Has anyone been to GL's Wild Water kingdom this year?

Thursday, June 17, 2010 8:49 AM

You know, I always hope a modern company (TGG or GCI) would build a traditional layout. I know the park is the customer and what they want they get, but I think it would be well received by many if a park chose to do so.

I think a 'modern' Big Dipper or Phoenix would do great at a smaller park, or even large. I know the draw is for the biggest and baddest and not the most "traditional", but I think it would be quite a fun project.

I love the new GCI and Gravity Group designs, but to me, they lack a classic feel. Bring in the vintage station with thousands of blinking LED lights, creepy themed tunnles and beautiful chaser lights around the entire circut. Lay off the banked turns a bit and let us fly into each other around turns. Double ups, downs and rapid fire funny hops around the circut... Make it simple and to the point!

To be honest, many classic woodies are boring compared to modern counterparts. But if done right, I think they could easily make a classic design a top 10 ride for many, fairly cheaply.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010 1:25 PM
Jeff's avatar

I always thought Villain was pretty classic outside of its "dipping" turn. It was just a little on the large size. Hersheypark did some pretty classic stations for both of their GCI's.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Twitter - Video

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Thursday, June 17, 2010 10:35 PM

That is true, Villain is not far off.... But the whole "hybrid" system ruins it for me in the 'classic' respect along with its sheer size like you mentioned. I sure miss that ride... Even when it beat the hell out of you in its final years!

Hershey does do a wonderful job with their woodies, for sure. I just love how those rides look at night with all the chaser lights and such. Hershey is one of my favorite parks after dusk, no doubt.

I guess in a way it is hard to recreate that classic feel... I mean, you just do not get that crooked lift hill, tunnels that smell like they are flooded with grease and trains that flex around turns (like the 3-bench PTCs) with modern designs. Everything is too "perfect" :)

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Thursday, June 17, 2010 10:44 PM

I know it might be getting a little long in the tooth now, but SFGAm's Viper is what I consider a "classic design" in fact of the cyclone clones out there (havent done the original) I would rank Viper as the best of the bunch.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010 10:55 PM
Jason Hammond's avatar

SteveWoA said:
the whole "hybrid" system ruins it for me in the 'classic' respect along with its sheer size like you mentioned.

If rides like Voyage are the result of being able to go big using hybrid technology, I say bring it on.


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Friday, June 18, 2010 9:03 AM

I wish I hadn't looked at those pictures of the current state of the park. It just leaves me feeling a bit empty inside. I spent a lot of my youth at the park both as a guest and as an employee.

I have to say I'm a little surprised nobody bought that skycoaster. And, did I read somewhere that the Illions carousel is still on site? That is a travesty. My wife's doctor is a realtive of Marcus Illions and we don't even want to tell him what has become of that creation. Why in the world did they not at least try to auction off the horses?

I try to stay level headed about Kinzel...even when I'm criticizing his actions...but he is a real bastard for letting this happen and showing such disinterest not only in Geauga Lake but in the water park that they are still operating next door.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 9:03 AM

I've always felt that if Cedar Point's GCI rumors were true, it would be a good idea to name it "Big Dipper." Purchase back the rights to the ride, essentially saving it's legacy from destruction. Then, design the layout in the "spirit" of the classic coaster, out-and-back-ish, but in a GCI sort of way (kind of like Prowler). Maybe decorate the queue with some historic artifacts from Geauga Lake.

It would definitely mesh well with a classic boardwalk-style concept. The company would save face with most of the super-pissed-about-Geauga Lake's-Big Dipper's-closure crowd. It would generate a decent amount of press, considering the local media loves to report anything Geauga Lake related. And it would definitely be a PR win for Cedar Fair in the greater-Cleveland area.

I know I would rest a little easier knowing that Geauga Lake/Big Dipper was preserved in a much more active way, rather than, say, a museum or website.


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Friday, June 18, 2010 9:05 AM

Frankly, that idea is just too good to be something Dick would consider.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 3:45 PM

did I read somewhere that the Illions carousel is still on site? That is a travesty. My wife's doctor is a realtive of Marcus Illions and we don't even want to tell him what has become of that creation. Why in the world did they not at least try to auction off the horses?

Their stand on the ride is that they want to keep it in the chain. From What I have been told and know, the horses are out and awaiting repair and the machine is still there. The gazebo has now been boarded up insted of that plasti-wrap it had. I have been told on several occasions that the carousel is not available for sale. But I know that the Dipper is for sale and is in fantastic un-touched shape. That ride is definatly not ready for the scrap heap.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 4:01 PM

Well, I hope the carousel rides once more. But, the LEAST Dick could do is donate it to the carousel museum across the bay from his home park.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 4:49 PM
mlnem4s's avatar

I know this is going to sound absolutely crazy but I at one point thought building a small lake front park at Edgewater Beach Park in Cleveland would be a great new home for the Big Dipper. The state could lease the land between the marina and the beach where the Dipper and a few other "classic" rides could go. The park is connected to the revitalized and growing Gordon Square neighborhood via the walkway under the highway. I personally think it is one element that could help Cleveland draw people to invest in the area which is desperatealy needed in the inner city.

As for WWK, the sad thing about the park is it does have a lot of potential if someone had the financial resources and willingness to invest in it. The management team there is great, the infrastructure is solid, it just needs more "signature" elements like a Master Blaster, Flow Rider, etc. I would absolutely love to see someone like Schlitterbahn or Holiday World buy the property and make a go of it.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 4:54 PM

Schlitterbahn...there is an idea. Sounds like they will be busy in Ft Lauderdale for the next several years though. I got to see some of the conceptual drawings today. If they can pull it off it will be great for the Region.

With some indoor components it would be great for Aurora.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 5:39 PM
mlnem4s's avatar

I didn't even think about the indoor stuff Schlitterbahn has done, that would definitely be awesome in Aurora!!!

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Friday, June 18, 2010 5:45 PM

In my opinion, the problem is not GL's WWK or the Aurora/Cleveland/Akron/Youngstown region, it's Cedar Point. It is well known that Cedar Point is the pride and joy of Cedar Fair, and Geagua Lake sits right in a market hot-spot of Northeast Ohio. It is fair to say that many of the GL visitors went to Waldameer for affordable family getaway, but the "Ride Warriors" are not going to want anything to do with that place. Not to mention Cedar Point is much closer to Cleveland than it is to Erie. What I'm trying to get at is that Cedar Fair may have not put too much into this place in order to take in more visitors for Cedar Point. If another wealthy private or chain ownership were to buy, the expansion opportunities are fairly good. Make or break for WWK is certainly a valid point. However, my fear is if the park goes under, Soak City will see a major renavation.

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Friday, June 18, 2010 5:52 PM
Jeff's avatar

Wildwater Kingdom is more or less the only game in town in terms of full featured water parks, but the bigger problem that everyone keeps ignoring is that every city with a rec center is putting in mini-water parks. If you can take the kids to a little rec center with a couple of slides and a pool all summer long for a family membership, it's going to be cheap and you don't have to drive anywhere. I think people forget that for at least a quarter of the Cleveland metro, GL is a pain in the ass to get to.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Twitter - Video

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Saturday, June 19, 2010 8:37 AM

Jeff said:
I always thought Villain was pretty classic outside of its "dipping" turn. It was just a little on the large size. Hersheypark did some pretty classic stations for both of their GCI's.

Herb Schmeck designed coasters with "dipping" turns. Look at Forest Park Highland's Comet and Meyer's Lake Park's Comet, both had a turn similar to the Villian's.

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Saturday, June 19, 2010 3:10 PM

wahoo skipper said:
Well, I hope the carousel rides once more. But, the LEAST Dick could do is donate it to the carousel museum across the bay from his home park.

When it has been refurbished it will probably end up at Worlds of Fun or Michigan's Adventures--the two parks in the chain without an antique carousel.

Remember, when CF bought Dorney they moved the Frontier Town Carousel to Dorney to replace the antique carousel that was destroyed in a fire.


This Isn't A Hospital--It's An Insane Asylum!

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Saturday, June 19, 2010 3:32 PM
birdhombre's avatar

AJFelice said:
It is fair to say that many of the GL visitors went to Waldameer for affordable family getaway, but the "Ride Warriors" are not going to want anything to do with that place.


This is an interesting point. My coaster buddies and I are drawn to Waldameer because of Ravine Flyer II, and while there we'll ride the other coasters, the two dark rides, and a couple flats as well. We live two hours away, and we've been known to leave work a little early on a Friday, get the "night rider" wristband at Waldameer and get in a good 3-4 hours. Multiple flights on RF2 makes it worth the drive, in our opinion.

But then, we're all in our 30s. The "Ride Warrior" types you're probably referring to are likely younger and accustomed to having a ride collection the size and caliber of Cedar Point just an hour or so away. In spite of RF2's awesomeness, I could see them being utterly bored at Waldameer.

Last edited by birdhombre, Saturday, June 19, 2010 3:33 PM
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Saturday, June 19, 2010 5:06 PM
Jeff's avatar

I think you grossly overestimate how many people in Cleveland even know Waldameer exists.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Twitter - Video

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Saturday, June 19, 2010 5:26 PM
birdhombre's avatar

Ha, I suppose I was overlooking the more obvious point. How can one analyze which park former Geauga Lake patrons might go to now, when one of those parks isn't even on the radar? Kennywood at least has a few billboards and the occasional commercial in the Cleveland area, but Waldameer is basically unknown.

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