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Friday, April 23, 2004 1:27 PM
I know this is almost a week after the fact, but I wanted to post some of the highlights from my trip to BGW last Saturday.

It was the first trip of the year for me. Sure enough, they had the "hand scan" at the entrance. When I presented my season pass card, they lady asked me to place my right hand onto the scanner. It took about 4 seconds and she gave me my card back and I was done. My daughter just has the Silver pass and she was not asked to scan her hand. When I asked why, the lady just said that the screen had not prompted her to do it. (I have the Platinum pass.) I'll see how it goes the next time I visit. ???

Before I get too ahead of myself, I noticed something different about preferred parking. I don't know if it was a mistake on the attendants part, or a new perk, but when I handed the attendant my Platinum pass, we were given free preferred parking without even asking. The ticket said, "Platinum Preferred Complimentary". Cool. :) Usually we would have to pay a few dollars even with our pass.

The main thing about this day.....CROWDED! It was Band Competition Day and it was packed. The coaster lines were the longest I have ever seen them. On Alpengeist, all parts of the queue were open and the line still started way outside the entrance. But most lines still moved along pretty fast...typical BGW. :)

I'll just hit on a few things below, and I have a question or two.

We were literally the first ones in the park and went straight for Nessie. She still has spunk and I love riding her first thing in the morning. We were in the front row and upon return, no one was in line yet so we got a re-ride. Good way to start the day.

Apollo's Chariot had the queue lines moving fast as usual. Hardly any train stacking and for a ride in the front row, it was not a bad wait at all even in the late afternoon. (Those lines have always been fast.) I still love this coaster most of all. Such airtime!!

Alpengeist....what can I say? SLOW lines! The trains were always stacked. But after you get your turn and ride, it is so worth it. I still can't believe the speed on this thing. We only got one ride (in the front) because of the long line and slowness of loading. I have to be in the front when I ride or I feel wretched. :( But give me props for at least being able to ride at all. I don't even do Tilt-a-Whirl :p

BBW was extra speedy today. It was really whipping around...or at least that is how it felt. It's still a great suspended coaster and the drop over the river is always good. Man, those cars really swing out after that drop! Good times. Here is my first question: Why do the operators check under the covers around the wheels each time the train comes back in the station? This is something they just started last year and I still haven't heard why. I would really appreciate putting this mystery to rest.

Wild Maus. I miss it. All that is there is a very tall fence and no way to see anything at all. Sad.

On Escape From Pompeii, the usual crap happened. Once we got to the top of the lift and inside, someone has to do something stupid like stand up and of course the operator tells them not to do that then turns everything off and we miss all of the fire and fun stuff. Stupid people. :( I should have known it was a doomed ride......our boat could not get up the lift at first. When the front of it just barely got up onto the lift, it couldn't go any further. It just sat there trying and trying. After about 30 seconds, the ops must have done something and we creeped up the lift really slow at first...but we made it. I have never had that happen. The boat was full, but nothing out of the ordinary and no different from the previous boats ahead of us. Don't know. Weird.

I almost forgot...BGW now allows smoking only in designated areas. This is great. They said that they started it this year because so many kids were getting hit and burned by cigarettes by smokers walking around in the crowd. I think this is a great move on behalf of the park. It's a compromise that everyone can live with. The smokers had good places with shade, so they looked pretty happy. :)

The last thing I want to mention is the new Pet Shenanigans in Ireland. (Formerly the Bird Show.) BGW had gone to shelters and rescued dogs and cats and trained them for this show. It was so good! They had several dogs, cats, a pig, a rat, and a bird. They did some amazing tricks. My other question: How, in the world, do you train a kitty? I have a cat and never in a million years would I think I could train her to do any of those tricks. They are so independent and "aloof". That was amazing to see. HUGE PROPS to BGW for taking these animals from shelters and giving them love and a home. They were all great and I highly suggest this show. :)

Another great day at BGW. I think I'll go back next weekend!

Thanks for reading.

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Tuesday, April 27, 2004 8:15 PM

Lorrie said:
Why do the operators check under the covers around the wheels each time the train comes back in the station?

I noticed the same thing on my 2002 and 2003 trips. The operator said they're cheking the brakes, but I didn't get the impression that she was too knowledgable. If anyone has the real answer please post it!

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Wednesday, April 28, 2004 10:44 PM
It’s great to hear that the park has gone to non-smoking. I wish more parks would jump on this bandwagon.

As far as ride-ops at Big Bad Wolf checking under diapers, this has been going on for years. I don’t see how they could possibly be checking brakes with a train parked in the way. My only guess would be that they are checking the wheel assemblies for parts that may have loosened or come off. Having spent many nights doing safety inspections on Iron Dragon, I don’t think it would be that unusual. Especially the way those cars swing.

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Thursday, April 29, 2004 11:14 AM
I didn't ask what they were doing, but I got the impression that the operators on BBW were checking for leaves or other debris that may have fallen into the "diaper" during the ride. The check is very cursory, they barely even look at it, just a very quick glance.

And, for the record, platinum passes now entitle you to preferred parking at no additional cost. A very nice perk, in my opinion. We were also at BGW on 4/17, and got there a little after noon. The park was so crowded that preferred parking was completely full. Bummer! Although I'm very happy overall with what we get with our platinum passes, I sure wouldn't mind if they added one additional perk that platinum pass holders at BGT get - reride privileges!

Kikky

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Thursday, April 29, 2004 12:44 PM
Do BGW Platinum Passholders get the reride privileges at BGT? My first season having a platinum passport.
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Thursday, April 29, 2004 12:56 PM

coasterguts said:
Do BGW Platinum Passholders get the reride privileges at BGT? My first season having a platinum passport.

Most of the time, yes. Not all of the operators are on the same bandwagon though. Last fall, we got re-rides at BGT all but once, and 50% of the time at SWF on Kraken. They still make you walk the length of the queue on Kraken after two consecutive rides no matter how you plead or what passes you flash, btw. Those that denied us re-rides told us it's because BGW doesn't have the re-ride privilege for platinums, and they are correct in that (unfortunately).

As far as parking, we batted .500 at BGT getting free preferred parking. One told us "absolutely, go right ahead" and the other one told us "nope, your pass is from BGW so it's not good for free preferred here". Of course, that was last year when preferred wasn't free at BGW for platinum holders either.

Bottom line - ask!

Kikky

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Thursday, April 29, 2004 2:35 PM
That is great news about the Platinum Preferred Parking at no charge! I had a feeling it wasn't a mistake. I'm glad there is an extra perk to the Platinum now. :)
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