As a native Northeast Ohioan who has been in Orlando since 2008, my yearly CP trip has become much more special than it was growing up. Season passes to CP and Geauga Lake/Six Flags WoA were the norm growing up, but knowing now I get one day a year makes me appreciate my day so much more. My summer trip home last week truly felt like a fall trip home, with high temps in the mid 60s, overcast skies, and Patterson Apple Cider already at Heinens.
I missed my yearly trip in 2013, and in 2014 I went on a gorgeous Halloweekends Sunday, so crowds prohibited me from doing much. It had been three years since I had done many of the coasters, and I couldn't wait to get on some of them.
First stop was Rougarou. My trip last year was the last day for Mantis, and I was always a much bigger fan than most. I have always loved the layout and placement, and over the years I learned how to ride Mantis. I was actually a little bummed when I heard about the transformation, as I always kind of enjoyed the stand up gimmick. I took four rides last year on the last day, and truly was ready to miss the ride. However, Rougarou was wonderful. It was still a very familiar experience from queue to ride, and I hit the brake run simply wondering how on earth we all spent 19 seasons standing up on that thing. It was a natural conversion and a great ride. My love for Mantis transferred over instantly.
Rather than go ride by ride in a tedious TR, here are the good and bad points of the rest of the trip
Finally got on favorites like Millennium Force, Maverick, and Raptor for the first time in three years. Everything was running great! Magnum was trimless and was knocking it out of the park on the return trip. If you ride in a non-axle seat, Magnum still delivers.
Great day for a light crowd. I know Ohio schools were back in session, but even with Michigan days, I managed to score walk ons on pretty much everything. 45 minutes for MF and about an hour for Maverick were my only real waits of the day. Heck, even Raptor was only 15 minutes for the front.
Blue Streak was running very well, better than in any recent memory. As was Corkscrew, which I probably haven't ridden in 5 years.
Other than Wicked Twister and Mine Ride, which I skipped over voluntarily, and Gemini, which went down as I got my seat, I got at least one lap on all the other coasters. It had been ages since I had ridden rides like Corkscrew or Iron Dragon, but I took advantage of the walk ons and just had a great day of riding.
The rain policy still puzzles me. A few drops of rain shut the place down for a good 30 minutes on two different occasions.
Gemini ran only the red side all day. I assume it was likely staffing. I typically skip Gemini if it is not racing, but wanted to ride. Was locked in and ready when the first of the two 30 second rain showers passed over, and the ride went down. Never did get my ride.
Midway Market lunch no longer includes the cheeseburgers, pizza, and taco/nacho bar. And the dessert selection wasn't nearly as good as it once was. This was always a staple for us midday, will likely look for a new lunch place after the menu change.
I want to like Gatekeeper, but for some reason it is one of a very select group of coasters that makes me queasy. I rode it last October and blamed it on a back row that had some rattling. This year I rode up front and the ride was glass-smooth, but the motion of the ride just does me in. The only other coasters that do this to me are the Intamin Impulses and Montu at BGT.
All in all, a great day back "home" at Cedar Point. The place was clean, employees friendly, and the guest experience better than ever. The care Matt Ouimet has for the overall guest experience truly shows more and more each year, and the guest experience is night and day compared with a decade ago.
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