Geauga Lake 7-12-06/ and Lakemont Park

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 2:05 AM
Hmmm.... it's been a LONG while since I was at this park... pre-Cedar Fair, pre-Six Flags, heck, the big coasters weren't even built yet... we're talking pre-1991 when I drove charter buses.

I had my son with me, who tops out at the 48 inch mark, and not another responsible person with us, so experimenting on the "big boys" was out... but the Dipper was still great, although down for part of the day. The Flying Wolf Bobs were fast, but no awesome drops. The biggest dissapointment was the Villain... looks great, rides like a piece of poo. It has potential, if they could just smooth it out a bit. I felt like a got punched in the ribs repeatedly no matter where we sat. Took all the fun out of it. The lap bars on the Villain and Bobs are horrendous as well. The seat backs need more cushioning as well.

I have heard complaints about the employees on various posts... I don't know if that was a Six Flags thing, but they were all nice this trip, although the carbon-copy script read at each and every ride got old. At 9:55 PM, do we really need to annouce "and enjoy the rest of your day at Geuaga Lake/Wild Water adventures? There's 5 minutes left before closing, kids!

One last dissapointment... the park totally lacks any beauty or excitment at night. NOTHING lights up, except for the giant gondola ferris wheel! It didn't even resemble an amusement park at night, not even from the ferris wheel view. Sad. Probably due to the lack of flat rides.

All in all, we had fun, but I miss the charm of the old park... pre-1990s. Not nearly as bad as some have rated it, but not like a good-old fashioned light up park with a nice midway and flat rides to compliment the coasters.

Quick overview of Lakemont Park in Altoona,PA last month.... NO crowds. Repeat rides anywhere and everywhere! Extended time! YAY! I hope this neat little park gets to stay in business. It was kind of bland in appearance, kind of like a giant permanent carnival ground. But it was worth the trip from Pittsburgh, it's dirt cheap to ride all day (like 8 bucks), and the Skyliner is cool... airtime galore on the first drop, at the crest of the 2nd hill in the front and during the 1st drop in the back. The historic Leap the Dips is quite a marvel, although it's not gonna whiten anyones knuckles. The Toboggan? ... DOWN, as each and every Toboggan I have ever come across has been. I am destined NEVER to ride this poor thing!

Decent flat rides, too. Although I am convinced the Scrambler gets cheesier and more dilapidated every time I see one. I don't remember the ride so slow, so noisy, or the car sides so high..I seem to recall being able to rest my elbows on the tops of earlier ones. And no seat back padding. Were there 2 different models?

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 8:15 AM
If you like a beautiful lit-up park at night, Kennywood is the place to be. Not only is the lighting great but the park stays open long enough for you to enjoy it. Also, KW has reduced prices after 5 PM. $14.95 or $8.95 if you are 55 or older.

I assume that you are familiar with this park because of its proximity to the two parks that you visited but I just mentioned it for those that want to experience a park that looks really good after the sun goes down.

Years ago, West View also was awesome at night with its abundance of multicolored neon on the park's buildings. Too bad that that park is just a piece of history now.

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 10:14 AM
West View was really nice at night like you said.
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Thursday, July 13, 2006 4:11 PM
Yup. I lived (still do, actually) within walking distance of West View Park. They had "Thorofare days" where you got comp tickets with grocery purchases, they must have given out an over-abundance of them, because we rode our tails off all week long and still always had enough to throw as confetti when they expired... a longtime tradition was to toss the leftovers from the dips or sky ride as confetti the night they expired!

Geauga was the first park that I really noticed that nighttime lack of illumination. It just felt so odd, especially since the lights are a particular favorite item of mine. Nothing beats riding at night... anyone who ever took a ride on Conneaut's Blue Streak in pitch darkness can attest to that! It's like riding a coaster with a blindfold on! And then back to the flatride lightfest! Oooooo!

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 5:12 PM
At one time Geauga Lake had a very decent abount of night time color. So much of that have gone the way of expensive spotlights on the coasters and yes, a removal of flat rides. Matter of fact, i think the really only flashy flat rides now are The Spider, Texas Twister and Starfish.

The Music Express (removed) and Tilt-a-Whirl (sent to wyandot lake) and Yo Yo (stripped of it's lighting) all had great light packages at one time.

Man, I never really thought about this... now Im depressed :(

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 5:25 PM
Another great park at night is Hersheypark--especially the Midway America portion of the park. It's nice to see tracer lights on all of their woodies.

Heck, even Storm Runner has a MF-wannabe light package :)

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Thursday, July 13, 2006 9:21 PM
Hershey is next year for me. I took an unrelated trip to Harrisburg in April, I was amazed at how much that park has grown, and at all the new coasters! (Once again, last time I was there was early 90s).

I never did make it inside the park to ride. I used to drive charter buses, and drove the Ice Capades on tour, we used to drive back behind the old arena to the stage doors. Man, that was tight!

Can't wait! (Plus there is a ton of neat transportation and train-related stuff to see in Hershey and nearby Lancaster). It's gonna have to be a multi-day trip.

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