Dorney Closing Day TR/End of the Season Review

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So the end has finally come for Dorney and many other seasonal parks in the country. Now begins the long 6 month offseason blues. For those of you that do not know me, I worked on the Talon crew this past season. It has been a great season. I was fortunate enough to work only from 10am until 4:30pm on Sunday, the park's last day, and was able to get in a few last rides and say goodbye to all the wonderful friends I have made over the past season.

Once I got off shift and said goodbye to some of my Talon crew, I got changed and headed into the park for about 2.5 hours of riding. I was able to get a last ride on Steel Force in the back seat, it was running really good. I also rode Dominator red side once it got dark so I could see all of the fog in the park. The fog on Sunday was CRAZY. I don't know if they decided to let it all out because it was the last day or if I just don't remember it being that foggy. It was so bad that when I started walking past the Whip (from the Laser midway) I couldn't even see the Guessing Game stand!

I took one last walk through the Gold Mine Arcade. I'm indifferent to the park tearing it down. I just hope the park plans on building a new arcade sometime in the future at the bottom half of the park. After this I went up to Hydra for 8 rides, to bring my total Hydra laps for the season to 100. My 100th lap was in the front row and I must say it was running unbelievable. Overall, after hearing all the positive and negative comments about Hydra throughout the year, I think it is exactly in the position that the park wanted it to be in. The Hydra crew came incredibly close to breaking 1 million riders for the season. (For those of you that know the Talon and Hydra crews well, we were both pretty competitive about who would have the most riders. Talon broke 1 million riders on Saturday night around 10:30. Despite us beating Hydra, I must give props to the Hydra crew for doing an outstanding job handling this new ride. It had its fair share of problems). I am one of the people who really enjoy this ride, though I still think Talon is a little bit better. In a few years I think Hydra will have the same popularity as Talon has right now. I remember when Talon first came out that there was just about as many negative comments as there were positive, and over time it just sort of grew on people. Hydra has made an excellent addition to the park and I hope to be working there next season. I took about 3 last laps on Talon, the last of which was the final ride of the season in the back row. Great ride as always. I waved goodbye to my crew and took a very slow walk out of the park looking at everything all lit up for the last time and proceeded to the employee gates down by Steel Force at the bottom of the park.

For those few of us who are both enthusiasts and employees at an amusement park, we know how hard it is to say goobye to the wonderful friends we have made over the summer. This was my first year working at Dorney and I plan on going back at least one more year. Was it hell to go through all the line jumpers and evaluations and long summer days? Yes. Was it worth it, absolutely. And I would go through it all again. Nothing can prepare you for the goodbyes you have to make with people you really don't think you'll miss until you realize it's your last day with them for either 6 months or possibly forever.

I would like to thank each and every single one of the enthusiasts who I met and talked to over the summer, I hope you enjoyed your visit(s). I met a ton of great people and got to work with some amazing supervisors. I hope all of you have a quick and painless offseason, see you next year! *** Edited 11/1/2005 8:58:36 PM UTC by DorneyMan88*** *** Edited 11/1/2005 9:00:32 PM UTC by DorneyMan88***

Hey, congrats on having fun working for the park. It really seemed to be a nice park to me. You guys did an excellent job of being so good to us and made it worthwhile to drive six hours there.

I have to say your park was a nice treat this year for me, and my first in pennslyvania. You have a nice collection of rides, including the whip which is a classic. It reminded me alot of my first rides ever at geauga lake pre-cedar fair owning. The park did well in drawing people also while competing with a much bigger park in new jersey about an hour away, so you guys are doing things right.

Always glad to see peolple enjoy running the rides for us and giving us our kicks. Thanks again and have a great offseason and maybe see ya back there next year.

Resident Arrow Dynamics Whore

Hey, I was at the park on Saturday night from around 9 until close. Nice to know I was number 999 thousand and something on Talon. My one Talon ride was great-- the cool night air added to the rush. Both times I visited Dorney this year, I thought Talon had a bangup crew. Good job, DorneyMan.

Count me as one of the people who like Talon better than Hydra. I won't say that it's a bad ride, because I still enjoy riding it. But I did notice the vibration that other people have mentioned. It seemed to begin at the cobra roll and lasted almost to the end of the ride. To me it felt worse at the front of the train. It just doesn't seem right that a coaster that's only 6 months old should shake so much. Maybe someone riding it for the first time, or someone who's ridden a lot over the course of the year wouldn't notice, but I felt it was not as smooth as when I rode at the Cbuzz event in May.

The only other thing I got to ride was Steel Force (3x). A ride in 1-3, followed by 6-1, then another in 1-3. The ride in the back was a little rough, but the ones in the front were unbelievably great, probably the best I've ever had on SF. The fog along the bottom of the drops was awesome-- perched atop the lift hill you could see the structure before you rising up from the fog. Flying down the first drop you couldn't see the tunnel at the bottom. The helix was really fast, and the hills on the return trip were giving an amazing amount of floating airtime.

The only downers were dropping 10 bucks (exactly) for a cheeseburger and a shake at Coasters, and the Lehigh Valley teenagers who are consistently the most annoying I've ever encountered in a park. Other than that, I enjoyed my brief visit.

I agree Hydra was running great on Saturday. It had more force in the final helix than ever, although that isn't saying too much since it was forceless in May. I'm just happy to have 2 quality B&M's so close to home. Is it too early to start the countdown for May 2006?
You and the other Talon ops did a great job this season. My last visit was in September and I couldn't belive how fast the trains were being dispatched. Same with the Hydra ops, it seemed like it took less than a minute to load and dispatch the trains on both rides.

I also like Talon more than Hydra. I think they are both great rides but Talon just seemed like a more fun ride to me (I guess it is also because Hydra lacks a vertical loop, my favorite inversion).

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