Indiana Beach (7/28/2002)

Associated parks:
None

Thursday, August 1, 2002 5:52 PM

We arrived at Indiana Beach around 4:30 under an ominous sky and very light rain. I didn’t expect the rain to stick around long so it didn’t bother me much. We dumped our car in the south parking lot (free parking!) and made our way across the suspension bridge, which is one of my favorite park entrances. The panoramic view of the park surrounded by Lake Shafer is amazing. I watched a single train navigate the course of the Hoosier Hurricane. Although this ride doesn’t get much respect in the enthusiast community, it really does have a great out-and-back layout. Just before the turn around, the train dives right under the suspension bridge leading into the park. This is a great photo spot and I instantly regretted leaving my camera behind.

We paid our $2.00 each for general admission and $16 each for the evening POP wristband. The woman at the ticket counter informed us that some of the rides were not currently operating due to the rain and that there were no refunds. I was confident that the park would have all attractions up and running as soon as the rain stopped, so it didn’t phase us. I was surprised at how busy the park seemed. I expected it wouldn’t be very busy being a rainy Sunday afternoon but the crowds were out in full force.

Despite the crowds, the line for The Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain (LoCoSuMo) was relatively short. The makeshift queue out front was barely half-full so we lined up for our first ride ever on this twisted CCI contraption. We endured a short 15-minute wait, during which, the rain stopped. Our first ride would be from the second of the two car train, facing forwards.

LoCoSuMo is a peculiar ride. Out front, there is a sign that advertises the ride as a "bone jarring experience". This is certainly accurate as I found this ride to be one of the most intense coasters I’ve had the pleasure of riding. For those of you who love intense rides, this one is right up your alley. The surprise drops along with some insanely tight turns provide an experience that definitely IS "bone jarring".

As for me, I have mixed feelings about the ride. While I do enjoy intense rides, I found LoCoSuMo to be a little too much. I don’t like having to ride defensively which is surely a requirement on this ride. I also found the pacing to be all wrong. A big reason for this is because the cars come to a complete stop midway through the ride, just before the double down. On the other hand, I’m not sure I’d want to experience that element at a higher speed. I can see myself warming up to this ride more as I get additional rides on it, but based on my first two rides, I can’t truthfully say it’s a great ride. I give Indiana Beach credit for coming up with something unique and it’s certainly the best creation of a runaway mine cart experience that I’ve ever seen.

We made our way down the boardwalk to the Galaxie coaster. We found the ride closed so instead, I decided to take a ride on the Chaos. While in line, I witnessed the first to two atrocious acts by IB ride attendants. As the Galaxie coaster began to test, one of the ride ops jumped in and rode the entire circuit with the lap bar up. I know this isn’t something extremely dangerous for such a mild coaster, but it’s still something that you just shouldn’t do if you’re a ride operator. Way to be a great example to the kids, buddy.

I was surprised to see the park loading every car on Chaos since every other time I’ve been to IB, they’ve only loaded every other car. Since Tammy doesn’t ride these, I was paired up with another single rider. We both were rocking away and got a lot of nice flips and inverted dives during the ride. This ride was great as usual and I appreciated the longer ride cycle you get at this park.

Afterwards, we took a shortcut through the Fascination parlor to the Hoosier Hurricane. I noticed they raised the price to 50 cents per game now. I think they may give you more points per ticket than before, but it means you won’t get to play as many games for your money. In the past, we have spent hours playing this addicting game.

The Hoosier Hurricane was running the white train, which was a first for me. They’ve always run the red train on all my other visits to the park. I also noticed that the Hurricane had individual seat belts. Am I going crazy or did this ride not use to have a shared seat belt for each row? I found the ride was exceptionally smooth and fast, just like my rides earlier in the year.

It was also on the Hurricane when I encountered the second disappointing act by a ride attendant. In addition to being extremely slow and lazy, the one kid working the ride was not even checking the bars. Instead, he was walking along the train ordering the people riding to pull up on the bar to show him is was properly locked. How pathetic and irresponsible is that? With the exception of these two instances, I had no problem with the workers at the park other than the occasional lazy or careless attitude.

Next up was the best Stand-Up coaster in Indiana, Cornball Express. We had a two-train wait for the front seat. Cornball had all day to warm up and was running spectacular. There was major airtime on every hill, great speed, and awesome laterals. CCI has built a lot of amazing coasters, but this one may be the most impressive of all. The way they managed to fit this coaster into the park is mind-boggling. This coaster delivers better than most coasters twice its size. I’ve logged close to fifty rides on this masterpiece in the last two seasons. I think it gets better and better every time I ride it. That being said, my best rides on Cornball Express were still to come.

So how do you follow up a spectacular ride like Cornball? With another lap of course. We took our second consecutive ride in the back seat and had an equally amazing ride. I wanted to go back for yet another ride but Tammy suggested that we get some other rides in before it started to rain again.

We lined up for Tig’rr, the parks Schwarzkopf – Jet Star coaster. Of course, she had to be right and it started raining again while we waited. Sure enough, with two people left in front of us, the ride shut down due to lightning in the area. As we left the line, I noticed that the Cornball train was just entering the brakes. We rushed up the stairs hoping that we could get a quick ride in before it shut down too. We got lucky and walked on to a middle row for yet another great ride. As we pulled back into the station they announced that this ride was shutting down due to lightning as well.

By this time it was raining pretty good and we walked back up to the boardwalk. We noticed most of the rides either shut down or in the process of shutting down. We lined up for one of the few attractions still running, Den of Lost Thieves. After the longest wait of the day at 20 minutes, we took our ride on this, wonderful, interactive dark ride. I have to say that the new green guns suck the big one. To make matters worse, my particular gun didn’t seem to be working at all. After half a ride (consisting of much *****ing and moaning) I had not managed to hit a single target despite placing it within centimeters of a couple of targets. I figured the gun was busted and stuffed it in the holster. I enjoyed the remainder of the ride as a spectator, which allowed me to pay attention to some effects that I normally miss during the ride. As if the ride were laughing at me, my gun managed to somehow give itself 10 points while holstered through the second half of the ride. Tammy managed a mere 110, which is well below her average scores of 400 – 500.

Since it was still raining, we decided to have some dinner at the Skyroom restaurant. I don’t normally comment much on park food because, let’s face it, there’s usually not much to talk about. In this case, I have to make an exception. The Skyroom at Indiana Beach is a wonderful place to eat. Located above the parks arcade and banquet hall, the restaurant provides a great view looking down onto the midway while you eat. The food was reasonably priced and was very, very good. The service was exceptional and I was just very impressed overall. I’d recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting the park. I’ll probably make it a regular stop on my IB trips from now on.

The park really cleared out during our dinner. It was close to 8:00 by the time we got back to the midway and many of the folks there for the early ride session had left. I imagine the rain helped empty the park out a little as well. For the remainder of the evening, we didn’t have to wait at all for a single ride on anything other than LoCoSuMo. This was shaping up to be a very good night indeed.

We let our food settle with a couple games of pinball. We played Theatre of Magic, which is one of my favorites. We followed that with a ride on the Skyride to the other end of the park. It was at this point when I noticed just how empty the park had become. Many of the rides were already running again and those that weren’t were getting ready to. The Skyride, which I think may be the most frightening ride in the entire park, provides a spectacular view of the entire midway, end to end. This is great for those that like to people watch or just enjoy seeing the park from a different view.

I hoped on the parks Yo-Yo for a completely solo ride. This is probably my favorite swing ride with a great location over the water and a nice long ride cycle.

There was a little bit of a line for LoCoSuMo, so we decided not to take a second ride at this time. Instead, we made our way over to Galaxie for a walk-on ride. Galaxie is one of those coasters that I initially didn’t like much but I find myself enjoying it more and more each time. I think the ride is better when they have the cars hooked together in pairs. Early in the season they will run single cars on the ride. There are a couple of good drops on this ride and the helices are fun. It’s certainly not the most thrilling ride in the park, but it’s worth a couple rides, especially when there’s no wait.

We decided to make our way over to the other coaster we hadn’t had a chance to ride yet. Tig’rr is a great compact steel coaster with some extremely high banked turns. I love the layout and positive g’s provided by this ride. It’s one of my favorite coasters of the compact steel variety. It also has a neat location right in the middle of the Cornball Express layout. This provides some great visuals.

This is the point of the night when this good evening at the park suddenly turned into a great evening. We walked up the stairs once again for a ride on Cornball Express. There was no wait so we took a seat in the second row of the train about to dispatch. The track was still somewhat wet from the earlier showers and we suddenly found ourselves in the middle of a whole new beast. Cornball was FLYING! Despite all the good rides I’ve had in the past, this was, by far, the best that I’ve ever felt the coaster run. I couldn’t believe the speed and airtime assault I was experiencing. Even with a less than full train, the coaster was faster than I have ever experienced before. The darkness only enhanced the ride. We immediately took a second ride in the back and had another amazing ride. I could have easily spent the remainder of the night riding this coaster alone. We managed to pull ourselves away though.

We took a second ride on Hoosier Hurricane. Unfortunately, the infamous 15-minute rule finally bit us. We had to wait a good 10 minutes for enough people to fill the train before the ops would send it (still not checking the bars I might add). I’m not sure if it was the white train, the wet track, some mysterious cosmic force, or simply the fact that Cornball had put me in a whole other frame of mind. But, the ride from the front seat of the Hurricane was easily the best I’ve ever had on this coaster as well. There were definite moments of airtime and the laterals around the turn-around were really good. The ride was smooth all the way through thanks to some off-season track work and the ride seemed faster than I ever remember it being. I hope the ride continues to run this way as it’s a good improvement over the past couple years.

We made our way to the end of the park to ride the S&S Double Shot. It’s good to see this ride back to it’s old self after some milder rides early in the season. The shot back down is now as strong as ever providing some incredible airtime. Who says towers need to be tall to provide a good ride. This one is great.

At this point Tammy went off to play some Fascination while I took another solo ride on Chaos followed by a ride on the Tilt-A-Whirl. Afterwards, we took a second ride on Den of Lost Thieves and were lucky enough to get car #5, which is the only one which still features the old orange guns. I happily redeemed myself with a solid score of 590, which was a little lower than my best (640). Tammy did better as well with a score somewhere in the 400’s.

We took another ride on Galaxie on our way down the boardwalk for a second ride on LoCoSuMo.

As if riding this ride forwards isn’t crazy enough, you also have the option of sitting backwards. I decided to give this a try since we had the four-person car to ourselves. Tammy wisely decided to remain sitting where she could see what was coming. With my death-grip on the handle bar, I experienced a totally insane ride. I’m not sure if I’ve ever had a more helpless and out of control feeling on a coaster. It was certainly thrilling but I’m not sure I’d want to try it with someone next to me. I was thrown around pretty good and I’d hate to end up banging heads on them hairpin turns. At this point I’m still not sure what to think about the ride. It will be interesting to see if the park reinstalls some of the theming to portions of the mountain. I doubt it would do much good with the speed of the ride now, but who knows.

With only about a half-hour left, we wanted to take a trip through Frankenstein’s Castle. Even though we’ve been through this walk through attraction several times in the past, we still have no problem paying an additional $3.00 (each) for the trip through. We were the only people in our group and we took our time going through. There is a lot to see and there are many surprises during this trip. I’m always amazed at how long the walk lasts. If you’re ever at Indiana Beach, do yourself a favor and don’t pass this one up.

I decided to take a couple more rides on Tig’rr since nobody was waiting. Both rides just as good as before and I may have finished the night here if not for Cornball.

About 10:45 I convinced Tammy that I was riding Cornball until the park closed. She was tired of riding and decided to go play some games. I managed to ride the final 5 trains of the evening. Four of those were from the left side of row two, which has become my new favorite seat. I was still amazed at how well Cornball was running and I had such an adrenaline rush afterwards that it actually helped me stay awake on the long ride home.

Overall it was a great night at the park despite the rain. I couldn’t have hoped for it to turn out any better. At this park, I always manage to enjoy myself more after dark and this day was no exception. I’m already looking forward to my next trip to Indiana Beach. I’m very envious of those of you who live closer to this wonderful park.

Thanks for reading,

Sorry so long,

Kyle

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Thursday, August 1, 2002 8:51 PM

Great TR and glad you had a great time.

Yes, the Hurricane's seat belts have been changed to ones similar to the CornBall's. The older long ones would get thrown out to the side by guests and damage the train's paint or get caught in the track.

And I *totally* agree with you about the HH operator you mentioned.

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Friday, August 2, 2002 6:08 AM

Hey, I was there that night. I got there while the coasters were testing after the storm passed and the crowd "dissapeared." I had made a Timbers run on Sunday, and decided to make the "IB Detour" on the way back to Chicago.

What a great night for riding. Cornball and Hurricane were both outstanding.

Did you catch the rainbow that spanned the lake?

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"Look outside, I know that you'll recognize it's summertime." - The Flaming Lips "It's Summertime (throbbing orange pallbearers)"

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Friday, August 2, 2002 12:56 PM

Great TR. Everytime I hear about Indiana Beach it makes me want to go more. Sound like a very fun place. Too bad I live in the Northwest.

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Steel: 1)MF, 2)Goliath, 3)Magnum
Wood: 1)Villain, 2)Beast, 3)Roar(SFMW)

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Friday, August 2, 2002 2:04 PM

Great TR. Can we all just agree on this point now and move along? Cornball Express is the BEST woodie in Indiana.

And that's saying something.

The individual seatbelts on HH are VERY new. My last visit was July 18 and it still had the one belt for both riders.

I agree re LoCoSuMo. After about a dozen rides, I still can't make up my mind about it. It seemed a little less violent during my last trip. Either adjustments have been made or I'm just getting used to it. And getting used to the brutality that is LoCoSuMo is not easy.

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Friday, August 2, 2002 5:01 PM

Great TR. I'm going in a couple of weeks, and can't wait. You and I are of the same mind, Recess, in that I'm much closer to SFGAm geographically, but closer to IB spiritually. That's not a knock on SFGAm -- it's fine for what it is -- but it's no match for the total park experience that IB affords.

I think HH is terribly underrated by enthusiasts. Somebody else hit the nail on the head when he called it "moody." A lot of the time it's just a coaster, but I've had some rides on it, particularly after dark, when it's furious. And as for Cornball, yes, best wooden coaster in Indiana, and that's saying an awful lot.

However, I'm starting to sense a consensus building that LoCoSuMo is a disappointment, or at least a really strange ride. Everybody talks about its intensity or violence ... nobody talks about really loving it in any way.

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Friday, August 2, 2002 5:14 PM

Sombody said that Cornball is the the best woodie in Indiana?????

Personally I have 4 that I can't make a desicion on.

Chuck, who loves LoCoSuMo, Expecialy with a Evil partner. :)

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Charles Nungester.
Visit Lesourdsville Lake :) Park phone is (513)539-2193

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Friday, August 2, 2002 5:49 PM
Nice TR, I just got back from IB and thought it was amazing, but I wish I could have ridden a wet Cornball, being the best woodie in the world (well, so far for me). Yeah, the new guns suck bad, I got 40 as my low. There are some decent green ones where I could get about 200, but car 5 with the old guns was by far the best.

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What is it Lassie? Did Timmy fall down the well again? Rough. Did Mr. Wilson have a heart attack? Rough. Is the drug dealer here for his money? Rough Rough. RUN!

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Sunday, August 4, 2002 6:03 PM

IB Dave, Thanks for the info about the belts. I knew I wasn't going crazy. You work at the park, don't you? Where in the park do you work and were you there last Sunday?

Chris, I did not see the rainbow. We were eating dinner during the brief moment when the sun broke through the clouds. Yes, it was a great night for riding.

IBSteve, I'm starting to believe that Cornball may not only be the best woodie in Indiana, but possibly one of the best anywhere. That IS saying a lot since Legend has been my #1 since the first time I rode it. I'll have to see how things work out when I re-evaluate at the end of the season.

Blizzard, I do think IB offers a better overall park experience. I have strong loyality to SFGAM since it's been my home park my entire life, but 3 out of 4 times, I'd rather spend the day at Indiana Beach. How did you know that I'm closer to SFGAM? Where are you located at?

It's good to see that I'm not the only one with mixed feelings when it comes to LoCoSuMo. Chuck, I can definately see how you would love the ride. ;-)

Kyle

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Sunday, August 4, 2002 6:15 PM
Good TR, I didnt kno CCI made a Stand-Up woodie :)

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Im the #1 Canobie Lake Park Fan!!!These are my top 3 coasters:
1. S:RoS @ SFNE 2. Yankee Cannonball 3. Cyclone/B:TDK

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Sunday, August 4, 2002 9:19 PM

Recess said:

IB Dave, Thanks for the info about the belts. I knew I wasn't going crazy. You work at the park, don't you? Where in the park do you work and were you there last Sunday?



No, didn't work Sunday, Kyle. I usually work Wed-Sat nites in the Skyroom, waiting tables or bartending. (If I am on rides, it's usually CornBall.) And the Skyroom staff loved your post about the restaurant.

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Monday, August 5, 2002 4:54 PM

Recess wrote:

Blizzard, I do think IB offers a better overall park experience. I have strong loyality to SFGAM since it's been my home park my entire life, but 3 out of 4 times, I'd rather spend the day at Indiana Beach. How did you know that I'm closer to SFGAM? Where are you located at?



I'm equal parts psychic and senile. Seriously, I could have sworn you mentioned SFGam in your TR. Now I think I just misremembered something somebody else wrote about IB. A lot about IB in the forums, recently.

I always read what people write about my favorite park. Read carefully, well, that's another story.

As for me, I'm a Chicagoan, north side. Less than an hour to SFGam, 2.5 hours to IB. Again, nothing against SFGam, I always enjoy going there. But give me a flat-out choice between the two, well, it's not one of life's tougher questions.

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Tuesday, August 6, 2002 6:41 AM

Hey blizzard, you're right. That was me in another IB post in another thread. My heart belongs to IB and still trying to find a way to get in at least one more visit. I'm going thru Cornball withdrawl!

Dave: We, also, have had great experiences with the Skyroom staff. Great food, great staff, great prices. When the whole family heads down, we can be a large and demanding group but the waitstaff is always friendly and accomadating. I wish I could rememeber their names! The guy who waited on us (all 11 of us) on Friday morning, July 19, was exceptional. I think I left a 40% tip (I only relaized it was that much later, but it was well earned.) The Thursday night Polynesian buffet RULES (kudos to the kitchen staff) and the music was perfect. After a few Hawaiians, my group couldn't help but sing along!

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Tuesday, August 6, 2002 9:04 AM

Recess - Too bad you missed it. I was going up CE's lift, and looked over to the right to see a really cool rainbow spanning the lake. It was the first time I ever saw both ends of one at the same time. To the left was a bunch of dark stormclouds set against a violet background. It was really one of the most striking things I've ever seen.

blizzard - I agree. I live in Chicago, but consider IB to be my "home park." There's just no contest.

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"Look outside, I know that you'll recognize it's summertime." - The Flaming Lips "It's Summertime (throbbing orange pallbearers)"

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Tuesday, August 6, 2002 9:12 AM

We really should have a big Indiana Beach get-together next year :)

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-Eric
GlitchCam Returns...if you thought the Subdivision Cam was something, wait untill you see this.
According to the general public, lots of coasters go straight down.

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