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2009 Worlds of Fun Updates

Quick Update (and short trip report) on the 2009 version of Cedar Fair's Worlds of Fun.

From James Rao
Posted April 19, 2009 at 1:20 PM
Made it to Worlds of Fun for opening day yesterday (April 18), despite a storm during the first hour the park was open. No need for a full trip report, as all my previous entries and comments are still valid. If you want more info on the park, feel free to search for those reports or check out the Worlds of Fun site on TPI.

The big new addition to the park, The Prowler, is not open until May 2 (May 1 for season passholders), so we (me, my two sons, and my daughter) contented ourselves with the normal slate of coasters and midway attractions.

It was fun getting to ride a few coasters after being on hiatus since last October. My oldest son got to ride his first inverted coaster, The Patriot, which he absolutely loved. Especially since Dad was savvy enough to make sure his first ride was in the front row. It was a real pleasure sharing his joy. He quickly proclaimed it as the best ride in the park. I still think the Mamba holds that honor, but the Patriot is a fine ride indeed.

The park was very clean, although there were quite a few dandelions in the grassy areas which surprised me. Cedar Fair is not known for their landscaping but they usually keep a well-manicured, clean park. Furthermore, some of the rides could have used a fresh coat of paint, but others did indeed receive some love (Timber Wolf, for example, is a lot less rough than it used to be).

The customer service was top notch, although because of the weather it did seem that there were more employees than customers at times.

There are a few restaurant changes, which I am trying to get updated on the WOF page on TPI, but have not completed that work yet. The big news (HAHAHAHA - that's funny to me) is that a Subway will be added to the park. Sadly, it will probably provide the best food at WOF. It is not yet finished, but will be in the Americana section where Sheridan's used to be (Sheridan's has moved to Africa where King Tut's once stood - is frozen custard common in Africa?).

Lastly, we took a train ride past The Prowler construction area, and the coaster looks like a real winner. It is very impressive. I also heard that the night ride is going to be tremendous as the only lights on the ride are during the lift hill, after which you will descend into total darkness! I will post a review (with pictures I hope) after I ride the Prowler on May 1.

Anyway, one of my planned summer trips is in the books and I am a better
man because of it! =) I took a ton of pictures and hope to find a few good ones to add to the TPI Worlds of Fun link over the coming days.

This post is not much of a trip report, but thanks for reading anyway! Next week I will head to Silver Dollar City and will post a full trip report of that event.


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. This discussion has been archived, and is not accepting additional responses.

From Robert Miller
Posted April 19, 2009 at 2:04 PM
Great post James, WOF is on the list for my trip west. I'm a grandfather, and isn't it an out of this world feeling to watch you son enjoy his first inverted coaster( and front seat to boot). I remember the first inverted my daughter got off of, she cried out how much she love it too. But alas, I still have to wait till next year to experience that joy with my grandson. So tell you son to Enjoy,Enjoy, cause it sounds like he's hooked like my daughter.

From James Rao
Posted April 19, 2009 at 3:55 PM
My kids have all been hooked on coasters and theme parks since they were very young. Funny thing is, they never seem too scared to try anything - and even if they are a bit apprehensive, I just tease them incessantly until they come around! =D

From Steve Pint
Posted April 19, 2009 at 4:41 PM
I have the same thoughts, it was a bit of a shame it rained the first hour in the park. But i enjoyed riding Patriot in the rain. :)

I look forward to seeing your trip report next week!

From James Rao
Posted April 21, 2009 at 5:50 AM
I've updated the Worlds of Fun link on TPI with some photos from my recent excursion (thanks for the help, Mr. Niles!). They are not the best photos (it was pretty overcast all day), but they are representative of the park. I will try to add some more photos in the coming weeks as the weather improves.

From Robert Miller
Posted April 21, 2009 at 8:59 AM
James, I've always lived by this rule. Don't judge a coaster by how it looks, try it one time, if you did not like it, don't ride it again. I told both my daughter and grandson the same thing and you can tell your children. Believe me, I've been on some coasters I'll never go on again, especially ones that bang your head around so much, you end up with a severe headache by the time your done riding.

From James Rao
Posted April 26, 2009 at 7:30 PM
Quick update: stopped in to WOF for a couple of hours today (Sunday, 5 PM to 7 PM - there was NO ONE there, which is perfect). Everything was running a bit slower than usual (high winds I guess), but I did notice that The Prowler was being tested so I stopped by to take a look. Upon closer inspection, there were people on the train, so I inquired of a nearby worker: "Who're the lucky souls testing the Prowler?"

"Managers, I think, and maybe some dummies, " she replied.

"Hmmm...like crash-test dummies, or are you saying some of your managers are dummies?" =)

"Ha ha...like the crash test kind. But they have been testing all day for the preview event on Friday. You coming?" she inquired.

"Yep," I said, "can't wait. See you then."

Just five days before The Prowler is unveiled...

From James Rao
Posted May 2, 2009 at 4:12 AM
Got to ride the Prowler yesterday at the season passholder preview. Very nice ride. Posted a pictorial trip report on the blog flume if you are interested.

Anyone else get a chance to attend the event? I thought Worlds of Fun did a great job. There was free food (hot dogs, chips, soda, and slushies), some nice theming and set pieces to set the mood, and some very cool cats from the Cedar Cove Feline Conservatory on hand for visitors to view and discuss. All in all, I think WoF did a great job with this event.

Kudos to them, and kudos on the exciting new coaster!

From Steve Pint
Posted May 2, 2009 at 2:28 PM
Everything you said James, I was there yesterday and that's exactly how I felt.

From James Rao
Posted May 2, 2009 at 8:34 PM
Dang, Steve, we should have worn name tags or TPI T-shirts or something. There were several TPI regulars on the scene... and I only got to meet one of them! Oh well, maybe next time! ;)

From James Rao
Posted May 9, 2009 at 2:55 PM
Stopped by WOF today for about an hour and caught a ride on both Prowler and Mamba. Both seemed faster today for some reason. Prowler has really improved in the past week as the trees around it have bloomed and it seems a lot more enclosed along the route. It is a very good coaster.

One note: the Subway that was under construction on my last visit, is now open to the public. It was packed at lunch time. Incidentally, this Subway does not offer $5 foot long subs like those outside of the park.

From James Rao
Posted May 12, 2009 at 1:22 PM
Another week, another WoF trip. Today, however, was not a good visit. Both Prowler and Timber Wolf were down the entire time, and despite light crowds (or maybe because of the low crowds) both Patriot and Mamba were only running one train each. So short lines still meant long waits. I hate when that happens. Will try again next week and hope things are a little better.

Spent most of the day thinking about what I would do if I owned WoF and Obama gave me a billion dollars to bail out the park. With a new owner and a huge influx of cash, WoF could be so totally awesome! Alas, it is what it is, and when two of the six adult coasters are out of commission, it is a very below average amusement park.

*Sigh* Nothing worse than a bad day at the park.

From William Clark
Posted May 12, 2009 at 4:15 PM
These wooden coasters aren't getting their due respect. Prowler looks like a good one. Gwazi at Busch Tampa is an excellent ride. Some thought that the wooden coaster went the way of the dinosaur. The Cyclone at Coney Island was the last of it's kind. I say thee nay! A thousand times I say thee nay!

Yeah, heart pounding. These coasters give you a real ride. No shoulder restraints. You get a seat belt, if you're lucky, and a lap bar. Better hang on. But you need a theme some say! Not me.

Others may say, well the Sim is the new thing. Look at The Simpsons, Star Tours, Wild Artic, Spiderman, Dinosaur.

Still others may respond with: what beats Kingda Ka, Nitro, Griffon, Superman, Incredible Hulk, Kraken, Montu...etc

Well, know what? Those old wooden coasters are still here for a reason. And we still wait in line to ride them.

Why?

It's tough to beat the original.

From James Rao
Posted May 12, 2009 at 5:10 PM
I think when dealing with these co-called coaster parks, a good mix of coasters is imperative...steel, wooden, dive, inverted, launch, all are needed to keep things interesting. Wooden coasters, by their nature, feel more raw and unrefined. They offer a completely different ride experience that is more "back to nature" and less polished. A good wooden coaster does not have to be bone-jarringly painful (like the Screamin' Eagle at Six Flags St Louis), but you should feel the track. Prowler, the newest ride at WoF, is smooth and graceful, but has a raw energy consistent with the best GCI wooden coasters out there (like Gwazi & Thunderhead). It was sorely missed in my adventures today.

William, if you have not had a chance to visit Dollywood and Holiday World, drop everything and take a road trip. Hit Thunderhead at Dollywood, and The Voyage at Holiday World. They are two of the best wooden coasters I have ever ridden, and if you like wooden coasters, your life will not be complete until you have ridden both.

From William Clark
Posted May 14, 2009 at 8:47 AM
Good advice indeed. The only wooden coaster in Central Florida is Gwazi. It has 2 separate tracks so you get 2 different rides. Gwazi Lion has more turns and Gwazi Tiger more drops so ride them both and take your pick as favorite. They really shake you up though. Great drops.

That's one of the reasons why I so love Busch Gardens Tampa, it's my wife's favorite park in Florida, they have a solid assortment of coasters and flume rides as well as animal safaris. Katonga is a first rate show, the food is excellent there and the crowds are mostly locals and moderate even on summer weekends.

When people think of the best rides there of course Sheikra and Montu and Kumba rate high. Even Scorpion is a decent coaster that children can enjoy. It goes upside down without shoulder restraints. But Gwazi is the real deal. Riding it takes you back to the days when coasters ran double wide on a wood track and you hung on tightly for your life.
Man I love that ride.

From James Rao
Posted May 16, 2009 at 9:33 PM
Finally got to ride Prowler at night. Wow, what an amazing adventure. Total darkness after the lift hill. Awesome. All coasters should be in the dark. Period.

From James Rao
Posted May 25, 2009 at 1:13 PM
Another week, another two hour WOF visit (two hours is all it takes to do everything I want to do).

I just wanted to add one update on my travels: the Timber Wolf wooden coaster is ready for the scrap heap. While still a fairly rough ride, whatever has been done to alleviate some of the pain, has diminished the speed of the ride to the point that it is just no fun at all. I rode it in several different seats today: front, back, middle, everywhere, and the outcome was the same: painful and slow. The train seems to struggle mightily around the final helix and that once great feeling that the train was going to leave the track at any moment is now gone.

The Timber Wolf has been completely neutered.

Thanks again to Cedar Fair for destroying yet another coaster at Worlds of Fun.

From Steve Pint
Posted May 29, 2009 at 9:38 AM
Haven't been able to get around back to the park again, I'm eager to take a night ride on Prowler, and on the webcam it seems like the trees really filled up the space.

As for Timberwolf, when I went on opening day I didn't notice anything on Timberwolf, still the same rough annoying woody I remember, I've been wanting them to tear it down for years and put a nice storm runner in.

From James Rao
Posted June 16, 2009 at 3:32 AM
Another week, another visit to Worlds of Fun. I mainly just wanted to mention that when crowds are light (as they were yesterday), it is entirely possible to ride everything good WOF has to offer in 75 minutes or less. Sad, but true.

Anyone else out there have a home park where an extended lunch break is enough time to accomplish all that needs to be accomplished?

From Eli Katzman
Posted June 16, 2009 at 11:40 AM
SFA, is a definite, especially on a weekday. Actually, maybe not. All 6 coasters are spread out, none of which are anywhere near the front gate. So, it's not that big of a park, but you might have to walk a ways to get to batwing from Superman (looks short, but long) and from Wild One from where you see the out end of the track.

From William Clark
Posted June 16, 2009 at 12:11 PM
I live for slow days at the parks here in Orlando. We don't get many true slow days but sometimes crowds are lighter than normal, like this summer. It would be excellent to catch Worlds of Fun on a slow day. I'd ride Prowler and Mamba and Patriot 5 or 6 times each.

Count your blessings for slow days at your local park so long as they run more than one train.

I pray for them here.

From Brandon S
Posted June 16, 2009 at 7:03 PM
I wish Cedar Point had light days like that. Sometimes you'll get lucky and they'll be slow but you really can't accomplish everything the park has to do in a day...

From James Rao
Posted June 17, 2009 at 3:01 AM
I guess my real point was that there just isn't that much to do at Worlds of Fun once you've ridden Prowler, Mamba, and Patriot a few times. So on a slow day, when lines are short, two rides on each coaster and you are pretty much done.

I wish there was more substance to the park, that's all.

From William Clark
Posted June 18, 2009 at 1:19 PM
It sounds like you need a first class dark ride over at Worlds of Fun. Could make all the difference in the world. I know Busch Gardens Tampa would be vastly improved with one. They have a 4D Pirates show that simply pales in comparison to anything in Orlando. It's an embarrassment really. It needs to be removed and a true dark ride needs to be installed in that large building. They use the building for a Haunted House during Howl-O-Scream, last year the Raven Twins occupied it. It seems InBev isn't interested in making the investment needed though.

Perhaps Worlds of Fun has such a building available? Is Cedar Fair the type to pour significant dollars into such an undertaking?

In any event, you should be able to get your fill of thrills at Universal. If you haven't been on The Simpsons yet, well be prepared for an excellent experience. It may even rival Spiderman. Quick update on Rip Ride Rockit if you're interested. Construction is continuing full pace. One train was on the beginning of the lift hill facing straight up today. Was over there due to unforseen circumstances and had a quick peek. Lots of construction workers around. I'm surprised Universal has kept open the path leading to Blue Man Group. I got pretty close to the construction, dangerously close you might say.

From Steve Pint
Posted June 18, 2009 at 5:22 PM
William, I agree that this park could use a great dark ride, and Cedar Fair is willing to pour significant dollars into some of their parks... But WoF isn't top priority for them, out of all the Cedar Fair parks, I can't think of one great dark ride they have...

For Worlds of Fun, right now what we need are a few good flat rides (Such as Skyhawk at Cedar Point) and a few more coasters, not high class rides you would find at the Orlando parks.

IMO, this park would look great with an Intamin Xcelerator, like Stormrunner at Hershey....

From James Rao
Posted June 18, 2009 at 8:11 PM
Steve, you're probably right on about WoF... it won't get any immersive themed attractions, but more coasters and updated flat rides would help. And, heck, I would take an off-the-shelf Sally Corp shooter at WoF and be content.

William, my next Orlando trip is still at least a year away...but every day is one day closer.

From James Rao
Posted June 22, 2009 at 4:45 AM
Went to Worlds of Fun on Father's Day and had a good time. Used the "bring-a-friend-for-$10" option and brought two boys from church to hang with us. Stayed from about 4 PM to close (10 PM). All the rides (except for Spinning Dragons, which was busted yet again) were operating at full capacity despite small crowds, so waits were minor at best. It makes such a huge difference in your mood when you can pretty much just walk up to a ride, wait one cycle or less, and then ride. Even in 90+ degree heat, things seem much better when you ride more than you wait. Kudos to Worlds of Fun for keeping the park fully staffed despite the economic woes they must be feeling these days.

Anyway, a couple of notes:

1) I actually watched a show yesterday. It was a dog trick show, and it was pretty good. My oldest son was pulled up on stage to be part of the act, despite him not having a dog of his own (his Grandma, however, has a kennel with over a dozen dogs he considers his "troops", I am not sure why he failed to mention that up on stage). But, it was a fun show, decidedly less professional than those seen at larger parks, but fun and entertaining nonetheless.

2) Prowler at night (we rode it three times from 9:30 to 10:00 PM) is the best ride in the park. In fact, it offers such a great ride that I often feel it is too good for Worlds of Fun. If you ever get a chance to visit WOF, do not leave without a night ride on Prowler.

3) Camp Snoopy just blows in every possible way. Who in the world would ever think it was a good idea to design a section of a theme park to cater only to children who are three or younger? The rides are so lame that even many of the little kids riding looked bored and embarrassed. And the fact that you have to split your group (send the older kids off with mom to ride "big kid rides" while the littlest ones are forced to ride carnival quality spinners) is an abomination. I mean, I sat on various benches for an hour watching my daughter spin slowly on rides that were only slightly better than the 50 cent spinners found in grocery store parking lots. It is unfathomable to me that park designers would opt for these cheap amusements rather than spend a little bit more money on attractions suitable for an entire family to share in together. Other than uber coasters, and high tech thrill rides, you should never have to split your group at a family theme park. Camp Snoopy, and all the crappy little three-year-old exclusive ride areas at parks across the nation, should be eradicated from existence. Curse you, Red Baron Biplanes, curse you!

4) The nachos at All Stars Grill are actually very good, the only food at the park really worth the price. Huge portions and good quality ingredients, a real stand out in a fast food wasteland.

5) I think midway games are finally at the tail end of their lifespan. With desperate "$1 Play Now" signs at nearly every empty game stall, and arcades filled with folks just getting a little a/c before taking their quarters and heading back to the rides, I was pleased to see very few people actually playing the games, and even less watching. When will park designers finally realize that no one likes this crap?

Well, that's it for now. In summary, it was a fun Father's Day, and despite my Camp Snoopy rant, I had a blast.

From James Rao
Posted June 22, 2009 at 4:46 AM
Oh yeah, I almost forgot: I figured out how to make the Vekoma Boomerang sort of fun: just wait until it is dark, then ride the entire coaster with your eyes closed. Wow - much better!

I figured out this little trick when I was dozing during my third ride in a row. Small crowds at a fully-staffed theme park make almost everything better! ;)

From William Clark
Posted June 22, 2009 at 6:53 AM
Isn't it great to catch a park on a slow day when everything is running at max capacity? I live for those days here. It's a blast just walking onto rides knowing you've seen 60 minute wait times (or more) posted there in the past. I love cruising right in, riding and then going back for another no wait ride.

At the risk of drawing the wrath of a certain Mr. Creative, I was at Hollywood Studios yesterday with my wife enjoying what can only be described as light moderate crowds. If you have ever seen 60 minute waits posted at Tower of Terror, and the line winding around and around and out the front entrance, you would be able to appreciate the fact that it was a walk on at 2 pm, 3:30 and 6pm. Aerosmith was posting 30 minute waits in the 96 degree heat most of the day and it was less than 20. I could go on but you get the point.

It's awesome to be in the park on non packed days when everything is running full capacity. I take full advantage and ride as much as possible knowing that in the future those 80 minute waits will be making a comeback.

I won't be happy until I've made it out to Worlds of Fun to have a night ride on Prowler. If it rivals Manta for best new attraction, it must be a hot ride.

Thanks for the entertaining update.

From James Rao
Posted June 30, 2009 at 9:14 PM
Quick jaunt to Worlds of Fun from 9 PM to 10 PM tonight. Weather was perfect (75 degrees with no humidity and a light breeze), crowds were light, and the coasters were running two trains. We (my two sons and I) parked at the back entrance of the park by Oceans of Fun which put us right by Mamba, the featured attraction for our hour-long tour. Rode twice, then headed to Prowler. Rode once in the dark. Sweet ride. It may not be a technological masterpiece like Manta at SeaWorld, but it sure is fun! Hit Boomerang once for my two boys and because there was no wait at all. Then finished off with two more rides on Mamba in the dark.

Here's a tip from me to you: the best way to experience Mamba (especially the camelbacks on the return ride) is in one of the two middle cars. Sure the front is great for the view, and the back is great for the "pull", but the middle is just the most consistent ride throughout the course.

Anyway, it was a fun hour!

From William Clark
Posted July 1, 2009 at 7:03 AM
What no Patriot? You skipped Linus' Beetle Bugs too? It's hard to believe that you can go over to Worlds of Fun and only spend an hour there. It's nice though to be able to go over to the park in the evening when the weather is cooler and the crowds have died down and get in some rides. Prowler must be fun after dark. It's likely going to beat Manta for best new attraction this year as well.

I think about that everytime I get on Manta too you know.

From James Rao
Posted July 1, 2009 at 8:39 AM
I love your tongue-in-cheek posts, William!

Manta is probably a better overall attraction than Prowler, but since it may not even be the best ride in its own park (Kraken, anyone?), how can it be the best new attraction of the year?! And let's face it, at 1/3 the cost, Prowler provides a superlative ride and is easily the best attraction at Worlds of Fun. In fact, it is too good for Worlds of Fun and should probably be moved to a better park. It is like a manta out of water here! ;)

The decision to skip Patriot was based upon the fact that my youngest son is only 50" tall and does not meet the 54" requirement. So we stuck to the two really great rides the three of us could experience together.

And we also squeezed in a ride on the Boomerang, which, as I pointed out to the ride attendant last night, would be a good coaster if they ever finished building the rest of it! The Boomerang suffers from the well-known Mr. Freeze Disease. Symptoms include, but are not limited to: fun ride, short duration, and a steady flowing ooze of unrealized potential. There is only one cure: surgical removal from the park. =)

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 5:15 AM
Stopped by a little Kettle Corn/Cotton Candy stand called Tibetan Treats during my visit last night. I had not really paid much attention to the stand before except to note that it hovers somewhere in that no man's land between the Orient section of the park and the Americana section. Anyway, I must admit that the kettle corn was outstanding. Salty, sweet, and with a nice buttery aftertaste, it was a pleasant surprise. The large bag runs $6.25, and you get a pretty substantial amount. On the down side, with just one person working the booth, even a short line can lead to a long wait.

One other note: Spinning Dragons, the only family coaster in the park, is once again operational. Rode it about a half dozen times to satisfy my under 48" daughter who had missed the ride during its recent downtime. Spinning Dragons is a decent family ride, though it would work much better as an indoor coaster, IMHO.

From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:03 AM
There are few things more annoying at a theme park than waiting in line while one guy works the snack stand. They leave one guy to get the snacks, fill the soda, get the water and ring up and take the money. If there are even a few people in front of you it can take forever. If you get some foreign tourists who can't really speak or understand English and aren't sure what they want then, well, ... it's a recipe for trouble. You can't of course blame the guy. It's management's fault. They are too cheap to pay a second guy to at least handle drinks.

In unrelated news I see that despite Worlds of Fun's strong show of support, and massive ballot box stuffing, Manta did indeed squeeze out a win for best new attraction. Congrats to Prowler though, the original is always tough to beat.

From Steve Pint
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:47 AM
James, great to hear another park snack... I myself stumbled across a great 4.50 frozen lemonade a month ago, it was very big, tasted great, and lasted a half an hour line on Patriot between me and my son! However, when I went a few days ago... Cedar Fair got to me first this time... They upped the price to 5.50, and halved the size.

I hope they won't do that to this delicious kettle corn you speak of.
:-)

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:59 AM
William, there have been lots of times this season when WOF snack counters were staffed by one overwhelmed worker. You really have to time things right if you want to get your junk food with a minimal delay.

As for Prowler v. Manta, the excellent Midwest coaster never had a chance. Despite garnering more votes and a great rating, it was bested by a derivative coaster that cost 3x as much and had half as many votes. Stuffing the ballot box may have actually hurt this time around! Oh well, Manta probably is the better ride anyway, I just wanted to be a pain in the a--. ;)

Steve, Cedar Fair is not known for sticking with a good deal. I remember when Sheridan's Yogurt stand used to be in the Americana section of the park and sold HUGE smoothies for $5 (one was enough for several people). It was such a good deal the smoothies were taken off the menu completely and the restaurant moved to a small, out of the way spot in Africa. Nice.

From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 8:06 AM
I think it was the Giant Pacific Octopus that turned the tide and made the difference in this race.

I urge Prowler supporters to remain calm and not take to the streets in public protest of the vote. Yes, even though official results may show Manta having a 95% to 5% margin of victory in Kansas City and sweeping everywhere else, election officials insist the vote was clean. The Ayatollah himself verified the results.

Anyone further disputing these results will be exiled to Siberia or worse... Great Adventure.

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 11:30 AM
LOL! Sadly, being exiled to Great Adventure would be a huge step up for WOF regulars! One or two excellent coasters does not a good theme park make.

The good news for Orlando fans is that the second best ride at SeaWorld Orlando is the best new attraction of the year. Kudos!

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 6, 2009 at 2:37 PM
When I went to hershey in early june, my 2 friends and I decided to stop for a little shack (not indoors, and only tables), just like you, james, but this was one for popcorn chicken and funnel fries. There were 2 PEOPLE WORKING IT! AMAZING! I was actually expecting 1 person... I guess hershey decides to help the customers instead of wasting their time! ;)

Anyway, one person took the orders and the cash. then, you move a few feet to the left and wait a minute for your food. They had a few condiments, too, as in mustard, ketchup, and non-spicy barbecue sauce (awww... :(...). Anyway, there were something like 5 people in front of use, and we only waited a few minutes to get to the cash register! Pretty good, eh?!

Another story: When I went to Dorney in mid-late june, they had this "pimped-out" dip'n' dots place! I normally get sick to my stomach if I eat too much (something like more than half or 3/4 of a small). This place didn't just have the regular stuff, but dipn dots smoothies, floats, etc. guess what-- THEY ONLY HAD 1 PERSON RUNNING IT! My brother and I were behind a few people, and yes, it did take about 15 minutes to get our food! I forget what I got- all i remember was giving the half i didn't eat to my brother! I do remember, for some reason, that he got a root beer float of dipn dots. (Seems like something better than it is. It's really some dipn dots in a kinda fancy cup with root bear...)

Oh, do you guys like dipn dots? Or any of your kids? It seems a lot more popular with the 18-and-under group than the "seniors" or "ah-dults"...

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 4:45 PM
I like Dippin' Dots okay, but I prefer real ice cream. I guess it is just what I am used to eating. My kids love Dippin' Dots, but I still think they also prefer ice cream when given a choice.

If I may digress a bit: the best dessert of all is the ice cream cookie sandwich at the Sleepy Hollow Snack Shop in the Magic Kingdom. Freshly made chocolate chip cookies, delicious ice cream, a fair price, and plenty of goodness for a couple of people to share unless they are being pigs! Man, I would be huge if I lived in Orlando!

Back to the thread at hand....

At Worlds of Fun, the kettle corn was a nice surprise, but probably the best dessert is still funnel cake (it must be hard to mess up a funnel cake). Although the funnel-crete (a funnel cake with ice cream) is a close second.

But, alas, no matter where you eat at Worlds of Fun these days, the place is woefully understaffed, the service excruciatingly slow, and the prices pretty much out of control. I am not sure why Cedar Fair (or Six Flags, for that matter) puts such little effort into their food and snack offerings. Seems like a huge financial miss to me.

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 5:43 PM
I was thoroughly impressed with the food at the All Star Grill place (I think that's the name of it. It's pretty close to the entrance and there's a smoking area right in front). The prices were slightly higher than what I'd consider theme park average, but the nachos were good and the black and tan cheeseburger was pretty respectable.

It was a little irritating that the menu board didn't specify that there was meat in the nachos (all other ingredients were listed). I had to take it back, and they were very prompt about getting a fresh batch made sans the ground beef (the gf is a vegetarian).

Edited to add - ah, I now see that James already pointed out those nachos.

Also added while I was at it: Manta's a better ride than Prowler. And in five years you'll still be able to ride it without a chiropractor on speed-dial.


From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 5:53 PM
Is it possible that Eli is a protege of Mr. Creative?

Memo to Steve: Why not try riding Manta and Prowler before telling us that Manta is a better ride than Prowler?

I might respect your opinion a bit more if it was informed.

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 5:59 PM
Sorry if I didn't say it in big letters, but I've ridden both Manta and Prowler. Manta's a better ride in my INFORMED opinion. Thanks for playing.

From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:06 PM
That's not bad then Steve. I mean you made it to Missouri and Florida in the last 3 months. Prowler just opened this Spring. Manta has only been open for less than 2 months. I live here in Orlando and have only been to Seaworld a few times since Manta opened and have never been to Missouri in my life.

Yet you claim to have been to both Worlds of Fun and Seaworld Orlando just since they both opened. Your informed opinion is that Manta is a better ride than Prowler too!!

Impressive indeed!!

Memo to Rames Jao: Sorry for disrupting your thread. Won't happen again. From now on we will limit our discussions to the merits of the Charlie Brown Windup, which I find to be a superb attraction despite my never having been on it.

:}

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:28 PM
Yes, William. I went down for Media Day at Manta (the regional ACE representative got members invited as riders for media footage). Two weeks ago I went to ACE Coaster Con XXXII, which included Silver Dollar City and Worlds of Fun (as well as a super-cheap add-on trip at Six Flags St. Louis).

Have I sufficiently qualified myself, or do I need to start linking pictures?

Oh, and you should go to Missouri sometime. Silver Dollar City is a really, really nice park. I daresay I like it more than Dollywood. Worlds of Fun is better than James makes it out to be (though I entirely understand being more critical of your home park) and Six Flags St. Louis is pretty darn decent for a Six Flags park.

From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:27 PM
I'm sure you've been to Tokyo for Nippon Day at DisneySea yesterday as well Steve.

From William Clark
Posted July 6, 2009 at 6:37 PM
Please feel free to re-edit again Steve. Did you just return from Hong Kong Disney too? Maybe jet lagged from the flight?

At least Mr. Creative is a worthy adversary.

Sigh... you seem boring.

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:11 PM
Steve, I am sure Manta is a better ride. I just wanted to bring some attention to my home park, and to a very quality addition in Prowler. And if I seem to be too harsh when it comes to WoF, please keep in mind that I visit the place at least once a week, and have been doing so off-and-on for years. With only 25 non-kiddie, non-upcharge attractions, and no dark rides worth a darn, a park can get pretty old pretty fast.

I also agree with you that Silver Dollar City is an excellent theme park, one of the best I have visited (see my SDC trip report from a few months back). As for SFSTL, I was very disappointed during my October visit last year (see my SFSTL trip report), but since you only compared the place to other Six Flags parks, I am not sure if what you stated was a compliment or not. ;)

And yes, All Stars Grill is a surprisingly good food place. My favorite restaurant at Worlds of Fun.

Did you get a chance to ride Prowler in the dark, Steve?

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:02 PM
Six Flags St. Louis was definitely the least of the three parks we visited in the week, James. There were some odd operational issues that bothered us, and the ERT was cut short due to weather that didn't materialize until well after midnight (as a result, I didn't get to ride Boss. I did, however, get to walk through the LONGEST FREAKING QUEUE ever. I didn't think we'd ever get to the station).

I did get one ride on Prowler at night. Very good stuff. My daytime ride was a little tainted because for some reason the lap belt managed to pop up over the main restraint. As a result, every pop of air was accompanied by a seat belt digging into my stomach.

I really did like Prowler, but I was more impressed by the fact that Mamba wasn't a piece of garbage. I expected it to be Magnum-level pain, but it was really quite fun. Patriot was also a lot of fun. Timberwolf was a piece of junk, but I'm used to bad wood in the South so it was fun nevertheless. Spinning Dragons actually turned out to be one of my favorite coasters of the trip. Sometimes "fun" trumps "exciting."

And as I said before, I completely understand why you're as critical on WoF as you are. I feel the same way about my home parks of Carowinds and SFOG. At least we have one decent dark ride at SFOG...

Oh, and I'm still bitter that I missed the Scooby Doo shooter at Six Flags. I didn't find out that it was a boat ride until just after the Glow in the Park parade. At that point we were trying to catch rides on Ninja and Namtab.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:28 PM
Whew! If i'm not on this site in about 4 hours, I'm way behind on this conversation!

Steve, this restaurant at dorney is called Game Day grill, which is almost the same. My brother and I almost stepped in, but ended up going to this old fashioned diner, which was pretty good, but the pizza sucked... Oh, I agree, I always beat up on SFA because it's my home park, just like James with WoF. SFA actually has 2 awesome coasters, and 4 medeoker ones, but everyone is a bad critic if they get too used to and sometimes bored with some rides. But, I'll never get bored with SFA- it's an amusement park! I'm sure, just like me, he would be happy to go to SFA (i think it would be his first time), and I would be happy to go to WoF!

William, remember- I'm a young teen. I have a very wide vocab (actually better than most of my friends), but I need you to explain this one that you typed: "Is it possible that Eli is a protege of Mr. Creative?" How was I creative? Even though I'm pretty sure that was part sarcasm?

Oh, and Steve, I thought that SFOG was AWESOME! It holds my #3 favorite coaster at Goliath! But, I'm sure that if I went 15 more times in the next 2 years, I would be in the same state as you are about it. But, you have to admit, it's a really great six flags park! It's the 3rd or 4th best six flags park, in my opinion! (Behind SFMM, SFGAdv, and maybe SFGAm) Another edit, steve- On most woodies, I keep the lap bar as loose as 2 inches away from my waist, so it doesn't hurt, and it can still save my life if it needed to! Oh, and have you ridden steel force? Did mamba have the same "type" of pain? Steel force has messed up g's...

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:25 PM
Game Day Grille is a popular Cedar Fair name, Eli. I've eaten at the one at Cedar Point, and it was surprisingly good *and* sit-down service to boot.

Oh, and William was referencing TH Creative, another poster here on the board. I didn't quite get where he was going with that, but I'm boring so who cares.

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:31 PM
Steve, I rode the Scooby-Doo ride, and it was pretty lame and in desperate need of some refurb love. You did not miss anything. Flooded Mine at SDC, for all its old fashioned quirkiness and broken guns, is a much better shooter.

I agree with your assessment on all the coasters at WoF. Patriot is good, albeit par for the course for B&M, and I love Mamba (although I think it is very similar to another hyper at Dorney and one at Vallyfair). Still, on a good night, Mamba rivals just about any hyper old or new for pure adrenalin induced fun. Spinning Dragons is the only family coaster at the park, and the only one (besides the Crappy...err, I mean...Wacky Worm) my daughter is tall enough to ride. We visit it a lot when she goes to the park as it is her favorite ride at Worlds of Fun. For now. And yes, Timber Wolf just sucks bigtime. I would love to see something like Wildfire at SDC in its place. Funny, you didn't mention the Vekoma Boomerang? I wonder was it a walk-on attraction, as it normally is these days? ;)

I checked your website (themeparksushi.com), Steve, and found your Manta Media Day trip report, but nothing on your WOF/SDC/SFSTL visits. I am anxious to see all your photos. Let me know when you have them posted.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:30 PM
Ok, steve, but how do I resemble him?

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:31 PM
In reference to your second edit, Eli - I'm not as skinny as you, so I don't have the luxury of having the extra space between the restraint and me.

I haven't ridden Steel Force (Pennsylvania is currently down for next summer), but as far as Mamba is concerned I've got nothing negative at all to say. I was jostled at one point on the return run, but it was a night ride and I just wasn't paying sufficient attention to the course. I can only compare it to Magnum, which is a very unfair comparison...

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:38 PM
TH Creative is a frequent poster on this site. He and William go "at it" fairly often. I think William was just trying to get something "spicy" started as I have not been putting up much of a fight recently.

Eli, sometimes William is funny, and sometimes he's just an a$$-hole. This time he was not being funny. ;)

(That was just a joke, William, so don't take offense! You know I love you and your venomous attacks quite dearly!).

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:35 PM
We're still working on the update for the ACE trip, James. Problem is we shot 2,200 pictures and six hours of video. I've narrowed the pictures down to about 600, but it's a very daunting task to get it done.

As for the Boomerang...it was part of the ERT on the same night as Prowler. We buzzed through it then, and promptly decided we'd had enough coasters for the day (keep in mind, this is two weeks ago when the heat index was like 105. It was still sickly hot at night).

I did actually see a full queue for it on the last night I was there. The park had some special event for SKILLS (some sort of high school group) and they were packing the joint. We decided that it must not have been an honor society if they were dumb enough to fill the line for a boomerang...

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:40 PM
ROFL! Kansas City is not known for its schools! ;)

One more question, Steve, since you frequent SFOG. Do you ever get to visit Wild Adventures park? It is owned by the same folks who own Dollywood and Silver Dollar City. I am just curious if it is worth a stop, or not.

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:42 PM
Is the time listed on a post based on when you first start typing it, or are we all getting edit-happy tonight?

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:48 PM
Both?

From steve lee
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:50 PM
The SKILLS people were from all over the place. We talked to one of the kids who was from Alabama (and in the smoking section, no less. Smokers are losers, kids!).

I haven't been to Wild Adventures, James. I haven't heard anything amazing about it, but I think any park that has a boomerang, an SLC and an SFC is high on the questionable list. I'd wait and see what Herschand has planned first.

(THIS POST EDITED TO SCREW THE TIMELINE UP EVEN WORSE)

From James Rao
Posted July 6, 2009 at 7:53 PM
That's it, I am going to bed. All this time-stamp-jumping makes me miss LOST even more! Thanks for the fun conversation... cya tomorrow!

From William Clark
Posted July 7, 2009 at 12:36 PM
Ouch! Seems like I caught a sharp elbow in here.

I'm wondering though what you meant by upcharge attractions at Worlds of Fun. Something like the tours available in the parks here for an additional charge? Perhaps something like Sky Tower at Seaworld which is $3 to regular park guests but free to passholders?

I enjoy the tours available at Busch Gardens. It really is quite an experience to hand feed giraffes and white rhinos. Animal Kingdom has similar tours as do all the Disney parks.

Universal offers a VIP Tour as well for the low low price of both arms, one leg and your firstborn son.

From Steve Pint
Posted July 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM
William, no tours are available from WOF, not surprisingly since the only things to look at are paths, coasters and trees. But you can still catch a ride on the WOF train.

The up-charge attractions in WOF are as you stated, a skycoaster, they charge around 10 dollars for that I think, I never went on the thing anyway.... There's a rock climbing wall that costs extra, and a horrible rock climbing wall at that! They even put it right out in the sun so you can burn your hands while your at it. Then there's a go kart track, again, a horrible go kart track.
You would think if they wanted extra money for those attractions, they could've at least made them GOOD.

From James Rao
Posted July 7, 2009 at 1:25 PM
Yep, Steve, you nailed them. Cedar Fair is notorious for adding up-charge or additional-charge attractions inside their parks. The Sky-coaster and Go-Karts are two of the most common.

IMO, WoF should replace their sky-coaster with a Giant Swing like the one at Silver Dollar City, or a Giant Frisbee like MaxAir at Cedar Point. The Go-Karts should be removed and replaced with another coaster, preferably something with loops (WoF is woefully inadequate in the "loops department"). The rock climbing eyesore should just be leveled and replaced with a tree or some other foliage. Heck, even a trash can would be a better option.

I hate up-charge attractions. I know parks have to make money, but come on, there must be a better, more aesthetically and thematically pleasing way!

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 7, 2009 at 5:58 PM
Guys, I know I'm a little "shaky" on my updates for going somewhere, but in mid august, I might visit my aunt in St. Louis! ... I assume you know what that means (SFstL, for the slow ones), and I get in free with a season pass. I have a chance of Kansas city, but extremely slim, but I bet my whole family of 4 (which consists of me, my brother, and my parents) will go visit her next year, and that's when we would got to Kansas City. I have no clue how I'm going to do with my chances of Silver Dollar City... but some pointers would help, such as "what is there to do with your family?" and "How much is it per adult to get in?"

Oh, and James, if you're just adding * and $ because I'm a kid, then don't, because I'm technically an adult in the jewish world (I had my bar mitzvah on Valentines day '09), and I really don't mind, and saying ass or whatever won't matter to me, or my parents, for that matter... so, if it's because of me, then no need to keep it up.

From James Rao
Posted July 7, 2009 at 6:43 PM
Eli, both SFSTL and WoF are typical, small, iron ride parks. If everyone in your family is at least 54" tall and has a willingness to ride roller coasters, then you should have a decent time at either one. Keep in mind, both parks are mediocre and the rides (especially those at WoF) will be very similar to those at your beloved Dorney. I would not plan a special trip for either park, but if you are going to be in the area anyway, there are worse places to spend your time.

Silver Dollar City on the other hand, is a vacation destination. It is a park that should be experienced in much the same way as you would experience a Disney or Universal park. It has thrill rides, but it also has some great shows, diverse attractions, and excellent food. If I had to choose one park in Missouri to visit, it would be Silver Dollar City - and it would not be a hard choice to make!

As for my use of $$ instead of ss, I guess it is just because of a habit I got into while playing an online game a few years back (Dark Age Of Camelot). Since you never knew who was reading your text on the other end, it was always best to disguise "bad" words a little bit. Nothing personal, I just have never really broken the habit! ;)

Lastly, for a few tips about SFSTL and WoF, check out the TPI park review pages at the links below. I have kept them both pretty up-to-date, and there are some reviews, strategies, and pictures. Let me know what other questions you have after reviewing these links:

Six Flags Saint Louis
Worlds of Fun
Six Flags Saint Louis Trip Report
Worlds of Fun Trip Report (Halloween Haunt).

From steve lee
Posted July 7, 2009 at 8:59 PM
It may be easier to convince the old folks to go to Silver Dollar City if you bolster your argument with all the "old folks" entertainment in the Branson area. There's a TON of shows, dinner theatres, and all that stuff there. Not necessarily my cup of tea, but there may be some Yakov Smirnof fans in your family...

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 8, 2009 at 1:53 PM
Thanks, guys. James, besides Mamba- steel force and patriot- talon, what other rides are about the same from WoF- Dorney?

Anyway, if I were to go to St. Louis this year to visit my aunt, it would be by myself. She doesn't really like rides, and is also short and slightly heavy-set. So... you get the idea. I would be the only one there, and I would still have a blast on my own! I can spend a whole day on my own at SFA, I don't mind. It's only kinda awkward when you're eating at a restaurant alone. Where do you look?! Also, I would rather have another person, because I like watching reactions if they are kinda scared, but being in your own group is great for a B&M coaster! That's how I was able to ride Goliath at SFOG 2ce in the front! And I'm just saying 2 people is better, but I would still have the same amount of fun on my own!

Okay, one last thing, guys. Pertend I'm in Kansas city or a little outside. Is WoF worth the $40?

From James Rao
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:01 PM
Mamba - Steel Force
Patriot - Talon
Detonator - Dominator
Zulu - Enterprise
Thunderhawk - Hang Time
Octopus - Monster
Le Taxitour - Road Rally
Scrambler - Scrambler
Sea Dragon - Sea Dragon
Fury of the Nile - Thunder Canyon
Flying Dutchman - Waveswinger
Monsoon - White Water Landing

Comparing these lists, the only "major" attractions for you to visit at Worlds of Fun are as follows:

Prowler (best ride in the park)
Boomerang (crappy)
Timber Wolf (crappy)
Spinning Dragons (fun)
Cyclone Sams (a Wipeout ride in a barn)
Bamboozler (a Round-up)
Finnish Fling (spinner where the floor drops)
Viking Voyager (lame).

So in your case, no I do not think a day at Worlds of Fun is worth $40. However, if you upgrade your Dorney Gold Pass to a Platinum Pass, it includes admission to all Cedar Fair parks. So, if you are thinking of visiting more Cedar Fair locations this season, then get a Platinum Pass and come ride the Prowler!!

From William Clark
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:03 PM
Nah Eli, iffen wer pertenden you outtside the kassa cita then take that there $40 and coma seesa me and my wefe Berta. Wese just outsides what you'll call Arrowhead stadiums, yessiree and we haven the bestest ever barbeeque sanwiches. Yep youall comean sees us now yahears.

From James Rao
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:06 PM
We do have good BBQ. Actually, KC has awesome restaurants and excellent movie theaters. And, since it is almost complete, come visit our world-class water park at the Schlitterbahn Vacation Village when it opens later this month. It is going to be phenomenal.

From William Clark
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:10 PM
No James, I am not slighting Kansas City in any way, shape or form. That was actually a dig at Eli's poor spelling. I remember when the Chiefs had a solid football team. The Royals a decent baseball team as well. Missouri is known as the Show Me state. I indeed have full respect for the fine folks in Missouri.

But when someone comes on here saying they have been on both Prowler and Manta well then... show me.

From James Rao
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:30 PM
Steve Lee goes to all the parks. I have no doubt he has been on both coasters. And after my 2010 Orlando visit, I will have been on both as well. If the world doesn't end first! Oh wait, that won't happen until December of 2012.

Btw, I do like the lousy Royals, but I have never been a Chiefs fan. Always partial to the Dolphins for some reason.

From William Clark
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:26 PM
Being from New Jersey and now living in Florida well I have a somewhat unusual perspective. If I'm going to Worlds of Fun then I'd look forward to 5 rides on Mamba, 5 more on Patriot, 5 on Prowler including 2 after dark. Then I'm looking for a decent steak sandwich. After that I want a nice ladies T-shirt for my wife, an ice cream sundae and milkshake.

It would be my pleasure as well to have the opportunity to spend a few minutes with a few of the fine folks who live in Missouri.

For the price of $40 each admission, yeah well it seems like a good deal to me. I'm more used to Disney prices.

Or worse... Universal. :}

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:22 PM
Come on, my spelling isn't THAT bad... heheheheeh...

anyway, james, I don't even have a gold pass to Dorney! I just got lucky I got out there this year. I went last year with camp, this year my parents let me go w/ my brother, and in 2 years, I'll go again with camp. Another quick q- Dominator and Detonater are the same ride, correct?

I don't care what-so-ever if they have a bunch of the same rides. I only rode half of those, anyway! Steel Force, Talon, Dominator, Hang Time, and Enterprise. That's it! I kinda liked Steel Force (worse than other hypers), and I've heard that Mamba is smoother than steel force, which was the main problem for me,and Mamba and that have more differences than i had expected, too, from what I noticed... on youtube... but still, I loved Talon, and patriot is a little different. I liked Enterprise, Dominator was "beast", and Hang time was ok.

I also love GCI (for prowler), I don't see what's so bad about Boomerang (I liked sidewinder at Hershey alot; it got smoother somehow from '07 to '09...) besides so many clones (only one i've ridden was sidewinder), spinning dragons doesn't look bad, and timberwolf doesn't look half-bad itself, either...

so no need to beat up on your park. Also, be aware that I live a little more than 3 hours away from Allentown...

From William Clark
Posted July 8, 2009 at 4:40 PM
You seem to have no problems adding a link yet I cannot.... Ahh well, the privileges of wealth...

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 8, 2009 at 5:39 PM
Ya need help? Look, I'll make one for the homesite of SFA.

ok, you need to make sure you're doing everything right. I just copy and paste, because I sent myself an email about how to do it, and then starred it, so i always have it ready on my email. Ok, if you have no clue what you're doing wrong, follow these directions:

1: copy and paste this: 2: Then, without spacing, copy and paste the site "ID" or whatever at the top. For the SFA home site, I copied and pasted this: http://www.sixflags.com/america/
3: copy and paste this: ">
4. After that, without spacing (even though there can be spaces in the middle, but just not the beginning and end), now write what you want to be highlighted in blue for what you click on to get to the link. For the thing above, I typed: homesite
5: Without spacing, finish it off by putting this in:

Ok, I hope this helps. It should all come out to homesite

Uh oh... as i'm typing this, it's being edited. It seems like it got clumped... okay, spaced out, this is the beginning: < a h r e f = "
There is still the " at the end, and between the a and the h, there are 2 spaces. make sure you get that. The end is: < / a >

Ok, NOW I hope this helps...

From James Rao
Posted July 8, 2009 at 8:30 PM
Eli - keep in mind that I have been going to Worlds of Fun for over 25 years, and in that time, it has remained largely unchanged. Even when something good was added, like Spinning Dragons or Patriot, something good was taken away like the Orient Express (think Loch Ness Monster at BGW) or Zambezi Zinger (think Whizzer at SFGA). I guess in many ways I am bored with most everything at WoF except Prowler, Mamba, Patriot, and to a certain extent, Spinning Dragons. Beyond those four rides, the rest of the crap has been the same for 20 years.

The Dominator is slightly different in that one side blasts riders up and provides 3 seconds of weightlessness, while the other side lifts riders up slowly and freefalls down. On WoF's Detonator, both sides blast riders up fast then gently rocks them back down to earth. 5 seconds of fun. Not worth any sort of wait, but okay if you can walk-on.

Timber Wolf used to be a fast and painful wooden coaster. I used to like it. However, with the recent retracking it has received, TW has become a slow and painful wooden coaster. It is not fun at all and should be retired.

Boomerangs are boring and stupid. The fact that one of these half-coasters replaced a great ride like the Zambezi Zinger is a travesty. If time travel was possible, I would go back in time and "convince" the genius who designed the Vekoma Boomerang to choose a different career path.

William - you have a great situation in Orlando, never forget that. Regardless of the high prices, you have over a dozen wonderful theme and water parks to choose from in your local vicinity. If you ever move away from Orlando to a theme park dead zone like Kansas City, you will likely die of boredom in less than a year. ;) However, your strategy for WoF is sound: Prowler, Mamba, Patriot, Spinning Dragons, and a few snacks. In and out in less than two hours. That's what I call a perfect night at my local park.

From steve lee
Posted July 8, 2009 at 8:40 PM
By the way, James, what is the deal with Detonator? I know it was the first S&S space shot in the US, so does that have anything to do with why they seem so crotchety about loading it? It seemed like they had to always make sure the tower was balanced (3 on one side, 3 on the other) before letting people ride.

I assume it has something to do with the fact that it's an earlier model, but man was it annoying when the ride ops wouldn't explain what the hold-up was about...

From James Rao
Posted July 8, 2009 at 8:49 PM
I dunno, Steve, but the thing breaks down ALL THE TIME, and they won't even run it unless at least six riders are on the attraction. I think it is just an old P.O.S.! However, I will talk to the WoF PR guy and see if he can shed some light on the strange loading tactics.

Loading and unloading on most of the cycle rides at WoF is a very slow, arduous process. That's what happens when teenagers getting paid less than minimum wage are tasked with a theme park job.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM
Wow... when was Detonator made? seems like it's an old guy who needs a cane to walk, and can't really move without it... so when will you find out on the weird loading? Like the 6 people thing? I would still ride it... and the 2 times I've been to dorney, Dominator was working perfectly the whole time...

From Bob Miller
Posted July 9, 2009 at 5:29 PM
Hey Eli, was that crack about an old man with a cane meant for me, remember, I AM an old man with a cane, who needs it to walk!!!! LOL :)

From James Rao
Posted July 9, 2009 at 6:20 PM
Just go on a somewhat busy day, Eli, and there will be plenty of folks lined up for Detonator's 5 seconds of fun.

From steve lee
Posted July 9, 2009 at 7:24 PM
That's why I had so much trouble, James. I rode Detonator during a night ERT when they were also running Mamba and Timberwolf. We had to beg people passing by to come up and ride the stupid thing.

I didn't get a chance to ride the drop tower at SFstL (the heat really killed my riding mojo), but from a distance it looked pretty darn good. Can you confirm or refute that?

From James Rao
Posted July 10, 2009 at 3:32 AM
Steve, the only "drop ride" I have ever been impressed with is the Tower of Terror at DHS. To me, the lines are usually too long, and the thrill too short. The Superman ride at SFSTL is just as lame as any other. You slowly inch up to the top....wait a bit...see some scenery, then drop. A few seconds of weightlessness is all you get. I just don't think drop towers are worth any sort of wait.

And I have been in the same boat as you, begging people to ride Detonator just to get to the six-person minimum. We'd finally get enough, then 5 seconds later the ride was over. Lame.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 10, 2009 at 5:18 AM
haha, no, Bob, I was talking about detonator. :) Now, I love drop rides! I used to be scared of em, but came over my fear at SFOG earlier this year. It's almost as much suspense as launch coasters! (except joker's jinx...) But, guys, you have to admit, ALL OTHER DROP TOWERS (that are safe) ARE BETTER THAN THE ONE I HAVE AT SFA! It's only 140 feet tall! What the hell, Intamin?! So, just be glad you don't have THAT... and I liked Dominator A LOT... i thought it was awesome, and you get more like 6 seconds, because you keep going up and down...

And guys, although you might hate drop towers, isn't Superman at SFstL WAY better than detonator? Seems like it... Just picture that superman, but cut down by almost half! That's what I am forced to ride here!

From James Rao
Posted July 10, 2009 at 6:19 AM
I don't know if you've ever ridden it, Eli, but the Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Florida puts all other drop rides to shame. Once you have ridden it, the rest seem very, very mediocre.

From Bob Miller
Posted July 10, 2009 at 1:48 PM
I agree with that statement James, we just got off TOT last week. Sorry we missed you at TOT Dan, I would have enjoyed meeting another TPI member. And Eli, your lucky my mother has passed away or she'd be washing your mouth out with soap!!! LOL :)

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 10, 2009 at 3:04 PM
Ha! If she were my teacher and we had the same "rules" in school as the '50's or sumtin, I would get spanked... :) Anyway, I've never actually even been to florida... my parents just say it's all flat, but my dad's college friend lives there and loves it. he lives in tampa, and my parents might let me go out to see him (we're friends, too) next year. If we do, we'd go to BGA, USO and IOA, and maybe some of the disney parks. If we did go to 2, should we go there and epcot? or animal kingdom? i donno... so what 2 disney parks?

From Steve Pint
Posted July 10, 2009 at 9:02 PM
Ahh, TOT... Good memories, I can certainly agree with you that it's the best drop-tower in the world...
Made it out to Worlds of Fun today for around 5 hours... Got to ride Prowler in the dark twice in the front... The way the millennium flyer trains have only bars in front of you gives a great sensation cool air rushing against your legs, of course this is the best at night.

Mamba seemed to be a little rougher than usual... Banged my head around and ended up giving me a headache later in the day, not usual for Mamba! (And before you ask, I didn't ride Wolf)
Also decided to hit Monsoon as it was reasonably hot... And actually, it turned out to be a highlight of the day, a staff running the ride was very into it, and entertaining none-the-less.
I had a chance to try out the Tibetan Treats pop corn as well... Delicious! Probably the best food in the park...

The more I come to this park, the more I wish for a nice Intamin Stormrunner to go in somewhere out there in the woods...

From James Rao
Posted July 11, 2009 at 5:40 AM
I agree Steve, WoF could use a Stormrunner...and a few other coasters, including another family coaster or two. If it had 3 - 5 more good quality coasters, we could overlook some of the deficiencies in the rest of the park.

As for Monsoon, we generally ride it after a day at Oceans of Fun. When OoF closes we just head over to WoF through the back entrance (by Mamba) and ride Monsoon a half dozen times before heading home. It can be a lot of fun if you (and the crew) are into it. Although, it truly is a one trick pony, and could be vastly improved with the addition of some theming and narrative elements (Jurassic Park at Universal's IOA is really nothing more than an extended shoot-the-chutes with an enhanced storyline!).

Glad you liked the kettle corn. That stuff is real tasty, even better than the kettle corn at Silver Dollar City, surprisingly.

And Eli, if I only had to pick two parks to visit at WDW, and I had never visited before, I would probably go to DHS and DAK, just because the very best rides (Tower of Terror, RnR Coaster, Dinosaur, and Everest) are stationed at those parks. But if you are going to be in the area, you owe it to yourself to try and hit all the parks, at least briefly.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 11, 2009 at 9:06 AM
I think i know why you thought it was rougher than usual, steve. I bet you thought that timberwolf was so rough that mamba was way smoother, and this time you didn't get to compare. get it?

Yeah, i bet WoF could hire intmain for something like a stormrunner, but not quite, like a speed monster. That's more "modern" intamin style. check it out! i love that site... yeah, it would also be cool to see a B&M dive in the US outside of Busch!

Oh, and james, i forgot that RRC was there... and i thought dinosaurs was universal, and i knew i had to see it! is that in DAK?

From Steve Pint
Posted July 11, 2009 at 12:08 PM
I hope that's the case Eli, this park definitely can't afford to have Mamba be a bumpy coaster...
As for the stormrunner, I think that something like the one at Hershey would be just perfect...

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 11, 2009 at 3:16 PM
I guess, i just hope that if they do get one, it doesn't age as bad as stormrunner. I went in '07, and I thought it was almost as smooth as a B&M coaster. But, I heard it got a lot rougher that off season, that the barrel roll - flying snake dive - banked ending session all got rougher, and you bang your head... i wasn't able to experience it myself because i couldn't go last year, and when i went the one time this year, it was raining (I didn't make or couldn't change the date) most of the day, so i couldn't ride either that or fahrenheit! But, i go 2ce next year...

From Bob Miller
Posted July 11, 2009 at 4:01 PM
Eli, DHS is a must, the second park would be a toss up, AK or MK, depending if Space Mt is running, otherwise, AK would be better because of MT Everest and Dinosaur. But Dinosaur can be rough if you sit directly over one of the rear wheels, atleast I thought so. Since your into coaster type rides, Epcot doesn't really have one like SM or ME. They do have Mission Space, Test Track and Soarin, all worth a visit if you have the time.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 12, 2009 at 9:48 AM
I was thinking of test track, which has cool theming (as I know of), and just pure speed, which is why I love the front of coasters! Does anyone know how fast it goes?

From Raul Araoz
Posted July 12, 2009 at 10:21 AM
65mph at its' fastest stretch.

I personally love Epcot. Granted, it is not a thrill seekers park, but it is just beautiful. I will argue that Mission:Space and Test Track are just as exciting as Dinosaur and Everest. If I had to pick two parks, I would go to Epcot and DHS. However, it is really hard to pick two. If you could, you should really try to fit in all four parks.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 12, 2009 at 2:05 PM
eh... how much is for all 4? no overnight stay?

From James Rao
Posted July 14, 2009 at 3:27 AM
Back to the original intent of this thread....

Went to Worlds of Fun last night, and just took my 42" daughter. I've said it a million times, but man, is this park lame for kids under 48", or what?! The only ride of any value for my daughter is the Spinning Dragons coaster (which we rode many, many times last night). Beyond that attraction, everything else is just flat out lame: midway spinners, cars-on-a-rail, a steam train, carnival merry-go-rounds, and a foam ball play area that is only slightly better than the play areas offered at your local Chuck E. Cheese. I can't help but think how a few dark rides like Peter Pan or Winnie the Pooh, would really improve the experience.

And my goodness, how is Worlds of Fun staying in business? The park was nearly empty again. They must do the vast majority of their business on Fridays and Saturdays, because that park is just plain dead every other day of the week.

By the way, I did manage to make the best of it for my daughter's sake. I acted like I was having World's of Fun, even though I was only slightly more entertained than I would be riding and re-riding the merry-go-round at my local mall food court. And to be completely honest, with the exception of a few slightly more intense midway rides (the Sea Dragon, Finnish Fling, and maybe the Flying Dutchman) even my daughter was hard pressed to find the fun.

I probably won't invest in season passes again until the youngest is at least 48" tall. There just is not enough to do at the park when not riding big coasters. Simply put: Worlds of Fun has a long way to go if they ever want to be a whole-family destination. And for me and mine, it is just as easy, and ultimately more satisfying, to drive 3.5 hours to Branson and visit Silver Dollar City, instead.

From Eli Katzman
Posted July 14, 2009 at 8:21 AM
James, my friend Clovis went to SFA with me last year. (My dad is an immigration lawyer. Clovis came to the US in ... around September '07. He went to his senior year in high school in NC. The next summer, of '08, which was before college, my dad asked him if he had any plans for the summer. He didn't, so my dad asked if he wanted to stay at our house. We kinda were friends, even though he was way older than me. Ok, remember this- He's 6'9''!)

When we got there, we found out the only ride he was short enough for or could fit his legs into was Batwing. We didn't find that out until most of the day was over, because we got there at about 3, and we had to leave at 8. We rode it 3 times, through the tough, single train line. the first was in the back, but i told him it's way more fun in the front. he loved it so much, he wanted to get back in line! And he was in the water park the first part of the day, so I got my share of coasters that day.

Oh, and WoF sounds just like Dorney. Totally empty, even on Sundays! I assume this is the same with WoF, as it is with Dorney- The water park (WWK and OoF) is what pulls ALL of the dough... is that what you're thinking?

From James Rao
Posted July 14, 2009 at 9:22 AM
You might be right, Eli. Perhaps Oceans of Fun actually makes most of the dough. If that is true, though, they are in some trouble because the Schlitterbahn Vacation Village is set to open in a few weeks, and no one (except maybe Disney) does water parks as good as Schlitterbahn. I fear Worlds of Fun, in this economy, with very light attendance, and with it being up for sale, may be the next victim of a company like PARC Mgmt, well known for their inability to provide a quality theme park experience. If that happens, you won't hear me talking about WoF anymore at all.

Since this is the last post for this thread, I want to thank everyone for their contributions, and if necessary, I will start a new thread in the coming weeks. We'll see.

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