SFGAm Fight Fest 2003

Associated parks:

Sunday, October 12, 2003 10:18 AM
Got to the park around 12:15 and found the parking lot packed, as expected. The first day of Friday Fest and 70+ temperatures = massive people (despite the Cubs game later in the day). It took us about a half hour to get through the ticket line for my roommate (and first time SFGAm visitor) to get his half price ticket.

First up was Superman. Still a decent ride, but way too short. My roommate (who is from the ValleyFair! area) loved it. Hour fifteen wait.

Next was the Jugglers of Death. They always put on a good show, but only one of them is extremely talented. They made a lot of mistakes this day, which I have never seen happen before. Thats okay, the kids enjoyed the show.

American Eagle was running both sides and I had the best blue ride I've ever had. Very smooth the whole way through, even in the second half of the helix. 20 minute wait.

The Hellavator (Giant Drop) was nothing special, the theming was a great new addition. Speakers blasted sound FX during the climb and fall. It would be better if there were more than just three sequences though. 20 minute wait.

Viper was average today. I still hate the placement of the lapbars on those trains because they did into my leg and make for a very uncomfortable ride. 40 minute wait.

Demon had an exceptionally long line throughout the day, but we managed to catch it at a decent time. Good effects, though nothing special for FF. 20 minute wait.

Raging Bull was backed up into the midway and moving quite slow despite three train operation. At about 7:30, there was a 2-3 minute downpour. After that, a couple of empty trains ran and one stuck in the MCBR for about 10 minutes. Odd, but not a big deal. The netting under the lifthill stairs looks like its been cut or torn apart in places, and the maintainence platform is present, but on the ground. Hour fifteen wait.

Time for the Necropolis, which turned out to be a BIG disappointment. The entrance was very well done this year, but there was a big lack of spooks throughout the trail. I remember much better efforts a few years ago. The Mausoleum of Terror line was probably a good 2 hours, so we bypassed that this time around.

Batman was our final stop. A very powerful nightime front row ride. My feet have never hurt as much as they did at the end of this ride. 30 minute wait.

Left about 9:15 with a good day behind us. I was very impressed with the park's efforts this year (aside from the Necropolis). The trolls are always a familiar and welcome site, but the rest of the characters seemed to be lacking a bit. I believe the dead Mexican Paco was back this year, but I only saw him from behind, so I'm not positive if it was him. The decorations were very well done. The strobes and silohuettes in the Sky Trek cabin were a nice touch, along with the search lights and the blood red American Eagle lift. The best part, IMHO, was the colored lights throughout the park. On any ride at night, you could see color throughout the park, giving it a very festive mood. This was the case in Astroworld in April when I was there, but I've never seen this done at Great America before. Hopefully these things, as well as the Hellavator will be continued traditions from here on out.

P.S. - I miss the toe-tag game from last year, with the season pass prizes.


"And we are now passing under Millennium Force, which, with the arrival of Top Thrill Dragster, is now...just blue."

Sunday, October 12, 2003 4:31 PM
I have to agree about the park looking great. Lots of decorations all over the place. We were kind of wondering where all the scary people went? Didn't see to many characters all day. 9 or 10 tops. A very good day at the park until the micro storm rolled in at 10pm. Blew everybody out of the park with gusting winds and sideways rain.

Damn Cornfields

Sunday, October 12, 2003 5:30 PM
stoogemanmoe's avatar Were there too with the kids. I thought the Mausoleum was excellant this year. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow house was terrible except for some of the artwork. I remember Sadies Dead and Breakfast was alot more fun than the Legend. Great America did a really great job with decor this year. We did see alot of actors, but not as many as previous years. Did you guys see a guy called "The Controller"? I saw it listed on JPM Productions page but didn't see it in the park. All in all I have to say The park looked fantastic this year! A cool touch was the waving Skeleton by Demon that waved to the train as it went by. Thank god they didn't have "PigMan" for the train this year.

Nolimits Rocks!

Miss coastergames.net? Here is a good site.

Sunday, October 12, 2003 6:33 PM
What did they did differently with Giant Drop for Fright Fest???? Was DeJaVu running???
Sunday, October 12, 2003 6:45 PM
Deja was running....on saturday though, it got stuck on the lift spike for about 5minutes....

And today, walking by demon, i noticed the waterfall had something wrong with it....and demon wasnt running; someone put soap in the pond...and soap bubbles had crawled out of the pond.


Sunday, October 12, 2003 6:48 PM
They re-named Giant Drop , Hellavator, and had sound effects piped in through the speakers. One of the sound sequences is the when the cars are pulled up, it sounds like a jet plane taking off. When the cars drop, a shattering crash sound happens.

Yes, Deja-Vu ran all day (at least on Saturday it did).

Arena football has arrived in the Windy City. Go "Chicago Rush"

Monday, October 13, 2003 2:39 AM
I was there on Saturday, too. I had a great time - the shows were good too. Dead Elvis was great - he was singing variations of real songs - "Don't step on my blood stained shoes", "Viva La Fright Fest", etc.

The Manny B Monster show was also really good, nothing like hearing the classic TV / movie themes being rocked out!

I agree, the necropolis was kinda weak, but you get what you pay for (free).

The highlight of the Necropolis was the freak show - Mark the Knife, Tomas (magician), Dante the Queen of blades, "The legendary T2" and "Happy the Human pin-cushion - he is absolutely crazy...

--George H
Currency Tracking Experiment...Where's George.com

My New Blog...Check it out

Monday, October 13, 2003 10:28 AM
Sounds great about Hellavator!!! Cant wait to visit this friday!!!
Monday, October 13, 2003 6:00 PM
Did any of you guys notice the Fake Train Crossing or the Ghost Train Crossing? It was fun to watch people. The Train crossing singles would start and the gates would come down just a little bit and stop. You here a sound like a train is coming. But there is no train. You see people all looking around for a train and do not see one.


Monday, October 13, 2003 6:09 PM
I got fooled by it everytime but it was really funny. Who thought the Masoleum was awesome? It was pretty crazy.
Monday, October 13, 2003 6:29 PM
Park was EMPTY today. The decorations were very impressive this year, and the "freaks" were better than ever.

A+ to Great America. Only thing that bugged me was Triple Play closed with Hometown Fun Machine open. That and they changed the music on Chubasco from Sandstorm to something else. Otherwise, it was an excellent performance by Great America today.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003 4:33 PM
From what I heard JoNo27, Triple Play is now closed for re-hab which I am sure being one of the original rides in the park, it needs it.

Whoever hasn't gone to FF at SFGAm this year but are planning to, make sure you are there during nightfall. The whole park looks absolutely fabulous at night with all the black lights, red lights, and strobes.

Arena football has arrived in the Windy City. Go "Chicago Rush"

Tuesday, October 14, 2003 4:58 PM
BullGuy's avatar Yes, I would think so. I was hoping it would at least begin to get dark yesterday, but the park closed at 6, and it was still bright. Ah, well, there were no crowds to make up for that. :)

Never Has Gravity Been So Uplifting.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003 5:56 PM

Chitown said:
Triple Play is now closed for re-hab which I am sure being one of the original rides in the park, it needs it.

If that's true, then I wholehartedly agree. Anything to keep it going for years to come!

I also noticed they didn't have the blood waterfall on Demon going when I was there..

Tuesday, October 14, 2003 6:06 PM
They had the blood waterfall running on Saturday... But, I believe on Sunday something happened to the water and it started foaming, so they turned it off.

Shockwave @ SFGAm R.I.P 1988-2002
Top 5 Coasters at SFGAm 1)RB 2)S:UF 3) DV 4)V2 5)Viper
Smell ya later!

Monday, October 20, 2003 12:09 PM
Hellavator (aka Giant Drop) has 3 sound sequences it goes through while the ride is climbing to the top and when it drops. Also, Techno and Rock music blares in the loading area throughout the day, only silenced while the ride is in motion (the music is on a 5hr loop also, so you rarely would hear the same song play twice). When it starts getting dark, fog machines fog up the loading area as well, while the area is only little by dark red lights. IMO, you must come to the park during the night to see how good Fright Fest looks this year, as most of it does not show during the day!

SFGAm Viper


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