Dorney Park, 7/21/08

Associated parks:

I has been just over a month since I was last at Dorney, the longest amount of time I have gone without going to the park in the past 3 seasons (not counting the offseason of course).

We got there at around 10:45, the lot wasn't that crowded but the waterpark already had long lines. When entering the parking area, I saw Voodoo was running with empty rows so we went their first. I got 2 rides and it is growing on me, I was really against the ride when I first heard it was rumored to come to the park but it is more fun than I exepected especially after riding it on a 2nd visit.

With Laser leaving this year, I wanted to get a few rides in. 1 train wait. Nice and forceful. While on the lift hill I saw Kinzel and some other guys in dress shirts walking around near the first drop of Laser/Screamworks. I also got 2 rides in and went to Steel Force where I saw Kinzel and the other guys again. 1 train wait also for Steel Force and again I got 2 rides in.

Thunderhawk was a 1 train wait, Thunder Creek Mountain was about 20 minutes, too long of a wait for me. Dominator Space Shot was a 1 cycle wait. Hydra had the fullest station of the day, but was still a 1 train wait for the middle of the train. Talon was the same but I waited 3 trains for the front.

We headed into Wildwater Kingdom which was where everyone in the park was. Aquablast looked to be around 30 - 40 minutes, Aqua Racer looked to be 20 minutes.

The 2nd lazy river was finally open, but it wasn't nearly as good as the newer one. The old one is short and has bad loading system since people can go around more than once, it's basically a free for all to get a tube.

I also noticed the swim game is gone and is now a VIP pool. I'm not sure if it was for the Cabana rental people or something else but I saw it empty every time we passed by it.

We stuck to the slides with shorter waits and never waited more than 10 minutes for anything (thankfully we went to Aqua Racer when the line got shorter). Patriot's Plunge was completely down the stairs and into the walkway leading up to the stairs something I have never seen before.

Overall it was a great trip with short lines for everything.

Ride Count:
Voodoo, 2x
Laser, 2x
Steel Force, 2x
Thunderhawk, 1x
Hydra, 1x
Talon, 2x
Dominator Red, 1x
Wildwater Rapids Orange, 2x
Wildwater Rapids Blue, 2x
Wildwater Rapids Yellow, 1x
Aqua Racer, 1x
Jumpin Jack Splash Yellow, 1x
Speed Slides, 1x
Cascade, 1x

Sounds like whatever crowds had been coming into Dorney a few weeks ago have all diminished. I wish Dorney would get more crowds in a way because I don't want to see it get closed someday like Geuga Lake. Cedar Fair needs to do something good with Dorney.

"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band

I've never been to this park but I would assume that if the waterpark was really busy that there is no chance of the park closing considering all of those people paid the full admission price to get in the park. Also, Cedar Fair wouldn't have paid the high price tags to install B&M's like Talon and Hydra in the park if the ridership wasn't there. There are many other cheaper coasters available but CF intentionally picked the higher quality, higher price tag coasters for Dorney (or would an SLC have been a better choice for Dorney rather than Talon? ;-) ).

Based on my one and only visit of Geauga Lake last year, there were no lines for anything (probably even in the waterpark which I didn't visit) which is the primary reason for that park closing. As long as people actually visit and pay the general admission to get in, the park should at least break even. I imagine Geauga Lake probably wasn't doing that so that's probably why it closed.

This is how Dorney has always been. It's crazy busy on the weekends, and the weekdays are a little bit slower, though the waterpark is usually packed. I drove by the park this past Sat. (7/19) around 1pm, and they were already substantially filling their final overflow lot, so I would hardly say that Dorney is in any kind of trouble. The park was clearly MOBBED on Sat. It's just the usual attendance flow for Dorney.
I'd love to make it to Dorney. It appears to be a total sister park to Worlds of Fun, which is outstanding. Sadly, I am never in that part of the country...

Off topic: Bunky did you finally score that Ka credit over the weekend? I was keeping my fingers crossed for you (and your courage)!

Dorney? Closing? I don't see that really happening. The crowds tend to be at WWK when its hot, and its never been terribly busy on weekdays, but its always crowded on weekends I've been there.
Even with the crowds at the waterpark, I can't see the ridership being at the actual "amusement park" portion of the park. I never see it so busy that I'm irritated in the slightest that I'm waiting in such long lines for rides I've done a million times. Sure, Wildwater Kingdom draws a huge crowd, but when is the Dorney part ever PACKED. I've never seen it, or at least, I haven't seen it in YEARS.

How did you find Wildwater Kingdom? Last time I went, which I must admit was years ago because no one wants to see me in a swimsuit now (unless you're one with a fetish for pasty pale fat girls LOL), I found the park crowded, without enough chairs, and disgustingly filthy dirty. I saw things floating in the wave pool that I don't want to ever witness again anywhere. Trash everywhere. Now when I pull into the season pass parking lot, I drive by the new pool and it looks spotless. How's the rest of the waterpark?

"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band

Saturday's and Sunday's in July and August pack in the crowds. In 2006 on a Sunday I went later in the day and Talon was 40 minutes, Hydra was 25 minutes. They also pull crowds in the ride side during school trips in May and June. In early June this year, the ride greeter said Talon was 45 minutes, Hydra looked to be close to 30 minutes, yet on that day the water park was empty.

I find Wildwater Kingdom great for an included waterpark since it has over 20 slides with a few drawbacks. Most of the time something is closed (usually the 2nd lazy river or older wavepool) which makes lines for other things longer. I also don't like the inconsistent rules about shirts on the slides. From what I understand, shirts can be worn on all slides and attractions except the body slides. I have been told on the inner tube slides you can't wear shirts yet 20 minutes later with a different guard or on another day they allow it.

I find it very clean, but I never go into the wavepool.

Yosh, I'd say that's probably a smart idea. LOL I haven't been to Dorney in a few weeks now, but considering I've been there eight times since the season started, I'm chillin' out right now and visiting some of the other Cedar Fair parks instead. Cedar Point is in a few weeks! :)

"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band

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