Short NJ/PA trip - in exciting bullet-point randomness!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 7:10 PM

  • The NJ portion contains no parks or coasters, just a fun day and a half in beautiful Flemington with my sister. It hurt a little to know that Toro was an hour away, but come October, someone's gonna get some Bull. (It's gonna be me.) ;~)
  • Lightning Racer is the most "fun" coaster outside of DMK's Space Mountain
  • Sunday was a too-short visit at Knoebels....aren't all visits to that park too short? Really only got on a few rides, but as with Toro, more later on this year.
  • Black Diamond is improved in terms of timing - the stunts and train are synched well, and there's a little more "run" as far as coasting....but I think they're not finished tweaking the ride or the scenery/stunts. JMM Studios FTW!
  • Hershey Sunday night (preview) and Rush the Sky event Monday
  • Twister - mixed blessing. I think the helix is much more re-rideable than in years past, but I do miss that lateral kick on the entrance to it. I entertain both arguments on the Twister changes....but personally, I'm relatively forgiving of a little bumpiness and overall probably prefer the previous version.
  • A town that smells like chcocolate would NEVER get old for me!
  • Phoenix - still the most consistent performer anywhere. In the earlier discussion about the importance of maintenance, even given Phoenix's easy-to-maintain layout....the ride is other-worldly in it's ability to deliver *that* ride, every single time.
  • Knoebels' Bumper cars - silly train wreck. Always protect the knees.
  • Lighning Racer is ridiculously fun!
  • Grilled pork chop on a stick - a little salty, but a real winner.
  • Waffle ice cream sandwich - yes, please. Given the PPP temps recently, maybe we could keep that stand operational into October? ;~)
  • Hershey should pick up a used Mangels Whip...because it's the right thing to do.
  • The new trains on SDL - Anton-style lapbars and no seatbelts? Awesomeness.....Clearly the coaster gods have smiled upon us....and why couldn't this have happened before Thriller went all Zonga on us?
  • Knoebels Rib-B-Q...because McRibs aren't available year 'round. And no pickle is a bonus.
  • The crew on Great Bear? Not what I'd call "capacity motivated"...LOL! What would have been 20 minutes on Raptor, or even 30-35 on Montu, was almost an hour. With two trains. Only one lap, but I seriously love the pre-drop helix.
  • Knoebels Frozen sweet tea - because they sell it there!
  • Philly airport - because you don't want the rats to find the cheese TOO easily.
  • Finally, SkyRush. Seriously? Ouchy, yet ridiculously intense. The restraints IMO would be way better if they presented more of a flat face *across* the lap to spread out the force. As designed, the lapbar creates a narrow band where the pressure is pretty extreme. Luckily I figured out pretty soon that by reallly sliding under the restraint, I got get that line closer to my hips...made a huge difference.

Thanks for your patience... ;~P

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012 8:05 PM

Lightning Racer is crazy fun. Still runs great, too. As for PHL, it's a really nice A terminal, a pretty nice F terminal, and a complete abomination in between. The food selection wasn't bad, though. Apparently the rats agree.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012 8:54 PM

I third the Lightning Racer opinion. There's only a coupla coasters I just plain have FUN on, and LR tops the woodies. Nitro tops the steel. Are they my favorite rides? Nope. But sometimes ya just gotta ride with a smile...

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012 9:44 PM

Mike, I like what you said. I think it's very true that sometimes the rides you have the most fun on aren't necessarily at the top of the rankings. For instance, I find Superman Ultimate Flight (the B&M flyer, not the Premier...whatever it is) to be one of the rides I have an absolute blast on each time I experience it. I think Manta and Tatsu are both far more impressive, but I could ride Superman Ultimate Flight over and over and over.

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Thursday, August 16, 2012 12:11 AM

The name Flemington will forever remind me of Furs, and the commercials for that store that used to play on the Philly cable stations back in the 70s and 80s.

(although not nearly as cheesy as the ones for Krass Bros. and Ideal).

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Thursday, August 16, 2012 10:02 AM

I remember going with my Mom to Flemington Furs back in the early 70's. Good times...NOT. They didn't sell Matchbox cars, so I had zero interest. We usually hit one of the diners on Rt. 22 on the way home, so that was a plus.

I vaguely remember Ideal, but Krass doesn't ring a bell..oh, wait..doesn't someone by that name post regularly on Coaster Buzz?

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Friday, August 17, 2012 12:23 PM

We lived less than a mile off Rt 22 growing up in Green Brook.

My aunt was a Flemington Furs regular - stored clothes there (a totally foreign concept to me, LOL).

Lightning Racer's timing is beyond belief - a difference of 50-100lbs. of rider weight on the train made the difference in the race outcomes....amazing. Almost 3400' of trackage, and the races were usually within one car-length difference...

The Whip at Hershey reminds me of HW's Carousel. Sometimes it's worth the investment to buy a CLASSIC ride...

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Friday, August 17, 2012 1:14 PM

Flemington is also home to the largest model railroad museum in the world.

http://www.northlandz.com/

I went a few years ago and while I am not a model railroad hobbyist, it is pretty darn impressive. I took me over an hour to get through it all and I was moving along. If you are into model railroading, you could probably spend the entire day there.

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Friday, August 17, 2012 1:52 PM

I am going to Hershey in a few weeks. I haven't been in years. I was under the impression that they didn't make chocolate there anymore. If that is true, how does the town still smell like chocolate? Is the smell lingering from years past? lol

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Friday, August 17, 2012 2:58 PM

I don't know if they still make chocolate there, but I swear it still smells like it. And chocolate world definitely still exudes chocolate fragrance way before you set foot in the building. Awesomeness.

Lightning Racer is still my favorite wood coaster after Toro. I like the red side much better than the green side for some reason, but I am always insistent on riding this coaster at LEAST once per visit. Such a smooth (for wood) ride, so well paced, and as was said before, so smile inducing. Now I'M smiling! Makes me happy just thinking about it.

And Hershey's whip AND Musik Express blow.

Last edited by bunky666, Friday, August 17, 2012 3:01 PM
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Friday, August 17, 2012 4:31 PM

They still make some..not all..the chocolate in the town. The actual factory and its smokestacks are very prominent.

I found out a few years ago that Hershey's Ice Cream is NOT made by the company we know simply as Hershey. That surprised me when one of their truck drivers told me that.

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Sunday, August 19, 2012 12:57 AM

Mike,

Ideal jingle from the 70's: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oQFlkK9nYYs

Krass Brothers Men's Store (not Krause) 901 South St. Store of the Stars: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5fUJWJX938&feature=player_detailpage Krass is a fitting name.

LK & bunky, Hershey moved some of its operations to Mexico a few years ago. The story evolved into Hershey doesn't make any chocolate in PA anymore. Reese's just built a new plant a few years ago, and Hershey is planning a new one as well. The old one apparently doesn't cut it for 21st century production techniques.

I still remember the pre-Chocolate world days when you toured the real plant. Monorail would drop you off at the factory and take you back to the park, or vice versa.

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Monday, August 20, 2012 11:47 PM

For Black Diamond I would recommend sitting in row 4 and keeping your head on a swivel for the best experience. If you sit in the front, a lot of stuff happens after you are past it IMO.

Favorite Philadelphia area cheesey commercial from back in the day

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOqEaDVJvZI

Last edited by billb7581, Monday, August 20, 2012 11:50 PM
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Thursday, August 23, 2012 6:49 PM

rollergator said:

  • Knoebels' Bumper cars - silly train wreck. Always protect the knees.

I protect my knees by making sure, whenever possible, that I get in one of the older cars -- they're higher. You can tell the older cars by the fact that the paint job doesn't go all the way down, there's a shiny metal section at the bottom.

(For that matter, I don't think that most of the other ones are even metal, but fiberglass or something. There's another tip for you: the metal ones are more fun, because you can do more damage with the extra momentum.)

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