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bert joins TPR on the 2018 USA trip


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^^ Ha! High tech at it's finest, heh. Thanks for that, Bert. And yes, cider much preferred.

 

the blackberry cider was amazing! Tho many in our group were drinking the frozen Blue Hawaiians from Grogan's Pub.

 

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I didn't have one (I still find it odd that they were serving it as a special in the Irish Pub. . but then again, the Maui Ice truck was parked in Ireland section too and was doing some booming business).

 

but I'd assume it's a standard recipe:

 

rum, blue Curacao, pineapple juice, cream of coconut, and 1 cup crushed ice in blender. Puree on high speed until smooth. Pour into chilled highball glass.

Garnish with a slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry.

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I didn't have one (I still find it odd that they were serving it as a special in the Irish Pub. . but then again, the Maui Ice truck was parked in Ireland section too and was doing some booming business).

 

but I'd assume it's a standard recipe:

 

rum, blue Curacao, pineapple juice, cream of coconut, and 1 cup crushed ice in blender. Puree on high speed until smooth. Pour into chilled highball glass.

Garnish with a slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry.

 

That reminds me of a drink that Michael and I had at a gay bar in Syracuse called the Purple Mother F%cker. As soon as I started drinking it, I started feeling warm all over. When I went into the bathroom, I was covered in these huge welts all over my body. After heading back to the hotel with some Benadryl, I finally started feeling better.

 

The only two things that were new in the ingredients for me was Blue Curacao and the Grape Schnapps. Since then I steer clear of both!

 

Looking forward to the next update, Bert!

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^ wow Phil. . that's a heck of an allergic reaction!

 

glad it wasn't more severe.

 

happy you're enjoying my TR! Luckily I have a good memory, so scanning thru the pics before I type, helps me remember details!

 

I'm working on next update (day II at BGW), but not sure I'll get it posted until late tomorrow, since I'm headed out to attend a monthly thing here at the Alamo Drafthouse called "Die Felicia!". .it's a horror film, hosted by popular Drag Queens in town, and they pause the film ~1/2 way thru to do performances. it's audience participation too. . so lots of interaction w/ the screen.

This month's film is "Friday the 13th". .so should be a lot of fun.

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I have no idea what was in the blue Hawaiian but it was delicious.

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May have been the highlight of BGW for me.

 

Your trip report is making me really miss being on the tour.

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Day 5: BGW

 

This day started out early, as we arrived at BGW a couple of hours before the park officially opened, and were met by staff who ushered the group in for some filming to be done on several of the coasters. We had an incredible time, and again, *huge* thanks to Robb and Elissa for arranging this kind of thing, as while filming was happening, we were able to get multiple rides in on things before the park even opened to the general public – which is not to say I didn’t go back to some of the coasters later in the day, since we had quick queue today. . but it got a lot of riding on my favorites done early, making for a day that allowed me to focus on other things (such as shows, or seeing the Clydesdales) and not feel like I was missing something.

 

added bonus for me was that I was able to get some pics near Alpengeist without a crowd around (that photo op near the entrance is near impossible to get a good pic of, since it’s next to the Quick Queue entrance).

 

Once filming was done and the park had officially opened to guests, we were given our Quick Queue tickets, and set loose for free time in the park, until the 5pm head out.

 

the group I had been hanging out with pretty much stuck together, with a few others joining us today, and we headed straight for Battle for Eire, which has a quick queue option. Was really glad we had it today, as the park was more crowded than it had been the prior afternoon, and it came in handy. We went in thru the QQ line, got suited up, and hung out waiting for the pre-show, and the “explanation” of what was the plot of the ride.

 

the design of the building is really well done, and you would never know it was the old Europe in the Air site. Honestly though I found the actual storyline to be very confusing, and still am not really sure exactly what we were supposed to be doing or who was fighting or for what reason – it’s a bit too complicated for it’s own good.

 

I also found the headgear one has to wear for Battle for Eire to be slightly uncomfortable (it’s fine until one snaps in the VR headset to the front of it, then it puts a lot of weight on the bridge of your nose).

 

All that aside tho, I (and some others in my group) was mighty impressed with the level of VR. Once the “ride” starts, you can look left/right/up/down and it’s a fully realized 360 world. . . yeah, I wasn’t really sure what was going on - the "ride" itself is kind of a mess in terms of what is supposed to be happening in the story, but when you’re riding the dragon, and you look to your right and you can see the wing flapping up and down? Really, really impressed with what they pulled off. I think I was more impressed by the VR than some others, but to me, this is what a VR attraction really should “feel” like, even if the storyline needed some cleaning up.

 

It's inside, in the AC, and once you get the headset on, the rest of the crowd around you disappears for a good 10 minutes.. so it has that going on for it too

 

After checking this off the list, we wandered counter-clockwise thru the park, past the animal exhibits (the wolves were actually out in their paddock this time), for another ride on Griffon, stopping to take some pics, and the intention of heading towards our goal of Verbolten. I realized that we were right by the Skybuckets, so convinced everyone to save our feet a bit, and take the sky buckets from France (by Griffon) over to Germany. . . which let out right next to the Carousel.

 

Everyone was ready for Verbolten, as we hadn’t gotten on it yet, but I really wanted to ride the Carousel – BGW has a lovely antique 3-across Herschell Carousel from 1919, called “Kinder Karussel” that’s featuring Classic Wood Figures, all of which “gallop” as well as some sleighs.

 

So some folks decided to ride with me, while the rest headed thru to Verbolten.

 

This carousel too, unfortunately didn’t have real organ music playing –there was a slot for the organ, but it appeared to be empty, with piped in Carousel music playing from speakers behind it. I could be mistaken, but it didn’t seem to have the true organ there.

 

Once I had gotten my ride in, I was super happy.

Then I spotted the Carousel horse photo op that was set up in a little alcove off to the side. . . and of course climbed right on top for some pics (not noticing until after posing, the little sign off to the side behind the horse noting it was for younger guests – oops).

 

we headed to Verbolten, and were ready to show our QQ, but he op told us that the ride was down at the moment, as they were adding a train to the tracks and it would be about 10 minutes. We decided to get in the line anyways, as the standby line continued to steadily grow, and ended up next to a few other TPR folks who also hadn’t gotten on the ride the prior night due to downtime. It ended up taking over 20 minutes, as they didn’t just add one train, they actually added two trains to the track – and started using the dual loading station! So it ended up being worth the shortish wait (4 of the 5 trains ended up running, the missing one seemed to be the Green train that had been giving them trouble the night before)

I found the ride to be a little disorienting, and I think I may have actually greyed out a little bit in the “blak forest” building!

I rode it again later, and it had the same effect on me, so who knows, but I think I did?

 

I liked it, but didn’t love it. Glad I rode it tho.

 

after getting our rides in (and getting our stuff back from the fluffy bunnies the ride requests guests to use), it was time to eat something, so we went over to Italy, and went to Marco Polo’s Marketplace, where I had an amazing Rosemary Garlic Lamb dish, with a side of mac n cheese, and a slice of super sweet rainbow explosion cake. It was really, really good, and tho expensive, worth it.

 

the seating for Marco Polo’s is in an outdoor amphitheater, and while we ate, we watched the “Mix it Up” show, which is basically “STOMP” if they were all chefs, and were playing kitchen equipment, crossed with a marching band. It was quite entertaining, and enjoyable to watch while we ate.

 

The group discussed what we wanted to do for the remainder of the afternoon, and I mentioned I really wanted to see the Clydesdales, and would love to catch a performance of “Celtic Fyre” as I had really enjoyed that show my one prior time at the park. It was about 1, and there was a showing at, I think, 2:30, and Russ expressed that he’d very much like to see that too, but he also wanted to get another ride on Loch Ness Monster. . so with that plan in place we started the walk towards Ireland, stopping to catch a ride on anything that struck our fancy as we passed it.

 

Turned out that BGW does photo ops with the Clydesdales, where a professional photographer takes your pic. .but they also allow your friends to stand behind the photographer and take your own pics, with no high-pressure sell tactics. I was very impressed with this (so much, I even mentioned it to Robb), it’s a very “Disney” thing to do and I love that they did that. So several of us took turns posing with the Horse – they have several, and swapped them out occasionally, and then we decided that we’d better head to the theater, as it’s a popular show, in the air conditioning (on what turned out to be a hot day) and we wanted to make sure we could get seating. . so we headed that way and got some great seats.

 

if you haven’t seen the show, it’s basically Irish Step Dancing, built around a plot of a wedding party happening in an Irish Pub/Inn. The dancers were fantastic, and it was a wonderful way to spend 20 minutes or so.

 

During the show, we had gotten word that the place to hang out from the heat was the Irish Pub that was just across the way from the theater. . . so we popped in there, and found a whole bunch of the TPR crew hanging out and sampling an impressive selection of beers, ciders, and ales on tap. We joined in, and I had a really fantastic Blackberry Cider (which tasted like a Doctor Brown’s Black Cherry Soda. .it was really really good), tho the drink of choice seemed to be Blue Hawaiians – which several folks said were great, tho I’m still not sure what that drink has to do with an Irish Pub. . LOL.

 

after relaxing and finishing our drinks, it was close to 4, and Russ reminded us that he still wanted to ride LNM again, so we headed out that way, and took another ride on it. Several folks headed back into the main park to grab final rides on Griffon, or Verbolten.. . but I wanted to do some shopping, so the main group split up.

 

over by LNM, there’s a shop I was browsing, when I realized it’s the “exit thru the gift shop” for the train. . which happened to be pulling up shortly after I stepped into the shop. So I hopped on the train and took a ride around the beautiful park, taking a few more pics, and by the time the train got all the way back around, it was time to head towards the front gate for the bus anyways.

 

Most of the group was milling around the big gift shop in the London section at the front of the park, and luckily I did manage to find a shirt I liked, as well as a magnet to buy. . tho had an odd exchange with a salesclerk who insisted on telling me a shirt I liked was only in the sizes on the floor, but that a Junior XXL would fit me (it was about the size of an adult Medium. . and I could tell it wouldn’t fit me because. . well. . because I have eyes and could see it. . LOL).

 

I found that way more amusing than annoying tho, so I laughed about it (and figured oh well, didn't need more than one shirt anyways), and then everyone headed out to the bus so we could head to the hotel in Ashland. . for tomorrow was King’s Dominion!

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Looking up at Griffon before we start the day's fimling

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This is a fantastic shot, that I'm going to credit to Chase, since I don't see him on the coaster, and all the other suspects appear to be riding (I'm in back row 4th from right). Taken during morning filming.

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Photo courtesy of Robb's rider cam.

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I didn't ride this one during the morning filming, as I had ridden the day before and found it still to be a bit too intense for me (especially early in the morning).

 

but being there before official open, allowed me to get some non-crowded pics

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like this.. theming! and I love it.

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and this. a GREAT photo op, that's hard to get with no people, since it's right near the ride entrance.

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so pretty, but this is as close as I got to it this am.

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got on this sucker (a lot tho) :)

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Photo courtesy of Robb's Rider Cam.

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almost 100% sure this pic is by Andy (Great Zo), since Chase is in the row with me.

 

(could be Brad, but pretty sure it was Andy)

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Noted. . pull your Knob!

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as Robb noted. . .we think we look sexy in our headgear!

 

LOL

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the Eagle was out, and sorta facing me

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look! there actually are wolves in that environment. . not just in the wolf show (which, sadly, I skipped this trip, as I had seen it on the prior visit. same with Pet Shenanigans)

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a couple of pics of Griffon from the Skyride

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able to get some good shots of Alpengeist zooming by too.

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James and Logan give a thumbs up!

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Russ and Ryan try to figure out if the Op is a Bangles fan.

 

"walk like an Egyptian"

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no trains in the picture, but hey, land of Dragons and a skybucket!

 

LOL. .not sure why I took this with no trains on the coasters.

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the Carousel! finally

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yep. my happy place

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see??

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but Merry Go Round Monkey aint got no time for that. . he rolls his eyes and wants to know why we didn't to to Verbolten with everyone else.

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the carousel horse photo op.

 

Phil told me I looked bored, and to try to be exciting.

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Happy?

 

(and yes, I felt dirty after.. but there was no one around)

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we're here at Verbolten!

 

and after waiting for them to load all the trains on the tracks, look who ended up in the front of the Orange Car! Brad and John.

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I'm gonna get to ride in Blue (yay!)

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some more shots no one else ever gets

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see? first time you've seen it.

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Lunch was great. and we got to see STOMP if it were done by Chefs and a marching band :)

But really. .it was an enjoyable show.

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Clydesdale! (and me)

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they were trained, obviously. . everyone got the head on the shoulder, and the "whinny" pic options.

 

loved they allowed you to take your own pics too.

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I honestly cannot recall taking this picture, and it's possible it's not one that I took myself.

But it might be from the LNM queue after exiting the coaster?

 

It's got Mach Tower running, LNM on the lift hill, and Griffon over there on the right, so it's a great pic.

 

if someone on the trip took it, please let me know so I can credit accordingly. . . .assuming I didn't take it myself?

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in the Celtic Fyre show. . .the dancing was good, and air conditioned. (I asked if I could take pictures, and was told I could as long as it was quick with no flash).

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Celtic Fyre

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Butterflies in the foliage around this beautiful park.

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the Rhine River cruise didn't seem to be running today, which was a shame. but was able to get some nice pics from the train.

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from the train

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from the train

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train

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train

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train

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the anniversary sign

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from, Darryl I believe. . taking a picture of us, taking a picture of him.

 

LOL

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courtesy of Robb, enjoying the Blackberry Cider in Grogan's pub

 

it was SO good.

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the shirt I bought

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the magnet I bought

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Great report Bert. It's great reliving this trip and also meeting everyone for the first time. Yes it was me who took the pics from the water cannons! lol

 

heh. . thought that was you

 

glad you're enjoying the TR thus far!

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Great report and YES, I also loved the Blackberry Cider

The other thing I quite liked during this visit was the most enthusiastic rip op ever (who was running the teacups)

 

thanks!

 

I'm working on the next installment (Kings Dominion). . but that one will take me a bit to finish up, I think.

 

so shooting for Friday update

 

yeah, the tea-cups operator was very enthusiastic. I'm not sure why we didn't ride that! (or Tradewinds). . . we just did Tempesto & the Rapids (once) then Apollo quite a bit while in that area.

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so shooting for Friday update

Nice

 

yeah, the tea-cups operator was very enthusiastic. I'm not sure why we didn't ride that! (or Tradewinds). . . we just did Tempesto & the Rapids (once) then Apollo quite a bit while in that area.

It was actually great fun! Especially with the operator shouting during the ride

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Day 6: Kings Dominion

 

Although I had been to Kings Dominion once before, I was very excited about this park because there were several things I had missed on my prior visit that I really wanted to ride (mainly: Dominator, Grizzly, and of course, the new Twisted Timbers). I knew Volcano was down, which was a shame, but that one I had ridden before.

 

I was also determined to get on a few flats, including the Crypt, to be my 1st Top Spin, tho I ended up putting that off until really late in the night -- spoiler: I DID ride it, and loved it, but once was enough. .LOL.

 

We were up and on the bus early, as this was gonna be a long day: we were getting there a couple of hours before the park opened (this was another case where Robb would be filming on a few coasters, and it would be taking place before the park opened to the public), and we had ERT at the end of the night after the park closed.

 

Although it was gonna be a long day, there *was* an opportunity to head back to the hotel for several hours during the day if one so chose – and a bunch of folks did take advantage of that, but I (and most of the group I was hanging with) stayed the whole day.

 

We ended up participating in filming and getting multiple rides on I305, Dominator (which I absolutely loved), and Twisted Timbers all before the park officially opened.

I believe I rode Twisted Timbers twice, and although I loved the barrel roll drop, I found the ejector air to be a bit too much for me personally, recalling (as you might) that I prefer floater air over ejector air – and if you’ve ridden TT then you know it has a LOT of ejector air.

 

When I spend most of the ride cringing and hoping it’s almost over?

 

Yeah, not a ride that’s been created just for me, which is fine plenty of other coasters in the park I love .

 

-- and, yes, I totally realize that I was still a little tender on my thighs from the restraints a few days earlier from Twisted Cyclone. . but I knew after the two rides in the morning that I likely wouldn’t be participating in the evening ERT on TT.

 

But hey, love the look of it, and love the idea of it, and willing to give it another shot at sometime in the future. . but for me it was simply too painful to ride again during our visit, so I made up for it by riding a bunch of other stuff . . . a lot.

 

A funny moment after we finished the TT filming in the morning was when the park officially opened – the attendant at the front of Twisted Timbers heard something on her walkie and said to us: “get ready for the stampede” as a steady wave of folks came running towards the new hotness. . LOL

 

James had never been on a Windseeker, so since it was actually opening with the park, while we were right there we grabbed a ride on it (the Windseeker at Carowinds had been down for weather, but the one at CP was working all 3 days, so got to ride on 2 of the 3 we were around, which is nice, it’s a pleasant, if sort of boring, ride).

 

The group I was with then headed up to the front of the park to exchange our FastLane vouchers, and I took the opportunity to grab a Starbucks Coffee while up there, and then we just started working our way around the park clockwise, starting with Woodstock Express.. which still has a ton of air and is great fun for a Jr. Woodie.

 

I looked at Berserker, and Crypt, but didn’t really wanna go upside-down so early in the day. . so instead we hit Avalanche (bobsleds). .really fun, and fast lane saved us some time, even this early in the day, attempted Flight of Fear (which had already gone down, so we went over to I305 for another ride), Anaconda (not the smoothest thing in the park, but good fun, and not too headbangy.. love the drop into the tunnel, and the setting over the lake is lovely), and then we tried BackLot Stunt Coaster (which I hadn’t cared for in my prior visit, but figured it was because I had been so much heavier then that the seating in the cars simply hadn't been comfortable). Backlot Stunt Coaster too had gone down for issues, but after we took a quick Bathroom/water break, it was back up and running so we got in line.

 

Turns out I *still* didn’t like it, the cars are not comfortable to sit in at all, and the launch into the upwards helix I found super uncomfortable. The sounds worked, but none of the special effects did..the only part I really enjoyed was the launch into the tunnel/thru the billboard. . this was a 1 and done for me.

 

By the time we got off of Backlot, Flight of Fear was back up again, so we headed over there and got a ride. Now FoF is a launched Premier Spaghetti bowl coaster (same design as Joker’s Jinx, and Poltergeist. . both of which I LOVE), only indoors . . . but I dunno what the heck is up with this ride, maybe not being maintained as meticulously as those that are outside?

 

This thing was rattle-y as heck, and to make it worse, it came almost to a complete stop at the MCB. . something the outdoor versions don’t do. Killed any thrill the ride had, and robs the back ½ of the ride of the intensity. This one too was 1 and done for me at KD today.

 

We had been given lunch vouchers, and since were in the area that has the Hungry Hippo sit down restaurant, most of the group were ready to eat. I had eaten something light at the hotel before we left, and had drank the giant Vanilla Latte, so wasn’t hungry, but was happy to sit inside in the air conditioning with them while they ate. There were predictions for rain this day, but like the other days we had really good luck with only some scattered storms later in the afternoon. . the day was nice and humid, and sticky tho. so the AC break was nice.

 

We worked our way around the park, riding things as we passed them, and I got to ride my 1st drop tower of the trip, as the great one at Kings Dominion was operating. I love this drop tower, and adding to my joy on it was the speakers at the top, where the attendant talks before dropping you (He sang on one of my rides “na-na-na-na, goodbye”. . . so yeah, I laughed on the way down. Great ride.

 

I noted the Carousel there in Candy Apple Grove, but figured would come back to that in a bit, as we headed to Racer 75 (aka: Rebel Yell). They must have done some retracking on this during the off season, as this coaster was giving fantastic rides! We rode both sides, and ended up riding it several more times thruout the day.

 

I still hadn’t made it to Grizzly, yet – that was the one coaster still missing from my bucket list, but after riding the Ferris Wheel – it’s right at the exit for Racer75l, so after passing it a few times while going back in line for Racer75, decided to hop on it for a spin), it was getting close to the time for the optional “I305 Backstage tour” that Robb had lined up for any of us that wanted to take it.

 

I certainly didn’t want to skip that, and we met up with a good chunk of the TPR group, and the Maintenance guy, and some KD reps took us thru the fence by Anaconda, and we got to walk along the road “backstage” that goes all the way around the I305 layout, and offered us super close, and amazing views of I305, Anaconda, and Racer 75. .but mainly I305 (got so many great pics, I’ll do a separate post just from the backstage tour).

 

This was an amazing perk, and although it was hot at this point in the day, an experience I won’t ever forget, and truly appreciate Robb & Elissa arranging this opportunity for us. The tour took about 40 minutes or so, and as we finished up, the bus was getting ready to go back to the Hotel for the afternoon break for those that wanted to go.

 

Several of us decided to stay in the park, and so while they went up to the front gate (I think Phil wanted to use his pass to scan in at the gates so his discount would work in case we wanted to buy Tshirts, or more food/drinks), I went ahead and used my meal voucher at the Mac & Cheese Bowl place. . . . wow, what a great meal that was too. I don’t get why anyone would be complaining that you only get one Protein now . .since they let you add as much “salad” stuff to it as you want, after the protein is added. It’s a LOT of food, and it was very good.

 

A quick ride on the Troika (called Bad Apple here), a stop by Phil and I at Apple Zapple – which was running really well with very little breaking, and shockingly had almost NO line, and then it was time for Grizzly.

 

Using the “insider knowledge” from the ladies who had gone with us on the backstage tour of I305 – one of whom, when I mentioned I hadn’t ridden Grizzly yet, told me “oh. . make sure you ride the orange train, ride ops have told me the yellow train is riding very rough this season” So we waited for the Orange train. And had a really good ride in the front seat! LOL. . some of the folks who rode with us further back in the train said it was very rough. .but we had a great ride up front.

 

Good enough I was willing to get back on it later - after bumping into Laura who wanted to go on Grizzly, we again rode near the front (2nd row), and this time was slightly rougher, but was still a good ride. So I’d recommend Grizzly. . but near the front, in the Orange train.

 

We also took the opportunity (and FastLane) to grab a ride on Shenandoah Lumber Company while in that area of the park - tho it didn’t get us very wet. Suprising, since there were 4 big guys crammed in a log, so I was expecting a lot of water – but that could have been because we rode while some TPR folks had gone back to hotel, so no one manning the water guns : p

 

Since we were by the Antique Cars, we decided to go ahead and give those a spin, with Phil driving and James and I in the back seat. The stink eye we got from the long line as we used FastLane was interesting, but then when Phil decided to ask the attendant to take a picture – but Phil didn’t have a camera out. . LOL. . it brought every car behind us in the station ready to go to a standstill as the attendant struggled to get us all in the picture. It was worth it, I suppose, because the picture came out great, but I’m glad the cars don’t have horns, since they rode on Phil’s butt the whole course!

 

The heat had really kicked up and some storms were starting to brew, so we decided we’d take an AC break and go see the show: “Origins: a Cirque Experience” which was in the big theater across from the Flyers. . it is basically what it sounds like it would be – a theme park version of a Cirque du Soliel show.

To be completely honest, it was actually quite good for what it is. The acrobats were talented, the costumes decent, and the crowd interaction was better than most theme park shows. So yeah, if you have time and want to get out of the heat, I’d recommend the show.

 

we exited the show, and headed across the walkway to the flyers. I’m not a big flyers fan, but I’m not opposed to them. James was kind of in the same boat, so we decided, upon being questioned by the operator at the Fast Lane line for ‘how many” that James and I would just share a flyer – hey, it LOOKED like we would fit no problem. Probably the funniest thing most folks had seen as it was quite “comfy” in the flyer and we realize immediately that it was a bad idea – but we had committed and the operator had already filled the other flyers. .so we went for it. Getting us out almost required a crowbar. . . but yeah, laughed the whole time about how stupid it was that we had decided to share.

 

I was ready to ride the Carousel, so headed over that way.

 

KD has a beautiful classic PTC Carousel, the 44th they built (it’s known as PTC 44). It just celebrated it’s 100 year anniversary, as it was built in 1917. . . and it’s one of the last few wood Carousels operating in the world. It’s a 4 across, with 50 jumping horsed, 16 standing horses, and 2 chariots. It’s housed in a lovely building in Candy Apple Grove, and although this one too has the space for the classic organ, they don’t seem to be using the organ.

 

In fact, I noticed immediately while waiting for the cycle to finish that there was no music playing! So I asked the operator about it, as she was loading our cycle, and when we started there was Carousel music playing thru the speakers (and she gave me a thumbs up as we passed her). I have to assume that they get tired of hearing the same music over and over all day when operating, so maybe she (or a prior operator) had turned the music down? It’s not like Candy Apple Grove is quiet, so there would have been other music playing. . but the Carousel music really is what makes the ride so much more enjoyable.

 

one of my fellow TPR trip folks mentioned to me that he had seen a 100 anniversary Carousel shirt in one of the shops (in the clearance section) but he couldn’t remember where in the park it was. I asked in every shop we stopped in, and no one knew what I was talking about! Eventually, late in the evening, I did find the discounted shirts – in really odd smaller sizes – in a store near the front gates. Despite knowing it was a) a shirt from last year, b) on clearance for a reason. . I asked anyways if they happened to have any other sizes that weren’t on the rack, and the Manager went into the back and came out 5 minutes later with a 2X, in a lovely grey color! And yes, it too was on clearance for $8.. the universe wanted me to have this shirt (it’s a little too big, but washing in hot water will fix that -- I’ll take it!)

 

. . . but I digress. . .

 

After a wonderful ride, as we were getting off, I saw Laura (my fellow Carousel fan) coming up. . so quickly got back in line, mentioned to her that they had just turned on the music (!), and rode it again.

 

right about then is when it started to rain. . the skies just opened up for about 20 minutes. We waited out part of it in an arcade, and part of it looking in shops for the Carousel shirt. . and that’s when someone in the group (Albert? or maybe it was Robb himself) texted that Racer 75 in the rain is awesome!

 

That was all we really needed to hear, and we all headed to the queue for Racer, and again got rides on both sides. And the texter was accurate: Racer 75 in the rain was awesome! We stopped back in at the Mack and Cheese place to grab drinks (and some folks to use their vouchers to eat), and then we headed back to Grizzly for another ride.

 

it was starting to get darker as it got later, so after we finally had found my shirt near the front gates, we swung by Dominator, and Boo Blasters (which unfortunately was down. .but we had heard the AC wasn't working and I imagine that indoor experience int he humidity was kinda miserable), and headed towards I305 for some night rides -- and that’s when I remembered that I had wanted to ride the Crypt.

 

I was having 2nd thoughts, especially after watching it cycle. .but wow..it really is so beautiful at night, that I went ahead and decided to just do it, and we got in line.

 

To balance out the car, they actually put us facing the back side (so we didn’t get any pics of us on it from those who didn't ride). . but wow, was this thing intense. It was like a Frisbee crossed with a tilt-a-whirl with a roll-o-plane mixed in! the first 3 flips were fun, but man the 2nd set of flips were super, super intense..and I mean that in a good way. I got off it with shakey legs. . LOL. . . if I had ridden it earlier in the day, I absolutely would have gotten back on it later. But since we waited so late to ride it, once was enough, but I really liked it.

 

With about 40 minutes left in the day, we headed to I305, and got multiple rides on that.. man this thing at night is absolutely BONKERS. So intense, so crazy, so fun! I didn’t grey out at all (I used the “squeeze your buttocks in the helix” technique and it worked great), but I think I got 4 or 5 rides in a row on this, most in the back seat. The ride was so good, I ended up buying the on-ride photos – which I have a magnet on the fridge.

 

Grinning ear to ear, we got our stuff out of the fluffy bunny (you really do need to use one for I305) and headed across the park for our ERT session on TT at park closing.

 

Earlier in the day, I had noticed that bruises had started forming on my left thigh. . didn’t really “hurt’ until I put pressure on it, but I decided that the multiple rides I had just gotten on I305, plus all the rides I had gotten earlier in the day on Dominator, had given me enough of my “big coaster” fix for the day. .and I was worried that the ejector air into the restraints might really cause me an issue – and there were still several parks to go that I was looking forwards to! – so I decided to play “bag-man” during ERT (TT requires all things put into a bunny, even during an ERT), so I stayed on a bench below the ride, and called home to my spouse, while watching stuff, and people ride, as the rest of the folks on the trip enjoyed Twisted Timbers.

 

While I don’t really regret that decision too much . . .I do wish I had been able to ride it at least once more.

Gives me something to look forwards to going back to KD in the future. . .and as I said at the start of this day, I’m just not a big fan of ejector air, and TT is really all about that.

 

Regardless, I had a fantastic full day at KD, and despite the adrenaline from I305 bonkers night rides, was out cold the moment we got back to the hotel.

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Dominator, looking lovely, as we park right next to it in the morning

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no trains running yet, but the park isn't really open yet. .

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lookie here. . .an EMPTY entrance place.

 

makes for a lovely photo op

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even a selfie :)

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our 1st stop for morning filming.

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train load of happy TPR folks coming back on last train of filming before me move on to Dominator.

(which, I apparently, didn't take any pics of other than the ones upon arrival).

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then it was over to Twisted Timbers

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after my 2 rides, I went down to get my stuff from the bunny, and was able to get a few pics of the barrel roll drop

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just lovely

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and some nice theming too.

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Then it was off to the front gate to get Starbucks.

 

Nice to know that even in a theme park, Starbucks never lets you down with the name on the cup - signed "Pert"

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on Woodstock Express. . yeah, we had to sit sideways in our own rows again

(Ryan)

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but we took over several spots on the train

 

(Chris & James)

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and in the back gave some wonderful pops of air!

(Russ and Myself)

 

I think the one at Carowinds was running slightly better, but really enjoyed this version too.

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oh Lucy! She wanted a hug, and I squatted on her instead. . .

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um.. .rethinking my plan to ride the Crypt after watching it cycle.

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fire effects not working, but seemed to be running an intense cycle.

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Avalanche with Fast Lane. . . really, the best way to ride it!|

 

L-R Jon, Phil, Ryan

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L-R Chris, James, Me

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There's Russ having fun in the front row. It's a really decent bobsled, tho not was unique as Flying Turns at Knoebels, since that one is all wood.

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I 305 and Anaconda.

the colors work so well next to each other

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really is a very pretty coaster, tho those Arrow coat-hanger transitions can be a bit rough

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exiting Anaconda, we're teased by Volcano track. . at least we knew it was going to be down, so it wasn't an unexpected disappointment

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looking down at my leg while in the queue, i was surprised to see bruises already popping up from the massive ejector air into the restraints I had gotten on TT. I mean, I knew it was sorta painful, but wasn't expecting to bruise that quickly.

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Verbolten flashback!

 

John and Brad. . in another coaster train looking like cars. LOL

 

Backlot Stunt Coaster

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myself and Ryan waiting to board Flight of Fear. . .look how thrilled the operator across the tracks from us looks. . . LOL

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at the Hungry Hippo. . I wasn't hungry, so just enjoyed the air, while others ate.

 

The food looked good, but I just wasn't hungry yet, and besides, I wanted to try the Mac and Cheese Bowl place

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my heart is full.

 

the totally non-phallic mushrooms serenaded me.

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love, love, LOVE this drop tower

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We are still waiting for our $5

 

(and the best part of this pic? the face on the game operator, who knew EXACTLY what picture we were posing for) :)

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Racer 75. We won once, and then lost once.

Running so smooth. .ended up riding this multiple times.

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Jon & Chris on Racer 75

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Ryan, Darryl (giving me "queen wave") and Russ on Racer 75

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Heading over to I305 for the "backstage" tour (pics in a separate update). . and we passed a plastic zebra?

 

or COURSE I must stop for a picture!

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post I305 tour, this is what I had for lunch - Mac n Cheese Bowl place. . was so good, and so filling.

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and got a ride on Bad Apple before eating too, and then got to watch it cycle while sitting outside eating.

It's a great Troika

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. .and I got my Grizzly credit. I didn't find it all that rough, although this is a REALLY rough "wood carving" at the entrance. WTF was up with this?

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the pic that Phil asked the operator to take that held up the entire antique cars line.

 

it's a good pic tho. . . Driving Miss Crazy

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time to cool down, let's check out the cirque like show.

 

wasn't bad, and these "monkey guys" did the standard Cirque Du Soliel pre-show interact/mess with the audience as they come in.

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wasn't bad at all

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not the most astounding show I've ever seen, but very decent for a Theme Park show.

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Surprised we were able to stop giggling enough to pose for the picture.

 

This is before we attempted to get out of the car. .we were pretty crammed in there.

 

hey, it SEEMED like a good idea at the time.

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my, what a beautiful Carousel.

 

and she turned on the music for me, since I had asked. not an organ, but at least Carousel music :)

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again, look how happy a Carousel makes me.

 

yes, I'm a nerd.

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one of the very few all wood carousels still operating in the USA.

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got to ride it twice, since as we were getting off, Laura came up, and we couldn't let her ride alone! :)

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Hi Laura!

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after visiting multiple gift shops, finally found the place that had the 100th anniversary Carousel shirt on the clearance rack. and the universe wanted me to have it, as the sales clerk was able to find this shirt for me in the back stockroom!

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the Crypt at night. . .wowza. .absolutely gorgeous at night (be it would be more impressive if the fire was working).

 

Still. . rode it and loved it. My 1st Top Spin.

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time for some (ie: 4-5) night rides on I305. . .absolutely BONKERS at night, especially in the back seat.

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I knew I couldn't handle the ejector air for our evening ERT on Twisted Timbers. .so I watched some folks stuff, called home, and took some pics (and got eaten by Mosquitoes).

 

The ride is lovely at night tho, even tho I didn't ride it again, I can certainly appreciate how much fun it is for those who like Ejector Air.

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see? lovely at night

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the pic I bought (magnet) for those of us in the back car of I305 at night. completely Bonkers!

 

Alex & Jon in front, me and Phil in back

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windseeker at night (was sitting on bench by TT and took this pic)

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headed out of park at end of ERT, looking up at tower (which sadly, didn't go to top of. . had planned to, but line was way too long when we passed it)

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TPR on I305, morning filming

 

I think photo credit for this is Brad Roach, since Robb is in front row (I'm about 1/2 way back on the right)

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On Dominator during morning filming. I'm 2nd Row on left

 

photo from Robb's rider cam

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On Dominator during morning filming. I'm 2nd Row on left

 

photo from Robb's rider cam

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On Dominator during morning filming. I'm 2nd to last row from back, again on left

 

photo from Robb's rider cam

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the shirt I had bought for me, but instead gave to Nick

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the shirt I bought for me, and kept for me :)

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Great find with the Carousel shirt, Bert! Is this one of your first ones, or do you have many more? Just curious.

 

I have a couple of others

 

but was very pleased to find one with the Centennial celebration, AND in a size I could wear!

(and clearance, only $8 was an added bonus)

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