Dorney Park Opening Day 5/6/2006

Associated parks:
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Saturday, May 6, 2006 10:08 PM
I decided to go to Dorney today to spend a few hours at the park and get my season pass.

First ride of the day was Talon. The line was just past the stairs but the wait was only 5 minutes. Almost everyone was waiting for the front so once one of the ops told everyone waiting for the front to move to the right, everyone else was able to walk right into the station and find almost every row with no wait. Talon was great like always


After that we went to the Cedar Creek Cannonball. While on the train, I wanted to see if Thunder Canyon (River Rapids) had the waterfalls turned on and they did, so I skipped it (only in the low 70's today).

Next up was Hydra. Wait was around 10 minutes. I enjoyed the ride but I didn't like it as much as I remember compared to last year. The Jo-Jo roll still feels weird even though it was my 5th ride on Hydra.


Thunder Creek Mountain was next. The wait was about 10 minutes. Even though I brought with a jacket specifically for this ride, I still got soaked. The waterfall you go through barely got any water on me but the splash after drop got water all over.

Then I headed to the Whip which was only a 1 cycle wait. It seemed more intense than Hershey's whip and was a great ride.

I then walked over to Laser. It was only a 2 train wait but with 1 train running and slow dispatches, it took around 10 minutes. What seems to slow down the loading is the rule of filling in the first open row. People were going into the last row of the train or somewhere else other than the first open row and the op was making them get up and move. And with only 1 op checking the restraints, it seemed like it was taking 5 minutes for a full circuit (loading, ride time and unloading). The last helix was a lot more forceful than I remember (maybe because I was towards the back of the train this time and last time I was in the 3rd row). Even if there wasn't a line, it seems like a once a visit type ride.

Steel Force was closed all day (I hear the chain lift is broken) which was dissapointing but I know I'll have some chances to ride it later in the season.

Thunderhawk was running 2 trains today. Everytime I walk through the queue with the 2 sets of switchbacks, I can't help but think how unneccessary it was to build such a queue considering I have never seen the line a few feet past the stairs. Most seats were a 1 - 2 train wait. I noticed there was little to no airtime in the back of the train. When we got back to the station, I saw the station had maybe 12 people in it so I went around again for another ride (I hate that Cedar Fair no re-ride policy). This time I rode in the middle because it seemed like everyone was going for multiple rides (I heard one person say they went on 6 times) so the station got somewhat filled up quickly. Again, no air time in the middle. I guess there is only a lot of airtime in the front (last season when I sat in the first row I was getting air time all over).

I stopped back at Hydra for another ride, again about a 10 minute wait. Same feelings about it as the first ride.

I then went to Wild Mouse as I didn't get the credit last year due to the line (last year was my first visit since 2000). The wait was about 20 minutes. It probably would have been shorter if the ride was more efficeint in that they only allow 2 adults per car. This caused some of the cars to only have 1 or 2 riders instead of 3 or 4. The first half was really intense with the car really whipping around those hair pin turns, but after that part the brakes were horrible. I had the lap bar down not to the point of being stapled but still down a lot. Every time the car hit a brake, I slammed into the lap bar which really hurt my stomach (the brake before the final brake was the worst). Definetly the worst Wild Mouse I have been on.

The last ride of the day was another ride on Talon. What was funny going into the line was that more people were leaving the ride than entering. It seemed as if the wait was too long for most people and as soon as they saw how long the line was they turned around right away and exited the line. Then the ride greeter started telling people the line was 30 minutes. It was about 15 - 20 minutes, but that just shows how everyone is used to the lines at Dorney usually being non existant that a supposedly 30 minute wait is too long for some people. Again, another great ride.

Overall the day was great with very short lines.

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Saturday, May 6, 2006 10:36 PM
Fun TR to read. I haven't been to Dorney yet... but I noticed a similar thing at Knott's last year: one poor ride op checking restraints on the Schwarzkopf shuttle(Montezuma's Revenge)! Seems like they were doing the same thing on Laser. Any ideas why they do that?
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Saturday, May 6, 2006 10:44 PM
I'm not sure, maybe a lack of staffing or staffing costs? Or they figure the ride isn't popular enough to warrant another op? I have never seen the line with more than around 75 people in line but even that can be a long wait since I can't remember the last time I saw it running 2 trains.
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Saturday, May 6, 2006 11:17 PM
Knott's wasn't out of ride ops elsewhere in the park! There was like 6 peoples doing "something" (cause they weren't breaking records in dispatching trains and chatted with each others most of the time) at Xcellerator, 4-5 people at Silver Bullet, same for Ghostrider, etc.! So, probably the parks that don't care for those rides...
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Saturday, May 6, 2006 11:17 PM
Good TR! I can't wait to go, i'm going June 13. When i'm there, i'm going to get my season pass because i'm leaving for CP on June 19. Really pumped! I wish I could go before then, my brother is going Friday for the Physics Day or whatever.
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Sunday, May 7, 2006 10:23 PM
I was disappointed to see Steel Force down opening day. This was the first time since it has opened that it hasn't been open on opening day. I was looking forward to a ride only to be let down. For shame! For shame! I got a lot of other rides so it didn't matter too much.
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Sunday, May 7, 2006 11:52 PM
Any word on when Steel Force will be running again?
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Monday, May 8, 2006 7:21 AM
Was there on Sunday, but again, nothing but good things to report. Park was pretty empty, but from the perspective of getting on the most rides, nothing wrong with that!
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Tuesday, May 9, 2006 12:59 AM
^^ Supposedly Steel Force is closed for 3 weeks *** Edited 5/9/2006 4:59:40 AM UTC by YoshiFan***
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Thursday, May 11, 2006 8:45 AM
3 weeks! That's a long time... ;(
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Friday, May 12, 2006 12:40 PM
I just got off the phone with the park. They are hoping for next weekend but couldn't give me any definite answer. Call me a cry baby but I'm thinking of cancelling our first ever trip to DP if Steel Force isn't up and running. :(
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Friday, May 12, 2006 3:29 PM
I think that's understandable. It's arguably the star attraction of the park (or at least the most popular) and it would be a shame to miss out on riding it if possible. I only live 45 minutes away and probably won't be going back until it's open again (or at least for another week in a half)
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Friday, May 12, 2006 7:20 PM
Just got back from an afternoon at Dorney and I must say it was the most crowded I have seen the park in a very long time. I believe it was Physics Day and Music in the Parks Day. There were thousands of kids everywhere in matching t-shirts. They called for rain, but it turned out to be a sunny hot day. Half of the parking lot was full of school busses.

Wait time for Hydra: 45 mins. Talon: 2 hours. Wild Mouse: 30 mins. Laser: 25 mins. Tacos for lunch: 25 mins. $.25 Cotton Candy: 10 mins!

Steel Force was closed all day and Thunderhawk didn't open until 4pm. All flats and water rides had long lines too. Hydra was smooth and fast. Talon was much more forceful and more g-forced than I remebered... TWISTER <3's B&M!

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Friday, May 12, 2006 10:00 PM
My brother was there today for the science and physics day, and he said it was really crowded. I had the opportunity to go, but I chose not to b/c I am going next month before my CP trip. I'm glad I didn't go now.
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Friday, May 12, 2006 10:14 PM
Wow, I'm shocked it was so crowded today. I had considered going today earlier in the week but decided against it because of the forecast. I hope that other weekdays in May aren't as bad as today sounds. *** Edited 5/13/2006 2:18:17 AM UTC by YoshiFan***
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