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bert goes to Kings Island for the first time ever, and gets CoasterStock'd - a photo TR

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3 hours ago, ytterbiumanalyst said:

Agreed on the Tom & Chee with balsamic. KI's food has been going up in quality mainly because they're letting other people make it now. 😆


The walkbacks look so fun! I always like those, but at KI where they've got a whole park's worth of land in their backstage, so much to see there.

We finally got a chance to eat at the Brewhouse the next day (Zach gave us a "use the bar to order" hack) and the food was very very good there as well.

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19 minutes ago, teacherkim said:

Joel did take some pics. Will look through them soon as  I can!

no rush. . gotta get thru my full report 1st anyways :)

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1 hour ago, teacherkim said:

We finally got a chance to eat at the Brewhouse the next day (Zach gave us a "use the bar to order" hack) and the food was very very good there as well.

Yeah, that is much, much better than the Reds place used to be. The bar over by Adventure Express has a really good beer selection, and their pretzels are pretty great.

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49 minutes ago, ytterbiumanalyst said:

Yeah, that is much, much better than the Reds place used to be. The bar over by Adventure Express has a really good beer selection, and their pretzels are pretty great.

^ we had beer (I had frozen Pina Colada) there and watched a show on Saturday afternoon

I made the bartender blush (and the other one Guffaw) when he asked me for ID, and I showed him it in my "wallet" and he said "can you pull it out"

and without missing a beat, I responded:  "But Sir, I JUST met you!"


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conclusion of 1st day:

finishing up the shopping (several shirts, and magnets were purchased), it was almost time for dinner.  So rather than head to the car to drop stuff off at the car, we headed over to the Picnic Grove and joined the long lines of Coasterstock attendees for dinner:


despite the lines, it all moved pretty fast.

tonight's offerings were burgers, hotdogs, chicken tenders, Potato Salad, Beans, Coleslaw, potato chips, and chili. . with Deserts being Ice Cream offerings from Hershey (their versions of stuff like Strawberry Shortcake, Fudgesicle, or Dreamsicle).   

from what Kim told me - she had just done a major Coaster event with ACE, this is pretty typical dinner offerings at a coaster event.  
(the only events I've done were at SFFT, so the catering was more BBQ based. .but that would be the meal tomorrow).

here's my plate - I bypassed the beans, and the coleslaw as I'm not a fan (but John said the slaw was good):

the great:  
-the star of my plate was the Potato Salad.   Absolutely fantastic, and I had a 2nd serving of it.
- the Hotdog which I added the chili to was also excellent

the good:
- the burger was ok, tho tasted like a standard "Theme Park Burger". . so not awful, but nothing really special.  Tho I did like there were cheese slices one could add to it along with other condiments.
- the ice cream (I had "Strawberry Shortcake") as a perfectly acceptable ice cream desert - tho we made note that we would be trying the famous Kings Island Blue Ice Cream later

the bad:
- the chicken fingers were so overcooked they were almost unedible
_ the homemade chips were not crisp and needed salt.

the disgusting:
- the grilled onions that were available to put on the burger/hot dog were GRAY.    I don't mean they were translucent. .I mean they were gray.  Like they were cooked in grease that hadn't been changed out after the burgers were grilled on the same grilltop.      I ate some of them (and have to wonder if that's what upset my stomach later that night.    All I know is that once i pointed out that I really don't trust the color of these grilled onions?   John scraped them off his plate and into the garbage after deciding my observation was a good one  😛


overall tho?  it was decent, and a filling enough meal.   A great deal too, in that it was included in the Coasterstock ticket.

Tho if I had to do it again, I'd just eat a couple of hot dogs, and eat a TON of that fantastic potato salad.

the company was fantastic at the table we chose, and yes, it was mini TPR forum group there :)
Ltr:  Joel (Kim's son), PianoJohn, Teacher Kim, Stacy Gretchen, John, and me.

after we realized we had likely made a mistake by sitting down, LOL, we forced ourselves to get up and head out to the car to drop off hats, store purchases, and Kim to change shoes:


on the way back in, I finally saw Invertigo running.  I hadn't noticed it running earlier in the day (tho was told it had been), but honestly, we hadn't been over on that particular area of the park. . so I snapped a few pics.    


we decided upon heading back into the park, that although we knew we had ERT tonight that included Orion?  let's go over there - which was really the only "big" area we hadn't gone over to, and check it out to see if the line is nuts or not.

on the way there, we happened to pass by the FestHouse right as the clock was hitting 7:15, and the Chicken Dance was starting.  So we stopped to watch it (and yes, some of the kiddos in the area did stop and join in on the dance).


and then we headed to Area 72.  
the park has done an incredible job over here, with the theming of Orion fitting pretty seamlessly into the theme they already had going for Flight of Fear.     Really, this area is pretty impressive with the props scattered around, the sounds and lighting thruout.

this parked vehicle was playing a conspiracy theory podcast supposedly being broadcast from inside the area - with working lights on the car.

Very cool:


the whole area/ queue for Orion is very well done, tho it seemed to have a lot of "open space". . maybe to eventually put a small flat in there?   or maybe it's just drainage?   regardless, I was very impressed.

the line at this point (~7:20, so the park was open for 2 1/2 hours longer) didn't seem too bad, so we went ahead and got in the line.  
it ended up being about 30 minutes, which really wasn't too bad, considering we wanted a daytime ride for my first ride on it.  And at least we weren't the only ones - despite having ERT on it in ~3 hours?  we saw several other Coasterstock attendees in line with us.





How was it?

I REALLY liked it.   

although I think I liked Fury 325 at Carowinds *slightly* better, and I think Diamondback over on the other side of the park has more sustained airtime thruout the ride?  
OMG, that wave turn just after the 1st drop is incredible, and makes this ride a very very good one, and easily into most people's top 10 lists.

it's SO smooth, and there's a lot of floater air (tho more in the front row than towards the back of the train. . . tho every row gave a great ride).  

Really liked it.  Here's the Funpix from our 1st ride:eeaa8873-c783-45e2-b91b-3bedc03da525.thumb.jpg.07df82f9438e12e5fa07588c3212eb02.jpg

it was just after 8pm when we exited Orion (and the line for FOF was insane, and snaked all the way thru the outside queue!). . I wasn't in any rush to ride it as that was also included in our evening ERT, so we decided to head to Racer and see if the line had gotten any shorter.

it had not, so we headed over to check out Adventure Express - something we had bypassed earlier since the line looked a bit long, but we had heard over dinner that even if the line on that stretches out to the walkway, it's really only ~15 minutes since there are no switchbacks.

while we were standing at the entrance, PianoJohn and his friend happened by and we stopped and chatted about how much I had enjoyed Orion.    We mentioned we were about to go on Adventure Express, and they should join us. . so they did.

i had no idea what to expect on this ride, other than it's a mine train.    but really this impressed the hell out of me with the total WTF-ery of it.   I was laughing so hard, and didn't really know what the hell was going on (it made a LOT more sense when I found out later that originally it had been themed to Indiana Jones when Paramount owned the park - and that makes a whole lot of sense with the remaining "sorta Raiders" theming on the ride.     and oh, that theming is fantastic - from the spears coming out of the walls at you in the tunnel, to ruins the train rushes thru, to the "masturbating Idols" and the "lava" dumping on you on that final lift hill - that had a drop after that must be experienced to be believed ( :p )

yes, I loved this, and ended up riding it multiple times the next day with our Fast Lane + armband.





getting off Adventure Express giggling, we decided it was time to get some Blue Ice Cream.   Asking John where the nearest location they sell it at was (we were hoping we didn't have to walk back across the park to Planet Snoopy), he told us they sell it just down the way towards Banshee.

so telling them we'd meet up with him at ERT, we headed off to get us some famous Blue Ice Cream.

I should mention that as typical (apparently), Drop Tower had been up and down all day.  Not as in it lifts you up and drops you, but as in:  it worked briefly, then stopped for along time.

so as we came around the bend, I noticed Drop Tower had just started loading up the chassis.   I said to Kim & Joel - hey, looks like this is just opening back up, and there's no line, do y'all wanna ride?
Kim did not, but Joel said yes, so he and I headed to the queue, while Kim got in line to buy the ice cream.

well. . . . joke on me, since what looked like a one cycle wait?  took 4 cycles, as the moment it started running?  the FastLane queue started loading up, and the operator was filling at least 2/3rd of each cycle with folks from that line, rather than from the regular queue line.      So what should have taken maybe 5 minutes, ended up taking us ~25 minutes.

which normally is not anything to complain about, except that Kim had already gotten thru the food line, and had our ice cream waiting for us (melting).

by the time it was almost our time to ride, Kim had actually come over to see what was taking us so long, and handed me my cone so i could eat it before it melted more - and apologizing that she had to eat the whole top "swirl" off it, since it was starting to collapse.      LOL    
No worries, really, the Drop Tower takes so long to check restraints for each cycle, that I was able to eat most of the cone before it was our turn to board.    Got a fantastic ride on it too..I love the Drop Tower here (think it's the same one at KD) as it rotates while it raises up.

what did I think of the Ice Cream?   I liked it.    I can't really describe the flavor. . it was kinda fruity. . but really, it tasted. . . . . . . blue.

yeah. .it tasted like what I'd imagine "blue" tastes like.

it was good tho, and definitely worth trying if in the park.

not sure why the heck I didnt' take a picture of it . . strange for me, but I don't have one.

it was closing in on ~9:30 at this point, and we slowly started to head back towards Orion area, since we had Carousel ERT at 10pm.
As we passed by Racer, the line wasn't too bad at all, so we decided we'd get on, and try to race.

literally 30 seconds after we got in the line, the Blue Racer went down.    so capacity cut in half, and only Red operating.     
Ok, no biggie, there aren't that many people in front of us, and there's still two trains on Red Racer, so should still move pretty good.

Since we couldn't race, we decided we'd wait for front row - I mean, it's an old woodie, so 1st or 2nd seat (or any non wheel seat) is the way to go.    there was a little boy (maybe about 10) who was by himself in front of us, so I asked if I could ride with him, since we were 3, and that way Kim and Joel could ride together.  
He said yes, and we were golden. . tho it quickly became clear he was slightly special needs (with a lovely runny nose that he was having trouble controlling).    
Kim pulled me aside and asked if I wanted her to ride with him instead - after all, she had just retired from Teaching and was used to being around kids - so i graciously accepted her offer, and we swapped places, with her riding with the solo rider, and I'd ride with Joel.

it took a few trains, since they let us wait for front row, and finally it was Kim and her friends' turn, and they climbed into the front seat.   and everyone got ready, and they started to check restraints. .and from back in the train (around row 11), there was a loud "EWWWWWW" and a woman jumped out of the train and stood in the station.    several staff came over, looked into the row, made faces (that I can only describe as the "Mr Yuck" logo sticker from the 70s) and they made an announcement for everyone to exit the train back into the station.     The little boy was confused, but with Kim's guidance he eventually understood they had to wait to ride a bit longer.

an employee (who looked like a manager) came running with gloves, a spray bottle full of cleanser, and lots of paper towels, and headed down to that row.  
he did some cleaning on that row - including pulling out the hose, and hosing down that row! (and thank goodness the breeze was going the other way. . . so I'm still not sure if it was vomit or pee. . tho I certainly suspect vomit based on reactions), and they sent the train out empty to dry it.

they then sent the other racer train out empty as well. . and when the 1st train came back, the Employee took one look at that row, went and got the cleaning bottle out again, pulled the top off, and dumped the whole thing into the row. . and they sent the train out empty again!   (if you're familiar with the trains on Racer, they are like wells there. . so good luck getting that mess out!). . OMG. . we were horrified, and amused at the same time.   

Horrified because the coaster now had capacity dropped down to one train on one side. . and amused by the looks on the Station Staff's faces. . they were having a fantastic time joking at the expense of the guy who had to clean.

at least the other train when it came back, got loaded, so Kim and her friend took off with their ride. 
(Kim's gonna say she took this bullet for me, but hey, she jumped infront of said bullet by offering to ride with him - I'll let her fill in what "rules" she had to follow while riding).

the "problem train" came back in.. they looked at it. . . pulled out the hose AGAIN, and sent it out empty AGAIN.     LOL

I can laugh, because the end result of this?  it took so long, that by the time we were loading into the train for our ride?  the booms of the fireworks for the nightly Area 72 celebration had started - so yes, I got a Fireworks ride on Red Racer, so that was absolutely awesome and I feel like it was a win in the end anyways.

the finale happened when we were in the brake run (and yes, they sent the other train out empty again). . . so we missed that, but what an amazing way to end the "normal" operating day.
and hey, we "won". . .ok, ok.. we were the only train on the track, but we still won our race :)

we exited, heard about Kim's magic powers that she had utilized during her ride - LOL
- and then headed over to what I had been looking forwards to for most of the day.  the Carousel ERT for 30 minutes.

yes, I know it's nerdy, but it's a lovely Carousel, and I had forced myself not to ride it yet, since I knew we'd get on it this evening.

so here ya go.. Carousel ERT pictures:



















why yes. . I DID ride it 4-5 times, why do you ask? 

then I took a brief break to call home and tell the Spouse how much fun I was having, and we headed back over to Area 72, since we were closest to FoF and Orion, so figured we'd get some rides in on those before heading over to the Beast for a night ride.

I ride Poltergeist all the time at my home park SFFT, so the fact that they were running Flight of Fear with lights on for tonight's ERT wasn't a huge selling point for me. . but I did want to ride it so that I could say that I'd ridden  4 of the 5 Premier Spaghetti Bowls that had been built (the 5th is in China, so likely won't ever get that one. .but never say never).   I knew it was the 1st one that had ever been built, and I knew it uses MCBR to bring the ride to a complete stop.   But I was willing to get a ride, especially since during ERT it was basically a walk on - a HUGE difference to the line we'd seen a couple of hours earlier.

the queue for this one is really impressive:

a spaceship?   you go into a Spaceship in the hanger?





Even tho it was ERT and not crowded, we were directed to the back row.  
we asked could we go closer to the front and were told no, so we shrugged and went to where we were directed (hey, at least got a good pic of the aliens).

but wow.. it was a horrible ride. . super shaky in the back.  Not "jackhammer" but not in the least bit pleasant.     The complete stop midcourse was a nice break in this case, as it stopped the shaking!
it's really showing it's age. .and I know Joel rode it the next day with Zach in the front and said it wasn't too bad.. but man, in the back it was TERRIBLE.


for some reason, the pics of our car came out "black". . .maybe someone in front of us shot the finger or something?   but as a result, no on ride from Flight of Fear, but I rode it.

we then went next door for the palate cleanser of Orion, and had a fantastic ride on it, this time in row 2.   it's just as good at night, perhaps even slightly better than the daytime ride.


I believe we even went right back around and got in line again, and this time sat more towards the back.
That turned out to be a mistake, because we finished our excellent ride, and got to the brake run. . and stopped.

after sitting for a couple of minutes, we realized that there was a train in the station, the 2nd train was on the brake run just outside the station, and we were in the 3rd train.     Thank goodness I wasn't stapled in, but we started to get a bit concerned when we saw station staff trotting out to the 2nd train, and another lady coming up the hill to our train.    she went row by row asking people how their ride was, and just being cheerful and chatting.  I wasnt' too concerned about it - I thought outloud, "this must happen often enough that y'all have a process in place".

But did start to get a little worried about our planned Beast night ride - that we had intended to head to next, as we approached 15 minutes sitting on the brake run.   It was maybe 11:20 when there were cheers from the station, and the train in the station pulled out (empty) and train 2 pulled in to unload, and we moved as well.

as soon as we got off, we headed straight over to the Beast area (tho we had to stop for a restroom break on the way, where I remain scarred from having to pee while listening to a "bluegrass" version of "Walk Like an Egyptian")    Never thought I'd even have that to check off a list. . really.. I think it scarred me. . . 😛

but we made it to Beast with a little time to spare, and queued up for Row 2 (Row one had at least 10 people waiting for it) and got an absolutely incredible ride.

it wasn't the complete darkness I had been expecting - but that's because Orion's light illuminate the woods pretty good.   BUT it was certainly dark enough to not really be able to tell what's coming.  and that stellar 2nd drop into the Helix feels completely insane and out of control at night, where it really does feel like you're going to derail, and you can't see the edges of the tunnel so you feel like you're brushing right up against it in those helix-es.   Oh and the light IN the tunnel?   was out.    So it was like dropping into darkness.

all in all, an amazing ride, and a night ride on Beast is a MUST do.


by the time we got off of Beast (and scanned our FunPix of course), it was something like 5 to midnight.

Kim and I were both pretty wiped, but Joel really wanted to try and get one more ride on Orion.   
we both were like, no way will he make it, but he's young and can move fast, so we told him to head to Orion and try to make it, and we'd meet him at the front gates.

he took off and we headed around the park towards the front gate, but deciding that we'd try to see if we could get on Stunt Lot Coaster - since it was on the way, and was on ERT.

it looked closed, but as we walked up I asked if they were still letting riders on, and was told yes - so Kim and I got a front row ride on BackLot Stunt Coaster.
I have to say, it was much better than I remembered the one at Kings Dominion being.. but that might be because on the Kings Island version?  all the effects were working!  the helicopter blades spun, the bullets shot and lit up on the wall behind, the fire effects worked (oh man, so hot!  and very impressive).   I had totally forgotten that launched upwards helix. . seriously intense!  almost passed out from it.

it was one and done - didn't bother with it the next day. . but with my ride on this, it meant all I needed for every coaster in the park (other than Great Pumpkin which I didn't care about) would be Invertigo, Banshee (both on the next morning's ERT) and Blue Racer.    I was pretty happy with how the day had gone, and even tho we ended it on Backlot Stunt Coaster (and not Orion or Beast) it was still a perfect cap to a perfect day.

we cut thru the Carousel area to head to the front gate, and bumped into Joel - who actually *had* made it on Orion for one last ride before midnight.









Exhausted - but still stopping to snap some pics - we slowly made our way out the front gates, made the short drive back to the hotel, and passed out to try to get some sleep before the next full day of CoasterStock.

it had been a wonderful first day, and I couldn't wait to do it again the next day. . .especially with Fastlane+, and meeting up with Zach (PKIJizzman) to hang out.

Day 2 up in a couple of days (if not sooner) :)


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Wow, great report, and as others have said, great memory.  I get that using pictures to remember the order of things helps (I do the same), but me at 38 needs to take little "video notes" throughout the day to be able to accurately recall a day's event, so yeah my kudos to you.

BTW, on Flight of Fear, the spaceship inside the hangar is part of the ride's original theming - to The Outer Limits, staged as if you were entering a restricted government hangar containing the UFO.  The video that plays in the queue kinda explains it, even still, it's just been modified to remove The Outer Limits references.

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OMG! That kid on Racer! So the whole time we were loading and getting secured he was non stop talking telling me about his past adventures on the coaster, and I was wondering how much snot was gonna fly on me during the ride and I asked him if he was there with someone and Mom or Grandma or somebody was waiting for him, couldn't understand.......none of which freaked me out after all my years teaching. So as we are going up the lift hill I said to him "so are we going hands up?" and he got super agitated, pointed to the sign that said hands and arms inside at all times and was adamant that we hold on to the grab bar. So I humored him and we rode strictly to code. Then as we came into the brake run he put his hands over his ears and expressed his apparently repeated fear that it would not stop. I think the noise in the covered brake run really bothered him. So I told him "it's ok" and I threw out my hand in front of us doing a stop sign and yelled "STOP TRAIN" and got really lucky and it all timed out like I controlled it and he just stared at me the entire time we were unbuckling and getting off. I mean he almost fell over because he was watching me instead of where he was walking as we exited, lol. I do regret not having a picture. 


The benefit of taking the bullet as Bert phrased it is that while they were stuck on the brake run I was able to see all of the fireworks from the little bridge that overlooks the station.

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19 hours ago, bert425 said:

^ hahaha. . perfect timing on the mention of food. . . since the next post will include the "yummy" dinner.
(it had it's highlights both nights. . . but with the highs, come the lows, right?).

I LOVED the walkback on Beast/Dimondback, and the one the next morning under Banshee was great as well.   the only one I bypassed was Orion/Racer the next day, since Zach and I rode things during that instead, so I don't have any pics from that (hopefully at the end of my report, Kim has some pics, or perhaps PianoJohn if he did that walkback, have some pics from that they can add).

I did the Racer/Orion walkback and took a few pics. It was drizzling the whole time and seemed a lot more crowded since there wasn't as much space as there was during the Beast walkback. Still cool to get these shots which I will post right now! 


























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This park does a really good job of maintaining their Paramount era coasters (Flight of Fear & Backlot Stunt Coaster). And I  always enjoy people's first time impressions of Adventure Express.... 😁


Yeah, that is THE standard enthusiast event lunch, though usually the onions aren't  grey.... Like I alluded to before, it's best when CF lets someone else do the cooking, and that's pretty much across the board at their parks. There's a good reason so many of us rave about Chickie's and Pete's, Tom & Chee, Melt, etc. Hell, as crap as Famous Dave's is, it still bests most of the stuff at Cedar Point. But even if CF gets theif food game together (and I really hope they do), that is still gonna be The Enthusiast Lunch.

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As far as Joel making it onto Orion from Beast with 5 minutes to spare...........he has pulled that sort of thing off a bunch of times. Amazing that he can make it all the way across a theme park in a couple minutes but takes him hours to clean up his room or do a simple homework assignment or take a shower, etc, etc, Teens. Are. Annoying.🙄

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39 minutes ago, IntaminLove said:

Awesome report. Kings Island is one of my favorite parks and I'm glad you had a good time. 


trying to get started on Day 2, but work (and life ) have been kicking my behind, so haven't had time to get started yet.

hopefully in the next few days.

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Day 2 of Coasterstock!

so after a long, and fantastic first day, we had decided that instead of being there at crack of opening (8:30 am parking lot open), we'd target getting to the park when ERT started - ~9am.

so with that in mind, we had planned to meet downstairs at breakfast in the hotel ~8:30, and head out closer to 9.

as usual, I was a little bit excited and was up early.  Not only was it day 2, and we had our Flash Pass + for today, but we were gonna meet up and hang out with Zach most of the day (and he had messaged me that he had gotten FP+ as well even tho it's his home park). . . I had such a great time hanging out with him in Japan that I was looking forward to that as much as the rides.   

I didn't really plan on doing any of the Speakers or Book Signings - but that was because this was still my 1st ever visit to the park, and I wanted to cram as much in as I could.    Next Year at CoasterStock, I intend to attend some of the speakers, and watch some of the games (the Kings Island Family Feud I heard was fun).  

but today?  it was time to get ready for Day 2.

so dressed and down in the Breakfast area, the offerings were slightly different today.  I snapped this pic to get Kim to hustle down, since she had been displeased about the peppers included in yesterday's Omelettes.. so today's?  just cheese.

(it worked too, she was down to meet me in less than 2 minutes, tho Joel didn't join us until just before we headed out at ~8:50).


once again, although I was passenging in the back seat, I was so excited watching the coasters on the skyline, that I AGAIN forgot to have my phone out. . so no pics of the main sign (whoops).

Easy/Peasy in - and although we were at least 25 minutes later than we had been the prior day?  we parked only two spaces over from where we had been yesterday.

The ERT this morning was on Banshee and the Bat for the 1st hour, then adding in Invertigo and the Drop Tower until general park opening.   So we went thru the main gates, took a left, and headed over to Banshee.




ok. .so, admission time:  I don't do well on suspended coasters.

not just the occasional headbang, but i tend to get nauseous from them. . and the only one I can really ride are the Batman Clones for some reason.   so in almost all cases, they are 1 and done for me, tho Batman clones I can do 2-3 times as long as not all in a row.

Raptor, Alpengeist, even Montu (tho I did ride that one twice over 3 days). . yeah, 1 and done.  Even as much as I loved Afterburn at Carowinds? I only rode that once too.

so although Banshee looked AMAZING, I knew that I had to be careful.   So I intended to ride it only one time during ERT, and after I had taken some Tylenol to be safe.   If I was ok on it, then I'd ride it later with FastLane+.

so we headed into the line (not Kim tho, she doesn't do upside-down stuff)




I really liked the tombstone theming, tho I was expecting "jokey" tombstones, a la the Haunted Mansion.

still very cool tho, and i really loved the Son of Beast tombstone with the eternal flame burning (tho it's hard to see in this picture), that you pass by in the queue.
Nice nod to what used to be in this location.


we got up to the station, and they were assigning rows.  I asked the grouper if I could go into the front row, and he said we should go to the middle of the train.

so I said to him, "I really need to sit in the front"

and he said, "oh, you really do?"

and I responded with:  "unless you want to chance cleaning up vomit from the train?  yeah, I really need to sit in the front, since i tend not to do well on suspended coasters unless I can see where I am going, so I need to sit in the front"

I further explained that the only reason I was getting on it at all, was because I wanted to ride everything at least once on my 1st time at KI.

he then shrugged and pointed us to the front row line - which had two other people in it, so Joel and I filled up that row of 4 anyways (and in talking to the two that were there, they were in the same situation, they asked for front so they didn't get ill).  so was weird he gave me some grief, but he did let us go where I really needed to ride anyways.

what did I think? 

i really liked it.   It was just spread out enough, that the inversions didn't really overwhelm me, and sitting in the front allowed me to not get nauseated since I could watch the track ahead and above to keep myself grounded and lean into the directional changes.     

it DID make me a little light headed regardless, so had no desire to go back around and get back in line, tho I possibly would have ridden it again later if it hadn't gone down for the afternoon.

regardless, it was a great ride, and I'm glad I did it:






although we had ridden the Bat yesterday in the very back, since it too was on ERT, we walked over and got in the line, and this time got a front row ride on it.

not quite as fast (seemingly) as in the back, so not as much 'swing', so I think on this one I did prefer back car. . but the front car gave a really good ride too.  
A nice hidden gem in this park.



Got lucky here and got both Banshee and Bat trains in the same shot :)



going on at the same time as the ERT was the "behind the scenes" Banshee tour. . .it wasn't really much of a tour, other than they opened the gates and let us back behind the restricted fences to get some nice shots of Banshee in action from some angles that the General Public can't usually get:





I'm sure not many even notice that the theming continues around the ride. . but it's actually pretty cool that they put the stones even this far out from the queue.
really gives a nice attention to detail feeling.



Tis me (with a terrible, "Jowel-y" angle, catching Banshee doing it's famous lift thru the giant loop.



[Robb] Loop-de-LOOOOOOOP [/Robb]


after about 10 minutes back here watching Banshee cycle, we decided to head over to Invertigo, as that was about to open for ERT in the next 5 minutes.

I knew it would be awful. . .I mean, it's a Vekoma Boomerang. . .but inverted, so it gets the added headbang
(and by the way, the two worst coasters in the park:  Invertigo and Flying Ace Arial Chase - are both Vekoma flyers.    Coincidence?  I think not. .LOL)

anyways, I really wanted to ride it because:
1) I'd never been on an inverted boomerang
2) I'd been told that Invertigo was running with the trains from Stinger at Dorney Park - a coaster that was SBNO on my 1st trip there, and gone on my next.

so I wanted to ride it to say that I'd gotten on both of em (even if not quite the truth) 😛

we headed over that way, and there was NO ONE else waiting.   LOL.    In fact, by the time they opened it up, there were maybe 8 of us waiting to ride it?  and at least 4 of them worked at KI and were doing Coasterstock on their days off  - and at least two of them regularly staff this ride anyways (they kept talking about "their" ride.





we were actually the very 1st people in the queue when they opened it, and Joel went to the very front.  
I didn't' mind, because although we didn't get to experience the awkwardness this ride is kinda famous for - staring at the people sitting across from you and staring at you -  the front afforded me the same as the front on Banshee had:  the ability to see where I was going to help cut down on the Nausea .   

but oh, did this really stink as a "fun" ride. . headbang for days.  at least it's kind of short.

still, I rode it and can check this off my list for a coaster type I've now ridden.

waiting to go thru the gates for the front row.


and now actually running.. with people!  (from the 2nd ride of the day, after us):





once we had ridden all 3 of the suspended coasters that were on ERT, it was still only ~10:15, and we really weren't interested in riding any of them again (and Kim hadn't ridden anything yet this morning), so I suggested we head towards the front gate, and see if maybe the Fast Lane Booth had opened early.   Even if they had not, we still had to go there for our wristbands anyways, so we heade dup taht direction.

as luck would have it, the boot was open and staffed, so we got our wristbands, and joined the group of folks queuing up by what would be the "rope drop" area - there was no rope tho, just a security guard on either side of the fountain, that were asking the crowd to wait until 10:30 (I guess that's early entry for pass holders, maybe?)

we stood on the side with Starbucks, as I really wanted to start my day there, and besides, we planned to go to the Carousel to have a ride for the anniversary at 11:15, so seemed like a good plan, and we'd meet Zach just after.

the sky, as you can see in the pics, was pretty overcast, and there was rain forecasted..so we weren't sure how the day was gonna go.  But kept our fingers crossed.

someone asked when the Starbucks would open (same plan as I), and the security checked and came back to tell them 10:50 . .  but when it hit ~10:30, the National Anthem played, and then the guards let folks move into the park.     And the Starbucks was open.   The people who originally had asked the guard what time it opened were very annoyed that some "younger folks" had run ahead of them and got in line, but as far as I was concerned, they had opened up 20 minutes early, so all was good.

here's a pic of folks pausing for the National Anthem. . that i may (or may not) have taken because of someone's certain body part that I kept noticing thruout the day. . . .hey, I'm married, not dead 😛
but(t) I'll say I snapped it to be patriotic.

that's my story and I'm sticking with it!



Starbucks in hand, ready to officially start to make use of Fast Lane + for my 2nd day at Kings Island CoasterStock!


. . to be continued. . . .

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Small correction - I do upside down stuff but also tend to be one and done with many inverts and tend to avoid most boomerangs at this point, since they are not only redundant but concussion inducing. KI coasters that have inversions aren't their best, remember I've been here more than once 😜

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21 minutes ago, coasternut said:

Hey you guys forgot to report on our new coaster friend - the groundhog, who came out of during the behind the scenes trip of Banshee. He looked like he was related to Don Helbig... 😂

you should have said hello if you were at CosterStock!

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15 hours ago, coasternut said:

Hey you guys forgot to report on our new coaster friend - the groundhog, who came out of during the behind the scenes trip of Banshee. He looked like he was related to Don Helbig... 😂

You know, there are groundhogs that hang around Ninja and Screaming Eagle at SFSTL and have been there for years. Are groundhogs secretly coaster enthusiasts? Or have they developed an affinity for theme park nachos?

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