What did you do as a kid during a car ride? Sleep? Play Game Boy? Ask “are we there yet” until your face turned blue? I was an odd duckling. I’d spend my car rides combing the skyline for carnivals.
My parents were so unbelievably understanding. Almost every time I saw that portable Ferris Wheel, they agreed to stop so I could ride the Gravitron for the umpteenth time. But they drew the line at one carnival, the Brockton Fair.
And like any child, I of course wanted the thing I couldn’t have. So I bided my time, patiently waiting until I had my own car and health insurance until one day I could visit the Brockton Fair.
Brockton isn’t exactly the best neighborhood. So I definitely understand my parents’ viewpoint now that I’m older. The fair specifically is usually home to at least 1-2 fights per year. For that reason, I always make sure to visit during the day when the crowd is predominantly families.
2019 marked my second visit to the Brockton Fair. Before my visit, I consulted the Reithoffer Fairs mobile app (yes that’s a thing) to see the ride lineup. It looked like they copy and pasted the lineup from 2017.
However, that ride lineup was laughably inaccurate. We’re talking Six Flags wait time inaccurate. I’d estimate only half the rides were correct. On the bright side, this meant there were two surprise coaster credits waiting for me.
The first was the Wild Cat. This is one of those Interpark galaxy coasters that have taken the US fair circuit by storm. If you thought Morey’s Rollie’s Coaster had unnecessary OSTRs, wait until you see the restraints on the Wild Cat. You have a seatbelt, lap bar, and comfort collars.
Unfortunately, this was one of the single car models. As a result, the drops didn’t have any airtime and the coaster really crawled through the helices. 3 out of 10
The second new credit was far more embarrassing, the Wacky Mouse. The most noteworthy thing about it was the fact that one of the employees stood in the middle of the layout while the train cycled. Oh how I love carnies. 2 out of 10
I also rerode the Indy 500, which is a portable flitzer. If you remember my 2017 report, you know I got stuck on the lift of this ride and was rescued by a carny pounding the wheels with a block of wood.
My ride this year was far less eventful, as I crested the lift with ease. Flitzers aren’t particularly forceful, but the twisted, headchopper-filled layout is enjoyable. 5 out of 10
Also, what exactly is the blocking mechanism on a flitzer? I noticed several cars on the circuit at once, but no mid-course brake sections.
But the stars of the show were the flat rides. My personal favorite was Speed, the KMG booster. Usually these rides have the same short cycle- 3 rotations one way and 3 rotations the other way.
Speed was different. It had 10 consecutive rotations in the same direction. I sort of liked this better because there was no reprieve from the craziness. Flipping wildly while diving towards the ground is quite the thrill. 9 out of 10
Stinger was my second favorite. This is a portable version of that insane Mind Warp ride at Fantasy Island. All you need to know is that this is one of the most bizarre frisbees out there.
The initial swings produce some airtime, but that’s all you get. Usually that would be a black mark for a frisbee. However, Mind Warp isn’t about the airtime. The first half is all about the insane positive Gs on the downswings and hangtime over the top.
But the second half is what truly makes Stinger insane. By this point, the ride stops inverting. Then the magic happens; the seats unlock. Just imagine bolting a zipper cage to a frisbee and you have Stinger. The whipping and snapping was simply out-of-control. 9 out of 10
I then got a bird’s eye view of the fair from atop the Sky Flyer. This wasn’t a particularly tall model, but it was about as good as you’re going to get from a fun fair in the US. 5 out of 10
The fair also had some IP-themed fun houses. The first was the Hero Zone. I think this is the first ride in the world to combine both Marvel and DC characters. Hmmm, I wonder how they managed that…
The other was the Ice Palace, a fun house with a Frozen facade. Curiosity got the better of me and I went inside. And I now have a new number one, a new worst fun house!
The effects themselves would have been ok; however, almost all of them were broken. Fortunately, it looks like they were trying to fix them. Why else would there be hard hats on the floor? 1 out of 10
It took me about an hour to make a lap around the fair and that was plenty of time. I got the new coaster credits, rerode the fair’s two craziest flats, and escaped unharmed.
Last but not least, anyone who wanted to learn firsthand what it’s like to work at a carnival missed their opportunity. Reithoffer was offering patrons $12 per hour to help dismantle rides later that night. These signs were posted at every single ride.