I read someone state how bad the traffic is going through Chicago. I will be leaving on a Sunday morning from Toronto, Canada. I'll be driving to VF on the sunday. How bad will the traffic be. Any alternate roots I should take besides mapquest directions?
Anything you can think of, don't hesitate to reply.
Went to the park last year Labor Day weekend. It's a great little park that you could easily due in a day if the weather holds. Keep in mind that Excalibur will be open later than the rest of the park.
Stay at the Sofitel in Minneapolis. Depending of when you go, you can probably get a room for $99. Not bad for a four star hotel.
Stay at the hotel that is owned by Mt. Olympus. Your admission to the park and all of the water attractions they run are included. Head to Hades first and get a few laps in on that. Dive to Atlantis has extremely slow operations, might want to hit that early too. Definitely check out the go-kart tracks.
I don't have any hotel recommendations since I live near the area. Get there when or before the park opens and head left to Superman. This is by far the slowest moving line. If the line for the front isn't long, go for it. Then head to Ragin' Cajun, another slow loader. Most other rides are pretty good people eaters. Definitely hit Raging Bull, Viper, and Deja Vu if it is open. But don't count on that.
Crowds shouldn't be bad at all. Consider staying there. The rooms are of a low quality but you can't really beat the location. Hoosier Hurricane is a good ride, Cornball Express is even better. Ride lost coaster facing backwards, much better experience. Tigg'r coaster has no restraints at all. Thought I would mention that. Also, I am a huge fan of Den of Lost Thieves. I'm sure it's seen better days but I had alot of fun on the ride. Check their website for some good deals on tickets. For instance, Wednesdays are buy one get one free with a CVS receipt.
Hope this helps!
Forgot to mention to avoid the Dan Ryan Expressway at all costs. If you hit the Chicago area in the middle of the day traffic shouldn't be all that bad. Be prepared to pay through the nose on tolls if you take I-90, I-294, or I-80. *** Edited 5/23/2007 2:23:50 AM UTC by mulfdog***
Indiana Beach is fun, but if you are expecting a theme park, you will be in for a surprise. It is basically like a carnival stuck in the 70's! Tig'rr and Galaxi are both kinda neat and have some fun to them. Lost Coaster is great backwards or forwards. Hoosier Hurricane is OK, but lacks the major airtime of Cornball Express. I would suggest an all-day waterpark and themepark ticket for $30 or something, cuz you get to stay the entire time. We stayed at the IB Campground, which was very well kept.
Mt. Olympus is great for what it is. Basically you are walking into a go-kart fun center with a waterpark and a few roller coasters. The best ride is by far Hades. Parking is free, which is nice. You can stay at a variety of hotels and motels that include tickets as part of your package, so be sure to call on that. That is about all I can say for that park.
SFGAm is my home park so I am very biased about many things there. I would have to disagree with coasterkid92 about the order in which to ride. From my experiences, Viper never has a wait immediately upon opening. So do this. Enter the park to the right of the Columbian Carousel (as to head to Hometown Square). Turn right at Aunt Martha's Boarding house and go for SW territory. Hit up the Viper with no line. After that do the Raging Bull and Giant Drop with very little waits. If Deja Vu is open, do that next, otherwise continue in a counter-clockwise fashion, but skipping Demon, Rajin Cajun, and S:UF. (So go to Am. Eagle (red is better), V2, Batman, and Whizzer.) You should be able to get on Demon quickly anytime during the day. If lines are short for Rajin Cajun, you can do that. My advice for S:UF is get in line 10 minutes prior to park closing. That way you don't waste too much of your park time waiting for it, and if you are in line, they will let you ride even after closing. Any hotels in the area are decent, but the Grand Inn is right outside the park. Also, 1 mile down Grand Ave. to the west you will find a HUGE mall called Gurnee Mills full of all kinds of outlets and restaurants and even a Bass Pro Shop.
Hope you are able to use some of my advice!
You should be able to get on Demon quickly anytime during the day.
Wrong! Demon is the 2nd most popular ride in the park, and is having an amazing year. The past few weekends Demon has had a 90min wait, over Raging Bull's 45min wait. Demon tends to clear out by the end of the night, It is a before 11:00am ride or after 8:30 pm ride. I highly recomend the after 8:30pm ride.
I can't say anyting about IB yet until after I go there in June.
There is no real easy way to get through Chicago. But by all means stay away from the rush hour times. Otherwise bight the bullet and go past downtow on 94. Enjoy the scenery.
My experience has always been good there. Superman will be the longest wait so get that out of the way. Whizzer is also a good day starter. RB is really fun but trimmed. I would have to say Viper is my fav there. AE races a train backwards (not realy news). Demon is a good Arrow for what it's worth. Watch your ears on IW. Good luck with DV being operational. And the O.G. BTR is as intense as ever. If it is a hot day, most of the crowd will be in the waterpark and will free up the rest a bit.
There are plenty of hotels in the area or nearby in Waukegan. Last time there I stayed at the Holiday Inn just across 94 (west) from the parks and on the same road as the main entrance (#132). It wasn't cheap but very nice and very close.
The Dells can get very hectic in the summer. Gridlock traffic and lots of people. I would not consider spending the night there just for MtO and TF. Stay the extra night at wherever you end up in Chicago and make a day stop on the way up to VF. That is if you are only going for the coasters. Shakopee is only another 4 hours away.
Also on the way to the Dells, check out Little-A-Merrik-A. It is a neat little place and not too far out of the way.
Check the web site for hotels. Another suggestion is the nearby casino Mystic Lake not far south of the park which has a hotel.
If buying anything to drink on the road in MN, Pepsi products are providing $10 off admission. So buy a can of Dew or something.
sws pretty much took the words out of my mind so have a good time in MN. Don't forget to hit the Mall of America for their 2 coasters.
Sun-Drive to Valley Fair from Toronto.(More advice on Chicago driving would be great)
Mon-Valley Fair and M.O.A. plus maybe drive to Mt Olympus.(VF is only open like 10-5)
Tues-Drive to Mt. Olympus if I haven't already, Mt Oly and Timber Falls.
Wed-Mt Oly plus drive to SFram
Fri SFGram plus drive to IB
Sat-IB and drive home.
I plan on buying a SF season pass cause I will be going to SFGrad for Toro later in the year. Also I have a Cedar Fair Maxx pass, so I will get in to VF for free. Should have mentioned both of those in the first post. Sorry.
I will be leaving around 5-7am on Sunday. I'm mostly worried about hitting gridlock in Chicago, there and back.
WildThingNative said: AE races a train backwards (not realy news).
AE doesn't run backwards at all anymore.
It was more interesting that way.
Anyhow, BamBam, that means you are going north around the lakes?
I don't know how mapquest advisied you to go through Minneapolis, but my advise is when comming into the Cities, take this route to VF:
694 west / becomes 94 west
169 south through the western suburbs.
there will be a few stop lights at the 494 junction, continue south from a few miles. Then you will cross the MN river. If you look to the right you might see the park.
Take the exit right after the river bridge onto 101 west.
That will take you to the VF gates.
Another option, this one a bit pricier, is to go through Detroit, drive to Muskegon, and take a ferry from there to Milwaukee. Then from Milwaukee, take i-94 right up to Minneapolis. The ferry ride will give you a chance to recharge the batteries. Here is their website...
The parks will be interesting, don't think they could all be more different. SFGAm is one of the nicer SF parks. S:UF is usually pretty packed, if your lucky you will get two trains operations. Hit Vu if it is open, usuallly doesnt make it all day. Viper is hit or miss, had sweet days on it, others, not so nice. Raging Bull IMO is a bit of a waste, nice smooth ride and alot of my non coaster friends love it but in all honesty it doesnt really do anything. Batman is always a pleasure and actually moves people through the line, imagine that.
Mt.O is pretty cool. Go-Karts are very unusual but fun, Hades obviously a must. TIP FOR CYCLOPS: one time you have to ride in the very last seat.
IB, aaaaa, dont expect much. Rides will surprise you they are not to bad, HH and CB express are kind of fun. Other than that it is a year round carinval, and be careful on the walk bride over, if it is still standing.
This trip is LOADED with really good wood. I've even heard that Cornball is "back". L-A-M-A's Meteor should be ready *sometime* soon.
Definitely, if you want to ride Dive to Atlantis, WATCH carefully and queue up *immediately* when you see them getting ready to open. Loved the park (and I'm one that thinks the mono-theming comes off well). :)
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