Monday, May 21, 2001 12:26 PM
In summers past, I always dwelled on weather reports and prayed for near-perfect conditions when I made my trips to Cedar Point. This time, however, I have been following the weather reports, only to be informed of a murky forecast. But somehow, it didn’t bother me this time. As I awoke from my slumber at Hotel Breakers, I put on the local weather to see spotty showers and thunderstorms in the area. After a quick shower we were out the door, for a short stroll along the beach as we headed for the gates. The clouds were really low, as the tops of Power Tower, Space Spiral and Millennium Force seemed to be gently erased from the canvas of the Cedar Point peninsula.
In years past, it has always been a tradition to take the inaugural ride on Raptor. However, not being able to see the top of Millennium Force, had peaked my interest. I decided to change my routine. After the gates swung open, we headed for MF. They had just finished loading the first train of the day as we approached the platform. I didn’t realize until after they dispatched the train and allowed us onto the platform, that we were first in line to get the front seat! A feeling of euphoria came over me, as the realization of my very first front seat ride on MF was about to happen! The yellow train soon rolled in to welcome us aboard. Things at this point started getting a little hazy, as I looked upwards of the 310 foot monster, only to see the apex of the hill vanish into the dense fog that had enveloped the park. The ride to the top came rather swiftly. As we approached the crest of the lift hill, a quick look around and the park seemed to have vanished below us as we entered into the cloud. For a brief moment, ethereal serenity was the only way to describe sitting in a cloud at 312 feet above the earth. The absence of the bottom of the drop (and the earth, for that matter) generated an unusual feeling of elusiveness. The descent from the top came faster than I had imagined, but it seemed to happen in slow motion, as bit-by-bit, the park began to reappear as we dropped out of the cloud. Did you ever dream a dream where you are falling (the kind that jolts you awake?) Now it could be the gin & tonics of the night before playing games with my head, but those dreams is exactly what it felt like! The rest of the ride was nothing short of pure speed. I had to do it again!
We exited the ride and quickly hustled back into the queue, only to find ourselves in line at the front seat – again! This time, as we rode up the hill, I noticed a flash off to my left. Thinking that we were near the top, that it was only the beacon light. I looked around and saw that we were not near the top yet. Then a crack of thunder rolled across the sky. This time, my expectations of another ethereal-like ride, turned into a feeling of uneasy fear. Luckily, the bulk of the storm did not hit until we were well off the ride, and venturing up Frontier Trail.
The rain lasted for about an hour, we utilized that time to wander into the various shops dotting the Frontier Trail and a visit to the Town Hall Museum. The rain was beginning to let up as I finished off the last bit of an elephant ear we purchased in Frontier Town. In the distance, I could hear that ever-annoying squeal coming from the direction of Mean Streak. Since my favorite time to ride a woody is right after a rainfall, we decided to give it a try. Outside of what seemed like more braking on the first drop, MS delivered a fun and speedy ride on its rain-soaked rails.
Opposing to our past visits of trying to get many rides in on the coasters as we could, we decided to take a leisurely approach to the day. Figuring that I have accomplished my biggest goal of getting on the front seat of Millennium Force (twice in a row), I really thought that spending the day standing in long lines was really not what I wanted to do. Especially now that the rain-soaked morning was giving way to a rather pleasant afternoon, thus yielding more crowds. So we spent the remainder of the day taking in some shows (skipping on Imax) and taking the time to experience the other rides that I tend to forget on previous trips.
Every year, I end my trip reports with some observations of new things that I have noticed around the park. And here is this year’s:
- Raptor’s paint job is simply fabulous! It even rides like it’s still new!
- There appears to be some seats from an old Sky Ride-style ride sitting in the bone yard. They look old, and are the type that you sit in and your feet dangle. Could this be the new attraction for Camp Snoopy?
- Speaking of the beagle, has anyone else noticed that the Sky Ride tubs (which were painted last year) now has Snoopy on it? I wonder if they plan on putting the beagle on Space Spiral as well?
- I vaguely remember Peanuts Playland (near Ocean Motion) having a lot of Peanuts characters in it. There seem to be very few this year.
- Given how hard it is sometimes to get service (or seated for that matter) in Coasters, I don’t see how Johnny Rockets will be a good fit in this park. I already miss Fascination! :(
- I’ve noticed that they are getting a head start on this year’s Halloweekends. Workers are busy assembling an attraction (haunted one, I assume) in the shell of the old Frontier carousel. I can’t wait for Halloween!!!
- Any evidence of a 2002 project is nowhere to be found! They are doing a good job of remaining secretive!
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 12:12 PM
Thanks for the great TR, Neil! You had to mention the previous night's gin and tonics, huh?!
Wednesday, May 23, 2001 4:39 AM
Well, after months of telling you about Coasterbuzz, you finally come over! Good to see you here Mar-Jean!
Wednesday, May 23, 2001 10:51 AM
I also experienced the clouded drop on the Force last Friday. I made plenty of trips to the saloon for the Labatts.