Next month I will be going to New Jersey for business meetings and flying in Sunday Sept 18. I figured why not go to SFGAdv. Never been there before. I will be going alone which will be a little awkward for me.
I have a season and dining pass at my home park SFGAM. Just looking for some advice from people that have been there. Should I get the flashpass that day? How is the food? Is there any place in the park to relax and have a couple beers?
I would wait off until day of visit to consider Flash Pass. Depending on which day you go and weather, the park will be insanely crowded, a walk on Kingda Ka. Considering you are going in late September, the park will probably not be crowded. Do not use the lines at the metal detectors as a way to judge how busy the park is. Often the security line is the longest line in the park. Speaking of Kingda Ka, I would suggest hitting that ride as soon as the park opens, as it often gets the longest waits (security excluded) in the park, in part to still being run at reduced capacity.
The food there is quite good for amusement park food, so you really cannot go wrong. I would suggest you try Macho Nacho, that is a must for me every time I visit. As far as the beer goes, there are many places that serve throughout the park, and if I had to give a suggestion, I would recommend the Macho Nacho near El Toro. Although personally, I am too busy marathoning El Toro to be worried about drinking. :-)
If you have a gold pass you can use early entry to be on the first truck out on the safari which is the best ride in the park. Then hit all the rides on that side of the park before you hop on the skyride to get to the other side of the park. You should be able to get all the rides done before 2pm thus not needing flashpass. I believe zumanjaro is the only ride with a single rider line.
Jscll's point about hitting Kingda Ka 1st is a good one, as it's not uncommon for this coaster to have 90-minute waits later in the day if the park is crowded. I used to hit El Toro 1st b/c that's by far my favorite and if I got there early enough I could get 7 to 10 consecutive rides on it but given the wait times for KK, I altered my routine. When I first started visiting the park 6 years ago I sometimes bought a Flash Pass but stopped doing that once I realized that the secret was to get to the park early and hit the rides in the right order. But if you're flying in on the 18th that might not be an option depending upon when your flight gets in and how long you're staying. (Park open on the 18th but closed from the 19th through the 23rd.) I would leave Bizarro f/k/a Medusa for last, as it's often a walk-on and rarely has much of a queue at any time of the day; possibly b/c it's at the back of the park some guests don't realize that it's there. As to food, If the other offerings at the Garden State Grill - on the Boardwalk - are as yummy as the black bean burgers, this would be a good place to have lunch or dinner. A place I'd recommend for a beer is the Main Street Pub, which has a nice patio on which to relax. The Joker also has a single rider line but unfortunately, you have to stand in the regular line in order to get to it, whereas Zumanjaro's single rider line is completely separate from the others. And The Joker is another ride you'd want to hit early. Because it's a new attraction the queue tends to be long. http://www.upsdownsandupsidedown.com/
It is the first weekend of Fright Fest so it will probably be crowded but not as bad as October. September used to be quiet but that really isn't the case anymore with Fright Fest starting earlier and earlier. The weekend between Labor Day and Fright Fest used to be good too but now that is being a friend free weekend and last year it was jammed, as in Skull Mountain with a full queue crowded.
Green Lantern also has a single rider line but it has the same problem as Joker, not until closed to the end of the line and is only helpful if the regular line is less than 25 minutes.
Dave, My thoughts are a little different from everyone else! When I go to a park that I may not get back to I always get the fast pass. I normally dont go to the parks on the weekend. And if it is the start of Freight Fest then the crowd will be double. I have become spoiled and hate lines so hell enjoy your self and buy it.
Thank you everyone. I appreciate it. Yeah unless the weather is bad I will get the flash pass just in case.
And one other heads-up. When I was at GAdv last July, I went straight to the FlashPass line just a few minutes after opening. They allowed one member of each party to enter behind the FP building to get in the outdoor queue. After waiting here, they would send groups into the building to watch a video about the FP options, and would then release those viewers into they purchase area to wait in line for the FPs. The total wait first thing in the morning, to spend hundreds of dollars on FlashPass Gold, ended up being 30 minutes...
That said, on a moderately crowded Saturday in July, it was worth the wait and the many dollars they charge for it, at least for this family of four that might not make it back to GAdv for years to come. But we did get to ride everything we wanted to, including the safari which took more time than we expected.
And if it is the start of Freight Fest then the crowd will be double.
Almost as if they'd been brought it by the truckload.
At the park now and not impressed. El toro down all day and kingda ka down. Good think I didn't get flash pass
El Toro had problems yesterday too, it was running ok on Friday night so I wonder what happened. Hopefully Kingda Ka opens while you are at the park. Even 11 years after opening the ride still has a lot of downtime but it usually isn't closed the entire day.
I hear you and I totally understand just sucks because I won't be at this park again.
I've been to Six Flags Great Adventure twice, once in 2005, which was Kingda Ka's opening year, and once in 2014. The ride was down on both of my visits. Perhaps when I go back in about five or ten years it will be open, or maybe by then it will be demolished. It's just another reason to dislike that run down, overcrowded, outdated, junked up park.
It's been a while since I've mentioned how much I dislike that park. It feels good.
I did get to ride El Toro though. It was pretty good. It's the best reason to visit that park, in my opinion.
Really sorry that you happened to be at the park on a day when El Toro was closed for the entire day. This is highly unusual. I too was at the park today and as El Toro is my primary reason for going there, it was a huge disappointment. This is a coaster that every enthusiast should experience. Kingda Ka was closed when I first attempted to ride it but I did manage to get on midafternoon. There were some delays with a couple of other rides - The Joker, when they shut it down to add another train and Nitro, when a train got stuck on the lift hill. From my perspective it looked as if the back of the train was still on the lift hill and the front was hanging over the drop. Evidently the B train, as only A and C were running when I got to the loading platform. Other than that it wasn't a bad day to go to the park due to light attendance and consequent short waits. I suspect that a lot of people were scared off by the weather forecast (thunderstorms), which turned out to be entirely inaccurate.
Hat that you had a bad experience. Every time I've been to the park it was a lot of fun.
El Toro is pretty reliable so it sucks that you weren't able to ride it. KK has always had problems, so I'm not nearly as surprised that it wasn't running. That said, it also sucks that you weren't able to ride it.
Honestly, while there's a lot to see and do at GAdv, I've been there enough so I only need to hit a few things: Toro, Houdini, Toro, Parachute Jump, Toro, Nitro, and Toro some more. LOVE that ride!
I'd been hearing that the Bull has gotten a little rough - can't help but wonder if they're considering some retracking....
I rode Toro within the last month and while it seems a tad rougher than when I first rode it, overall it was fabulous, still the best ride in the park. A lot of people dis this park - Travis doesn't like it and he's certainly more than entitled to his opinion - but I love it. I think the ride ops are great; they put much more enthusiasm into their jobs than most at other parks I've visited. Some of them are actually quite knowledgeable about coasters, something I wouldn't expect from a seasonal employee who's probably working at minimum wage. On Sunday the ride op who checked my restraint on Bizarro noticed the Outlaw Run tattoo on one of my legs and said that what the park needed was an RMC. This led to a discussion of New Texas Giant and Iron Rattler. When I told him that I was finally going to have an opportunity to ride IR he suggested that I stop in Seguin to ride Switchback; that's how aware he was of what's been happening in the coaster industry.
There are a lot of ride ops that know about coasters. At Silver Dollar City, a Wildfire op noticed my Banshee first rider shirt, and because it was the first ride of the day, she gave me some helpful tips to avoid likes. At Cedar Point, while my friends got stuck on Rougarou (I couldn't ride because I had a walking boot at the time) the ride op at the entrance noticed my Outlaw Run shirt. We talked for a while while waiting for the ride to reopen. He went to dollywood 3 times to try to get on Lightning Rod and it was closed every time.
Overall I really enjoyed the park and thought it was much better than my home park SFGAM. Sad I didn't get to ride El Toro but was able to ride Kingda Ka 3 times.
Kingda ka was fun but I prefer TTD. It seems very rough and the launch feels different sort of like the cable is being pushed towards the end of the launch. The hill at the end is a nice touch though. The drop tower on this was awesome. What a rush.
I went on mostly every other ride and the back seat on Nitro was great. I felt so many elements and didn't expect much from this ride. The Joker was fun as well and looking forward to it coming next year to SFGAM
The safari was really great and I enjoyed it very much. What a surprise that was. Land area was huge and so many awesome animals even though I am not a huge fan of animals being locked in cages(lions).
Food was outstanding. I ate at Nathan's and had a gyro. Had a few beers.
Crowds were not bad so I didn't get a flash pass. I left before the Halloween stuff because I was by myself. Overall though I had a great time especially with me going to a park by myself for the first time in my life.
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