Conneaut and Waldameer 6/23, the worst ride operator ever

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Friday, June 24, 2005 10:08 AM
Hi, I'm new here, but i've been a coaster fan for many months. I've already been to Cedar Point 7 times, and my brother is an employee there. So me and my brother and another CP employee took a small trip to CLP and Waldameer. Conneaut was first. It was disappointing because 1/2 the ground rides down. But the Blue Streak didn't let us down. The airtime in the back of the original Vettel train was amazing. The ride was smooth but didn't seem to go as fast as it did when Conneaut was using the NAD trains. After seven rides on the Blue Streak we left and took a 45min. drive to Waldameer. Waldameer reminded me of Conneaut except the staff was much worse. Before I get to that, the steel dragon was smooth and thunder river, the log flume was the best log ride that I ever rode. Now Comet. My first Herbert Paul Schmeck. It didn't go very fast but airtime could be found near the end of the train. Here comes trouble, on my sixth and last ride, I wanted to ride the last seat. My brother and friend already did, so I wanted to also. The train was half full and I'm next in line. I stay in line and the operator tells me to go. I said that I'm waiting for the last car. So he yells and tells me to go or get out of line. I stood my ground. My brother and friend boarded the train so I followed, but it was full, so I went to the operator and said, "Well, it's full, I guess I'll have to wait for next ride." The brakes are manual and the guy leaves the station during the ride. Can you say "operational", for those of you who work at CP. Train in the station, I get in the last seat on the next ride. Some kids ask him if he likes his job, he said he loves, but he doesn't do it right in my opinion. Then a group of three ask if they could all ride in one seat. These are junior trains and he says sure I don't care. Another "operational". So I couldn't enjoy my last ride and when leaving , I wanted to give the operator the one finger salute, but I knew better so when I scratched my head, he thought that i was giving him the finger but i was holding back. Then he jumps out of the station into the exit ramp and tries to grab me. I just keep walking. Again he tries to grab me and says, we have rules in this park, i am going to have your wristband taken from you. So in response, I said ride operators have rules also and you don't follow them. Never said another word to me. I guess that I was right. Then my brother steps in telling him the he has no class and his operating attitude would be disgraceful at Cedar Point. So after visiting park operations, I filed a complaint and if he would have successfully grabbed me, assult, but he could catch me. Was I at wrong for waiting for the last seat? There was no posted policy that staded that you must go to the first availoable seat on the comet. And if there was a policy, he didn't tell me. So, I want to know what you think about what happened on the comet. Should the guy be fired or was I doing anything wrong?

In conclusion, the day was still fun, I have the Blue Streak to thank for that.

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Friday, June 24, 2005 10:30 AM
It would be easier on the eyes to put this into paragraphs...also a bit of grammar checking might be a good idea while you are at it. Spell check is your friend too.

Otherwise despite the one rude ride op it sounds like you had a decent time. I dont recall that they make you sit anywhere in particular on the Comet from when I was there last summer. Also I thought the park was very well run when I went and was without any of these rude awakenings you encountered. I still look forward to going back to Waldameer.

As far as Conneaut they are having financial issues stemming from several years of lawsuit bs from a previous owner. The more money you spend their the more likely they will have money to fix their broken rides. If you at all like the park and some of their hidden gems be sure to make the effort to go back. *** Edited 6/24/2005 2:37:38 PM UTC by beast7369***

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Friday, June 24, 2005 11:18 AM
Gee, I seem to remember a MF policy, You sit where they tell you too!

Comet operates on a first come, first choice basis as do many coasters around the country.

Of course it's Erie, Theres more fights in the stands at a hockey game than on the ice.

Conneaut hopefully has turned the corner and now can focus on improving what it has and possibly getting more in the future. I hope!

Chuck, Thanking you for your report.

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Friday, June 24, 2005 2:09 PM
I also noticed as well that the Blue Streak was running much slower this year. It's not related to the train switch. Last year and the year before, the Vettel train flew, especially when experienced from the front seat. The slowness seems to be from extra roll back protections that I don't recall being on the 2nd and 3rd hills.
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Friday, June 24, 2005 4:15 PM
Also, when I said that I was waiting for the last seat, all he said was go or get out of line. How is that a sit where they tell you policy. He never told me where to sit!
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Sunday, June 26, 2005 11:35 AM
Sorry for that bad experience at Waldameer. That is definitely not the norm there. It's such a neat little park with great atmosphere and charm. The employees have always been friendly and energetic on my visits. But I guess there's always one that can louse it up for ya on any given day anywhere you go.

I was just at Conneaut yesterday, and the Streak was running great. Second trip in a month for me to the park. Don stopped to speak with us and said the Bug should be in operation by the end of July. He has all the wheels back and is waiting on the axles now (they are due back next week). Scrambler (Ultimate trip), is a lost cause. He told us the ride was original from 1952, and that the main bearings and such are just too old and worn as with many parts of the ride. Tobaggon was being worked on while we were there and will be open next weekend he said. Not sure about the Tilt-A-Whirl, Train, Yo-Yo, and Tempest which are all still closed and/or missing.

The most interesting thing he mentioned to us was how he hasn't had to replace broken bolts on the coaster as much running the Vettel train. "I was always replacing broken bolts with the other trains" he said. "I haven't had to replace one in almost three weeks now!" As much as I loved riding in the NAD's on that coaster, I could tell that they were hard on the track and structure. I've loved riding in the original train the last three years. I don't miss the NAD's at all on that ride anymore. Night rides on the Streak are still hard to beat as well. Another fantastic nightime coaster that more people should be talking about!! :)

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Sunday, June 26, 2005 1:14 PM
Conneaut is an awesome park, even with the problems they are facing.

Question: were the Tumble Bug, Toboggan, and Yo Yo running? There were serious issues with these rides last season.

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Sunday, June 26, 2005 2:38 PM
Two maintenance guys were working on the Toboggan all afternoon. Don said the ride would be running by next weekend. They moved the Ultimate Trip (Scrambler) out of the building it was in because the record snowfall this year has caused the roof to start to collapse. It hasn't yet, but you can tell the roof is in *dire straits.* I'll assume that 's when they found the problems with their Scrambler. I'm not sure about Yo-Yo, but Don muttered something about Chance rides when I mentioned to him why the train is down.
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Sunday, June 26, 2005 3:30 PM
Waldameer is my hometown park.I have never had any problems there in my 36 years of going there.It is a nice little family park.CP Junkie if you had already rode the Comet 5 times earlier you should have known you can't wait for seats it is a first come first choice policy.It sounds to me like you were in the wrong first.However it also sounds like the operater should have handled the situation differntly.You are right about Thunder River being the best log flume around.

Ps I go to about 5 hockey games a year and have never seen a fight in the stands!!! *** Edited 6/26/2005 11:14:08 PM UTC by Coasterfreakfromeriepa***

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Friday, September 16, 2005 12:52 PM
I am the other CP employee that CP Junkie 2007 mentioned, and I gotta say that I agree, that guy was a terrible ride op. He had very loadly critisied a little girl on one of our erlier rides when she went to the train sitting in the storage track since she did not know any better, asking her "Are you crazy?!" Then the whole fiasco later was nuts.

As far as knowing the policy from riding it a bunch before, for all rides other than that last one, we went ahead and went with what was available. There were no signs and the guy had not said anything to anyone else when we were on it, so there really was no way of knowing that there was such a policy. The guy could have definatly been more professional about it, and if he were then we wouldn't have argued and tried agian the next time around. If we did the same thing at CP, we would have been canned faster than a ride on Dragster.

Conneaut was a nice park, the Blue Streak had some great air off of the first few drops when in the back seat.

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Friday, September 16, 2005 1:06 PM
Sounds like the guy gace absolutley unacceptable customer service, what a disgrace. However, how do you know what operationals are at Waldameer? Just because something would be considered an "operational" at CP doesn't mean it is at Waldameer. I knew CP ride ops were snobby, but now its trickeling into their families.
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Friday, September 16, 2005 1:45 PM
My crewmates brother wasn't saying that they should get in trouble, we were only noticing the things they did that we at CP would have gotten in trouble for. I know that some of the employees at Cedar Point may seem "snobby" and what not, but the kind of rules that we uphold are for one main purpose.......safety. And if I am on a ride where the ride op LEAVES his post (especially when he is the only one on the ride itself) then I sure as hell would not feel safe riding that ride with him operating it.
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Sunday, September 18, 2005 7:32 PM
I hope that guy got in a lot of trouble. This makes me sick. If other people go to that park and it's the only park that they have been to, but they want to go see others, then what ever they saw that op do, might have changed their minds in a hurry. It makes ride ops everywhere look bad. Becuase there are people out there who judge other parks by what they have seen at one park.

If it was me I would have yelled at the guy and made a bigger scene than he did. I would have made him get his supevisor and explained the situation and if it wasn't taken care of, then I would have gone and demanded a refund.

Also as far as I know most parks have a policy against leaving your ride area or post, treating guests like crap, and attempting to assult guests.

What he did was arrogent and I really honestly hope he gets in trouble. It's people like him that give the hard working, dedicated people like me a bad name.

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Sunday, September 18, 2005 10:15 PM
When I'm at Waldameer it's always nice when the seat you want on Comet is open. When it's not, tough luck! That's just how the ride is ran. You can't just not get on if the seat you want is not open.

Now for the employee, it was rude of him to leave his area to yell at you and grab your wristband. That's not how he should've handled it.

Us people in Erie can sometimes get roudy. Waldameer has been closed early because of massive brawls, Celebrate Erie was closed early because of a huge fight, and those hockey games can get roudy, not just on the ice.

Waldameer employees seem to be either really nice or they could care less about how they act.

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Monday, September 19, 2005 3:40 PM
Heres the straight facts just do what they tell you and no one gets hurt, and yes cedar point does pretty much tell you where to go on millenium force, unless you go to the front and decide to wait. The thing is disobeying someone can cause you to be taken out of the park, its about capacity issues, whether or not thier were a ton of people there it seems that they want to get everyone on the ride, so that way they can MINIMIZE waits. I think that makes sense if im not mistaken.

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Monday, September 19, 2005 4:06 PM

MagnunBarrel said:
and yes cedar point does pretty much tell you where to go on millenium force, unless you go to the front and decide to wait. The thing is disobeying someone can cause you to be taken out of the park, its about capacity issues, whether or not thier were a ton of people there it seems that they want to get everyone on the ride, so that way they can MINIMIZE waits. I think that makes sense if im not mistaken.

That's how most coasters are run, well if it's a big park and long lines of course.

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Monday, September 19, 2005 11:44 PM
I don't know if it's fair to say 'most'. It depends where you are at, and what management thinks is a good idea. For example, at Dorney Park you can pick where you want to sit except on Laser, and on very very light crowd days Thunderhawk. The reasoning is because Laser's station doesn't have room for lines of guests, and the ride needs to be loaded from front to back for safety issues. Most ride ops I've dealt with, though, will let you pseudo-choose which row. That is, they'll let you wait and let people in front of you until you are at the seat you want. The only time I've had a problem with this is on the really busy days when half the people want the front. As for the Thunderhawk, when it's really slow they close of the 3rd and 4th cars and won't let you sit in them. I never asked, but I think I heard one of the attendants telling someone that it takes much longer to check/buckle the empty seats than to just close them off and not have to check, so the actual wait time per person is less.
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Tuesday, September 20, 2005 4:38 AM

AJFelice said:Us people in Erie can sometimes get roudy. Waldameer has been closed early because of massive brawls, Celebrate Erie was closed early because of a huge fight, and those hockey games can get roudy, not just on the ice.

Why am I not surprised? I found Conneaut's *clientele* a little more laid back and family-oriented. Not nearly as rowdy. :-)

We didn't have any issues with the ride ops at Waldameer but the place was full of gangster-wannabe kids who never heard of the concept "line-jumping will not be tolerated."

On the other hand, I have never seen so many security guards in my life. :-) Of course this was on Memorial Day and I have heard the park has a different "feel" to it during the day as oppossed to the evening when the "creatures" come out. ;-)

I enjoyed myself at both parks. Both were very nice and clean. The mouse rocks!

Oh, I believe the Tumble Bug at Conneat was removed. I just saw a bare space.

-Tina

*** Edited 9/20/2005 8:39:20 AM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***

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Tuesday, September 20, 2005 10:05 AM

coasterqueenTRN said:


Oh, I believe the Tumble Bug at Conneat was removed. I just saw a bare space.

-Tina

*** Edited 9/20/2005 8:39:20 AM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***


Was the track still there? Last I understood they were waiting for some parts to be fabricated. When I was there this summer, you could see the cars behind the Music Express.

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Tuesday, September 20, 2005 1:28 PM
Yes, it was still there as of Memorial Day.

There is STILL a *baby* tumble bug that I wasn't aware of. I thought Bill would of gotten a photo of the larger track we saw, but neither one of us did.

-Tina

*** Edited 9/20/2005 5:30:40 PM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***

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