Great Adventure 10/1/10 Fall Family Fun Night

I always look forward to the season pass nights at the park since it usually means little to no lines for the rides.

2 years ago, the event was probably my most memorable trip to the park. It rained all day and stopped at 5 when the park opened, only 410 people showed up and while the park closed at 7:30 instead of 10:00, it was amazing to walk around the park and not see anyone else around.

With the rain today, I thought they might not open at all. I got to the park at 4:50 and there were 20 - 25 cars at the most. I figured there was no way they would stay open until 10:00 especially with it still raining.

Instead of letting people into the rope drop areas, they opened up the gates to the entrance of the park at 5:00 and there was no rope drop. I was the 2nd person in the park and went right to Nitro. It was very strange to be walking through the park alone with no other guests and very few employees around. I almost had a solo ride on Nitro but they were still testing and the ride opened up about 10 minutes later. There were still only 2 other people on the train. I haven't ridden in the front row in a while and there was basically no air time. I moved to row 7 for 3 more rides and went to Batman next. I walked right onto the front row and was able to get a re-ride without leaving my seat.

The Dark Knight was loading the pre-show so I went there and was able to get a re-ride there as well. Skull Mountain was next, 2 trains running and I had a 1 train wait for the last row. The bars in the station really need to be re-painted as most of the paint has worn off and the bars are all rusty. The skull figure was not lit up today and during the strobes, I was able to see there was a large tricycle maybe for Frightfest near the brake run. The ride shuffled a lot today and even though I could have gotten a lot of re-rides, I left after 2 rides.

Buccaneer was closed so I stopped at Blackbeard's and went to the Golden Kingdom since I saw Kingda Ka was testing. There was a line of maybe 20 people waiting and they started letting people in the line about a minute after I got there. At first they were only loading the right side of the station despite the side not closed off and they made people walk back to the right side. Then about 15 minutes later they opened up the left side because the right side was starting to get crowded. 10 minutes after that they closed the left side again and made people waiting on the left side move back to the right side, including those who had waited multiple trains for the front row and would have been on the next train since they not only waited extra trains for nothing but had to wait again for any row on the right side. Needless to say, they were angry. They should have either just kept the left side open or not opened it in the first place. I was able to get 4 rides in about 30 minutes.

Rolling Thunder has just the right side open with 2 trains running, faster than normal dispatches today but I guess that was because the trains were going out 75% empty. El Toro looked to have a station wait.

Bizarro had 2 trains running with most rows being a walk on or 1 train wait. I got 3 rides and went to Runaway Mine Train getting 2 rides with a 1 train wait each time. The Skyway was closed and never opened up, same with the Parachutes. That left only 6 non coaster rides open besides kiddie rides, Carousel, Tea Cups, Jolly Roger, Fantasy Fling, Houdini and Twister.

Superman had 1 train running which I actually prefer to 2 trains since I hate being on the brake run while your head is tilted down waiting for the other train to dispatch. It was a 1 train wait but once was enough for me. I finished the trip with Nitro, 2 trains were still running and it was a 2 train wait, and I grabbed an empty seat for a re-ride.

Although crowds picked up once the weather got better it still was never crowded and there couldn't have been more than 300 cars in the lot and after not going to the park since July, it was really nice to have a trip to get a lot of rides in without lines.

I was there Friday night too, although I didn't arrive until just past 6:30 after driving after work from Newark. I was in my Toro seat..although not "MY" Toro seat... at 6:50. I had a dozen rides on Toro all told. Although it felt great and was faster in the turnaround than I've ever experienced, it felt a little sluggish and forceless at several other junctures. My ride on Thunder was the best I've had in pain, little roughness, and actually a bit of AIRTIME. KA was even smooth..didn't even have to hold my glasses on. I'm not a huge fan of KK, but I love it at night when all you can see of the tower are the red lights. Bizarro was incredible on mhat I believe was my first real night ride since the re-do. Great visuals with the gateway lights and the fire, despite a little ear-boxing. I got off at 9:30 and accepted my own unspoken challenge to make that loooong walk to Nitro before closing. Barely did, and closed down that ride with my two best rides of the evening in that almost pitch-blackness of the woods. Everything I hoped and more.

The amusement park rises bold and are huddled on the beach in a mist

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