Dorney Park, Allentown, Pennsylvania, USA
I'm finishing out the East Coastering season with a trifecta this weekend and next. Last evening after work, I headed to Allentown. My friend Judy was coming in from the Pittsburgh area with her occasional coaster companions. I wanted to see her and ride some coasters, but I knew it would be a late arrival and an abbreviated night. It was a tough ride out...I've never headed to Dorney that late, and ran into rush hour traffic on Rt 78, as well as a very strong sun directly in front of me most of the way through Jersey, heading due West. I missed a coupla turns, but made it to the motel while Judy was checking in ( I was gonna crash with them.)
Judy's companions are developmentally challenged, and they LOVE roller coasters. So it's a slow go when they're along, but they get a lot of enjoyment, so it's all good. We didn't get to the park until a few minutes after 9pm, with a 12 o'clock closing. I had heard somewhere that SP holders could get guests in for $20 during Haunt, and Judy did that for me. The parking lot seemed to have a fair number of cars, and a handful of buses. I don't know where all those people were. I expected a crowd on the last Friday night of the season with nice..though chilly..weather. I had been advised by two CB'ers..the internet kind, not the radio kind...to expect the place to be slammed.
THERE. WAS. BARELY. A. SOUL. THERE. And that's not a Halloween Haunt joke.
We started with two rides on my favorite coaster in the park, Talon. Both rides were excellent, a recurring theme this night. One of Judy's companions needs the (very) Big Boy seat, so I rode with her on the first ride and without her on the second while she joined him. I think we went to Hydra next. Aside from the Jo-Jo roll, Hydra is very "meh" to me. I don't hate it, and I give it points for being a very disorienting ride, but I can take it or leave it.While they went to use the facilities, I grabbed a ride on Meteor, which I love. The cycle has been lengthened...In the past, I've counted seven revolutions one way, then five the other. Last night it was 10 and 8. I rode again with my group when they met me, and that time there were TEN each way. I was feeling a little green around the gills after that, bringing back memories of my last couple laps on Hydra at CFK in June (right, bunky?) A terrific ride on Steel Force was followed by a ride on ThunderHawk, which I was surprised to see running when Judy pointed it out from Force's lift hill. They've eliminated the haunt that was underneath the ride and used its queue, so I assume it's been open all Haunt season. Literally no one in the station. I took a front seat ride on a whim. Glad I did. Not rough at all, and I got two great pops of airtime when cresting the two hills after the first drop.
I think that's all the rides we rode. We did two Haunts...Asylum, with about a 10-minute wait, and CornStalkers to close our night with no wait. Asylum is always well done, but I was disappointed with the other. There were very few scare actors making appearances (staffing?) and it's very tedious to walk through an attraction of that length when there just ain't much happening. Eve the chainsaw guy at the end was nowhere in sight.
That was it. Short but fun night, which was all I hoped for. Slow going with the "kids," so didn't ride a lot, but I got my money's worth. Didn't get back to the motel until close to 1am, and I'm not much of a night owl, so I was pretty wiped. I split for Jersey a little before 9am today, and got off at a wrong exit seeking a Golden Corral breakfast. I eventually got there, but only after a tour of residential Allentown.
On the way out of the park, I separated from my group to pick up a t-shirt I had seen at a little kiosk near the Whip. The girl was just packing up the shirts for the night, but her register was still on. It's a black shirt with zombies riding a roller coaster under a full moon with a logo reminiscent of Walking Dead, amended to read RIDING Dead. And it glows in the dark! They only had XL, though. It fits, but I'd prefer a 2XL.
The second part of the Triple Play referred to in my title is GrAdv for Closing Day tomorrow. I'm meeting my friend Jen and a fellow from another forum whom I've never met. Then next weekend, I'm gonna hit Hershey, having only found out this week they're open. I may go Friday and do the Preview thing for Saturday's full day ticket purchase. As I'm typing this, I decided to go for it. I'll make a motel reservation after I finish this....
Thanks for reading!
The amusement park rises bold and stark..kids are huddled on the beach in a mist
"Yay. Hydra. Yay." :)
Sorry I missed it...sounds like it was a great evening.
It is strange to me that there wasn't much going on, but there WERE a lot of trick or treating things going on on Friday. I expected the grocery store to be packed, but it was absolutely dead...I think all the kids were in my development looting for candy. They never trick or treat on Halloween anymore around here. Also, maybe people were squeezing in last minute trips to haunted attractions like Pennhurst and Eastern State and whatnot. We went to Pennhurst tonight, and without the VIP passes, I don't think we would have even seen everything until around 2 am or so.
"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band
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