Valleyfair/Nick Universe/Waterpark of America - 7/2

Friday, July 6, 2012 3:32 PM

Started the day at Valleyfair. Park was not very crowded (other than a mid-day ride on Renegade with a 25 min wait, everything else was a walk-on or 1/2 train wait). Temps were in the high 90s and a lot of people appeared headed to Soak City leaving the non-water rides less crowded. Park was clean with Snoopy scattered about the park. There were a lot of winding/curved paths around the park which make for a better look but make getting from point a to point b more difficult than straight lines.

Renegade was my favorite ride in the park. By a lot. One of the best wood coasters (and just plain coasters) I have ridden. Have my first trip planned to Holiday World later this month so that may change a little from what I have heard. They really could have used the second train (at least in the afternoon). But still, the wait wasnt bad and we got in 3 laps.

Wild Thing was a fun coaster as well. Though there are other steel coasters that are better. I do not like the high sided cars. Almost feels like you are riding in a car down a hilly highway because it is so closed in. Riding in the front seat helped bring more wind to your face. Lift hill and brake run were pretty noisy. 2 laps.

Excalibur was a walk up with the trains only 1/3 filled. Seemed very average to me. Nothing much to recommend it. Best thing it had going for it was we could re-ride moving a few rows back without waiting. 2 laps.

High Roller was an enjoyable, smooth ride. Almost seemed to meander around the course. No flying up and down little bunny hills. Liked the single lap bar and seat belt with no headrests. One lap.

Corkscrew. What can you say about corkscrew coasters? All seem pretty much the same to me (I am sure that is sacrilegious to many here :)). Though I missed the little hill before the loop. Talked to a ride op while waiting for the next train. When I joked about the heat, he smiled and pointed to his name tag which indicated he was from Texas. He said that he came to Minnesota to escape the heat so this was nothing. When he found out I was from the Cleveland area, he wanted to know about Cedar Point because he was thinking about requesting a transfer there for next summer. He was really interested in the CP coasters. I told him I thought CP is a great park but I have never worked there so I could not comment on that aspect of it. Would be interesting to see as the pace for ride ops seemed much slower there (all but Wild Thing were running one train and many of the trains were partially empty). The man appeared to be in his late 60s to early 70s. I told him I would look for him next summer in Sandusky. One lap.

Steel Venom. When I saw the ride from the parking lot, I thought the stop on the straight spike was too short. Then when I rode it, I realized it was pretty uncomfortable and wouldn't want to stop any longer than it did. I still like the forward and backward launch coasters. Especially when you can walk on. One lap.

Mad Mouse. My son and I convinced by wife and daugther to ride this one. Its a fun little coaster. They list it with their family rides rather than thrill rides. My wife and daugther both enjoyed it. One lap.

Also rode the Looping Starship. I like the free swing aspect of the Ocean Motion but going upside down is fun. And the restraints were not uncomfortable going upside down. One voyage.

They were selling Fast Lane passes though I didn't see anyone who was using one. Wasn't a need for one. Few people seemed to understand what they were as several people used the FL entrances without wristbands (not skipping anything because there was no wait). Maybe the park is more crowded on weekends.

Camp Snoopy seemed to have just about everything that Cedar Point's version does but also had a little more variety. Loli swing ride was larger than the CP version (though smaller than the Wave Swinger). They had a spinning ride where you laid down like superman and a big swing with 6 kids sitting across on either side. If she wasn't way over the height limit, my daughter probably would have spent a lot of time there.

Next we headed to the Mall of America. My daughter had a trip through the American Girl store planned for months. Having been to the stores in Chicago and NYC, I liked the one in MoA best because I could step outside and take in the sights of the amusement park while she and my wife shopped at the store.

Fairly Odd Coaster. This ride overpromised and under delivered to me. Watching it while in line, it looked very good. Riding it was boring. We did not spin very much at all. There was a stretch where we did not spin at all and it seemed like we should have. Was disappointed.

Rock Bottom Plunge. This was a fun ride. Wish it had been a little longer but still a good ride.

Orange Streak. Was basically a fast train ride around the amusement park. My daugther rode it with me. She enjoyed it and I thought it was a good way to take in the sights of the entire park.

TMNT Shell Shock. This was the first ride I saw when we walked into Nick Universe. It looked fun from the second level of the mall. I was able to roll over 3 times but could not get into a continuous roll. Got close but was stuck almost upside down. Fun ride.

We finished the day at the Water Park of America which was attached to our hotel. It says its the largest indoor water park in America but it didn't seem that big to me. Though I have not been to many indoor water parks so I can't really say.

The family raft ride was 10 stories tall and a good one. We spent a lot of time on that. Body slide from that height was also very good and fast. It had no line and you walked past groups of people waiting for the raft ride. They had some other slides that were also good. Wave pool was the smallest I have ever seen. The lazy river crossed it. Line was too long for the flowrider though those always look fun.

All in all, it was a fun day in the Minneapolis area. I would go back to Valleyfair if I was in the area again (especially based on a total cost of under $10). Water park was fun and was only a $30 add-on to our room for the 4 of us. I would probably pass on another visit to the MoA/Nick Universe as a "been there, done that" type of place. I am sure my daughter would head back to the AG store though I think she has the one in LA in her sights for next summer.

Friday, July 6, 2012 3:39 PM

What did you mean when you said your total cost at ValleyFair was less than $10. SP/parking from Cedar Fair?

The amusement park rises bold and are huddled on the beach in a mist

Friday, July 6, 2012 4:27 PM

With our Platinum Passes, admission and parking were $0. We each had a drink (which totaled less than $10). We had lunch at the MoA.

Another thing I forgot to mention: Valleyfair still has an Imax theater. I remember that as being a great way to cool off on an extremely hot day at CP. My wife and daughter watched the movie at VF. I have never been to the Snoopy ice show at CP. Never think about it or it doesn't seem to be running when we are there. I would probably watch the movie if they still had an Imax.

Friday, July 6, 2012 4:43 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

GoBucks89 said:

I have never been to the Snoopy ice show at CP.

I would probably watch the movie if they still had an Imax.


Never saw SoI (new acronym?) at CP, used to do IMAX every visit.

Saw Snoopy on Ice at Carowinds. It was as stupid as expected. No expectations to ever see it at CP.

Friday, July 6, 2012 10:44 PM
Jeff's avatar

I haven't seen it in years, but I thought the show wasn't terrible.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

Saturday, July 7, 2012 9:33 AM

Sounds like a new ad campaign: Come to the park and see our shows. They aren't terrible. :)

I didn't understand why Cedar Point didn't use CP coasters in its ads in the Cleveland area. But in Minnesota they are using the exact same ones. Presumably they are using them around all CF parks.

Saturday, July 7, 2012 11:26 AM
rollergator's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:
Saw Snoopy on Ice at Carowinds. It was as stupid as expected. No expectations to ever see it at CP.

Me 2! The good part was that the show theatre had AC, and it was about 1,000 degrees outside at Carowinds. Oh, and they did have snacks and drinks in the theatre... :)

I remember they made a big deal about introducing the show's "creative director" or whatever...I'd have been embarrassed.

Saturday, July 7, 2012 11:53 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Yeah, the only reason we ducked in was because of the heat too.

Saturday, July 7, 2012 12:23 PM

I haven't caught this summer's Snoopy show at CP yet, but I've seen many of the past productions. And, no, it's certainly not Disney on Ice, but I've always found it to be quite enjoyable.

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Saturday, July 7, 2012 12:34 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Ice skating shows are as boring as watching Snoopy's crap dry white.

Peanuts as an IP outside of the three holiday specials is dreadfully uninteresting.

Theme park shows are notoriously cheeseball.


(and yes, I feel as strongly about this as I do the old Paramount fountain entries - don't make me break out the "Sucks" posts)

Snoopy Rocks On Ice - Carowinds June, 2010

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Saturday, July 7, 2012 1:40 PM
Saturday, July 7, 2012 12:43 PM
Vater's avatar

I haven't even seen PoI, but I will agree that, because it's an ice show, it sucks. Way more than the International Streets.

I'd watch them if it was 100+ degrees out. Actually, I'd probably sit through the entire Twilight series as long as there was AC.

Saturday, July 7, 2012 1:15 PM

Sit through or sleep through?

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Saturday, July 7, 2012 2:01 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

Vomit through.

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

Saturday, July 7, 2012 3:09 PM
Jeff's avatar

Don't they at least get points for having an attractive skater now and then?

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

Saturday, July 7, 2012 10:23 PM

I considered mentioning that little perk.

Last edited by Ensign Smith, Saturday, July 7, 2012 10:23 PM

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Sunday, July 8, 2012 1:18 AM
LostKause's avatar

YEAaaaaa! Someone else thinks The Peanuts is not interesting! Way to be, Gonch.


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