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Shaggy

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Everything posted by Shaggy

  1. Specifically I recall several trips in 1994 and 1995 when the ride was a walk-on. I lived about 1 hour from KI then, had a season pass, and visited roughly every other week. I don't ever recall waiting through the full queue for the ride in any of those trips. Now, of course I didn't ride every time I went. I thought the ride was lackluster - so it wasn't of great interest to me. IMO that was the predominant feeling among most guests by that point. I remember it being down on a few of those visits, but I don't recall taking note of it not operating for long periods of time. (Although I could be wrong... again, it wasn't of great interest to me.) Frankly - I MUCH preferred Skylab - but that ride seemed to be down more than it was operational. Skylab typically did have a line when I was there and it was running.
  2. I'll add my $.02 I rode both Flight Commander, and Sky Pilot (at Kings Dominion) several times each. The ride - as others have said - was "meh." It really wasn't that thrilling, but it was unique for its time. The barrel rolls were its novelty, and they were slooooowww. When KI (and KD) removed it, I didnt see it as a big loss. In its later years, the ride was typically a walk-on.
  3. Sorry - I was referring to the S&S Freespin that KD is installing for 2022. Frankly, that ride is beneath the park.
  4. I cant imagine a company such as B&M having a "no build" clause with any given park/company... at least not for any lengthy amount of time. Seems very constrictive for business. I'd say if CF wanted B&M to build a coaster for KD, then B&M would build one. Now, they may steer clear of duplicating "types" of coasters.... for instance, not building consecutive flyers, wing, divers at nearby competing parks... but again, I'd say that B&M will work with whatever a park wants them to do. If I had to guess, I expect KD is operating on a very limited capitol budget. Who knows this may be a small step toward a bigger plan... I will say, however, I personally dislike this type of coaster. (Edit - referring to the S&S Freespin KD is installing for 2022) I've ridden 4 of them across the states, and every one of them was - IMO - terrible.
  5. I think this is a great addition to SFFT. I've been to the park several times and love where they chose to put it. Its essentially adjacent to Roadrunner (a completely underrated Arrow mine train - the last to be built) and across from the entrance to Iron Rattler. It creates a sort of 1-2-3 punch in the Crackaxle area of the park. I personally am glad its a more "compact" layout with a lower height. I've often said that I find B&M Dive Coasters a one-trick pony. I find virtually everything after the first drop on the ones I've ridden (Valravn, Sheikra, Griffon) essentially forgettable. I attribute that to the fact that the elements are more drawn out and cause the train to linger and just sort of drift through the inversions. This layout will likely produce better, more intense elements. I also think its an interesting move considering Six Flags has... with only one exception I can recall... steered clear of B&M for about 15 years now. (If memory serves me X-Flight at Great America was the last... 2012 or so... and prior to that the most recent SF B&Ms were installed around 2006.) Fiesta Texas has been a "trend starter" for the SF parks for the last decade. Several of the rides SFFT has installed have been repeated later at other SF parks. This may be the precursor to other dives at other SF parks. Side note... If you ever get the chance to visit SFFT... dont pass it up. Its my personal favorite of all the SF parks I've been to. It tops SFMM, SFGADV and SFGAM in my book because it retains a much fresher/cleaner feel and (for the most part) stayed true to its original theming.
  6. Installing a log flume in the vicinity of the original "Mill Race" which was removed for Raptor. Actually, I have no idea - just a wish ;-)
  7. Paul Ruben has passed away at 84. The name may ring a bell to some, not to others. Many of us, ummm "long time" coaster enthusiasts knew (or knew of) Mr Rubens. He did a lot within the industry, and was essentially many park's go-to guy for quotes and opinions on rides and attractions. I would often come across him at parks, media days etc. (including several of his visits to KI and many ACE events.) "https://obits.democratandchronicle.com/us/obituaries/democratandchronicle/name/paul-ruben-obituary?pid=199434434&fbclid=IwAR1iia_yPU0gc4X2IpFdesR8jN3y5t8n47FcliJrs8_bPq4v_Oxyj451N3g
  8. When the Dinn Corporation ceased operations, Charlie’s daughter Denise re- formed the company as CCI.
  9. Not sure if this has been posted, but Charles Dinn, head of Construction at KI for a number of years (who lead the team to build "The Beast") has passed away at 88. He also was responsible for the relocation and building of several coasters across the country - under his firm Dinn/Summers - after he left Kings Island. Here's a link to his obituary: https://www.brewerfuneral.com/obituaries/Charles-J-Dinn?obId=21626357&fbclid=IwAR3Tu4prfRNaDjzzFxsl56CX15JHCTB23nlpynv908KUioy8kYKRAx9rfik
  10. Kudos to Chad for addressing this. Rumormongering by uninformed folks can really do social damage.
  11. The Waterpark placement at KD began a string of really bad decisions by that park's planners. Many blame Paramount for the devastation of KD's original "feel"... but, in fact, it was well underway in the years leading up to the sale. Draining of 75% of Lake Charles was a ridiculously poor decision - not only because of the esthetic loss, but also because from the start they "land locked" the waterpark. It was inevitable from the beginning that they'd have to split it up and expand on the other side of Rebel Yell. They very easily could have duplicated what KI did, and utilized the Old Dominion line as a transport to a waterpark placed on the back corner of the property... or built it adjacent to (then) HB land in the front of the parking lot where (ultimately) Dominator was placed. Of all the parks, Wonderland (IMO) has managed to stay pretty true to its original concepts. The biggest change to the park is the land surrounding it. When I first went there some 20-25 years ago, the entire area surrounding it was essentially all farmland. Then, within a couple years *BAM* it was surrounded by development. I've never seen that kind of change anywhere else.
  12. Well, lookie here…. Gotta say, the 2021 Coasterstock T-shirt is incredible… the itinerary is most definitely “coasterstacked”… and there’s even a cool matching wristband. So excited to be returning to this superb event. Counting down the days!!!
  13. This is VERY reminiscent of the tragedy that occurred on Raven at Holiday World just prior to the start of “ Stark Raven Mad” in 2003. Tamar Fellner was a part of that enthusiast event and fell out of the train just prior to the start of the evening ERT. From all indications, the female that passed away was an enthusiast attending their “Hollywood Nights” event (which was essentially the re-named SRM event after the park took a few years off after the Raven tragedy.) Apparently she was found unresponsive just prior to the start of the ERT. My heart goes out to everyone involved. I was the newly appointed ACE Regional Rep when the SRM accident happened. I was at the event when the death occurred. To say it is an awful situation is a complete understatement. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.wthr.com/amp/article/news/local/indiana/ohio-woman-unresponsive-holiday-world-roller-coaster-dies/531-c59df18d-1df2-4fe6-be9a-371047a85219
  14. We all, in some form or another, take ownership in the park. Every single one of us should be outraged that this happened at a place as beloved as Kings Island. The mere fact that this has occurred makes me sick on my stomach. For the love of God there were families and little, little children there. Its simply disgusting. I trust in the park's leadership enough to know this sort of thing will not be tolerated. If that means hard rules must be instituted, fine by me. I support any measure the park takes to ensure the safety of ALL guests, and ALL employees.
  15. This is coming on the heels of multiple "incidents" at the park. Not just the recent two "newsworthy" fights in the parking lot. Let's just say there's a very bad, underlying problem inside the park that has prompted this. I hope this change works... but until they make some very difficult, hard-core decisions, the problems that have plagued the park dating back to Six Flags days will continue to happen. Read through some FB responses to this new policy, and you'll get the general feel of what locals actually think about the park.
  16. He's an absolute legend. An asset to the industry, and to enthusiasts. Terrific Podcast.
  17. Most of today's bands/performers/musical acts are contracted through an outside "promoter." For instance, Live Nation is a concert/act promoter. Many promoters, have their own venues. That, or they have contracts/agreements with independent venues to bring their acts there. Those contracts can differ, depending on the facility and are often financially complex. Successful venues often use very current technology - not only the staging, lighting and technical needs of today's acts - but also event admissions technology such as mobile barcode scanners, live analytics data, and database-driven sales feeds etc. Many of those venues also have contracts, or agreements with successful ticketing software/distribution providers (i.e. Ticketmaster) Kings Island (TMK) does not have a contract, or agreement with major concert promoters (outside of Spirit Song - which I'll get to in a bit.) So any concerts they *may* do (at this point) would likely be, one-offs. Kings Island does have a contract with Ticketmaster to not only sell and distribute tickets - but to also supply the software and ticketing equipment on site (such as Boca printers, dumb terminals etc.) Because of the infrequency of concerts, there's not been a need for KI to invest in the costly ticketing technology themselves. That infrequency is due, IMO, to a number of things... competition from other venues (better & larger facilities/better options for inclement elements etc.) Also, the "face" of concerts has drastically changed in the past 40 years. Most of today's performers are heavily reliant on theatrics... so they travel with their own stages and massive rigging so they can distract audiences with light shows/hydraulic lifts/scenery changes/fire and special effects etc. Such performances are best seen at night - or in a darkened venue. Timberwolf wasn't really built for that - it was built for static performers and bands. Demands of artists play a role as well - and KI simply isn't in the business to cater to most of today's intricate tech-riders themselves. Spirit Song is a low-risk, successful event that has proven to be a large draw for decades. The performers are more traditional "static" performers that don't rely heavily on theatrics or complex tech-riders. Its a "festival", so it is an admissions draw to the park for an entire weekend. Because of the nature of the concerts, and the fact that it is at a family-oriented theme park - its a huge draw for churches and youth groups across the Midwest. A great portion of ticket sales are to large groups that are maintained, and return, year after year. There's a built-in base of buyers that help guarantee that it's a success. Now, I am not privy to what type of a contract SS's promoter may have with KI... but I'd guess its a simple 4-wall, where they are essentially just renting the venue and KI only retains the profits from park admissions and concessions. It is my opinion that the reason Timberwolf still exists is literally because of Spirit Song. The event is obviously a large enough draw that the park continues to see its merit (As recent as 2020 - which was cancelled due to Covid.) And as long as Kings Island deems the facility's use for Spirit Song as a viable use of the "real estate", then Timberwolf will continue. Also, as long as SS's promoter deems the facility adequate, then KI will likely just "maintain" it rather than heavily re-investing. If the park deems the land's use better suited for something that can be better marketed, or produce a larger return on investment, then it will be removed. If they are faced with a costly renovation or remodel (in order to maintain some sort of standard for future use) then they'll run the metrics to find out what the better monetary use is. As of now, its costing them little to nothing to just sit there... and its tucked away in a spot that isn't really prime midway real-estate. I do not think the land clearing seen this season is reflective of anything related to a removal of Timberwolf - I think its just a simple clearing of foliage overgrowth.
  18. The mere fact that the name "Gerstlauer" is continually mispronounced "GerTslauer" in that video undermines any potential credibility IMO. ;-)
  19. It was time for Vortex to go. A dagger to the heart of sentimentality, but its time had passed. ;-)
  20. Yeah, its pretty evident there was mis-information in that USA Today article. I'm glad it got shared, because its a good example of how the press can misconstrue their reporting about parks. Bottom line, there's no factual information that any such thing ever occurred on The Beast.
  21. Interesting. Any idea if it was a local article or something printed through AP? On a related note, I personally can recall a large article on coaster safety that appeared in Popular Mechanics in the 1980's that featured coaster accidents. It covered, in great detail, information about the West Edmonton Mall Schwarzkopf derailment, the Lightning Loops incident etc. I still have it somewhere in storage. When I was a teen, that article was the trigger for me to understand that those sorts of tragic stories sell.
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