There have been a few rumors circulating that Skyscraper may be removed from Valleyfair! There have even been reports that parts of the ride are dismantled and currently in the VF parking lot. I didn't put much weight into the rumors until I visited the VF website and noticed that Skyscraper is no longer listed as a ride at VF. Skyscraper has also been removed from the options in VF's Challenge park. Thus there could be some truth to the rumors. It would be a shame as Skyscraper was an incredibly intense, fun ride and it would be missed. Last season, we fortunately decided to do the X-treme upgrades to our season passes and got in quite a few rides on Skyscraper. I must admit, it never was very busy and you could do multiple consecutive re-rides on it. Probably wasn't cost effective. I might take a drive by the park and see if the rumors are true; that is, if it wasn't so fricking cold out here in the great white north.
Was it owned by the park or was it a independent concession? Many up-charge rides (and on-ride photo booths) are just that. If the ride was a concession the park would have little to say in its leaving.
If you drove by during say, the winter of '99-'00 and saw half of Excalibur's second hill completely gone, you'd probably figure that ride was history, too.
Not to say that it isn't leaving. It might. I dunno.
But it could be routine maintenance, too.
ETA: Forget I said that. I re-read the first post and checked the VF website. Sheesh, they even re-numbered the attraction count in the first paragraph of copy about Challenge Park. Oh, yeah. It's gone.
A shame I never got around to riding it....
*** Edited 1/16/2008 4:43:06 PM UTC by CoastaPlaya***
NOTE: Severe fecal impaction may render the above words highly debatable.
Skyscraper was added to VF in 2005, the same year they added RipTide. So it's only had three seasons at VF. There was a rumor about CP getting a Skyscraper ride. That may be what's going on here. From a business perspective, it makes more sense to have it at a park like CP where is would be used more. Although I hate to see it go because it is alot of fun. The thing that caught my eye last night was the change in VF's website. The Challenge park discussed their four upgrades: RipCord, mini-golf, go-karts, and bumper boats. Skyscraper is no longer mentioned. Bummer.
Probably they'll get a lot more money running it at CF's Challenge Park, so for CF as a whole it seems like a good move.
I never rode it at Dorney, but I did get a spin on it at VF! They were running a great deal on it...but it was operated SO poorly it was hardly worth it. Based on the reports I heard, it was run MUCH better when the ride was at Dorney. Coastin' Steve of KFT fame did more than his share to help pay the ride off while it was in PA... :)
There were times I believe when the price was as low as $5 to $10 per ride. And it still sat idle. I'm not sad to see it go though. I can wait until the state fair if I ever have the urge to go on one of those.
I wouldn't say that Skyscraper was run poorly last year. I cannot comment on previous years however. I rode it on opening day last May. It did run slow that first day since there were new ride ops being trained in. After that first day, the ride ops did a very good job, and I thought it went very smoothly. It is the type of ride that does require special training for the ride ops. I personally think that is a good thing as you're falling face first at 60 mph from ~140 feet. I would prefer they go through all of the safety checks so I don't end up as a giant splat on the pavement. Personally, I thought Skyscraper gave more of an intense ride than Ripcord does. The first 5 seconds of Ripcord is very intense as you freefall, but Skyscraper has a much longer adrenaline rush. But that's just my opinion. I would agree that Skyscraper probably was under used at VF. Whenever I walked by, they were offering discounts of $5-10 per ride. I'm sure that is why it may be moved elsewhere.
By far the best Skyscraper of the four I've ridden. I got amazing rides on it in '06 and '07. I've never felt so exposed and terrified of a ride since being afraid of most big rides as a young kid.
WIldThingNative, I told ya you should have ridden it with me! Gator, not sure what happened on your visit, but I paid $5 also and got an incredible thrill out of it. The skycoasters are totally lame in comparison.
Could a ride be too scary for some people to ride? I think in the case of the Skyscraper the answer would a solid 'yes.' I only rode it once while at Dorney, and the first half of the ride didn't seem so bad.
But once perched atop the windmill (as it were) waiting for the bottom two people to load, I had no idea the hell that was about to be unleashed. Swooping towards the ground at rapid speed headfirst, losing total sense of where you were, it got to be one of those "Okay, you did your job well designers, I'm scared!" kind of rides.
I have ridden the Zamperla version three times since then (once at Great Adventure and twice in-a-row at the Montgomery County Fair in MD) with a harness instead of straps, and I don't know that it's any less scary. Sure, the speed is not as great and the height is lower, but the flipping action is fairly similar.
Well it is confirmed that the ride has been moved and transported to its new home. However, no knowledge of its destination is yet known. A spoke person for ValleyFair declined to comment on its new location, offering only that a future announcement from the park it will reside at can be expected in the near future. The ride was in fact dismantled last week and was residing in the parking lot, but nothing else is known at this time.
Any ideas on where this things going to go? My guess would have to be Cedar Point or maybe even Michigan's Adventure, simply because it's close to Valley Fair and won't have to deal with capacity as much.