TR: SFKK Opening Day

Associated parks:
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Friday, April 2, 2004 2:14 PM
TR SFKK 3-27-2004 Weather: Supposed to be wet but warm. Ended up being very warm and dry. It was the perfect weather.

We woke up, had some breakfast and hit the road. We got to the fairgrounds half an hour before opening and proceeded to get stuck in a huge traffic jam for a truck show. After getting in we found that the normal parking lot was full for the show so we had to drive around to the back parking lot. When we got there that lot was turned into a campground full of RV's. We eventually found a site, parked and headed to the gate.

There were several hundred people there and after viewing or more accurately described as attempting to view the pre-opening song and dance number through the gates (it'd be nice if they would let us in to a roped off plaza then did the show) we were let into the park. All of the costumed characters were there so Bond got his hugs in with Bugs and Marvin the Martian. We met up with Brian and Casey, a guys who work down the road and headed into the park.

Bond's favorite thing to do at SFKK is to run around in the Looney Tunes Acme Fun Factory which is a huge playroom full of foam balls in which you can throw, shoot and launch them all over at each other. It is a blast. We ran all over there for a while before it was time to go. We ended up taking the Tin Lizzies for a spin. We never got the chance to ride these with their reconfigured course last year. Surprisingly we found out that with Bond not being 42" tall (he is 41.5") he was not allowed to ride in the front seat with me even though I was driving.

Greezed Lightnin' was finally up and running so it was time to start the season off right. I headed for the front. Just like last year the launch was fantastic, the loop forward fun, nothing but blue sky and bliss all the way up the front spike and then super hang time heading back through the loop. After my first ride I had to run around for another quick one because there was just two people in the station but the ride ops made us go on around.

After I was finished with my first Greezed Lightnin’ hit it was off to find Brian and Casey. The two of them wanted to start their coaster season on T2. They’re young and don’t know better so don’t be harsh on them for actually liking T2. We ran into them by Chang and headed off to Swampwater Jacks for lunch. The lunch was pretty good but not spectacular and then we were off to find something else to ride.

Quake as usual was not running and I wanted to go try out the Roller Skater with Bond. He had been talking excitedly about riding it for a while and tried it with me. He ended up getting scared on the lift but after the first drop said “That wasn’t so bad”. When we got done riding it he did not want to ride again and I was fine with that since he tried it so I hopped on again. The Roller Skater had received a new paint job in the off season and was looking pretty good. Carrie, Casey and Brian took a spin on the International Carousel and sadly this once good looking carousel has been beaten senseless and isn’t in the greatest of shape.

After a quick spin on the Fire Engine a go at Thunder Run was up next. I love the speed and intensity of this coaster and it had some fantastic track work during the off season resulting in a smooth ejection seat airtime filled ride. Just a small note they had actually opened up the walkway from Thunder Run to the drag racers which has been closed every time I’ve been at the park for years. It’s nice if you’re in the back of the park not to have to go all the way all around Thunder Run to get back to the front of the park but I understand that they closed this off so people wouldn’t miss Twisted Sister, I mean Twins.

Twisted Twins just had one of the twins in the building. The blue one (I mix up their names) vallied and had to be removed from the track. Just like Thunder Run there has been a good amount of track work and new wood on this coaster. It ran well but we heard a weird noise throughout the ride. It sounded like the coaster was screaming but it turned out to the up stop wheels spinning without touching track or that they had thrown an bearing. Is that good? I mentioned it to the ride op. Oh, backtracking for a minute a ride the ride operator on Twisted Twins mentioned after hearing a comment of mine about the wasted un-landscaped space near the coaster said that the park was thinking of moving the Enterprise just south of Twisted Twins entrance plaza.

From there it was around to Chang with a quick stop at the Great Race for a little ERT for Bond. The Great Race is a nice little car ride for kids and this is one of the rides Bond hated last year but he got on it and stayed on it for seven ride cycles. So he is warming up to riding. Bond actually likes rides that he feels that he’s in control of so that’s why he’s not into coasters just yet but loved being able to steer his car. Chang was Chang, a nice mix of g forces, quick direction changes and inversions. I noticed a nice change from last year as SFKK added canopies over the queue area. I say bravo because one of my complaints about the park is the lack of shade.

It was time to start working towards the front of the park so Carrie and the guys took a spin on the Giant Wheel while Bond and I spent a little bit of time taking pictures of Greezed Lightnin’ What’s a bit freaky is that Bond is just a half an inch away from being tall enough to ride it. He’s just tall for his age.

Over at the front of the park Brian and I hopped on the Rainbow which was a fun ride similar to a Falling Star. It was fun and the ride op tried to get everyone in it but we noticed something while the ride was in motion, the exit gate was left wide open. This is the second year in a row where some ride’s exit gate was left wide open so anyone could wander in and get hurt so we again mentioned it and the ride operators name to Guest Relations. Brian wanted to go for a spin on the Enterprise and knowing my limits and having the desire not to spew all over a Huss built Schwartzkopf designed ride I stayed off of it.

From there it was time for a little more Lightning where I noticed for the second time that day another Tin Lizzie stuck on the track on it’s far turn. GL was down for a little hiccup so Brian and I got on the Roadrunner Express mouse coaster which is always fun. By the time we were off GL was up and running and we got a couple of fantastic laps in the back. Yeah it’s an old coaster and can be a pain to keep up and running but I love it. It’s just a blast to ride.

It was off to play in SFKK’s fantastic children’s area and we once again ran all around the Fun Factory and Bond and I got a spin on the jr. Ferris Wheel which he really liked. Bond took me for a spin on the monster trucks before I finished my day once again on Greezed Lightnin’.

Unlike last year we had a fantastic time at the park. Yeah there were a few negatives like the trash smell that wafted around near Greezed Lightnin’ which wasn’t as bad as the rancid trash smell last year and the annual exit gate left wide open. I can tell that they are trying and chances are we’ll be back a few more times this year for a few more rides on GL and some fun playtime in the Acme Fun Factory. Have Fun! Paul Drabek *** Edited 4/2/2004 8:11:11 PM UTC by Paul Drabek***

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Friday, April 2, 2004 2:34 PM
Paragraphs? This is hard to read!
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Friday, April 2, 2004 2:40 PM
Sounds like you had a great time, Six Flags really seems to be shapping up which is great to hear. I can't wait to get to SFNE April 17th, opening day!
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Friday, April 2, 2004 3:12 PM
Sorry Kick the Sky, I forgot that my copy-paste command trashes paragraph brakes. It's fixed now.

Have Fun!

Paul Drabek

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Friday, April 2, 2004 4:20 PM
Great TR, Paul ;)
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Friday, April 2, 2004 4:30 PM
Great TR Paul....thanks!

Glad the fixed at least SOME of the poor pathway dysfunctionality...the park needs someone with RCT skillz to go through and make the park more....accessible...;)

P.S....IIRC, Blue-Green (color-blindness on my end, LOL) is Stella. Pink one is Lola.

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Friday, April 2, 2004 5:44 PM

P.S....IIRC, Blue-Green (color-blindness on my end, LOL) is Stella. Pink one is Lola.


The strange thing is, I have seen the trains on opposite sides before. But yes, the pink sign is Lola and the Blue-green is Stella.

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Tuesday, April 6, 2004 11:23 PM
Greezed Lightnin' is a blast. I was so glad to be able to get my kids on a coaster that I loved as a kid. I wish SFGAm never got rid of it. It was called Tidal Wave (for those that don't know) and at night the waves with light would light up as the train would pass by. It's a classic in my eyes.
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