Myrtle Beach/PKD Weekend

Associated parks:
None

Monday, July 24, 2006 3:06 PM
July 22nd: Myrtle Beach Grand Prix

Located in North Myrtle Beach, this small "park" held a Crazy Mouse and a Wacky Worm for us. Well, it looked like the Crazy Mouse was closed (along with a partially disassembled flying carpet ride), so that credit was missed on this trip. Kevin and I boarded the trailer-mounted Wacky Worm and got the credit, and that is all I can say about this place.


Family Kingdom

I had read online that the park doesn't let adults ride the Speedy Gonzalez coaster (which is a Wacky Worm). Never mind the fact I just rode one a few hours before, but they set the rules. We also passed on the Great Pistolero Roundup, which looked really small from the outside (I guess the building was once a Mexican restaurant).

Emily, Kevin, and I bought our tickets and queued up for the Swamp Fox. I actually really like the white/lime paint on the coaster itself, and it's pretty cool to see the Hurricane down the street as you ride it. The ride was actually pretty nice, and was decently kept up for it's age. The rest of the park looked like a Jersey shore pier, though.


Myrtle Beach Pavilion

Now this was the gem of the entire trip. We hit the park just as it was getting dark, and that's when I believe parks like this really shine. After paying for our wristbands, we queued up for the Mad Mouse. When we were in line, it started raining, and once we sat down in the car, it started pouring. Not bad for us, because we were under a roof, but bad for the people on the back brake run, sitting in the pouring rain.

After a slight delay, I experienced what was probably the single best wild mouse variation I've ever been on. Really, I hope some park close gets this one at the end of the season (Knoebels, I'm looking in your direction).

Hurricane was next up, and it's a good thing I got this credit when I did. I really don't see this ride being saved after the park closes, for a few reasons: it's got G-trains, it's a boring layout, the station is a concrete mess, and the ride shakes the hell out of you. Really, this is now on my bottom five coaster list, nestled between SFKK's T2 and PKD's Shockwave.

Next up was the Haunted Hotel, a dark ride cheesy with terrible capacity, but it was fun. We also rode a Rainbow that faced the ocean, a Calypso with a cool lighting package, and Emily and I opted for the most restrictive Top Spin that I've ridden. We also took in the other dark ride, a small pirate-themed shoot-em-up.

As we were standing in line for the Haunted Hotel, we noticed the operator at Little Eagle cycling the train a few times, without riders. After re-riding the Mad Mouse, we walked over to that area to complete the park. Little Eagle was an OK kiddie coaster, but what made up for it was all the themeing.

It's a shame this park is closing, because (with the exception of Hurricane) I had fun on everything here. The front of the park facing Ocean Boulevard has this charm to it, and the park looked clean and well-kept, even over the other two parks in the area. It's a shame this park is closing, but it's just the way the industry's going these days, I suppose. At least there was plenty of merchandise to be sold, as no one entering the park in 2006 could miss the dozens of "Farewell Season" signs, decals, and posters.


July 23rd: Paramount's King's Dominion

Talk about change. I wasn't too sweet on PKD before this trip, and I'm concerned and confused by the park policies. For example, even though we showed up at the front gate past five, the park does not sell "Twilight Admission" or "Late Admission" at the park itself. You have to purchase it at a credit union of some sort (I didn't hear the explanation). So although Kevin and I were season passholders, it took two $49.99 tickets to get Emily and Alecia in the park. Now, these tickets could be used twice for two admissions, but we were just stopping here on the way home, and had no intention of coming back this year. Explain that one to me, please.

As we were walking to the Italian Job Turbo Stunt Track Coaster (whatever they're calling it...), Kevin and I both noticed the large amount of new, black trash cans all around the park. In line, we noticed how slow Anaconda crawls through it's mid-course (it wasn't doing that last season). I wonder if this is the Cedar Fair influence starting to show up?

Anyway, the coaster itself is fun. I don't know if it's worth closing Flight of Fear for (if the rumors are true). Pretty enjoyable for what it is. While queuing up, we noticed signs that stated "The line for this ride closes at 9:30." I've never really seen this at any other park, even if they close off lines early. Maybe they've had guest complaints? Kevin thought it might be this way to save on an operation budget.

Next up, Kevin needed the Volcano credit, so we stood in an hour line. I had ridden it before, and it's got a powerful launch, but the rolls are just so-so for me. It looks like Intamin put new seats on the ride this season, and they have support on the sides, which gives you an "arm rest" from the feel of it.

We did the Scooby-Doo ride (I seem to be getting better at interactive dark rides... I want to go back to Holiday World), and also got to catch the Funtastic World of Hannah-Barbara. I was happy to get this in, since we skipped it at Carowinds, and didn't know SFKK had it playing. I remembered seeing the film back at Universal Studios Florida in 1990.

Finally, we rode the Grizzly, which was a walk-on at this point. This year, they have a new padding on the seats, which for a person my height, had hard padding from the top down to about where my elbows were, and cushion padding below that. Well, thanks to this, the coaster has been knocked out of my top-10 list by Raven. We left PKD, and continued driving home for the rest of the night.

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Monday, July 24, 2006 9:32 PM
Two-day-same-price-as-one tickets are the new thing, with discounts usually only applying for one day. Actually, they push the two days more than the one day.
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Wednesday, July 26, 2006 12:51 PM
Volcano is open? Geez, where have I been?
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Wednesday, July 26, 2006 8:31 PM
I must admit I only read your TR for the Myrtle Beach Parks. That being said, I agree with everything you said. I think MBP should stay and FK should close. Take out Hurricane and put Swamp Fox in it's place.
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Wednesday, July 26, 2006 9:46 PM
I'd much rather ride Flight of Fear than Volcano. Maybe that's just me, though.

The Pavilion is an incredibly nice place, and Hurricane is the only black mark on the place (well, besides that Top Spin... but I guess I should know better).

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Wednesday, July 26, 2006 10:17 PM
^ I've been on lots of Top Spins, that's the first one where the restraints closed extra-tight (as they normally do) but then DIDN'T relax at all before the cycle started...it WAS a tad uncomfortable....but the flippage was SWEET!

Seems like almost all the flats at Pavilion are run on good intensity... :)

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Wednesday, July 26, 2006 10:21 PM
All the flats seemed to be on long and crazy cycles, which made me steer clear of the park's Wipeout, because that's what did Kevin and I in at Kennywood.
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Thursday, July 27, 2006 4:08 PM
^ Believe it or not the Wipeout and Rainbow are running at EXTREMELY slow speeds compared to last season. The Rainbow was the most insane experience ever on a flat ride last year, this year it is rather tame with no airtime.

The Top Spin also runs a pretty mild program compared to what I've seen before, but I guess those 30 flip german fair programs have spoiled me...

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