Michigan's Mis-Adventure - 9/11/04

Associated parks:

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 4:54 PM
Coaster dorks are so very hydrophobic.

I took a lap on each coaster, bolted straight for the waterpark and never wanted to leave.

If they're smart, they'll steal a page from HW's playbook and add more quality wet stuff. Something from the ProSlide Competitive Matting series, please.


NOTE: Severe fecal impaction may render the above words highly debatable.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 4:56 PM
what you are saying here yet again proves my "complaint" with the Golden Ticket Awards...people are voting based on recollections of a ride they rode two, three, four years ago...As we can see, rides can change over time. Simetimes for the worse (Timbers) other times for the better (HW's woodies with their impeccable maintenance).

IMHO, there should be some outside limit set for how long ago voters should be able to "go back" into their memory to rate a coaster for the GTA's...because the ride that I rode, was in no ways was the "#2 wooden coaster in the world" - that is unless they were rating on pure hellish roughness...

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 5:40 PM

I am not sure if all the Golden Ticket voters "went back" as there have been reports of the ride running great during Timbersfest this year. I feel that if what you are saying was true, Raven would still be in the #1 spot.

Back when I used to rate, I did have ST it as my #1 wooden coaster. I also remember the best rides being at night after the coaster ran all day. The ERT during Timbersfest 2001 was insane and one of the most memorable events I have ever done. Last year I didn't even stay for half the ERT.

-Sean *** Edited 9/14/2004 9:43:23 PM UTC by Sean Flaharty***

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 6:28 PM
Was it really that bad? I went in mid July on a friday and it was pretty crowded. Everything seemed to be running ok with food stands open.

The thing I can't imagine is ST running that rough. When I rode it I thought it was smooth as glass, except for the turn around and helix. I would even go as far as to say it was smoother than most steel coasters I have ridden. ST is a top 5 coaster in my book. It was nice being able to ride a woodie and not have to do the Meanstreak cringe.

I think people expect way too much out of this park. It is a small FAMILY park, not a huge corporate giant park like CP or SFMM. This is also the mindset that has killed SFWOA/Geauga Lake. Some parks are not made to be giants, they do much better as small FAMILY parks. In my opinion, SFWOA and Michigan's Adventure fall into this category.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 10:03 PM
It's interesting to hear people say the park was better as a family - owned park. I can assure you, it wasn't. It's always been a crappy amusement park. It's all about the water park.

Now, as far as ST goes, I've had some of the greatest coaster rides of my life on it - specifically at TimbersFest '01 and '02. I've been stopping by the park to snag a few rides two to three times a year since it opened. But I have never had a ride on it that "sucked". Granted, I haven't been up there since July, and I now the thing is moody as hell - but I'm finding it hard to believe it's gotten that bad.

To being an "us" for once - instead of a "them".

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 10:23 PM
And to think, I was going to check this park out this season.

George, since you live near me and went to MIA, thanks for being the Guinea Pig for me. :)

I will check out VF instead for my next "new-to-me" CF park.

My favorite MJ tune: "Billie Jean" which I have been listening to alot now. RIP MJ.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004 11:33 PM
Yes, Raptor, I understand it is a small park. I like small parks if they are run well (I love IB and HW). It is poor management to close the "unique" food stands and only keeping open the stands that all sell the same burger and hotdog while the other options of pizza, chicken, fries and kettle corn are closed up tight.

Go ahead and try to tell me that HW or IB would only have one type of food offered in the park, whether it was the last weekend of the season or it was a Saturday in July. It wouldn't happen.

As for my comments on ST, take a look at my track record. I have ridden some of the best and some of the worst wood coasters out there. I am not making the comment of "one of the worst/roughest coasters I have ever been on" without having a moderately sized track record to back it up. I was getting side to side shaking on the drops (and no I am not talking about the trick track section after the turnaround. I rode this on Saturday afternoon and I am still feeling the effects on my back tonight (Tuesday). I have not felt this sore from any coaster...ever.

--George H

Wednesday, September 15, 2004 12:40 PM
Chitown, try it out anyway during the midseason.

I visited MiA three times this year, with no significant complaints each time. Don't expect Cedar Point - their selection is small, but the rides were smooth and fun when I went. ST was running smooth and fast both times. Food's so-so, unless you go to the family grill, which was quite good and semi-reasonable.

I'm sorry you had a rough time, Redman. I know it shouldn't matter what time you go, but I hope you'll try it again when they're busier. The park really does have a better side.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004 4:27 PM
I went this year in late July. I thought ST was great. It was only a bit rough in the turn around when sitting in the back seat. I thought the park was nice, and the waterpark seemed very popular.

Please wait for the ride to come to a full and complete stop. Push down, then pull up on your lap bar. Thank and enjoy the rest of your day at CoasterBuzz.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004 4:55 PM
Redmann, in the words of the great George Carlin, "calm down, have some dip". Imagine someone saying Raven and Legend were rougher than Meanstreak and half of the food stands and shops were closed at HW. I think you would object to that. My experience of the park was the total opposite of yours. Yes, I do agree that not having the food stands open is poor management. Maybe I think differently than you, but doing the rides is #1 on my to do list at amusement parks followed closely by eating at about #1753. I eat what I can, which isn't usually very much because I'm in line for rides about 75% of the time, riding rides 15% of the time, and wandering about the park aimlessly the other 10% of the time, and on top of all that, the food is ridiculously over-priced. I eat during that 10% of aimless wandering, but eating only accounts for about 2% of my time.

As for ST, it can give a smooth ride, and I can give you about 10 instances.

I think you went on a bad day and got some bad rides on a great woodie. You should give it a try in midseason.

Chaindog, I said a family park, not family-owned. There is a huge difference. Family park to me means small flat rides, some small coasters, and occasionally, some bigger rides thrown in for the major thrillseekers. A place where families can enjoy a nice summer day and not feel like they have be in a frenzy to hit all 16 major costers. A family-owned park can be a giant like SFMM or CP, but a family park can't be a SFMM or CP.

Thursday, September 16, 2004 11:15 AM
Damn. You must have caught the Timbers on one hell of a bad hair day. Never once have I experienced a rough ride on the Timbers...that's really too bad. It's probably similar to the craptastically slow/boring rides I got on the Beast when I went to PKI...

On a related note, what's up with all the MIA bashing? It seems like there are tons of enthusiasts who don't like this place...granted, it's a tiny park with just a couple rides but the Timbers makes up for that in my opinion.

Thursday, September 16, 2004 1:52 PM

raptor2 said:
Redmann, in the words of the great George Carlin, "calm down, have some dip".

I think you should take your own advice.
It's not as if George insulted you personally.

He went to MiA and it sucked in his POV. He's not the only person who thinks so. I think you all need to get off the coasters and hop in one of the three wavepools for a change, but guess what? We're all entitled to our own opinions.


NOTE: Severe fecal impaction may render the above words highly debatable.

Thursday, September 16, 2004 2:00 PM
They were closed for the season when i went, Playa. ;)

--George H

Thursday, September 16, 2004 2:31 PM
rollergator's avatar LOL....the day I was there, it was about 2 degrees too cold for the waterpark to open. Pleace was *packed* to the gills, and I was told the second train on Timbers was for weekend ops...

*Bashing*, IMO, is saying "MiA sucks" without having facts or giving specific ideas for how to improve in the future. For some of us, the park left QUITE a bad taste in our mouths and we're unlikely to return. Will that affect MiA's bottom line? Not really....but if LOCALS have a similar opinion to mine on the ONE day they were likely to have gone to MiA, then the park isn't doing what it needs to do and will suffer.

Constructive criticism is NOT equivalent to "bashing", and sometimes I think people get their panties all knotted up when others find THEIR park to be *less-than-stellar*. For me at least, it is almost NEVER about the rides that are or aren't at a park, it's ALL about the staff and operations...

Thursday, September 16, 2004 5:28 PM
I agree that criticism is not bashing. I had some OK times at MiA at the beginning of this summer. As the summer progressed, however, I saw the level of decent customer service go down. I provided examples of the problems I had there in my TR (which I also referenced in my first post in this thread).

Seriously, I have loved ST since I first saw pictures of it, and even more so after I rode it last summer for the first time. I probably got in about 50 laps this summer. I will probably go back and ride it again next summer too, if I happen to be in Michigan again. But if the CS is bad, I will not return for a VERY long time.

CS means alot to me (probably more so than to others), and sometimes it does make or break a park experience for me. Just ask me when I plan on returning to SFA again (oops) ;)

Friday, September 17, 2004 1:13 AM
I am not upset about this report and I don't want to call it bashing, but at the same time I am not going to take it at face value. To me it sounds like a combo of ST not having its best day (we know woodies are tempormental and some more than others), anticipointment, and just a negative attitude. You can ruin any day at any park if you let the little things get to you. Food stands closed on bonus weekends in a small empty park? Food that tastes like you got it at an amusement park instead of a fine restraunt? Girls in bikini tops? If you let stuff like that get to you, it will taint your view on everything. I have a hard time believing that ST is the second worst wooden coaster now. When I rode it, it was second best. I think you should take some peoples advice on when to go and give it an honest second shot.
Friday, September 17, 2004 6:22 AM
I'll take on your points in order, Raven.

Yes woodies can be tempermental, but those usually are on cool days. Saturday was a bright and sunny day with a temperature of 75 degrees. Now that might sound a little cool but for the three months prior to my visit, Muskegon averaged a high of 74 degrees with a maximum high temperature of 87 (which only occured once - on July 21st). So the weather would have not been sufficiently different any other time this summer.

The only bit of anticipointment I had was with ST. Everyone had built it up as a great coaster. I understand that not everyone agrees on ratings (which is the reason Jeff doesn't allow best/worst threads here). That being said, all I was expecting was a good coaster. ST was nowhere near that, IMO.

I had a great attitude going into MiA. I was on a weekend away with my wife where it was just us, picking fruit, buying/tasting wines and in general, having a fun and relaxing weekend. (And I still was in a great mood when I was at the park, despite the issues I had there.)

Why do you guys keep calling last weekend a "bonus weekend"? It is a weekend that they were planning on being open since they created the operating calendar. Do you call Fright Fest or Halloweekends "bonus weekends"?? I sure as heck don't. They're weekends the park has determined before the start of the season that they will be open. If they are open for any additional weekends beyond their pre-determined operating calendar, THOSE are bonus weekends.

As for food stands being closed because it was late in the season and they are a small park, I will be willing to bet you that on October 9th at Holiday World (their last operating day of the season) they will have a bigger selection of food stands open than were open at MiA on the day I was there. I am not complaining over stands being open or closed. I am complaining that they didn't have a VARIETY of food stands open. When the ONLY meal choice is Hot Dogs and Hamburgers and they have multiple locations of that open, yet they don't have the pizza stand and the Boardwalk Fries stand (which according to the menu board sold fried chicken), just to name two. That is poor management decision-making.

I never said I was looking for food that tasted like it came from a fine restaurant. Don't go putting words in my mouth. In fact in my original post I said, "C'mon, I am not asking for high cuisine, but they need to have more food options!"

Girls in bikini tops...wasn't really that much of an issue, just a comment about management. If you are going to have a dress code, enforce it. You never would have seen that at a well managed park, whether it was HW or IB or CP or SFGAm

If something "got" to me, it must have gotten to Rollergator, ltlbat, IBSteve, +Danny, coasterqueenTRN, Sean Flaharty and Chaindog too. (And those are just the ones who posted in this thread.)

**EDIT for spelling and grammar.** *** Edited 9/17/2004 12:52:06 PM UTC by redman822***

--George H

Friday, September 17, 2004 12:06 PM
On my one visit to MiA in 2002, we had an OK time. Our first 3 rides on ST were total anticipointment. It wasn't until we got a night ride that it became what everyone had been claiming.

My views on the rest of the park,

No shade what so ever.

Dumbfounded employees.

Trash all over every line we were in.

Found a dead rodent in the middle of WW's que and when I asked an employee with a broom to sweep it up, he said "I ain't touching that". So I took the broom myself and swept it up.

Will we be back anytime soon? Probably not.

Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, silly monkeys give them thumbs they forge a blade and weapons by the pound to divide it, right in two - Tool
Friday, September 17, 2004 12:36 PM

redman822 said:
Why do you guys keep calling last weekend a "bonus weekend"? It is a weekend that they were planning on being open since they created the operating calendar. Do you call Fright Fest or Halloweekends "bonus weekends"??

Yes, but that is the terminology that Cedar Fair used for most of their parks for many years. Before Halloweekends Cedar Point's weekends were always called bonus weekends. The price was lowered for these weekends, but the hours were shorter and not all the food stands/souvenir shops were open. I still think of weekends in the offseason as bonus weekends.

As for food stands being closed because it was late in the season and they are a small park, I will be willing to bet you that on October 9th at Holiday World (their last operating day of the season) they will have a bigger selection of food stands open than were open at MiA on the day I was there.

Perhaps, but it's not uncommon for parks to have limited operations overall in the offseason. I mean look at Disneyland right now, about half the food stands are closed currently and half the rides as well.

Now the lack of variety, that's just stupidity on MiA's part. I would have kind of peeved at that as well. Especially because I'm picky about park food, and rarely will get a hamburger and never a hot dog (except corn dogs).

If you are going to have a dress code, enforce it. You never would have seen that at a well managed park, whether it was HW or IB or CP or SFGAm.

I'll have to disagree here at least about CP and SFGAm. I know for a fact that bikini tops are allowed at CP as long as they have more than bikini bottoms (i.e. shorts covering). And I saw quite a few girls in bikini tops at SFGAm as well. Even at CP, they don't really enforce it until you try to get into a line.

So, I've never been to MiA, but what I've heard it's an OK park with a great wooden coaster. If the coaster wasn't all that for you, then I totally understand the negative review. Just wanted to point out that some of your criticism could have been said about the majority of the parks in the offseason.

Perhaps I'll eventually make it to MiA, but one great ride in a otherwise OK park with bad CS isn't going to get me there soon. I think I'll probably end up waiting until they get another great coaster up there. *** Edited 9/17/2004 4:39:10 PM UTC by Blaster_1578***

Friday, September 17, 2004 1:34 PM
My wife and I also went to MiA on Saturday, hoping it would be as dead as it was. We rode ST four times (twice in the front, once in the middle, and once in the back), and I loved each ride. It was only rough in the back, but hey, aren't most big woodies rough in the back? In the front and middle there was some wicked good airtime. The only roughness came (expectedly) on the turnaround and helix.

Now I will admit that the rest of the park left something to be desired, but we expected that somewhat. Mostly because it was a September weekend, but also because it's a small hick park. Let's be honest, it needs to expand a lot! Food-wise, the only thing that disappointed us was the kettle corn stand being closed. But then again we weren't aware they had one (we were there in 2001 and don't remember there being a kettle corn stand), and we don't eat too much food in parks anyway.

Speaking of expanding, a ride op on the Go-Karts said that there was a deal in place that would bring 3 new coasters plus a Power Tower clone to the park over the next ten years - we'll see. I would think that if CF hopes to run a consistently profitable park, they'll have to expand the park significantly - and improve the customer service, no doubt.

So maybe it's because we only traveled 90 miles from Kalamazoo, or because we had such low overall expectations to begin with, but we had a great time, and were still home in time for dinner! We'll probably go back in a couple of years if they get someting new.


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