Kings Island, Mason, Ohio, USA
We got to KI Friday night May 8th 2009 around 8 PM and from Friday evening to Sunday it was a fantastic weekend!
When we arrived it had just stopped raining. It was chilly and allot of people we leaving (bonus for us). The park looked great, clean, great plantings and the employees we encountered were very pleasant. We headed to DB but got sidetracked at Scooby Doo because it was walk on. There were some major issues with the guns that night and all three of us scored really low. Being one of our favorite rides this was unusual for us. But we were not there for Scooby... on to DB
Walking up to the new area around DB was impressive. It is very cool the way they designed the station so that you can see the trains being loaded and then watch them travel up the lift hill. The structure of the coaster makes you realize what monstrous machines these really are.
The DB queue was only partially open. The outer rows of the first part of the queue and none of the second. The queue is well placed so that you can watch the splash down each time a train approaches the station. We were only in the queue about 15 minutes and we were at the top of the steps. I really hate assigned seating but I guess it does keep the line moving. We were assigned rows 5 and 6, the green train pulled up and we boarded. Gosh I love these trains, from the first time I rode Behemoth to now on DB they just impress me so much. They are so well designed, comfortable and secure with a great range of body motion.
They were running 2 trains that night and the crew did a great job. We started up the hill and my anticipation was really high. After riding Behemoth over 30 times last season I expected allot from this coaster. It was before sundown so the views from the top were impressive. The ride was good but not great as I expected. Was it the rows we were in? Hmmm we would need to do much more testing to decide.
We rode the Crypt next. The ride is much more intense then it was as Tomb Raider, but seems much shorter.
The new area going up to the Beast's entrance is very well planned and looks nice. The Beast Friday night with wet tracks from the rain was insane. The re-tracking they have done has improved the ride immensely. The beast was just great. There was no line so we rode it at least five times. The crew was having fun and the station announcer was very funny. He was telling people that there were Zombies and rabid chickens in the tunnels (added of course for the 30th year of the Beat). He asked if there were any people there for the RW event this weekend. Most of use cheered and he called us Coaster Nerds. Well how could we argue, we are.
We rode about ten rides in that two hours, all were walk on but DB. We watched the fireworks and then headed to the motel. It was a great way to start the weekend.
Saturday morning we arrived around 9 AM (slept in) and the check in was very simple and efficient. They gave us our VIP (oh I feel so special) lanyards, event schedule, and all day free beverages wrist band (score). I would have thought that the schedule would have been on the back of the lanyard card but it was on a separate folded card. They could save some money here and make it more convenient if they would put the schedule on the lanyard.
ERT was on the Beast until 9 AM so we missed that, we had so many great rides the night before it really didn't matter. ERT on Backlot Stunt Coaster & Vortex was until 10 AM so we headed to BSC. We rode it 5 or 6 times, I love this coaster and think it is very cool. I don't care what the naysayers say it is fun! We did our obligatory one time a year ride on Vortex. Dang that coaster hurts. At 11 AM we headed over to The Beast for the behind the scenes tour. There was a large group and we could only go as far as the paved road went. The rest of the road was too muddy. It was still very cool to be able to tour the grounds around The Beast.
We rode some more rides until about 1 PM, the park was getting really busy with school and church groups. We decided it was a great time to head out of the park for lunch. We hit our favorite restaurant Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen which is about 10 minutes from the park. WOW what a fantastic place. Amazing Cajun/Creole cooking, great service and a beautiful restaurant. After that we headed to the motel for a nap.
Back to the park around 6 PM to hit a few rides/coasters. Saturday night was fun with the birthday party for The Beast. Cake, pop, chips, music from '79 and give-aways. My son won a great poster board from the display they had for the building of DB. They didn't sing happy birthday though... I was looking forward to that.
The ERT on DB that night was insane. The moon was so bright it cast a cool glow over the wooded area of DB. The crew running it was efficient and fun. Plus, in the gift shop, they would email you your on-ride photo, this was a really cool surprise.
Being able to pick where we sat changed our opinion of the coaster. Row 1 was totally insane, as good as Behemoth. Row 2 was really great. Row 10 and 12 had the most intense airtime and Row 16 was the best ejector seats I have every been on. All in all it is right up there with Behemoth. We got in around 15 rides and then headed back to the motel at 1 AM. It was a great day at the park.
Sunday we got to the park and checked in, drink bands were handed out again wohoo! ERT was on the Racer, Flight of Fear and Firehawk. We headed right to Firehawk to find out that it was down and wouldn't be up until the afternoon if at all. I guess I am just not destined to ride Firehawk, every time we have been in the park since Firehawk opened it has been down or the wait was over an hour. Since I have ridden it as X Flight a number of times I have never wanted to wait.
Next we hit FOF. The train shot down the corridor and something was different... WOW the lights were on! It was so cool to see what the thing looks like in the building. I give KI a big thank you for that.
After, we rode Racer a bunch of times. Red side was running smooth but the blue side was harsh. It was way rough. It felt like my brain was dislodged during the ride. Hence we rode the red side for the rest of the time.
We headed to DB for a daytime ride. The PP and Goldpass folks were just heading to the ride so we only waited about 10 minutes to get Row 1. Another crazy intense ride.
We rode the steam train next so that we could be uber-coaster geeks and see what the ride was like from underneath. I wonder how many other enthusiasts rode the train to see DB from the belly side?
We needed to get on the road by 1 PM so we hit a few flats and the mine ride. The entire weekend was totally rockstar. What a great event and with being PP holders it was free, what a unbelievable added value. I thank KI for putting on such a great event and hope they continue it for many years.Last edited by Zakkster, Monday, May 11, 2009 2:33 PM
Sounds like a fun weekend. Was the emailing of the photos an ERT thing or is it a new feature? I would much rather pay $5 for an email photo than $10 for a printed one that I had to carry around all day.Last edited by eightdotthree, Monday, May 11, 2009 3:03 PM
I almost cried when I went to KI last year and there were lights on in the FOF "shed". I think that kills the ride myself.
They should do as much as possible to keep it pitch black.
Gald you had fun though.
Top 5 wood: 1.Hades 2.Voyage 3.Boulder Dash 4.Avalanche 5.Legend
Top 5 Steel: 1.Maverick 2.Fire Dragon 3.Batman 4.Raptor 5.Ice Dragon
We had a great time....ERT rides on Racer, OL:FoF, Italian Job, and Vortex...oh, and the shiny new Beemer. It was "curious" that the only wooden ERT was during the mornings, but I guess I understand the park's desire to "showcase" the new ride. Did get a bizarre ride on FoF when it was lit, then went dark after the midcourse.
My take: Beast was running pretty well, very aggressive and smooth through the helix. Racer Sun. morning was fantastic (even got an absolutely perfect race, delicious, didn't realize it COULD do that after several visits over the years). Sonny still bites the big one. Something is *wrong* with the first hill/inversion on FoF. IJ still kicks butt in a pretty serious way as an interactive coaster/attraction, despite the complaints of so many.
Finally, and this is a big one for the business enthusiasts: The loss of Paramount licensing hurts the park more than CF was willing to believe. Merchandise sales of "Flight Deck" and "Backlot Stunt Coaster" can't be too brisk, and I missed the Paramount Story, and the floral clock near the Tower. (At least they still use the name Eiffel instead of calling it Tower Ride 1, LOL). I'll have more later, both good AND bad, undoubtedly, as I expect to get "called out" for one opinion or the other.... :)Last edited by rollergator, Monday, May 11, 2009 11:28 PM
BamBam36: When we rode it last year the lights were off. I thought they had the lights on for the event only. I aggree it should be as dark as possible during regular times. Only have the lights on when the coaster geeks are there for an event.
rollergator: I saw something on Saturday that was disturbing. I was in one of the shops and all of the Nickelodeon items were 50% off. This is strange for a couple of reasons, one, it is really early in the season for CF to discount anything. Second, why would they need to?
Do you think this is the first step of CF dropping the Nick brand for Peanuts? If they did that it would ruin the kids area and their status of KI being number one kids . Or am I reading to much into this?
Sounds like a fun weekend. Was the emailing of the photos an ERT thing or is it a new feature? I would much rather pay $5 for an email photo than $10 for a printed one that I had to carry around all day.
idk if you can just have it emailed to you or not, I do know for 99 cents they will email it to you, but I believe you have to purchase one of the actual pictures first. I have to agree with you too-I don't like having to carry the picture around either
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