Homey G's CoasterBuzzCon MEGA TR ! Part 1 : SFKK

Associated parks:

June 8, 2002

Hey everyone! Sorry I'm just now getting around to writing this. It's been a crazy couple of days since I returned home from CBC. The past two of which have been spent sitting through 2 days worth of OSHA Compliance Training. For those who have no idea what that's like.. picture a root canal without Novacaine® and you have some sort of idea. Not fun, and definitely didn't allow me the time to pen out my TR. Let me just say before I start, I had a great time and anyone who's ever "on the fence" about attending a coaster convention should put those reservations aside and just do it. You won't regret it.

Please note all coasters will be rated using the "Griswold Scale". -3 (complete nightmare) to +5 (religious experience) and 0 being positive, but just slightly.

This particular trip started out Saturday June 8th in Greenville, SC. My buddy Brad and I hit the road towards Cincinnati at about 10 AM in our rental car, a surprisingly legroom-a-plenty, but brown Dodge Neon. The plan was to see what kind of time we could make and if there was some to spare, make the short jaunt over to SFKK for a late Saturday session to pick up some coaster creds. At around 3:30ish we made the executive decision to pass up the exit to Cincy and head on over to Louisville. With the park being open til 10, we figured we'd have all the time we needed to catch all the coasters.

We weren't sure exactly where it was, but from my time on here I knew that it was next to the airport, so we followed the signs. No problem right? Wrong. You'd have an easier time finding the entrance to the Batcave than you would being able to drive right up to this park. So, after about 5 rights and 14 lefts off the interstate, we managed to find the entrance. 3 bucks for parking!! Woohoo! It's 10 at SFoG! I find that a reasonable parking fee puts me in a better mood going into the park. Most days going to SFoG I feel like Chevy Chase singing "Moon River" in Fletch. It was around 5 when we exited said rental car and headed for the park. The first thing you notice is Chang's large, impressive structure invading the skyline. The very next thing you notice is how extremely pastel-colored it is. Unfortunately, the THIRD thing we noticed as we were getting ready to enter the gates was a running theme the rest of the day. MASSIVELY overflowing trashcans. Not just one, everywhere you turned. I was hoping to have a different experience than Mark Baruth had, but it looked like that's exactly what we were in for. Strange that a park could provide such a Jekkyl and Hyde persona that SFKK apparently does. Some reports praise it for their cleanliness, others.. including this one.. do NOT. We headed across the poorly designed bridge to the other side of the park to take a crack at

CHANG +4 (Coaster count : #44)

Crowds had already begun to disperse, so a 10-15 minute wait was all it took to land a front seat on this looong B&M Standup. At 154 feet tall, it became the tallest coaster I had ridden to date. That record would stand for about 16 hours. This coaster, which is a vitual no-show in general topic conversation on the 'Buzz, is an absolute delight. What I had heard on here told stories of headbanding, but on our 5 laps on it this night, none were to be found. The only possible negative thing is the fact that towards the very end, there is a pop of airtime that tends to staple you in a bit. That's it! All the inversions were comfortable and the ride provides great speed and visuals. Eeks out Georgia Scorcher as my new favorite standup. Sorry Bill.

After this great ride, we decided to head back towards the the woodies. But first we decided to ruin it with a quick lap on T2. What exactly is this thing themed to and how the crap do you get to the que line? 5 minutes later, we find the que and begin our wait for my FIRST SLC. They were running two trains, so we figured maybe a 10 minute wait. Amazing how standing in line for 10 minutes seems like 30 when everyone in line is smoking. Oh wait, it only seemed like 30 minutes cause it WAS. Someone had puked on the coaster, and the ride op informed everyone via PA system that it wasn't in her job description to clean up puke. Funny, down at another SF park in GA, the ride ops sure clean puke. Disgusted, Brad and I jumped the guardrail and headed back towards the back of the park away from the acrid smoke purgatory that was T2's que line. We passed on Penguin's Blizzard ride even though it seemed to be themed very nicely. Thunder Run came into view and we headed that way. Wait.. how the... WHERE'S the que for it? Apparently, someone thought it would be a good idea to make folks walk the entire length of the ride, then double back on the other side to search for the que AGAIN on the other side. Ay Demi....

THUNDER RUN +2 (#45)

This woodie which greatly resembles Hurler (but is NOT, I repeat NOT the Hurler) easily deserves a +3, if not +4, because of it's great layout and airtime filled ride. However, it's completely hidden que, pitiful queing, and one train operation on a Saturday almost completely saps the fun out of it. The que, when you find it, loops under the station through the use of switchbacks. Heavy foliage surrounds the que on all sides. My guess is that this is there to provide shading for people waiting. What they didn't probably plan on is the fact that it's so thick, it stiffles out any breeze and the standing water underneath gives fabulous breeding ground for mosquitos. You're trapped. Another miserable thing about it is people were cutting in line left and right because the chain was dropped at one of the switchbacks, so people weren't looping, they were just cutting without a care in the world. I informed one of the 2 ride ops, but they didn't care either. *Sigh* A back seat ride on the very comfortable trains was tons of fun though! I wanted another ride, but I would rather take a swift kick to the pills than wait in that line again. Somewhere on the ride, I cut two of my knuckles! That goes to show you, if you're having fun on a coaster, you don't notice OR care about little things like that! If that happened at work?? Nurse Taylor, here I come! Bottom line, lots of potential for this gem of SFKK, but they need to serious rethink some queing issues and train capacity.


Coaster credit only really, but I wish they had coasters like this when I was a kid. When I was a kid, the smallest coaster they had was the equivalent of Scooby Doo/Beastie. This would be great to break a kid into coasters. I have a particularly hysterical photo of Brad and me smooshed into the last car together. You can imagine a 6-2 205 lb guy and a 5-11 190 lb guy in those tiny restraints. Classic stuff. With that tomfoolery out of the way, we head back to the dueling CCIs


Stella +2 (#47) Lola +1 (#48)

Stella, which we tackled first, gave great airtime off the drop and kept it's speed relatively throughout. Lola, gave moderate air on the first drop and seemed to stall midway. The dueling element is completely lost on me here, the tracks were in DESPERATE need of grease, and the brake run is a super gutbuster even though they were only running one train a piece. These CCIs need some serious TLC, but I think with a generous helping of lube, could be decent. Unfortunately for these guys, they happen to be sandwiched in my CCI coaster count between MegaZeph (a marvel) and the tag team champions of the universe Legend and Raven at HW.

T2 +1 (#49)

I'm the wrong person to ask when it comes to Vekoma and their track design, but they would help themselves tenfold if they could develop suspended trains that seat 4 across. As a whole though, this wasn't all that bad of a ride. We grabbed the last train and had a nice little trip. I like how it jerks you down the hill in the back. I fully admit that some of the inversions aren't smooth, but for what I was prepared for, it was actually enjoyable. The corkscrews were nicely executed and I'm glad I rode it. I've heard that T2 is one of the more poorly maintained SLCs, but to me, it wasn't near what people had built it up to be. That doesn't mean I wanted another ride, but still.

After 4 more laps on Chang, we left just enough time to hit their mouse... again, just for the credit. Had I to do over again, I would have looked closely at the numbers so that my 50th coaster wouldn't have been..


It's a mouse. It's heavily trimmed. It's not that thrilling. However, like usual, Brad and I make the best out of things by turning this tame mouse coaster into "The Dirty Stock Car Racer Coaster of Doom!". Hence, we spent out time putting each other into the wall on each and every lateral turn this little mouse had. Laughter, mayhem, and bruises ensued. Little did we know we'd have been better off saving those bruises for what was to come the next day AND the next!

It was 10 o'clock at this point, so the park was closing as rain began to fall. Here's the skinny on SFKK. Their coaster collection really isn't bad at all. In fact, it's quite good. Their restroom facilites, overflowing trashcans, poor park layout, apathy about people going around shirtless and smoking while breaking in line was wretched. If you were to weigh it all out, the bad outweighed the good. Tis a shame too, as I won't return until I hear people saying things have changed. We hopped in our car and began to head towards Cincy and the full day at CBC tomorrow!

Thanks for reading... gotta get back to work now. Part 2 (PKI) and 3 (HW) coming soon, though it'll probably be tomorrow!

Sorrrrrrrry folks! Parks closed. The moose out front should have told you.

*** This post was edited by Homey G. on 6/13/2002. ***

Nice TR. Glad to see you guys could make the most of what otherwise might have been a mediocre day. It seems from what I've experienced and heard is that SFKK is good when the park is empty, but turns "ugly" with the slightest of crowds.

I agree with you about Chang, it's really a great, powerful ride. I still like the Scorcher a tad more, but I really couldn't tell you why. Just one of those preference things.

I think that Thunder Run has the most dificult to find entrance I've ever encountered. On my first visit to the park, we walked all over the place trying to figure out how to get to it. Did you guys get a front seat ride in? The air over the bunny-hops in the front was amazing on Sunday after SRM. It would be nice to see two train operation, but I'm pretty sure that SFKK doesn't have another train for the ride.

Glad to see you guys were also able to squeeze in the trip to HW.

"drop rides, not bombs."

*** This post was edited by chris on 6/13/2002. ***

Wouldn't it be great if they put Chang in a good park? Maybe they can sell it to PKI up the road ;)

Proud CB club member

chris said:

It would be nice to see two train operation, but I'm pretty sure that SFKK doesn't have another train for the ride.

See?? That's what I thought! I didn't see transfer track anywhere, but I seem to remember Bill (rollergator) saying that they had 2 when he was there before. Wish someone could clear this up.

Sorrrrrrrry folks! Parks closed. The moose out front should have told you.

I hate to hear negative comments about my home park, but they are true. I always drive past the park and it looks like a ghost town Actually got off on a wrong exit on the interstate on accident and it was a street that ran right next to twisted twins. Well since my g/f never saw the ride before, we parked and walked next to it. In my view I could see Mile High Falls, lift hill of T2 and Chang.

I think we stood there for 10 minutes and never heard anything or saw anything moving. I know the park had to be open it was only 7 on tuesday night.

I however told my g/f that next year we should get season passes since its a 5 minute drive from the house and parking is so cheap. Nothing better than wasting a evening after work on a couple of coasters =oP

To my "limited" knowelege:
Thunder Run has no transfer track and only one train
Twisted Twins has no transfer track and only one train per side.
T2 has a transfer track and two trains but doesnt always use both. Additionally, the trains have less rows than most SLCs
Chang has transfer tracks to accomodate 3 trains. I think they only have 2. Though they only run one at times (doesnt matter, they stack so bad two trains would be a waste).

So for my ride opinions:
Chang ROCKS! 'Nuff said.
T2 is a pile of crap, even for an SLC. Fortuneately, the headrests are VERY soft so there is no headache.
Thunder Run *used* to be acessible from two different sides. For 'whatever' reason they blocked the path from over by the dragracers for the 2001 season. Oh this ride ROCKS too.
The Twins are just there.
I hate rodents...

Even on the day after SRM when there seemed to be no lines (everyone was in the waterpark) the place still was pretty messy (filled trash bins and all).
Besides, if we were really shutting down people we disagreed with, would Jeremy (2Hostyl) still be around? :) I think not. - Jeff 1/24/02

Thunder Run ran two trains when it had the old PTC trains. Those were the old dark brown trains. In 1998 (don't quote me on that, but it was before premier) they replaced the old trains with a new PTC (the current yellow one) but this time only with one train. Hope that helps.


Yeah, that DOES help. I don't see how they couldn't/don't run two though. The layout is long enough to facilitate 2, definitely. Just leave one out in the break run and cover it at night. Just that alone would have made my trip there worthwhile if I could have gotten a few more laps in.

Sorrrrrrrry folks! Parks closed. The moose out front should have told you.

*Bump* so as to get the two parts together. ;)

Sorrrrrrrry folks! Parks closed. The moose out front should have told you.

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