SRM/SFKK.....opposite worlds

Associated parks:
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Sunday, June 2, 2002 2:20 PM
We set out for Santa Claus, IN from Columbus at about noon on Friday, looking forward to having a great new adventure in coaster riding. My wife, while not an enthusiast, per se, is a great sport, and was more than willing to come along for the ride.

We pulled into HW after a great scenic tour through Southern Indiana at about 5. Well, I thought it was 5, anyway. Turns out that I forgot about Indiana not observing daylight savings time. After registering (must remember to pre-register next time) and getting our names written in marker on our tags, we headed off for the coasters.

It turns out that this would be the best riding time of the day. Virtually no lines for either Raven or Legend, so we got multiple rides in both the front and back of each coaster. I'm going to vote for the back seat on each as being the best ride, providing insane airtime. Both leapfrogged all the way to the top of my woodie list, with Legend just edging Raven out for number one, based on a more controlled ride and more airtime...but it was a very close call!

We went back to the Holiday theater and met some really nice people, both enthusiasts and regular park-goers asking questions about the event. I recognized tons of buzzers, but didn't say hi, due to the fact that they were always about 20 people ahead in line...rollergator, Sean F., wiredog, Gregleg, Rideman,etc. If anyone saw me, i was with my beautiful blonde wife, and i was wearing a black polo shirt.

The ERT wasn't really what I thought it would be-the lines were pretty long, but it was great to talk to people and just feel the excitement level in the stations. The staff was outstanding...especially the one young lady who was dancing to her own tune all night long. I met Pat Koch and talked to Santa a few times, and even got a picture with him.

The free pizza was a nice touch, although it was disturbing to see many people taking multiple desserts when it was obvious that one would more than do anyone. However, I can say that I would rather visit a park full of enthusiasts anyday over "GP." Everyone was very polite, nobody line jumped or sat on handrails, or anything like that, and there was a ton of enthusiasm all night long.

We got hopelessly lost on the way to the Days Inn Jasper, no thanks to the girl who hung up on me when I called for directions. What should have been a 15 minute drive turned into about 50 minutes. Sucked.

The next morning, we headed out for SFKK. I must say, this was the worst experience I've ever had at a park. The park was ridiculously overcrowded, due to "Scout Day," the beautiful weather, and the fact that it was the season pass deadline.

Season Pass processing was a nightmare. The line was about 45 minutes long, and everyone was being loud and jumping in and out of line, smoking in my face, etc. The people processing the passes were more interested in talking to their friends than working, as was evidenced by the misspelling of my name on my pass TWICE.

I fought through the masses to get to Chang, which had about an hour and 15 minute wait. There was nobody checking height, and nobody preventing about every other person from smoking in line. There were many, many people not wearing shirts, but they let them board the coaster without a word.

I was dumbfounded by the fact that with only two trains, they were always stacked. This seemed to be caused by many things, not the least of which was patrons not understanding that it was a stand-up coaster. On every train i saw released, at least 5 people were sitting down, and could not understand why they were being asked to stand up. Unbelievable.

However, the ride is great. Beats the heck out of Mantis, IMHO. I was instinctively expecting a brake on the first drop, and was pleasantly surprised when there was none. In the back seat, there was plentiful air and great speed. In my limited stand up experience, this one is the best.

We only waited about 25 for the hang'n'bang, T2, and it lived up to its name. The restraints were quite cushioned, but the transitions on this ride were awful. Huge thumbs down.

Twisted Twins was not what I was expecting from a CCI, that's for sure. No airtime to speak of, and brutal laterals. I liked Lola a little more than Stella, but neither approached the volumes of CCI goodness I had experienced the night before.

At this point, I'd had enough SFKK. We headed for Thunder Run, but the line was massive, it was 91 degrees, and Lori was done. So we headed back for Columbus, with a promise never to return. The park reminded me of SFWoA last year, with twice the crowd and one-fifth the good rides. I really wished we had done both days at SRM instead, but we'll know better next year.

Thanks for reading!


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Doesn't it seem as though morons always have the caps lock on?

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Sunday, June 2, 2002 2:41 PM

I kinda think Chang is better than mantis also but to each their own. We stopped friday before SRM to get our passes and it all took about 5 minutes. Had 3 great rides on Thunder Run and took mulitples on both sister because IMHO Twisted Twins is great when greased and we were surprised both were running and both were well GREASED!

Anyway, SRM was fantasic, thanks for posting your TR.

Chuck

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Charles Nungester
Lesourdsville Lake, The great American amusement park opens the season June 6th Thurs-Sun every week. Park phone is (513)539-2193

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Sunday, June 2, 2002 3:06 PM
It's a shame you missed Thunder Run. I had as much fun on that as I did on Chang.

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Wash away us all. Take us with the floods.

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Sunday, June 2, 2002 5:21 PM
thunder run is absolutely incredible this season. we did about 6 laps on it in april and it ran just out of control. the bunny hops after the first turn around provide massive/violent airtime. what a great surprise in such a mediocre park.

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seek first to understand
then to be understood

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Sunday, June 2, 2002 5:45 PM
Thunder Run has a very odd layout IMO but that must add to the excitement, is that first turn after the drop as intense as it looks?

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Tuesday's Gone With The Wind.
Elijah Rock.
Is it written in the stars?
La Vie Boheme!!!

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Sunday, June 2, 2002 7:56 PM
Thunder Run caught us by suprise too. We got popped hard on those hops. I rather liked the layout. Only coaster in the park we were tempted to ride twice.

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Jeff-Jeff
Wood - Raven
Steel - Millennium Force
Generic, isn't it?

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Monday, June 3, 2002 4:57 AM

Went to SFKK on Sunday and had to say that it is the worst amusement park I have ever been to. It is dirty, the rides are run horribly, the workers are rude and could care less about the patrons. I was there for 2 hours and left.

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Monday, June 3, 2002 5:17 AM

Mark W. Baruth said:
we headed back for Columbus, with a promise never to return. The park reminded me of SFWoA last year, with twice the crowd and one-fifth the good rides. I really wished we had done both days at SRM instead, but we'll know better next year.

Its amazing how this park transformed overnight from a pleasant, tidy, efficiently run park, to the horror that you've described! Friday was a delite at SFKK short lines, well maintained rides (some were down briefly or opened late) and friendly personable employees.

I suspect that the heat, and the crowds / lines had more of a factor to your horror than the actual operation of the park did.

I always try to remember that Holiday World is sadly the exception, and not the rule to amusement park operations. I find it best to not compare Holiday World to other parks, it makes my enjoyment of the "others" a little more easy.


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Monday, June 3, 2002 6:08 AM
I'll vouch for what Bmuskie said. We went there Sunday after SRM for the first time and it was pretty below par. Single trains on Chang and T2, trash overflowing the cans and some of the rudest employees I've ever met. I'm hoping I just caught it on a bad day. On the plus side the parking was cheap and the snow cones were big.

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Jeff-Jeff
Wood - Raven
Steel - Millennium Force
Generic, isn't it?

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Monday, June 3, 2002 6:30 AM
I'm now frightened to go to SFKK on our way to HW in 3 weeks. If it's as bad as you say, it's just more rides on the Legend and Raven.

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There's nothing like a woodie...

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Monday, June 3, 2002 7:09 AM

Looks like Steph and I chose wisely to skip SFKK on the way home. Whew!

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Jeff - Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com, Sillynonsense.com
"As far as I can tell it doesn't matter who you are. If you can believe, there's something worth fighting for..." - Garbage, "Parade"

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Monday, June 3, 2002 7:44 AM

I was considering going to either HW or SFKK as part of my family summer vacation in mid-June. I couldn't decide where to go and though I come here for help. I'll be going to either one of the two after two days at PKI.

After reading the previous posts, which one of the two parks should I go for a day?

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Monday, June 3, 2002 8:28 AM
It's not even a contest-go to Holiday World. It's only about an hour further on, and you'll experience two of the best wooden rollercoasters in the world. I figured that I might get bored with only two adult coasters...how wrong I was!

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Proud CB club member

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Monday, June 3, 2002 8:46 AM

SFKK is horrible, I live right down the street from the park and I never go. I believe the last time I was there I was so disgusted I stayed about a hour or so and left. You didnt catch KK on a bad day, you caught it on a normal day. When I was younger I thought it was the greatest park in the world, but that was before I experienced true amusement parks like PKI, IOA and such.

Its a shame to have such a great coaster like Chang in such a horrible park.

I actually thought things would get better for KK when six flags took over but it only became worse.

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Monday, June 3, 2002 8:54 AM
Mark-
Last year we made the same mistake as you did. So this year, we were very happy to stay at HW for the 2 days. Live and learn. Next time do say "hello", my husband loves chatting with fellow buzzers
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Monday, June 3, 2002 9:15 AM

Thank you very much for all your help. Now my mind is made up.

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"It's tough to learn from mistakes you've never made."

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