You needed another one of these...NEW park! (Cypress) :~)

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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 5:36 PM
Well, FINALLY located this "way outta the way" park, and making the trek to Winter Haven (not Winter Garden, or Winter Park, or any of those other FL *Winter* towns).

The entrance area is very reminiscent of the "Gardens Park" that I SO vaguely remember from a visit when I was about 4-5 years old. (Didn't have to drive there THEN, LOL).

A small walk around the entrance area brings you to the *original* Cypress gardens ride, the "Island in the Sky" tower....Of course, even before pass processing we had to go up there....a good choice, since several of the rides (including the flyers) closed early in the day due to *questionable* high winds. But overall, a very cool park, hell-bent on expanding further, and a really fun (and photogenic) way to start the day.

Pass processing went smoothly, fast and friendly staff that was surprisingly familiar with their park AND their sister park. Every single employee at the place was VERY engaging and friendly, and a few were even pretty knowledgeable (like the guy running the *BEAUTIFUL* CP Huntington train).

Coasters: First up: The "extended rollerskater", Okeechobee Rampage, nothing too exciting but a solid ride and a good start for ANY park that appeals to small children. Walking thru the nicely-landscaped park (quite different from the barren concrete jungle that is Wild Adventures) the next coaster on the way was that junior woodie (Triple?) Hurricane. Those Canadians sure know how to build a wooden coaster, and do JUST as well building from scratch as they do *fixing* others' rides. A couple surprising pops of air, and some fairly intense laterals on the turnaround. The laterals on the finishing turnaround int the station were almost too strong for a kiddie coaster, and I was reminded of Arkansas Twister's finale. Passing by the (absurd) Fiesta Express, we went on a couple flats (Power Surge!, Disk'O, Fabbri (?) tower, etc., and found our way to the third kiddie coaster (FE is an *infant* coaster, LOL). The Junior Vekoma invert, a new ride with the recycled name of Swamp Thing, it was as bangy, if not moreso, than the other junior inverts. I like the style, but wish the guide wheels didn't have to BANG so much for such a short ride. Did give good views of the upcoming waterpark though...

Flats: In addition to the aforementioned, there was one of the COOLEST flats I have seen, kinda similar to the one at Uncle Bernie's, named Mega Bounce. I really needed Adam at this point, cause there was NO signage I could find to indicate the manufacture. I believe the Tower ride was a Fabbri Drop since it looked SO similar to the one at LibertyLand in memphis (remember the weird cupola, Tina.....SAME top, precisely). Dry sack slide (Yay!), more Disk'O, really nice train ride around the park, surprisingly *kicky* bumper cars, a really strong assortment of flats that I'll need to look thru the park map or the pics to recall them all. Oh, one more, a Double-decker (Chance?) carousel. The set of flyers looked to be of an unknown make, but they went down due to the wind when they Island in the Sky and the Drop Ride went down, so no rides on those OR the Chance Ferris Wheel. Did I mention the amazing assortment of flats. The last one I "rode" was this kiddie fire-fighter simulator-type thingy, you had to shoot water at all the windows to light the top "fire!" light, then putting that out was the ultimate point of the "game". Only ONE kid had succeeded ALL day...(until I got there at 6pm, LOL)...the op got SUCH a kick out of me on that thing...

There was a PBR ride that had a LOT of ridership despite the FRIGID temps...we passed.

Other kiddie flats? Just wait'll you see the pics, TONS of 'em, including a COOL kiddie shot/drop ride that I sadly didn't get to see operate...

There were a couple shows, TONS of bathrooms (Yay!), some souvenir shops, and a really cool model railroad area that is "in process of being fixed up" according to the knowlegeable guy running the place...

Employee walked with us and talked with us on the way out, and said Kent B was *planning* on having as many rides at Cypress as there were at Wild Adventures...(yes, they know ALOT about the sister park, LOL). The "big woodie" is on hold at the moment, and I have NO idea where they'd fit it in, but the new waterpark will prove HIGHLY profitable.

P.S. Music ALL the time there, Jill's mom was going to go with us until she found out that George Jones was coming NEXT week...

George Jones? Is he related to Howard Jones?

I'll re-post, with a link to the pics, when I get them up....yeah, I hear ya Tina, Dawn....be PATIENT... ;)

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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 5:45 PM
They have a Disk'O? I love that ride. More parks need those!
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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 5:55 PM
Make me a little queasy Jeff...well, not so much the first ride, but then Jill finished her waffle cone and wanted to ride, so I was *compelled* to go again...THAT time I left a little greenish...;)

The one at Golf-N-Stuff in SoCal did the same thing to me, I think that restraint system just isn't my fav...but I do like the ride, just need more swing and less spin. LOL, I could almost swear I've said that before..:)

P.S. When the pics DO go up, you train junkies (remember the CP Huntington thread), you people are gonna DROOL....immaculate!

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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 6:02 PM
I visted the park on Thursday and had a blast. I planned on leaving at 3 but found I didn't have enough time to get everything done I wanted to get done, partly due to the fact I spent quite a bit of time walking around and taking pictures.

Never visting the park before, I only had images of the decrepeit condition the parks previous owners left it in from the various news reports. I arrived to find a nice clean park with lots of kids rides and a smattering of adult rides emerging.

I felt the park staff was friendly. Especially liked the fact they were letting most of the coasters run through the circuit two times since the park was slow.

A lot of the rides were made by Zamperla. Including a Fire Brigade (looks like a lot of fun, wish they were around when I was little), Power Surge, Disk O', Yo Yo swing.

The Ski Show was decent, the Ice Show had some good parts. I watched some of the other shows from the midway but didn't stay long enough to really give them a thorough review.

The gardens were in great shape. The Bird Aviary is coming along, as well as a couple of new restaurant including a fine dining restaurant. I thought the Southern Belles were beautiful ladies and the park is planning to have live entertainment just about everyday of the week.

The C.P. Huntington train looked great. I only wish I had time to ride it.

*** Edited 1/25/2005 11:05:11 PM UTC by coasterguts***

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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 6:36 PM
Good report. Swamp Thing looks fun to bad irs rough!
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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 7:46 PM
rollergator,

Is this the Mega Bounce they have?

http://www.larsonintl.com/rides/mb.htm

If so I'd be interested to know what its ride cycle is like...

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Tuesday, January 25, 2005 10:24 PM
Odd Todd...Yep, that's the baby...INTENSE cycle, that thing kicks BUTT....lots of different *configurations* of bouncing, all forward, but made for a very interesting ride. I did learn to put my arms DOWN though, otherwise it was a real shoulder-breaker, as you can prob tell from the pic.

Now I'm forced to wonder if anyone who went to the *Southwestern Con* last year saw that ride at the Larson factory tour...

Next time I'm promising myself to have some more time so I can check out the animals, shows, gardens, etc. some more...it was COLD, and frost was coming, but instead of Southern Belles and hoop skirts, they were covering/protecting the plants with plastic tarps....I guess sometimes *progress* does take us backwards, LOL...;)

coasterguts....suck it up and do the fire brigade...it gives the op a good chuckle, and it was actually kinda challenging...

I still say getting to Silverwood was easier...:)

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Wednesday, January 26, 2005 2:08 AM
......and, for those who tell me I never get around to posting pics...;)

http://www.pbase.com/rollergator/cypress_gardens

Take THAT! ;)

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Wednesday, January 26, 2005 3:09 AM
I believe the drop tower is also an ARM ride. I remember visiting Cypress Gardens as a kid, and I look forward to visiting sometime in the future, although I think I'll wait until the park is over its growing pains. :)

-Nate

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Wednesday, January 26, 2005 9:29 AM

rollergator said:
coasterguts....suck it up and do the fire brigade...it gives the op a good chuckle, and it was actually kinda challenging...

I know, I shouldn't let my pride interfere with my childhood fun. :) The park isn't that far out in the country. Only about 20 miles off I-4.

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Thursday, January 27, 2005 5:58 PM
Nice trip report and pics Bill. I'm hoping to finally get to the park next month. So is this your big TR for the year?:)
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Friday, January 28, 2005 2:06 AM
LOL, no telling Heath...

If Scandia Screamer turns out to be as good as advertised, you may get another TR sooner rather than later...;)

Now, come later this summer, you can almost *expect* a TR from the trip to www.gilroygarlicfestival.com...oh, and all the NorCal parks except for PGA...been there, done that, no need to go back.

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Friday, January 28, 2005 11:11 AM
Screw the coasters, let's hear about the garlic! I hope you have a good time in Nor Cal. I'm hoping to possibly fit it into the schedule this year as well. May try and fit in a few more TRs as well.
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