My Trip to PKI

Associated parks:
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Friday, June 15, 2001 10:39 PM
Finally, after hearing about Vortex, the Beast, and other coasters in Kings Mills, I got to take a trip to Kings Island. I have been waiting so long ever since I found out all about this park. My girlfriend's family and mine planned to go, so off we go :).

Let me start off with that I will try my hardest not to compare this park to any others because in my opinion this park is underrated.

I started off the sweltering day with a walk over to Top Gun. The first thing that I noticed about this ride was not only how it hugs the terrain but it ROARS!! That is probably the first time I've heard the roar of an Arrow instead of the clanking like on Iron Dragon. Although this ride does seem a bit short I have to admit that Top Gun packs a punch. I was so surprised how smooth and nimble this ride was. I really loved it and it totally blew me away.

My next ride was the Son of Beast. Once again a walk on ride. From past experiences from other wooden rides such as Mean Streak (sorry) I sat towards the front. SoB was really awesome!! I loved the helices and you pulled some serious G's in that loop. The only thing that caught me off gaurd was the jerkiness of the this one-year old ride. And I thought that fircrackers were under the train going up the lift hill, it was pretty darn loud. Overall, that was a great ride.

After SoB my parents decided to fly on the Sky Coaster. And to make a long story short, I decided to take a friend with me on it. That was my third time going on one. LOTS OF FUN!! Worth the money!! :)

After the Sky Coaster I saw the King Cobra and decided to conquer this once-so-novel ride. I wasn't a big fan of the primative loading, but hey it's the first successful looping stand up (I think). I sat or stood in the back only to find out why nobody else was waiting there. I think I greyed out at the bottom of the first hill and that loop really put me in my place :). I know for a fact my girlfriend blacked out from the first hill. I liked the helix and I thought this was a great ride, until we hit that wierd banking and the bunny hills... OUCH!! Okay ride, but it has some loading issues.

Next I headed off to Face/Off and was pleasantly surprised that it was not a typical "hang-n-bang." Fun ride, my parents happen to be sitting across from us so we kicked each other :). That going backwards around the loop and cobra roll really disoriented me.

It was a fun morning and the families and I decided to get some pizza at La Rosa's. That was some gooooood pizza. It really hit the spot!!

Next off I heard about Adventure Express and really nobody else wanted to go on it because they didn't know where it was at. I dragged them on there and found out another hidden jewel of Kings Island. I loved how this ride was always on the terrain. It had a really out of control feeling. The cars were nice and roomy and the ride didn't start with a lift, just a nice runaway mine car. The theming of the second lift was a great touch!! AE is a worth-while ride if you haven't discovered that yet :)

We headed over to the Racer next and rode backwards. That was a really neat experience. This is a real classic, it had some great airtime and it really didn't hurt me that much. I didn't, however, try the other side.

After the Racer we jogged over to FoF but it closed due to a coming thunderstorm... in fact all the rides shut down and were down for about an hour. So we headed to the 7th Portal and rode the 3D motion simulator. That was okay, some of the movements were kind of unnecesary, but it was entertaining.

We rode the train next and caught a glimpse of the construction. It looks like nothing is really going on yet. It looks like alot of room for expansion hope to see soon what PKI has in store.

Some of us then rode the Wild Thornberry's water ride and it was kind of fun. It was so hot and the water felt so good.

Finally the rides reopened, it never rained at all. So we headed to the Beast. Ever since I heard about this ride I wanted to ride it. In my mind when anyone talked about it I thought "Well CP has Magnum and MF, so it can't be THAT good." Boy I'm glad to be wrong!!! The Beast kicked @ss!! This ride had everything. It built up my anxiety as we slowly ascended that first lift and I was blown away by the tunnel and the winding track all through the woods. It seemed like we were going 100 MpH through that second tunnel and I thought that it was over with and then suddenly we hit a SECOND lift hill. And now we hit what my girlfriend will dub "The Helix From Hell." I enjoyed every second of it!! The tunnels were good chopper effects and it seemed so fast then. We hit the brakes after our 4 minute 50 second ride and we were all in awe. So I promised to ride it at night. :) :)

Next up was Vortex my first Arrow megalooper. It looks like the ride is getting painted and I like the dark blue and orange scheme. This was a totally different experience for me. I sat in the front and slowly ascended the lift hill. Make a quick turn and dove waaaaayy down and back up. I was ejected from my seat at the top of the second hill and coins flew out of my pockets and jingled in the car. :) Next we hit the nicely paced loops and through the corkscrews. Lots of head banging and ejections but I love those rides. The bommerang element was really smooth and new to me. Great ride, it had good pacing. I was the only one in the group who wanted to ride again :(

Finally we hit our last big ride. FoF was a great experience for me. I loved the UFO themeing and I liked the whole ride. I heard that there were shoulder harnesness and it used to hurt. I went on it and was delighted by the lap bars and the smooth ride. The launch was really cool!!! and I didn't know at all what direction I was going. Overall a must ride.

Like I promised I hit the Beast at night, only after a few other rides including Top Gun ;). I have to agree that that is a great ride at night. It is so pitch black after that first drop. The tunnel was really dark and really loud!! Coming back into the station they had to literally pry my off the ride!!! So since I had to get off I ran and got on again for one of the last rides of the night. Nothing can compare to this ride *except Magnum*. I will admit that this is my second favorite ride. It beat out the Millennium Force as a favorite. People this is a must ride at night, do not pass this up!!!

The park itself was a great experience. I was warmly welcomed by the beautiful fountains and the Eiffel Tower replica. The ride ops are the nices ops I've met, everyone of them said "hi", "have a nice ride" or "did you have fun?" I didn't have to hear one say "Stay off of the yellow line!!" They really seemed patient with people and were very very helpful. I loved the themeing of the park and the landscaping. It looks as if not a single detail was missed!! Oktoberfest clock is a real treat to see and the clock and date seen from Eiffel tower was a great touch. I think I picked a great day to go, not one ride was over a 30 minute wait. Many of them were walk ons. I trully believe that this an overlooked jewel of a park. I really hope to be coming back really soon!!

Thanks so much to the people who gave me advice, I got to ride everything that I wanted to ride!! And the food that you suggested was delicious!!

Sorry this is so long ;)

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***Why can't all parks have a Millennium Force and a Beast!!!!????***
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Saturday, June 16, 2001 6:49 AM
You hear all kinds of praise for Sonny and Beast, but I generally dig Top Gun, Flight of Fear and some of the others more. I did four or five laps in a row on Top Gun at few seasons ago and still wanted more. Ever since Flight of Fear got its retrofit, it easily ranks as one of the best steel coaster experiences I've ever had.

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Jeff
Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
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Saturday, June 16, 2001 2:48 PM
Great TR! I'm glad you had a lot of fun at my home park. We have a lot of hidden gems. One has been in operation for 5 years and truely uncovered this season(FOF of course). It's nice to hear a good report and not the bashing we've heard about other parks lately. The only reason Top Gun is so short is because it is fast, action-packed, and doesn't have two lift hills. I love the ride too. And don't worry. If PKI is an overlooked park, so is CP as they both get approximately the same attendance every year. I hope you can come back soon!

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Danny
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Monday, June 18, 2001 2:32 AM
I was just at PKI on the 16th myself. I must admit I was taken by surprise by Top Gun. I was expecting anther Iron Dragon and I found it was quite different. I liked Top Gun alot, however, it seemed way too short.
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Monday, June 18, 2001 10:00 AM
Top Gun is short, because:

1)It's fast(compared to ID)
2)Doesn't have two lifts like some other suspendeds(compared to BBW)
3)time flies when you're having fun(compared to others)

:)
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Danny

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