown in the foreground and the Kite Eating Tree in the background.

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Poor Charlie Brown's kite...

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You could even sit under a giant baseball hat and read some Comic Strips.

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Time to head across the street...

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Gotta love the old technology here...

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Another temporary exhibit they had was for the musical "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown"

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Charles Schulz was really into ice skating so they built this ice skating rink across the street from the museum.

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Snoopy's out front to greet you.

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Time to check out the ice rink.

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It was nice and cool in here.

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There was also a Cafe next to the ice rink.

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Here's the cafe inside. Great view to watch people fall on their butts trying to ice skate.

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When it gets colder, they actually still use this fireplace to warm up the cafe.

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Thanks Charlie Brown!

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Time to head over to the Giant Gift Shop.

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Woodstock is making sure you're following the rules.

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Standard merchandise store but they had a lot of unique things inside as well.

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This report has gone off the rails and is coming to an end...

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....thanks for reading...time to sleep.

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Great report!

 

The last time I was at SFDK, neither the Joker nor Wonder Woman were there. Joker sounds fantastic and I'm really impressed how well Wonder Woman fits in. I really need to try one of those Zamperla Giant Discoveries.

 

I missed out on the Schultz museum when I was in California a few summers back. I didn't even know that was there, which is unfortunate.

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Super TR! You sure packed in a lot of fun in a small amount of time. For some reason I had no idea Discovery Kingdom had so many animals and great exhibits! I don't get out to California hardly ever but next time I do I'm definitely going to make a stop there for Joker and the animals. Your photos from the Snoopy museum are really interesting and that also looks like a great place to visit. Thanks for sharing your trip with us!

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I visit my family in Sacramento sometimes, and have driven by this park on the way to my niece's house in Novato, but have yet to visit Discovery Kingdom (timing just never works out). I'd like to, as it looks pretty good.

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To answer a few of your questions:

  • That inversion on Medusa is called a Sea Serpent. It's a one of it's kind in the world, they only time so far B & M has made that particular inversion. It is a good one.
    The old killer whales/orcas were called Shuka.
    The space where the Air Penguin kiddie flat ride is located used to be a starfish themed trabant, so it wasn't really part of the old Thomas land. It sort of stood alone.

 

And believe it or not... but I do own a hard copy of Snoopy's book, It was a Dark and Stormy Night that you pictured. It's a pretty great book.

 

To those who want to do both SFDK and the Schultz museum, just realize they are an hour's drive apart. Not that far, but not right next door, either. You would definitely need your own car to get there.

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Kudos to the brilliant efforts that went into creating the Charles M. Schulz Museum. What an amazing tribute to Charlie Brown, Woodstock, and the gang -- and to the master cartoonist who made the world a funnier place (and always gave us some food for thought)!

 

Thanks JimmyBo for sharing this unique site with us! Great trip report.

 

Alice

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