Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby coasterbill » Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:34 am

This is the single sh*t parks give about anniversaries. This right here.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

I've been wanting to do a Valleyfair / Mall of America / Target Field trip for awhile now. The fact that in the event of bad weather you can just decide last minute what day is a Valleyfair day and what day is a mall day makes it even more appealing. Neither park seems overly amazing (though the flume at Mall of America is calling my name), but it sounds like it would be a fun trip.

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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby ytterbiumanalyst » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:12 am

^ You should! The log flume is the best ride at MoA. Neither Nick Universe nor Vallyfair! were the best park I've ever been to, but both are a lot of fun. I'd actually give the edge to Nick Universe, mostly because since it's in a mall, there are actual restaurants and you can go do other things in the middle of the day. Also, sunscreen isn't required, it's not dependent on weather, and operations are better (it's a pay-per-ride model that sells all-day wristbands).
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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby Mossed » Wed Aug 24, 2016 5:29 pm

coasterbill wrote:
This is the single sh*t parks give about anniversaries. This right here.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

I've been wanting to do a Valleyfair / Mall of America / Target Field trip for awhile now. The fact that in the event of bad weather you can just decide last minute what day is a Valleyfair day and what day is a mall day makes it even more appealing. Neither park seems overly amazing (though the flume at Mall of America is calling my name), but it sounds like it would be a fun trip.


There's also a billion dollar football stadium that might be worth checking out!

As for the Duluth portion of this trip - next time people go to that city, they need to head to the Bent Paddle Brewery. That's good stuff.
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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby DirkFunk » Wed Aug 24, 2016 5:53 pm

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:^ You should! The log flume is the best ride at MoA. Neither Nick Universe nor Vallyfair! were the best park I've ever been to, but both are a lot of fun. I'd actually give the edge to Nick Universe, mostly because since it's in a mall, there are actual restaurants and you can go do other things in the middle of the day. Also, sunscreen isn't required, it's not dependent on weather, and operations are better (it's a pay-per-ride model that sells all-day wristbands).


Did you do the Soarin' knockoff?

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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby ytterbiumanalyst » Wed Aug 24, 2016 5:57 pm

We did not. It would have been about $75 for all of us, and I wasn't sure the kids would like it.
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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby Wingwright » Wed Aug 24, 2016 7:36 pm

Nice TRs! I didn't know Mall of America had a Tampico Tumbler (R.I.P.) clone, so it is now my mission to visit.

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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby ytterbiumanalyst » Thu Aug 25, 2016 3:23 pm

Arnolds Park

On the way back, we decided to go through Omaha, and Arnolds Park wasn’t much of a detour from the fastest route. It was a delightful small park right on the lake, with plenty of classic rides. Most of the park is focused on small children, so if you’re not traveling with kids, there isn’t going to be much for you here. With kids, though, it was a blast. We stayed for about 4 hours and rode as much as we wanted.

Food: If you’re going to get several drinks, the souvenir cup is the way to go. It sells for $6, with $1 refills. At $3 a pop, soda can rack up fast. We didn’t actually eat any food here, as it was all very expensive, so we opted to eat at the Godfather’s in town (not the one at the park) for much less.

Service: Very good, especially the guy working Legend. Yes, no crew here; it’s operated by one person, and he was fantastic. Very friendly, helped everyone get excited for the ride. I must say, though, the bathrooms left a lot to be desired. There weren’t any locks on any of the stalls. Not sure if that’s intentional, but it was certainly not desireable.

Water ride: Just the one log flume. Pretty standard as those go, so it was the second best ride in the park behind Legend.

Walkthroughs: These need their own section. Tipsy House is built over the Legend, and you can see the coaster go through a hole in the floor. Not a 90-degree corner anywhere. The Mirror Maze is pretty straightforward; you’re not likely to get lost. My four-year-old loved it, though, and we went through it several times in a row, even well after she had memorized the correct path.

Flat rides: Tons of classics: Rock-o-Plane, Roll-o-Plane, bumper cars, scrambler. And a special shout out to Bug House. If you go here, you need to visit the Bug House. It’s weird, it’s disorienting, it’s awesome.

Coasters:
Kiddie Coaster – The incredibly original name of Kiddie Coaster should tell you exactly who the intended audience is. This one’s for kids only, no adults allowed. My kids liked it.

Legend – This is the very definition of a great children’s coaster. It’s not tall or fast, but it’s a tremendous amount of fun. The second drop has a bit of air (yes, the second drop is actually a bit more intense than the first, due to an unusual layout). If I have any complaint, it’s that it’s a bit short. But that problem can be corrected by riding it over and over again. And since lines are not a thing at this park, that’s what we did!
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This isn't part of Arnolds Park itself, but it's right across the street and it's pretty awesome.
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There are all these percussion instruments scattered around a small park.
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They're all of the xylophone, marimba, or drum families. It was fun!
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After banging around a bit, we headed to Arnolds Park proper.
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Two great attractions!
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Everyone enjoyed the dragons.
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They have a Ferris wheel!
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This is the kiddie coaster, called Kiddie Coaster. Mind=blown.
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The kids are being reckless here.
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The yo-yo was ridiculous. Sketchy looking ride, stupidly long ride cycle, tons of fun!
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We can't explain it, and you wouldn't understand anyway.
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The "midway."
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Every park needs a big ass flag.
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My youngest really liked the fish ride. She was practically their only customer all day.
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Those who like spinning rides enjoyed this scrambler.
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The park's log flume.
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There isn't a great area for spectators to take in the splash. This was as close as I could get.
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Octopus was the second Monster ride of the trip.
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The ubiquitous classic tilt-a-whirl.
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Bumper cars!
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Roll-o-plane. I don't do these, but my wife and my oldest daughter loved it.
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The go-kart track was obviously one of the main attractions of the park. It and the mini golf were not included on the wristband.
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Rock-o-plane--THROUGH THE TREES!
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I've actually not ever been on a rock-o-plane before this one. It was fun!
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They had a playground that I'm pretty sure used to be at a Burger King.
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And in case you're wondering, yes, there's a toy shop!
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Tipsy house. It was very fun!
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Hmm, maybe you want to model yourself after a slightly more successful park? At least on the Pirates ride, the pirates don't eat the tourists.
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Carousel THROUGH THE TREE!
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Legend was incredible.
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As were the many children's rides here.
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On the way out, we discovered a classic car show had descended upon the park!
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That's it for this report. See y'all at West Coast Bash!
Last edited by ytterbiumanalyst on Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:55 pm.
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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby RCjunkie » Fri Aug 26, 2016 12:30 pm

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Excalibur – If they’re going to take out one coaster, this should be the one.


You got that right.

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Mad Mouse – This is the best mouse coaster! It felt really solid, didn’t have any odd bumps or jolts, and had plenty of lateral goodness. If only they didn’t stack all the cars every lap…. Wow, why bother having more than 3 cars if you’re going to run it that badly?


Can't argue with any of this logic. If people want this credit I tell them to get to this ride first once the gates opens due the capacity issues. It is a good Mouse though.

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Renegade – Best coaster of the entire trip. It’s relentless, powerful, fast, and it does not want you in your seat ever. I think I still give the edge to Prowler, but just barely. Wow.


I am the other way around but agree overall. I like the twists and turns in Renegade more than the out and back Prowler but both are solid coasters. It might be park bias for both of us. ;)

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Steel Venom – I love these, and this one was especially cool with the holding brake. Really unnerving in the front seat looking straight down.


The break is a nice element for such a one dimensional ride and adds to the fun. It makes it more fun than the one SFGAm.

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Wild Thing – So much fun. The “tunnel” was a little weird, what with its not going underground.


You mean, "The awesome tunnel of vinyl siding!" ;)

ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Overall, with the amount of negativity directed toward Valleyfair! on this forum, most of it is completely undeserved. Yes, it would be nice to have a modern looping coaster, but it needs a better waterpark first. That’s the glaring need, and the main thing that keeps this from being a two-day park.


I don't think the negativity is directed at VF, it is more directed at CF and their smaller park investment since the Paramount takeover. I think almost everyone agrees that the waterpark is the #1 place that could use some love, it is the worst in the chain. Hence the proposal to drop Excalibur, create it's own parking lot for the waterpark and expand the place. And #2 is a modern Steel Looping coaster. For a visitor it is not as big of a deal as for the locals because we have been waiting 36 (going on 37) since the Corkscrew. Once those 2 area's get addressed it could be a good medium sized park. I like that the Star Flyer next year will be unique to VF for the chain, a solid addition.

Thanks for the report, it is always fun to see it through visitor's eyes after visiting the park so many times myself.

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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby ytterbiumanalyst » Fri Aug 26, 2016 3:14 pm

RCjunkie wrote:
ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Wild Thing – So much fun. The “tunnel” was a little weird, what with its not going underground.


You mean, "The awesome tunnel of vinyl siding!" ;)

The very same. It was the vinyliest!

RCjunkie wrote:
ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Overall, with the amount of negativity directed toward Valleyfair! on this forum, most of it is completely undeserved. Yes, it would be nice to have a modern looping coaster, but it needs a better waterpark first. That’s the glaring need, and the main thing that keeps this from being a two-day park.


I don't think the negativity is directed at VF, it is more directed at CF and their smaller park investment since the Paramount takeover.

Yeah, that sounds like splitting hairs. The point is that if you read this forum, you'd think Valleyfair! is a hellhole, and it's not. It's a really fun place.

RCjunkie wrote:I think almost everyone agrees that the waterpark is the #1 place that could use some love, it is the worst in the chain. Hence the proposal to drop Excalibur, create it's own parking lot for the waterpark and expand the place.

After having visited, I say that's a fantastic idea. It's a long way from front to back, and having a second gate on the west end would be very nice.

RCjunkie wrote:And #2 is a modern Steel Looping coaster. For a visitor it is not as big of a deal as for the locals because we have been waiting 36 (going on 37) since the Corkscrew. Once those 2 area's get addressed it could be a good medium sized park. I like that the Star Flyer next year will be unique to VF for the chain, a solid addition.

Except that you haven't been waiting that long. You have a modern steel looping coaster in SpongeBob. I've been reading the Valleyfair! thread a lot the last few months, and it's a lot of complaining and choosing things to ignore in order to prove a point about how you're so neglected, whatever that means. And before you say "You don't know our pain!"--I've got Worlds of Fun close to me, which is in pretty much the same position. I see them improving things year over year, and I'm really not itching for a new coaster. If they get one, it'd be awesome. But they don't have to; the park keeps getting better with the little stuff.

Valleyfair's coasters are not its problem; they're great. When I left, I did not think at all, "You know what my day lacked? More roller coasters." What I thought was "That was really fun! Too bad there wasn't very much for the kids to do in the waterpark." I'm not one to completely fawn over any place, nor do I completely bash it. There are places that seem to me to be more bad than good--Mount Olympus notably--and so I just don't go to them. This is now the second time in three years I've been near it, and could have gone, but I didn't, because I didn't think it would be fun. Valleyfair! isn't like that. It's fun. Sure, it could be more fun, and that would be awesome, but overall it's really good, and definitely worth the nearly $200 it took to go, once you add up all the meals and fluffy bunny rentals and everything. We got our money's worth in entertainment and got to spend time as a family, and that's the important thing.

RCjunkie wrote:Thanks for the report, it is always fun to see it through visitor's eyes after visiting the park so many times myself.

You're welcome! I had a good time!
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Re: Photo TR: 10,000 Lakes and 15 Roller Coasters

Postby Brent York » Mon Aug 29, 2016 11:31 am

To me, Adventureland was a really nice looking park with lots of grass and tress (and water), which does make it more spread out, requiring some walking. Employees were friendly, especially the woman pushing 80 running Outlaw. Outlaw and Tornado are both great.
"Dragon – This is a decent..."
I never thought I'd read "decent' in the same sentence as Dragon. :lmao: That thing is bru-tal.

Como Town's Tiger Trax seems to be a new install, made by SBF Visa, vs. a standard hand-me-down relocated Galaxi. Pretty nice considering when I went a few years ago, all they had was an Orient Express (in the same location). I wonder what Tiger Trax cost them.
I often see the zoo near/at Como Town in lists of top zoos in the country. Unfortunately I didn't know that back when I stopped by for the coaster credit.

NU/MoA is a blast to just look at. It's like your own real life RCT. Too bad there aren't more "NU/MoA's" around.

Valleyfair isn't a "bad" park, but (IMO) it and Michigan's Adventure are the worst in the chain, and I don't care to go back unless they add something significant. Michigan's Adventure does have the best coaster among the two, with Shivering Timbers, but really has nothing else. It's been a few years since I went to VF, but Wild Thing, like it's sisters, looks fun but is about half as thrilling as it looks. Seems like Renegade was rough and nothing special (as I can't even remember much about it). I'd say Prowler is easily much better (and actually one of my favorites). And Excalibur definitely isn't, although I'd hate to see any Arrow get torn down (and I'm sure this is a great step-up coaster for kids). The Intamin Impulse coasters (ie. Steel Venom) are fun the first few times you ride them, but get old fairly quick. The only other thing I remember about Valleyfair is the crowd was pretty scary, and someone in line trying to start a fight with me (can't even remember why) when I'd done nothing, and I remember lots of smokers walking around in no-smoking areas.

Legend at Arnold's Park was very rough a few years ago. The frozen chocolate-covered bananas in the park were selling like hotcakes, so we got some (good stuff). Funny, there was a car show when I went then too. The lake was packed with boats. And around the whole town, there were motorcycles *everywhere*.

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