SFKK on 5/17 - Brokedown Palace

Associated parks:

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 9:56 AM
PREFACE: I know I should have been at CBuzzCon, but this weekend was my only chance to catch my buddies at CP (see TR here) and my Dad in Columbus at the same time.


We had orignially planned to hit both SFKK (new to us) and PKI (not been since '93) in the same day, but the Boss Upstairs had other ideas (read on).... So, on 5/17 it was just SFKK.

My first impression of the park was not the greatest. In past experience, most park entrances are nicely landscaped, inviting entryways to come on in and spend some money. Not here. The only way you could tell there was a park was the skyline. We stood in line with our $50 season pass vouchers from Kroger (what a deal!) and entered. Arcing to the left, we head straight for....

Greezed Lightnin'
Highs: The hang time in mid-loop going backwards, the old fog horn signaling the launch is still there!
Lows: Slow operations, the launch isn't as nice as the flywheel style ones.
The Verdict: It's so nice to see my ol' friend Tidal Wave again.

As luck would have it, as soon as we got on the train, they had "technical difficulties", causing an additional 10 minutes wait. No biggie. After our nostalgic loop, we head over the bridge to the back side of the park. This has got to be the stupidest crowd flow manouver I've ever seen. C'mon guys, this thing needs to be at least three times as wide. Around the swarms of kiddies, we hit....

Highs: Nice unique layout, not rough but strong enough g's to make me grey out before the dive loop.
Lows: Really slow operators, sloooooow line, bad paint peeling in places.
The Verdict: A little TLC, both physically and operationally, would make this top notch.

Once again, as we get up to the station, we get....you guessed it, "technical difficulties". With this delay, we wound up waiting for Chang the same amount as we did for TTD the day earlier. At this point, I started to think that we were cursed, paying penance for our relatively short wait for TTD. Since I was feeling a little woozy from the grey-out, it was time for some wood, so it was over to....

Twisted Twins
Highs: My first dueler, the only short lines in the park
Lows: Slow operations, the overall feel that the ride was built in 7/8ths scale
The Verdict: A nice little pair of rides (especially Stella), the operative word here being little.

Then it was over to our next debacle of line delays....

Thunder Run
Highs: The unique, high-bank-turn layout, nice air and smooth for a woody.
Lows: Slow operations (noticing a pattern, here?), as they only have one train for this thing. One Train!
The Verdict: Definitely the unknown gem of this park. By far, their best ride.

As hinted above, we had a delay in this line. Was it "technical difficulties"? Nope. This time we got to stand behind and watch while the park EMTs rendered aid to a teen who had fainted about 20 people in front of us. OK, we were cursed.

After all of these delay, we were getting pretty tired of standing around, but we had two more to go, so it was off to...

Highs: Uh...hmmm...err...hey, they actually ran it in a light rain!
Lows: Slow operations (of course), unneccesarily long station queue rails, really bad paint job.
The Verdict: One more Vekoma Hang-n-Bang = one more credit. 'nuff said.

Of course, to fit in with our day of delays, the row we picked and got stuck in had a few runs of one train with an empty seat. We got to watch a ride op with rubber gloves and a rag scrubbing away at the center of the chair, most likely trying to remove gum or a nice racing stripe.

Well, one more to go, but of course, to put a capper on our day, as we get in line, it stars to pour, so no ride on...

Road Runner Express = Not ridden

Overall, I would say that there's a whole lot of work to be done on the Kingdom. Widen that bridge, put on some fresh paint, and for cryin' out loud, speed up your operations! What should have taken a couple hours took us over four and a half. I would have been severely disappointed if I hadn't gotten such a great deal on the season pass (which is intended for use close to my home at SFGAm).

Not to sound uppity, but the other main downer that I noticed was the "trashiness" of the clientele. There was not a single line where I didn't have to inhale cigarette smoke or listen to incessant swearing, and on three separate occasions, I saw kids literally abusing each other. I'm not talking pushing or "noogies", I'm talking full-out punches to the backs and sides of heads. Sheesh, violent kiddies!

BTW, one really strange thing was the garabage cans. "What?", you say, "Garbage cans? What's so strange about them?". It wasn't the cans themselves, it was just that they were placed in the centers of the ten foot wide pathways! At my height, if I didn't pay attention, they were potential nut-busters.

I'll chalk this place up for the credit, but unless I'm stuck in Louisville without anything else to do, I won't be coming back.

Remember that if you're one in a million, that means that there are 5000 other people on Earth just like you.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 10:53 AM
Bummer. My one previous visit to SFKK (after SRM 2001) was MUCH better than that. "Much better" being relative, of course -- I loved Thunder Run, liked Twisted Sisters (as they were called then), and was pretty much indifferent about the rest of the park. I'll be returning this year for the Schwarzkopf credit (I haven't been on it in any previous incarnation) and some Thunder Run laps -- hopefully it'll be a decent day.

--Greg, aka Oat Boy
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"I can't believe I just left a nuclear weapon in an elevator." -- Farscape


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