Kiddieland - June 15th

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Friday, June 16, 2006 6:58 PM
So my friends and I decided today was the day to make the trek out to Melrose Park from Palatine to visit one of my favorite parks. We left here at about 4:00... Pretty bad idea as we hit a good chunk of traffic. 50 minutes later we saw one of those mega big red truck driving school trucks. Always the first clue that we're close. Pulling into the parking lot, I was certainly suprised by the number of cars there. It was busier today (Thursday) than I've ever seen it. Maybe this shouldn't be a suprise since we normally get out to the park earlier in the season. Either way... they seemed to be getting a good bit of business.

At 4:55, we arrived at the front gate and obviously waited the 5 minutes to get the discount entry price of $17.75. Regular price is $20.75 which is up from the ($16.00)? I think it was last year. But when you take into account the free parking and the free soda... eh, ain't bad at all.

Well, seeing as how it was 5:00 and pretty overcast, we figured we'd ride the water rides in case we got drenched. This would give us an oppurtunity to dry before night. First we proceeded to the log ride. Man this thing really moves in the lower sections. I also noticed that the landscape was definately invading the lower trough sections. I thought it looked nice except for one bush that you had to lean to the opposite side to avoid getting a mouth/face full of.

Next was the water slide pipeline water coaster thing. They have two very similar slides next to each other. Yet, I've only seen the one side operate. Since the slide is completely enclosed, you can hear the person and what they say go all the way down. This provided for some crying laughter - even the quiet operator was lauhging.

After leaving the wet rides area we started to feel a couple drops of rain. We quickly crossed the midway to catch a ride on Galleon, their pirate ship type ride. Eh, not a bad ride...

Walking to the other side of the park, we passed the Polyp which holds it's tradition of always being worked on by mechanics when i'm there. (Past 3 years) We then hopped on their junior wooden roller coaster, Little Dipper. It was a fun little ride, as usual.

Next up was Dip 'n' Drop which is their mini drop ride. Despite it's rather tame appearance, this ride really is thrilling. It must have got that feeling in my stomach 15 or so times per cycle. (we marathoned on it for a good 20 or so minutes) 8-) The ride operator was very cool about it also.

Next we walked over towards the train station. On the way we couldn't pass up the mushroom. The shroom is basically a very tiny ride with self-spun tubs. It only holds two people so me and my buddy squished in one and thought we'd get a good spin. Holy CRAP! I just couldn't move. I literally had to hold on for my safety. What an intense spin ughhhhh and I'm feelin' it. A trip on the train gave us some rest and was neat as it goes out into the parking lot and also circles the large field in back of the park finishing with a trip through the tunnel of love.

We then hit up all the other rides like the small ferris wheel, the antique cars, the scambler, scooters (which I think were moving a little quicker on my last visit?), and Polyp as it also traditionally goes up later in the day.

A quick break and we then stepped aboard the tilt-a-whirl. We quickly mastered the ride and marathoned until we could take no more. At one point we were the only ones on the ride and no one in line. When people finally showed up, the operator ended our cycle and told us he had run it for 9 normal cycles. Good stuff....

We ended up stayin' until close (9p.m.) and until then hit up all the rides atleast one more time. I also played a lot of skeeball. :D They have a lot of good machines if anybody's a fan like I am.

Overall, I love this park. The atmosphere is very snuggly aside from a bunch of kids cut loose from their parents. Everyone seems to be in a decent or better mood. The employees were good. Some were excellent and made nice conversations with riders. Only one irritated me and unfortunately he was operating the coaster... It's a shame about the news of Kiddieland's issues and probable closing? I would highly recommend a visit to Kiddieland for any enthusiast in the area. Maybe not worth a trip from more than an hour and a half or so but it's definately a gem of a park. BTW, the free soda kicks butt and we definately took advatage of that all day long :-) A big beef from Portillo's on the way home topped pff just an excellent day.

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Friday, June 16, 2006 7:51 PM
mmm Portillos ;)

Hey where in Palatine are ya? We live here for the next five or so weeks till we relocate to Richmond ^_^

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Friday, June 16, 2006 9:28 PM
Over in Winston Park... about a mile away from Palatine High.
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Friday, June 16, 2006 11:37 PM
we're right near palatine and plum grove roads. too funny.

havent been to kiddieland in ages. Great report!

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Saturday, June 17, 2006 5:54 AM
If these dumbasses (being the family that owns the property and leases the land) can't get their heads out of their asses, they need to hand the park over to someone who will take on this property as an amusement park.

From what I read and heard on the news, this park placed 3rd in the Golden Ticket Awards for best kids oriented park for 2005. I am not one for popularity contests, but since CP and PKI recognize this award, this small park should take notice of this award and promote it.

They really don't need to because they are successfull, but hell, take what you can get. :)

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