SFA on Saturday (May 20)

Associated parks:
None

Tuesday, May 23, 2006 6:07 PM
Ok, so Intamin Fan beat me to a TR, but I'll post one, anyway :)

I went to SFA on Saturday with my friend and my dad. My dad probably enjoyed the park better than we did, but we may be more critical of the place. Instead of going into a play-by-play, I'll just make some commments below.

--They are doing a good job of running 2 trains on everything that can run 2 trains. And it's also nice to see that Batwing is running 2 stations.

--On that note, it seems that not all the people are catching onto the 2 station thing. The line for that side was shorter than the line for the 1st station when we got there (to the second station). It looked like some people weren't quite sure about going over there.

--SROS doesn't seem to be running as fast as it used to or something (at least during the end of the ride). Maybe it needs to be hotter out than it has been.

--Some girl (employee) on Mind Eraser was being ridiculous with her method of OSTR checking. She was pretty much jumping up and then shoving down on all the OSTRs on her side, which is overkill, IMO. Couldn't that potentially hurt someone?

--Typhoon Sea Coaster was running, though it did break down while we were there. It's a shame that this ride has had so many problems, and that it seems like they never did a "complete" job with the theming? They should have done more with the giant skull mountain thing.

--Wild One is the gem of the park. It was running well, and there was no prolonged screeching during the helix. I hope they keep this ride in great shape. Though it does seem like a safety issue the way there is that large gap on either side of the train (between the train and the platform) in the station. Someone actually got their foot caught there briefly on Saturday (my friend saw this).

--While it's nice that they have the parade, it was kinda pathetic. It's not very big, for one thing. Also, while we were there, there was a group of girls that were supposed to be twirling some flags or something. One was twirling--the other 3 didn't seem to be doing much else other than holding them.

--It is nice that they have the characters and Justice League out often.

--The park should really do SOMETHING in the Nantucket area of the park. The old Enterprise wannabe is still partially there, yet fenced off. IE is gone, and they haven't done much with that area. Also, the area between Shipwreck Falls and the "Enterprise" is mostly unused. Why don't they have more games and/or food or something there?

--Batwing and SROS could definitely use paint jobs. Mind Eraser and JJ look nice.

--While riding TF, my friend literally got hit in the leg or shoe by a piece of trash that flew up when we rushed through the station the first time. We were joking about it--This park is so trashy, he literally got hit by a flying piece of trash! (or something along those lines)

--ToD was back to running 2 cars.

--They are headed in the right direction with some stuff. But, IMO, what they have given us this year barely, or doesn't quite, justify the prices of LAST year, let along THIS year. I think it's ridiculous what they have raised some of the gate and parking prices at some SF parks this year. Some of you may argue the point, but when better parks, such as HP and BGW, charge less and still give you a better experience, how can SF, in their right minds, do what they do with the prices?

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Tuesday, May 23, 2006 7:50 PM

rablat5 said:
--On that note, it seems that not all the people are catching onto the 2 station thing. The line for that side was shorter than the line for the 1st station when we got there (to the second station). It looked like some people weren't quite sure about going over there.

We're keeping that our own little secret. ;)



--SROS doesn't seem to be running as fast as it used to or something (at least during the end of the ride). Maybe it needs to be hotter out than it has been.

Which train were you riding? The blue train was giving a great ride one week ago last Sunday. It has been a little cooler than normal and since this is really the only second week the blue train has been running, I'd imagine is still probably breaking in.



--Some girl (employee) on Mind Eraser was being ridiculous with her method of OSTR checking. She was pretty much jumping up and then shoving down on all the OSTRs on her side, which is overkill, IMO. Couldn't that potentially hurt someone?

I've had a horrible problem with stapling this season on S:ROS and Roar. Haven't rode Mind Eraser this season but thanks for the heads up.



--Typhoon Sea Coaster was running, though it did break down while we were there. It's a shame that this ride has had so many problems, and that it seems like they never did a "complete" job with the theming? They should have done more with the giant skull mountain thing.

TSC has been running great up until this past weekend. Noticed it opened late on Sunday so whatever the problem was it required some work to fix. Up until last weekend, it's been opening before noon and running consistently.



--Wild One is the gem of the park. It was running well, and there was no prolonged screeching during the helix. I hope they keep this ride in great shape. Though it does seem like a safety issue the way there is that large gap on either side of the train (between the train and the platform) in the station. Someone actually got their foot caught there briefly on Saturday (my friend saw this).

Never noticed the big hole between train and the platform. This is probably not something that SF did but something that Wild World did when they built the station platform. The Helix was retracked in the off season.



--While it's nice that they have the parade, it was kinda pathetic. It's not very big, for one thing. Also, while we were there, there was a group of girls that were supposed to be twirling some flags or something. One was twirling--the other 3 didn't seem to be doing much else other than holding them.

To my knowledge this is the parks first attempt at a parade. If it's anything like the rest of the parks shows, it will improve over time.



--The park should really do SOMETHING in the Nantucket area of the park. The old Enterprise wannabe is still partially there, yet fenced off. IE is gone, and they haven't done much with that area. Also, the area between Shipwreck Falls and the "Enterprise" is mostly unused. Why don't they have more games and/or food or something there?

When the park was Wild World, they had skeet ball machines between The Enterprise and Shipwreck Falls. I believe an arcade was on one side and skeet ball on the other. That alley is dead! Now with the removal of Iron Eagle, I hope the park fixes this problem once and for all.



--Batwing and SROS could definitely use paint jobs. Mind Eraser and JJ look nice.


Add to that list High Seas and Two Face. I'm hoping with SFI finished with installing big coasters for the next couple of years, that some of these coasters will get the TLC they need.



--While riding TF, my friend literally got hit in the leg or shoe by a piece of trash that flew up when we rushed through the station the first time. We were joking about it--This park is so trashy, he literally got hit by a flying piece of trash! (or something along those lines)

I don't think the park has ever been cleaner. One piece of trash doesn't make the park trashy, particularly on a windy day.



--ToD was back to running 2 cars.

It was running three cars for a day or two and not it's back down to two cars.



But, IMO, what they have given us this year barely, or doesn't quite, justify the prices of LAST year, let along THIS year. I think it's ridiculous what they have raised some of the gate and parking prices at some SF parks this year. Some of you may argue the point, but when better parks, such as HP and BGW, charge less and still give you a better experience, how can SF, in their right minds, do what they do with the prices?

You only pay the $49.99 if you buy your ticket at the main gate. If you pay it online, it's a modest $3 increase. Not to mention with the $15 off with gas receipt promo, your ticket price would be $34.99. You have to do a little work to get the better discounts. I don't see Hershey or BGW offering those kinds of discounts. I think Shapiro has priced it right. I like the Play Pass idea. Come back a second time and you've reduced your G.A. price to $25. If it works in keeping the bad elements out of the park, go for it.

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Tuesday, May 23, 2006 9:19 PM
They really need to do a retheme of nantucket & add a nice flats package along with a small family coaster like the one SFNE got last season,or a good spinning mouse because that area of the park is just dead.

I'd say put a frisbee on IE's pad,remove the enterprise & it's associated pad entirely which would free up at least some space for another flat or two & then just get rid of the buildings back in that area & then it may be possible to squeeze a mouse in there.

As for Batwing I'm glad that it's up to two trains & stations on a consistent basis but they really need to do something about the split in the queue...perhaps a path to station 2 going from the main Batwing path & in between the field seperating supes from Batwing would be a good idea as most folks simply aren't familiar with the switch point midway through the main queue as station 2 hasn't been in use for the past few seasons.

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Tuesday, May 23, 2006 10:28 PM
Two Face gets cleaned all the time the way the train comes through the station kicks up alot of peoples lose articles, ie. park maps and such so thats probably what the trash was.
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Friday, May 26, 2006 2:09 PM
"You only pay the $49.99 if you buy your ticket at the main gate. If you pay it online, it's a modest $3 increase. Not to mention with the $15 off with gas receipt promo, your ticket price would be $34.99. You have to do a little work to get the better discounts. I don't see Hershey or BGW offering those kinds of discounts. I think Shapiro has priced it right. I like the Play Pass idea. Come back a second time and you've reduced your G.A. price to $25. If it works in keeping the bad elements out of the park, go for it."
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I would rather Shapiro price the parks comparible to other parks than to have them priced ridiculously. Some of them were already priced high enough as it was last year.

Here's how I feel: They should have left the gate prices and parking prices what they were last year, and they should have raised the SP prices--thereby making it harder to get a season pass and less easy for people to get them for their kids to use SF as a babysitting service. They should have worked hard on raising the quality a year or two BEFORE raising gate and parking prices. Then, when they do raise them, they should be gradual, not a big jump. Get people to have faith in the parks BEFORE raising prices, not say, "Hey, we promise we're gonna do a lot better now, so now we're gonna ask you for more money to get in."
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"They really need to do a retheme of nantucket & add a nice flats package along with a small family coaster like the one SFNE got last season,or a good spinning mouse because that area of the park is just dead."
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They ought to do SOMETHING there. I think the theming they have is nice, but the area is on the dead side. If they aren't going to use those spaces and buildings, tear them out, and give us a couple of nice flats and a small spinning coaster (like Mr. Six at SFNE). This park has potential. I wish they'd do a better job at living up to it.
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"Two Face gets cleaned all the time the way the train comes through the station kicks up alot of peoples lose articles, ie. park maps and such so thats probably what the trash was."
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Yea, he thinks it was a cup that flew up and hit him. Personally, we just don't like the park a whole lot, and we tend to knock on it. Maybe as things get better, we'll have less reason to do so, but it's definitely not on my list of favs. *** Edited 5/26/2006 6:21:32 PM UTC by rablat5***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 2:28 AM
That "dead" alley in Nantucket is actually very much alive. Those in the "know" know what I'm talking about, and if you don't I'm not telling.

I too wished they would've replaced the Sky Escaper a long time ago. Unfortunately, that left Iron Eagle as the centerpiece of that section. They even added a chasing "Six Flags" sign to the top of the giant arm which looked cool at night. But as most of us know, the ride was a complete mess. I think taking it down was the right decision. Better to have an empty spot, than a ride that barely works.

It the park survives into next year, maybe they can look at getting us a Frisbee, Topple Tower, Top Spin, etc., etc. to fill the spot.

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 3:27 PM
I'll take a frisbee or maybe even a topple tower but I'll definitely pass on a top spin.
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Saturday, May 27, 2006 5:05 PM
Well folks, Premium Parking has shown up at SFA. Yep! Pay $25 and you can park in the 7 rows, closest rows to the front gate.
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Saturday, May 27, 2006 6:04 PM
^Is that really necessary? I don't mind walking at all, but if I can find a closer spot, I'll take it.

I forgot to comment on the Batwing station thing. No one was directing traffic, so you could pick either side. I think once things get busier it'll either a) work itself out --you'll see that station A is busy and go station B or b) when it's really crowded and the whole queue is used someone will divide people up at the split.

I also didn't comment about Typhoon Seacoaster. Years ago, it actually had working props (like the guy who pushes the boulder) and a soundtrack. I don't recall if the soundtrack was in both enclosed areas or just one. This ride could really be something special again if someone put the effort and money into it. I'm sure Sally could make this ride awesome. I'm just happy that they replaced the sensor system last year.

I've often pointed out that it looked they (the former Premier Parks before Six Flags acquisition), ran out of money. If you look at the concrete troughs that are closer to Roar before the second lift, you'll see some spraypainted markings. Since I'm not an engineer, I don't know what they mean, but is it possible that there were to be more buildings or passages? I don't know if you could find it still, but I seem to remember Thrillride having a short videoclip of a boat on the last turntable before the drop without the skull. *** Edited 5/27/2006 10:05:37 PM UTC by Intamin Fan***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 7:29 PM
I'm Sorry, I-Fan is what really necessary? The post or the Premium Parking?

I have to say, I like the idea, it just caught me off guard. They have a great newsletter that does a wonderful job of promoting the park. But, it didn't mention anything about premium park. You would have thought it would've been announced since they had no fewer than eight signs promoting the arrival of premium park before I even got to the Parking Booths. What I don't like is the fact if you already have a season parking pass, there is NO option to upgrade to the Premium Parking Lot.

There have been several changes in the past week to the park, added pyrotechnics to the Batman Stunt Show, a great 50's and beyond musical, hanging plants and big planters in Main Street, the concrete has been replaced and painted a nice brownish color in Hurricane Harbor. It even appears all of the pools were painted, again, in HH. Lots more Looney Tune Characters, including Pepe La Pew, Petunia and Lola!

My only disappointment was the trash on the ground in Skull Island. Didn't look like the area had been cleaned in hours. *** Edited 5/27/2006 11:29:22 PM UTC by coasterguts***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 7:31 PM

Well folks, Premium Parking has shown up at SFA. Yep! Pay $25 and you can park in the 7 rows, closest rows to the front gate.

Just another way for Six Flags to make money. As if the parking wasn't expensive enough. Ya know, I don't know how many other SF parks use it, but if SF is gonna charge an arm and a leg to park, at least they could give a better parking lot experience, such as trams, parking attendants, etc.


That "dead" alley in Nantucket is actually very much alive. Those in the "know" know what I'm talking about, and if you don't I'm not telling.

C'mon, Rob--do share!


I also didn't comment about Typhoon Seacoaster. Years ago, it actually had working props (like the guy who pushes the boulder) and a soundtrack. I don't recall if the soundtrack was in both enclosed areas or just one. This ride could really be something special again if someone put the effort and money into it. I'm sure Sally could make this ride awesome. I'm just happy that they replaced the sensor system last year.

I've often pointed out that it looked they (the former Premier Parks before Six Flags acquisition), ran out of money. If you look at the concrete troughs that are closer to Roar before the second lift, you'll see some spraypainted markings. Since I'm not an engineer, I don't know what they mean, but is it possible that there were to be more buildings or passages? I don't know if you could find it still, but I seem to remember Thrillride having a short videoclip of a boat on the last turntable before the drop without the skull.


I do remember 1 or more working props, like the bat that was on a string that spun around, and the coffin door opening and closing.

It's almost like the did run out of money or something. They could definitely make that ride better. I thought I heard from someone that they were supposed to enclose the entire mountain.

I wish that they would enclose the mountain, do something on the inside as well (turntable and drop area) and make it DARK. Also, bring back some of the theming. It would also be nice if they would add more theming or something throughout, and clean up the mess around the second turntable. It's an interesting concept that they had, but it was not executed in the best manner.

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 7:56 PM
The park does have parking attendants but not tram service (at least not today). However, the parking attendants do nothing more than point you to a open row. It's actually kind of funny, they point you down a row that's designed to go up (slanted spaces). It's also funny the parking attendants seem to disappear once the main lot is full.

However, FWIW, SFA has the best looking parking lot of any park I've been to so far.

*** Edited 5/28/2006 12:08:32 AM UTC by coasterguts***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 9:19 PM

However, FWIW, SFA has the best looking parking lot of any park I've been to so far.


Actually, it does have a somewhat nice-looking main lot, because of the trees and grass, etc. There are nicer lots, IMO, such as Hershey's (it even has bathrooms in the middle), and BGW's.

SFA's lots, however, are definitely not the most ideal in terms of functionality. If you are trying to get out of there on a busy night, be prepared to wait. *** Edited 5/28/2006 1:19:59 AM UTC by rablat5***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 9:45 PM
Even the second parking lot has trees that are going to be really tall in the coming years. When I was thinking about the lot at SFA. I wasn't thinking about HP or BGW. I was thinking of the tall shade trees in the parking lot.
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Saturday, May 27, 2006 9:56 PM
I also recall hearing from one of the leads on TSC last year that they indeed had originally planned on making the ride bigger during the initial design phase,but because of added expenses had to remain within budget so alas this is what the end result for the ride turned out to be....IIRC he said that there originally were a couple more turntables in the orginal design but they were sadly left out.

The themeing on the ride certainly was better way back in the day...what I always wondered is why was the onride camera removed? it used to be at the base of the drop at the end of the ride & I never even knew about it until seeing the post that the camera used to sit on last season.

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 10:01 PM

The themeing on the ride certainly was better way back in the day...what I always wondered is why was the onride camera removed? it used to be at the base of the drop at the end of the ride & I never even knew about it until seeing the post that the camera used to sit on last season.


I'm not sure. Maybe for the same type of reason why they don't use the Joker's Jinx camera anymore? Maybe it wasn't generating enough revenue for their expenses. I assume they still use the SROS camera, and I think they still use the ROAR one some. Do they still use the Batwing one? *** Edited 5/28/2006 2:01:52 AM UTC by rablat5***

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 10:09 PM

BATWING FAN SFA said:
I also recall hearing from one of the leads on TSC last year that they indeed had originally planned on making the ride bigger during the initial design phase....

Almost tough to believe considering the ride is already nearly 10 minutes in length...

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Saturday, May 27, 2006 10:33 PM
^^Nope only Roar & Superman still have their on ride cameras.

I'm only going by what I heard last year on the design plans that were originally intended for TSC so I can't be 100% certain as to wether what I was told is true or not....speaking of rides has anyone got an update on the progress being made on avalanche?

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Sunday, May 28, 2006 6:26 AM
Avalanche is closer than it has been. They have the canopy most if not entirely up, the twinkling lights have been turned on and all of the cars are on (it appears, can't see the backside of the ride). I don't think it'll be much longer. I would say all they need is a state inspection and to hang the Alpine Bobs sign back up.
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Sunday, May 28, 2006 12:43 PM
Cool as I'm going in a couple weeks<june 10th> so it'll be great to see the ride back in operation again<crosses fingers for the return of backwards operation>.
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