PKI: April 3rd - "Season Pass Preview Weekend"

Associated parks:

Weather: In the 50's, sunshine, with very gusty wind (15 - 20 MPH)
Crowds: Very light
Major Rides Closed: Son of Beast, Top Gun, Face/Off, Scooby's Ghoster Coaster

My wife and I arrived just as the park opened (we were going to go Saturday, but the weather took care of that). We headed straight to IJ:ST, to see how it looked (I missed both construction tours, so this was my first in-person look at it).

Well, color me impressed. The whole ride is heavily themed, and looks like something that could've easily have been installed at Island's of Adventure or Disney. Everything from the freeway signs, cop cars, cargo containers, parking garage, etc, looks great. The Mini Cooper themed trains are also impressive. You can see a lot of the track layout, (and like the video shows), I don't think the ride has a single piece of straight track, minus the launch areas. Certainly looking forward to riding this one in May.

After taking in IJ:ST, we took several laps on the coasters that were open. Flight of Fear is running normally, except they had the lights turned on in the launch tunnel and the building (I prefer it in the dark). The Racer was running both sides, and the crew was actually racing the trains most of the time we were there.

An interesting thing was happening on the Beast. The park was running all 3 trains, but during our third trip through the line, one of the trains had to have the lap bars released manually, EVERYTIME. After everyone had exited the train, they would let a new group board, and send it on it's way. I'm not a ride expert, so I won't even venture a guess as to what was going on, but it really slowed everything down (it would take around 5-6 minutes to dispatch that one train). I don't know if this continued for the rest of the day or not. Maybe the Beast was having opening weekend jitters.

The Beast was running rougher than I remember last year. It had this "jack-hammer" thing going on through-out the course where the train felt like it was bouncing up and down on the track. Hopefully it was just the cooler weather, and the Beast will smooth out a little bit as it warms up.

Congo Falls and The Wild Thornberrys River Adventure were both open, and people were riding. Every once in awhile you'd see a boat go up the lift of Congo Falls with one or two people in it. You would then see them come off, shivering like crazy. Must've been doing it on a dare or something. :)

I took a spin on Delirium, and everytime I ride it, the more I like it. Cedar Point is going to have winner on their hands when maXair opens this year!

Other changes I noticed: The parking lot had a little makeover. The fence surrounding the employee lot is gone, and the little shed that used to be at the entrance of the Gold Pass lot has disappeared. The tram circle near the front gate is also gone. We saw the new Graeter's Ice Cream shop, and the mini-donut shop (but didn't sample either one). The Happy Day's diner near the Vortex is nicely themed. I'm going to have to try a "Ralph-Mouth" milkshake on my next visit.

One last thing: The employees running the games seemed a lot more "aggressive" this year, trying to get people to play. A lot of the time, they would be standing in the midways, stopping people, asking them to try out a game. I don't have a problem with it (just say "No thanks" and continue walking on), but I wonder if it will bother some guests.

Well, it was great to finally visit PKI after the long winter break. The only disappointment was Top Gun being closed, but we'll catch that on the next visit. It was a fun trip, and I can't wait to go back.

EDIT: Typos

Jerry *** Edited 4/4/2005 3:14:01 PM UTC by Outlane***

Outlane said: It had this "jack-hammer" thing going on through-out the course where the train felt like it was bouncing up and down on the track.Jerry
Queue Rideman...

Where are the trams going to be stopping at now? Nice report by the way.

*** Edited 4/4/2005 3:04:40 PM UTC by Neuski***


I took one ride on The Beast on Saturday morning and thought it was running very smoothly. I wasn't sitting over the wheels and it was raining/snowing during the ride so perhaps that had something to do with it.

I could not believe how fast Flight of Fear was on Saturday. I have never gotten a ride on it that quick before. Usually the train barely makes it over the small hump after the first three inversions, but on Saturday there was some nice airtime in any seat. We later found out that Premier did some work on the LIMs during the off season.


coasterqueenTRN's avatar
I don't think I have EVER seen Congo Falls or the Wild Thornberrys rides closed. ;-) It's baffles me that people will STILL ride those things so early in the season, especially when it's cold. People were actually riding them in the snow/rain? Yikes.


Hopefully the weather will be a little warmer THIS weekend. :-)

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