The day started by arriving in the parking lot at 7am. Registration for the event started at 7:30 then ERT began at 8. It was great watching Georgia Scorcher and Goliath testing as the sun came up.
First up for ERT was Georgia Scorcher. It was running great with both trains. This is my favorite standup so far. Next was Goliath. All I can say is "WOW"! SFOG really has a winner on their hands with this one. I got 5 rides during this ERT session with more to follow at night.
Next on the morning ERT was Superman:Ultimate Flight, Great American Scream Machine and Ninja. By the time we rode those three, it was time for the park to open.
We made our way around the park to hit the other coasters, even though we would have ERT on them later. The weather was perfect. The park was super clean. (I almost thought I was at Holiday World).
Lunch was at 1pm in the Picnic Pavilion. Following lunch was a drawing for a walk-back tour of the park, and an auction of the control panel from Freefall.
Spent the rest of the afternoon in the park enjoying the beautiful weather. Great day for taking pictures thanks to the sunshine and minimal clouds.
At 6pm we had some "EST" (Exclusive Show Time) and were treated to Looney Tunes Talent Show. Also got our very nice event tshirts at this time.
It would soon be time for the park to close so everyone gathered in the Axis Arena while the park was being vacated by the public.
Evening ERT started in Gotham City on Mindbender and Batman. Next up would be Goliath, Acrophobia and Georgia Cyclone.
Having ridden Georgia Cyclone earlier in the day we opted to spend the last 2 1/2 hours of ERT on Goliath. The crew was really having fun doing ERT on this ride. They were very upbeat, and kept the ride moving at a good pace. Despite only running one train for ERT (the other train really wasn't needed as there was never more than about a 1 train wait except for the front row), I managed to get over 30 more rides on Goliath that night, the first 15 of which I never left my seat.
What a way to end the off season blues. I know this park has always been one of the better ones in the chain, but if park operations here are any indication of how things are going to be this year, Shapiro and company are definitely on the right track. Every ride was fully staffed, with the coasters running all trains. Everything was running (with the exception of Deja Vu which had valleyed on Friday during testing).
Wondering if the excellent operations on Saturday were somewhat due to the ACE event, we went back to the park on Sunday, and employees were performing great if not better than on Saturday. To see multiple train operations on the coasters when the lines were almost nothing was great. Every park employee we came in contact with was very friendly and helpful. The park was spotless. I don't know how they do it, because we rarely saw any sweeps, but they got the job done.
Management also had a very visible presence throughout the park, which was nice to see. We had one minor issue with the lockers (which we were told were being run by a new company this year), and when we stopped and talked to a manager about the situation, he immediately offered to refund the money, no questions asked.
This is definitely a Six Flags park I will be happy to go back to. Hopefully park operations hold out through the entire season. If they do, and other SF parks can do the same, this will be a great year for Six Flags. I know that may sound like a SF Fanboy, but I think we all want to see the SF chain succeed so we can all enjoy the parks we love.
Until the next trip (Dollywood/Carowinds). My coaster off season is officially over!
Does Scream Machine still have the old buzz bars?
Scream Machine's running belts and buzz bars (dual position non-individual yada yada, LOL)... ;)
Oh, and just since I'm unlikely to write a real TR in the foreseeable future...
I have been riding Bender every year for the past 24 years- and I can honestly say that right now it is running the best it ever has during that time, the heavier chassis from the Viper at AW and minimal braking make for one insane steelie- the laterals and airtime are awesome. This ride is a true classic!
Actually those aren't the chassis from Viper formerly at Astrowold. They had a local fabrication shop build new ones identical to the old ones over a period of the last year and a half. The Viper chassis are still out back not being used. *** Edited 3/29/2007 12:43:50 AM UTC by Chris the Coaster Freak***
Actually I just STAYED on Goliath. I was oblivious to everything else in life at that time. ;)
I love Spring Fling. We couldn't have asked for a better day. :)
*** Edited 3/31/2007 1:14:46 PM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***
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