Jeff's Clipboard and Bitter Taste - Kings Island Opening Day

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Monday, April 21, 2008 3:04 PM
I arrived at the park later than I would have hoped, given that I had driven part of the way (Columbus or that area) the night before, and my visited started off on a very sour note.

I have a 2008 Platinum Pass from Cedar Point. Unfortunately, when I got to the parking lot, the KI folks would not honor the pass because it wouldn't scan. Instead of letting me through anyway, they told me I'd have to pay for parking and get a refund from Guest Relations (I think that is what they call it).

Well, that left me very unhappy. I drove all the way to CP to get my pass redeemed, and they are supposed to work this year. Yet it didn't. I understand computers not working, but forcing someone who already payed for a service to pay again is just dumb. That definitely left a bitter taste in my mouth!

Once in the park, I saw, and talked with Nick LaCastro, who is in charge of Park Services and the watepark. Nice guy, whose team did an amazing job over the weekend. The park was virtually spotless. I talked to him later in the day to let him know of the great job he was doing.

Ride-wise, The Beast now has that famous "Cedar Fair Squeal." I was told it did not have it before Cedar Fair bought the park. Not a bad ride considering it has been tamed to hell. Rode it twice. First time was when it was wet, so it was not bad. Second time was good despite the squeal (which I don't recall hearing during the first ride), but I was in front seat.

I learned that Vortex's drop is amazing from the back seat. I love Arrow coasters, despite their square wheels.

Also, X-Flight seemed just as bad as when it was at Geauga Lake, and perhaps worse. KI can keep it. GL was great without it, and even though the park is now closed, that is a ride I don't think I'll miss much.

Speaking of Rides, new uniforms this year. I hope CP has the same shirts. They were due for a change by now!

Construction was evident. Looks like some footers have been poured. It will be interesting to see if KI gets a new ride.

Anyway, when I left the park to go to Waffle House (see the thread on Passover), I saw that someone was doing surveys, and participated. Standard survey, except for one weird detail. The clipboard the survey person was using had Jeff Putz written on the back. I kid you not!

Jeff, I don't know why KI stole your clipboard, but you should ask for it back! ;)

Anyway, despite the bad start, the park seemed to be in decent shape. There definitely appeared to be some opening day problems, like a Signal 55 of ONE rider off Vortex, but overall, it seems like KI is a decent park. The staff was generally very friendly, and it seemed as though folks were willing to go out of their way to help. Always important.

And finally, After Waffle House, I re-entered the park eating a piece of Matzo. Aside from a guest asking what it was while I was walking to the gate, no problems with bringing it into the park (again, see Passover thread in General).

-Sam

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Monday, April 21, 2008 3:16 PM
Glad CF is doing wonders at KI.
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Monday, April 21, 2008 3:24 PM
Did they refund the parking charge?
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Monday, April 21, 2008 3:42 PM

Avalanche Sam said:
The clipboard the survey person was using had Jeff Putz written on the back. I kid you not!

"I saw Jeff at Cedar Point on the Millenium Force!" ;)
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Monday, April 21, 2008 4:13 PM

Avalanche Sam said:

Construction was evident. Looks like some footers have been poured. It will be interesting to see if KI gets a new ride.


With the number of footers already in place, I don't think it's a question of "IF" they are getting a new ride. Those footers aren't there for decoration. ;)

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Monday, April 21, 2008 4:57 PM
^ With the flower pots covering them up I wouldn't be so sure. :)

As far as I understand, older PTCs squeal if the track is not really greased up. I believe this is because they don't yaw very well due to their four-wheel configuration "box-like" arrangement. The point here, however, is that a squealing wooden coaster is hardly a Cedar Fair phenomenon. If the track is well oiled the ride won't squeal all that badly.

By the end of Holiwood Nights even my beloved Voyage was squealing here and there. *** Edited 4/21/2008 9:04:13 PM UTC by Craig the Coaster Freak***

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Monday, April 21, 2008 6:21 PM
Mark, you put the emphasis on the wrong word. If KI gets a ride, it could be used, just like that last ride they put in.

Ensign,

The tried to give me a $10 bill. I requested a refund on my credit card though. They supposedly did give me one, but I might check with Discover if the credit doesn't show up at the same time as the charge.

I wonder how much money CF lost in credit card charges by making me pay ahead of time.

At the end of the day, I guess I came out ahead. I spent absolutely no money in the park, and they probably had to pay to take money from me that they gave back. I have a goal this season of negatively affecting the Per-cap figures for Cedar Fair.

-Sam

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Monday, April 21, 2008 6:50 PM

I have a goal this season of negatively affecting the Per-cap figures for Cedar Fair.

Oh how I wonder why!

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Monday, April 21, 2008 8:15 PM
I would think you were pulling my leg if I didn't actually think that I left my clip board there for BeastBuzz a couple of years ago. It was something I had since college. It very well could be mine.

The Beast has not been "tamed to hell." I get so tired of hearing that. Its run time is actually shorter, and therefore faster. That's not more tame.

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Monday, April 21, 2008 8:46 PM
Your heart might belong to Cedar Point, but your clipboard is property of Kings Island. ;)
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Monday, April 21, 2008 9:14 PM
25K Pyramid 'dink...dink...dink...dink'

'A Geauga Lake steel coaster, a clipboard...'

'...Things you would reclaim on a King's Island ! ' *** Edited 4/22/2008 1:16:49 AM UTC by Rye.D.Ziner***

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Monday, April 21, 2008 9:34 PM
Jeff,

What would you call adding numerous brakes to the ride? My first ride was in 2003, so I don't think I've ever ridden it without trims. (I don't know when they were added).

I was under the impression that brakes slow things down. Can you please explain your post Jeff, or point me to an explanation?

Parker17, was that supposed to be sarcasm? Cedar Fair needs to add value to their product to be profitable, not raise prices as high as possible on food while attendance keeps dropping, capacity goes down, and guests turn to other sources of entertainment.

-Sam

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Monday, April 21, 2008 10:14 PM
You enjoy going to the park and your goal is to see how much money you can not spend there? I do not follow. I would think that if you enjoy a park, you should support it any way you can. It is no wonder some parks are struggling if folks have that attitude.
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Monday, April 21, 2008 10:42 PM
I love Kings Island. I went also but I tried to not spend any money while I was there. I snacked on snack bars and ate a take along lunch in the car. I also hate how tame the Beast seems now.
*** Edited 4/22/2008 2:45:20 AM UTC by Wabash Cannonball***
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Monday, April 21, 2008 10:50 PM
Beast has ALWAYS been braked in the places it is now. The only difference is the brakes are now magnetic, and slow the train more abruptly than the skid brakes did, making them more noticeable.
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Tuesday, April 22, 2008 9:17 AM
a_hoffman,

The idea is that as a customer, I need to feel value. With Cedar Fair, I don't feel the value. There are some things I still plan on spending money on when visiting Cedar Fair parks. One is Skee-Ball at Cedar Point. At $0.25 it is a good value. I may also occasionally buy food and/or other items. But I want Cedar Fair to EARN any money that they get from me. The job of a company is to add value to a product in order to obtain higher products. My problem with Cedar Fair is aside from admission, they are not provided much added value to justify high prices.

-Sam *** Edited 4/22/2008 2:29:00 PM UTC by Avalanche Sam***

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008 9:24 AM
The job of a company is to earn money. Period. Making customers feel warm and tingly is just a bonus.
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Tuesday, April 22, 2008 10:02 AM

Jeff said:
The Beast has not been "tamed to hell." I get so tired of hearing that. Its run time is actually shorter, and therefore faster. That's not more tame.

At last year's ACE convention many people, including me, thought the Beast was running better than it had in years, so I tend to agree.


What would you call adding numerous brakes to the ride? My first ride was in 2003, so I don't think I've ever ridden it without trims. (I don't know when they were added).

Skid brakes were added during the initial testing phase. The Beast has always been trimmed, unless you were lucky enough to get on it after a rain storm when the old skid brakes were still wet (my most memorable ride). The skids were removed and magnetic brakes added in 2002. They may slow the train a litter more abruptly, but I think it runs better now than it did with the old skids.

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008 10:30 AM
Amusement parks "earn" their money from me by simply existing. Am I more apt to pay more at a park where I find more value? Sure. But that is not what you said. You said your goal is to negatively affect the per-cap figures for Cedar Fair. In the grand scheme of things what will that accomplish? Make you feel good that you "stuck it to the man"? Now then, I also picnic in the parking lot, but in the interest of making my money stretch rather than negatively impacting the company who is running a business that I want a service from in the future.

And good luck with the speeding ticket. It is an exercise in futility and cheaper in the long run to just pay the thing, if you ask me.

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008 10:39 AM
They did not add brakes to The Beast, they just replaced the skid brakes with magnetic brakes. The deceleration is therefore a lot faster, but it isn't greater. That's why the ride has a shorter time than it did before.
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