Mini Mini East Coast Trip

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Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby i<3coasters » Fri Jun 19, 2015 12:04 pm

Alright, so I have a very short trip booked to the east coast (flying into & out of Philly) this July and have 3 days to work with. I've never been to any of the parks in the region and would like to get in as many great coasters as possible in the limited window.
Here is a rough outline of what I was thinking so far:

7/19 - SFNE
7/20 - Lake Compounce & Dorney OR just Hersheypark OR just Knoebels
7/21 - SFGAdv

Those of you who live in & visit the parks in the region, whats the best logistical option to get the most of the trip?
My flight is out of PHL in the afternoon on 7/22, so I was thinking of going up north first and then working my way back down over the 3 days.

Any tips, strategy, advice, or recommendations for choosing between and navigating these parks and the route would be hugely appreciated!
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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby Genx24 » Fri Jun 19, 2015 7:33 pm

I'd do SFNE and Lake Compounce in the same day, and head to Hershey on the 20th.
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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby King of Ka » Fri Jun 19, 2015 9:14 pm

SFNE and Compounce in one day is a lot, but if you're able to arrive at SFNE at opening I think it actually makes a ton of sense. You probably wouldn't need a full day at SFNE anyway, and if you left there by 5 you could be at Compounce by 6:00 and pay the after 5 price ($23). I'm a hardcore "Boulder Dash at night" advocate (if you go through my posts probably 1/3 of them are on this topic haha), so for me going to LC on a Sunday night when you should have at least 45 minutes of darkness is much preferable to paying more to go the next morning, even if it means only having two or three hours in the park.

In terms of Knoebels or Hershey, I'd probably recommend Knoebels because I think it would work a lot better with your schedule to "break up" the other two days of big chain-style parks, and because it's just a really really awesome park. And given that it's a nearly a five hour drive from New England to either one I think Knoebels is a much easier park to arrive at in the middle of the day and not have to scramble to get everything in. With that said, Hershey does have a really really good coaster lineup and if you're looking to get the most coasters out of the trip it definitely beats Knoebels in that category. You can't really go wrong either way, both are great parks.

Two other pieces of advice:
1. I wouldn't plan around it or anything but if it works out that you'll be driving past Quassy at a time when they're open, I would recommend you stop and ride Wooden Warrior. It's a really fun little ride and the entire stop will cost you like $10 and less than an hour.

2. When you're in the Philly/Jersey area, if you need food or anything look out for a Wawa! If you haven't been, imagine a 7/11 with fantastic food and coffee. In my experience grabbing a hoagie from a Wawa and then eating it at mealtime is pretty much the best way to eat when doing amusement parks.
Last edited by King of Ka on Sat Jun 20, 2015 8:19 am.

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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby coasterbill » Sat Jun 20, 2015 4:16 am

I agree with everything King of Ka said.

Also, you can really do Dorney and Knoebels on the same day stress free but spend most of the day at Knoebels as it's much better in every possible way. Lake Compounce and Dorney are only 3 hours apart, drive until you're tired once you leave Lake Compounce and finish driving to Dorney in the morning if you have to. Then on a Monday morning you can ride every coaster and ride that matters at Dorney in 2-3 hours (again, the only other rides that matter are Demon Drop and Thunder Creek Mountain as Knoebels has a better version of basically everything else in the park including Dominator). You can then get to Knoebels by early afternoon and spend the rest of the day there.

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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby robbalvey » Sat Jun 20, 2015 6:24 am

Gonna move this to the main forum. With us being in Japan right now, not much time to respond at the moment, sorry.

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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby A.J. » Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:56 am

Do Dorney Park and Knoebels on the 20th. If you get to Dorney Park at around 10 AM or 11 AM, that will give you plenty of time to ride the stuff you want (Hydra, Steel Force, Talon and Possessed should probably be priority) in a few hours, and you can have lunch there too.

Then, you can make the hour and forty minute drive to Knoebels to be there around 4 PM, where you can take advantage of the sundown plan for $28, which goes from 4 PM to 10 PM - enough time to probably get you on Flying Turns with little hassle, and grab dinner as well. Last time I showed up at the park on a weekday I was able to ride the three wooden coasters and Impulse in under an hour and a half, and that was with me being in a hurry.
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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby i<3coasters » Sat Jun 20, 2015 10:32 am

Thank you so much for the input so far, everyone!
It looks like Knoebels is becoming a clear frontrunner and Phoenix is obviously near the top of my list for a "must ride."

That leaves my revised schedule looking something like this:

7/19 - SFNE & Lake Compounce
7/20 - Dorney & Knoebels
7/21 - SFGADv

Since I won't be doing the full day at SFNE I'll be getting a Platinum Flash Pass there, but what do you think about SFGADv? With it being a Tuesday I imagine the crowds wouldn't be too horrendous, but I also have no idea what to expect from this park.
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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby gp1086 » Sat Jun 20, 2015 10:46 am

Going up to SFNE is to and from Philly is a solid 4 hours and out of the way from the PA/NJ parks. That's a reasonable amount of driving for just spending 1 day up there in my opinion. My suggestion for your trip would be:

7/19 - Hershey
7/20 - Knoebels / Dorney
7/21 - Great Adventure

Great Adventure is a large park and a good amount of coasters. Assuming you plan to spend full day there on a Tuesday you should be alright though (would assess when you get in and do Zumanjaro and Kingda Ka first thing to save time - they're right next to each other).

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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby larrygator » Sat Jun 20, 2015 11:57 am

i<3coasters wrote:That leaves my revised schedule looking something like this:

7/19 - SFNE & Lake Compounce
7/20 - Dorney & Knoebels
7/21 - SFGADv

Since I won't be doing the full day at SFNE I'll be getting a Platinum Flash Pass there, but what do you think about SFGADv? With it being a Tuesday I imagine the crowds wouldn't be too horrendous, but I also have no idea what to expect from this park.


I like the new itinerary and agree you sou should plan on the Flash Pass at SFNE. Lake Compounce is a cute little park but there is not too much in the way of uniqueness. Try to enjoy the Sky Ride before it closes for the day and devote the last hour of your night to Boulder Dash.

As far as food, there are unique and affordable food options in Connecticut that are far superior to stopping at Wawa. I would seriously investigate if any steamed hamburger joints are along your route in Connecticut, I wish I had tried them sooner in life.

Regarding the Flash Pass at SFGAdv, I would wait and see what the crowds are like first, some weekdays it is not necessary.
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Re: Mini Mini East Coast Trip

Postby gp1086 » Sat Jun 20, 2015 12:42 pm

If it's on your way in Connecticut and you have time, might want to stop in a Stew Leonard's. It's a grocery store rather than a restaurant, but have heard great things about their theming and stores in general.

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