Friday, June 25, 2004 5:00 PM
We arrived about 2 am in Conneaut Lake PA. and after spending a night at the Wal Mart Campground only 6 miles from the park we awoke to fresh doughnuts inside the store. No, we didn't sleep inside but for those who don't know Wal Mart nationwide allows weary drivers to sleep in it's parking lots. Something to do with a family member who died in a crash from falling asleep. We were not the only ones as someone with a boat and trailer was parked up from us doing the same thing. I suppose if we had arrived earlier it would have been real easy to just set up at Conneaut's Campground but Rob's tent is a bit of a chore to set up and we are not that quiet when doing so. 11am arrives and Conneaut park opens. We passed the time from 6am till about 10:30 listening to CD's and keeping an eye on a local railroad track as IM a train buff too. We got one train to pass and that's all I needed. for a local train fix. Inside the park, which we had driven through as far as the Hotel the night before we noticed most adult rides not open. We walked around and then about 11 got in line to buy our reduced all day pass at $11.50. We quickly hit up on the Pretzel darkride. I thought this was better than Camdens just in general condition and capacity. After that we hit the parks Carousel and had a long enjoyable ride on that. We decided it was time to hit the Flyers and yes we did get good altitude and some snappage but there was a stong wind blowing toward the lake. A train ride to see the layout of Blue Streak and then we just walked around and enjoyed the atmosphere. We walked down under a beach hall where a sign said Museum but we never found a museum and ended up on the Beach which was quite beautiful but still chilly. we took some more pretzel rides and another flyer ride and tried to ride that indoor scrambler or whatever but Ed struck and broke it on the ride before we got in. About 2pm we were off. Rob and I agreed that this could be a great park but were somewhat disappointed not to get a blue streak ride even though we expected it to be down from word from Kelly on RRC.. The park was full of families and I heard many people saying they hadn't been there in years. I mean it got busy and the lack of rides open only made for the other rides being swamped. That waterpark seemed to be popular and perhaps they should consider expanding on that if possible. I was just glad the park was open and except for some paint and sidewalk issues the park was charming to me. It didn't take us long to reach Waldameer. All highway with a couple zigs and zags and we entered Waldameer to the smells of people grilling everywhere. Tons of picnicking going on and families enjoying themselves. You kinda enter in the middle of the park with picnic groves on both sides as well as rides and it took us a minute to find the ticket/Ride sales booth. We got our arm bands and walked in to see Comet wooden coaster directly behind the carousel and except for the station you couldn't see much. Comet is a Shmeck, Jr. woodie and its bigger than the Scooby and other jr.s I've seen and ridden. WOW, What fun from a JR. It has airtime in places and is completely inshrouded in trees. Not many trees mind you but BIG OLD TREE'S that enshrouded and came just over the coaster. The second turn around is over the station and the tree branches rest on the station top so it's kinda like a tunnel. Just fun, Not overly thrilling or anything like that but fun and we never waited more than one train for a ride. The ride was also totally Classically run with skid brakes and wooden pull levers. The rest of Waldameer was fun also. The log flume was better than I thought it would be. The Ravine FLyer 3 was kinda like our mall coaster Boa Squeeze but over water. The ferris wheel gave us a good Idea of the layout for Ravine Flyer 2. We thought the skyride went from one end to the other but we ended up where we began but it was still fun cruising over the park and people. A live Christian band was playing in the old Carousel building and they had a big audience. Nothing wrong with that and the Music wasn't bad either. The Spinny Mouse was not finished. The top of the station and some wirering were being done but the track was in place and a car was on the track. We needed a restroom at one point and found one in what appears to be a dance hall/skating rink/meeting hall. Kinda neat actually. The Pirates Den was nice but not great. I was kinda annoyed at the kids who tried to push past us only to stop in front of us a couple minutes later and then try to pass us again. It was a walkon/walkthrough so I don't see why they couldn't have let groups go individually spread apart. The Whacky Shack was a well done darkride. Probably about my third favorite. My favorite being Knoebels. It didn't quite match that but was close. I guess we left about 7pm after only about 4 hrs in the park. I gotta say we crushed this park even though it was busy. We got about 10 Comet rides and rode everything we wanted at least once and Wacky Shack twice. We left Waldameer vowing to return and discussed both parks. Clearly Waldameer was more complete but Rob said, Ya know, Conneaut can easily be the BETTER PARK with it's atmosphere and Beach. and after thinking it over. I AGREE but there is nothing wrong with Waldameer either. We had a good day and got to Grand Island at 9:30pm to setup Fort Funk! Kick back and get ready for SFDL on Sunday. :) Chuck Nungester
Sunday, June 27, 2004 10:57 AM
Nice trip report Charles. Rob Ascough and I, plus a few others are going to Waldameer and Conneaut this Saturday (July 3rd). Rob's never been to either park, and I know he'll have a great time with all of us and his g/f. You are absolutely correct about the Comet. That is one charming little coaster that is FUN!! It's not thrilling...it's FUN!! Waldameer is a FUN park. Conneaut is a FUN park. I'm so there!!!
Wood Coaster Fan Club: Traditional parks ROCK!!!
Sunday, June 27, 2004 12:52 PM
Nice report, I'm glad you had fun. My manager at Kennywood went to Waldameer and she said she had a great time too.
I'll be at Conneaut Lake on July 19th because I'm part of the 4th Annual Blue Streak Challenge. Wish me luck!
Sunday, June 27, 2004 11:00 PM
All I can say is expect some rides at Conneaut to not be open. but I hear Blue Streak is up and running now.
Chuck, who enjoyed both parks for what they are and ended his trip at Kennywood, More later!
Tuesday, June 29, 2004 5:25 PM
BS was opened this saturday (26th)