Pittsburgh's treasure -- Kennywood 7/15

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Thursday, July 19, 2007 5:38 PM
What can I say about Kennywood? It's just a great tradition park that has done a good job of holding onto the old and the new. We only stayed until around 6:30-7:00 (the drive back to Baltimore is pretty long after you've been at a park a good bit of the day), but the place wasn't too crowded, which was great. Below are the random notes as usual.

--The entrance plaza looks new and is very nice. We were able to get our tickets quickly and easily. Also, Kennywood starts their senior discount at 55, so my dad was able to get in for like $15! How cool is that!?

--The Cosmic Chaos is fun and has some nice theming. I like Survivor: The Ride better, but this is a nice addition for the park. It's a good thing we got on early, as the line for this was fairly long when we left. The disk isn't as large as Survivor's. I still don't like the way the restraints keep constant pressure on your back; I wish they would set and then lock without the constant pressure.

--Phantom's Revenge rocks! I like this one better than I did the last time I was there. This has got to be one of, if not the best Morgan coaster that I've done. Of course, it is a hybrid, but they did a great job with it. One of my main beefs with Kennywood, though, is that they don't start off the day running 2 trains on it, nor Thunderbolt for that matter. For weekends, I say start with 2 trains and leave it like that for the rest of the day.

--Exterminator was fun, and my dad really enjoyed it. He was actually laughing on the ride, which doesn't happen a whole lot on coasters for him. We rode it twice in a row early on, which was a good idea, since the line got longer later, and it moves slow. This is definitely better than the outdoor versions. The theming is great, and the darkness just adds to the ride experience.

--Thunderbolt is a decent old ride, and it's in pretty good shape, though it was somewhat painful riding over the axle. Perhaps they should retrack it. I don't like it as much as I did when I first rode it back in 1997, but it's not a bad ride.

--Jack Rabbit disappointed! Where was the big air? The first time, I rode it in the front car, and barely got any air on that double dip. The second time, we rode in the back car, and I got more, but not an extreme amount. The new logo looks fun, though.

--Racer is a decent fun ride, though why in the world did they add seatbelts?! This slowed the loading, and I find it unnecessary, especially since it's like the tamest of the wood coasters there!

--The Swing Shot was fun, but they should have a longer program. Only one side was running.

--Lost Kennywood is so pretty.

--The Whip was ok, but I think I like Dorney's a little better at this point, since the ride experience seems about the same, and Dorney's is still covered.

--It stinks that they removed the flying carpet ride to put in Cosmic Chaos. Also, the platform behind the skycoaster with the Huss ride is gone! :(

--Log Jammer is fun--I like the coaster-like drop and hill. The final drop is a bit bumpy and uncomfortable, but the ride looks great. You do get a decent amount wet for a log flume, too.

--The Potato Patch fries are great :)

--Garfield's Nightmare is a good retheme of the Old Mill.

--Kennywood is the type of park where you want to try the food. Would be nice to have a bigger stomach for this place :)

--Got some more pics for the website, and the day was beautiful for a good bit of the time.

--One of the lows about visiting Kennywood is finding your way away from there and back home--definitely kinda confusing using Mapquest directions :)

Overall, a great day at a great park. What more could I ask for besides more trains on the coaster tracks :)

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Thursday, July 19, 2007 6:02 PM

rablat5 said:
The disk isn't as large as Survivor's.


That's the point, they put a regular disk on a mega disk-o platform. Hence faster and more spins.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007 6:20 PM
I'm glad someone else agrees with me that the removal of the platform and the Huss Swingaround for a high diving act stinks.

I was told the Magic Carpet bit the dust due to frequent down time and parts not being avalible. Well, actually, I heard more like it was a maintenance nightmare. It was, however, a cool ride when it worked.

I still miss the Bayern Kurve, which I hear is still around, in storage. Lost Kennywood is particularly beautiful at night, especially looking down on it from atop the Phantoms Revenge hill. :)

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Thursday, July 19, 2007 7:33 PM
Platform? That was a whole theatre with the Huss Swing Around on top. I would say that I missed the Magic Carpet this visit, but considering they still have one at BGE (DaVinchi's Cradle), I'm not griping. I think it's replacement does the trick just fine anyway.

Ben, you're the second person to complain about the Zamperla back restraint. Bryan, who was on our trip, complained about some pain in his tailbone. The three others of us didn't have any complaints. Bryan is my height and approximate build, so we can't factor that in. Perhaps it's your height placing pressure lower on your spine?

I agree that Jack Rabbit lost its "air" with the new seatbelts, or whatever else they may have done. And I will agree that Racer has gotten even more tame with the seatbelts. Call it heresy, but tear em' both down and put in one bigger woodie (or maybe even another steel coaster?)! *** Edited 7/19/2007 11:34:14 PM UTC by Intamin Fan***

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Thursday, July 19, 2007 10:51 PM
Does anyone remember the old Vettel style trains that used to run on the Racer? Very similar to the ones that are still on the Jack Rabbit and those which used to be on the West View coasters. Of course, the belts in the cars then were much looser than those new style belts used now.
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Friday, July 20, 2007 11:48 AM
A "regular" disk on a mega disk-o platform? I don't quite get this--please explain.

Wow--hadn't realized that the "platform" had a theater underneith--it's been a while. It looked better, though--I wish they had kept it.

Rob, I personally don't like rides where the restraint maintains constant pressure on the rider, such at this one, and also Fandango at Knoebels. The rides themselves are good, but I don't like to have to fight the restraint to remain comfortable.

Tear down JR and Racer?! The heresy! Haha--well, in their present shape, they don't do a whole lot for me. Of course, the Racer never really did, but neither one are as good as they used to be. A nice GG or Intamin woodie would do nicely :) Or perhaps a nice steelie, like you said. Can someone say terrain B&M invert? :)

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Friday, July 20, 2007 12:58 PM
The Racer would be fine if that first drop wasn't so dissappointing following that long lift. Whoever did that design could have done better. The remainder of the ride is much better, of course, with its twists and rapid succession of drops.

As for the Jack Rabbit, it's a real piece of history and probably the only non-junior woodie that allows small children to ride. And yes, I still enjoy that double dip even with the newer belts.

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Friday, July 20, 2007 1:04 PM
I don't see how the newer belts would hamper the airtime, though. Did they do something else to the ride to tame it? Magnetic brakes?
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Friday, July 20, 2007 1:22 PM
Jack Rabbit has, in my past visits to Kennywood, been quite random in the amount of air it gives. It seems to do better after dark / later in the evening, or, on the visit in which we had a brief rainstorm it ran better afterwards than beforehand.
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Friday, July 20, 2007 1:22 PM
Yeah, you used to come flying off your seat on Jack Rabbit. Perhaps another solution to the Racer/Jack Rabbit issue would be to create another hybrid combination, something Kennywood is great at!

The theatre that the Swing Around sat on top of had one of those variety shows with a bunch of college kids singing modern and classic hits.

One thing is for sure and that is that Kennywood is not afraid to "play around" with history. Of course, when you have as little property as they do, you're forced to. Since my initial visit in 2000, it's amazing how much has changed over the following visits in 01', 02', 03' and 07'. I'd say the biggest shock this year to me was Garfield's Nightmare--a reworking of the Olde Mill.

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Friday, July 20, 2007 3:47 PM
I can't get Jackrabbit's seat belt tight enough around me. I don't get why you guys want to be tossed from your seat, then slammed back down like you do on JR. Its not like the seat belt is even tight. it hangs off me and my girlfriend just as it always has. I don't get it.
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Friday, July 20, 2007 7:16 PM
This year I thought Jack Rabbit was just plain slower. Maybe my imagination, or maybe it just needs greased up or something.

As far as the seat belts, I agree, they are not that tight, and no one comes around to make them tighter than you make them yourself. I got just as much air on the double dip as before.

The rest of the ride seemed slow as molasses this year, though. Maybe it's just because I get to ride it every year now and I'm used to it. :|

(PS... the comment about the sign on the Racer was amusing. West View Park had a skull and crossbones on their "do not stand up" signs!)

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Friday, July 20, 2007 8:34 PM
Couldnt agree more, about many of your points at least. My only gripe at Kennywood every year is their lack of 2 train operation. It still just baffles me...I mean sure, they will eventually put the 2nd train on if the line gets long enough, but it seems like it has to get pretty long, especially on Phantoms Revenge, before that will happen. I mean why should we have to wait 30 mins when we could only have to wait 10? I also agree about the removal of the garden stage, the high dive show stinks, IMO. Although it does seem to draw pretty good crowds, but I just really loved that ride on on the stage, not to mention the area was definatley prettier with the stage there, I dont think you can even argue otherwise.

I have to say though, that I disagree with some peoples desires to tear down the Racer and Jack Rabbit. These rides are classics that should never be removed. And I would say the Jack Rabbit still gives as much air as it ever has...

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