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Everything posted by homestar92

  1. It's up in the top left, but it is ONLY visible when images from multiple dates exist from that spot. If there is only one, then it will not appear. I'm on a desktop web browser so I have no idea if it's different on a mobile device.
  2. Is Diamondback running at half capacity or full? The way they were doing seating for Orion yesterday was very similar to how Diamondback's train is naturally designed (inner two seats in odd rows, outer two seats in evens) so I'm curious if they are just letting DB use its full capacity since that's basically the same thing. Also curious if Banshee is being filled in the same way as Orion.
  3. Old street view images are archived. When multiple photos exist, there will be a clock icon you can select to change the image date
  4. If we assume that having and recovering from the virus results in immunity (anecdotally, this seems to be the case, but there haven't been any controlled, peer reviewed studies yet so we don't know for sure) then places where it was already widespread would be at little risk for a second peak. Take L.A. County, where potentially half the county or more tested positive for antibodies if you extrapolate the random samples. If having the virus brings immunity, then logically, they couldn't have much of a second peak as potentially half of their population has already had it. It's also tough because we know that for people who are young and have none of the risk factors, it's possible to get this virus and never show any symptoms at all. It's part of what makes it so scary, but it's also part of what gives me hope that we may be at a lessened risk of a resurgence. My diabetic mother-in-law had a really bad respiratory illness in early February that her doctor was never able to diagnose. It took a couple weeks for her to get better. Was it the novel Coronavirus? Seems possible to me. My wife and I, who are obviously younger and are also less at risk were around her at that time, so is it possible we were exposed to the virus and never got sick? Who knows! Antibody testing is finally starting to become available to the general public, and it could teach us a whole lot about what the next few months are going to look like. We've obviously been doing not nearly sufficient testing. Intuitively, there are a lot more people who have gotten the virus than the numbers suggest. It will be very interesting if some randomly sampled antibody testing studies are done and can reveal numbers that are a lot closer to our actual reality.
  5. I think there are a number of reasons to believe that they won't become the *permanent* new normal. One concern is accessibility. People wearing masks is very difficult for the deaf community where people rely on lip reading and facial expression as a critical part of their communication. Which means in all likelihood, the deaf community will be among the first to ditch masks. Then the folks who don't like them, but are wearing them anyway will probably be next because, hey, if they can ditch them we can too. Then community by community, masks will start to disappear. I predict this will happen after the second peak but before the threat is gone. I hope the six foot distances at grocery checkouts stick around forever though. We could eradicate every pathogen in the universe and I still would prefer people stand six feet away from me. Why? Because some people don't shower and I don't want to breathe in that stank. I believe that as restrictions are loosened, we will see a series of smaller peaks. I think the next peak will come this summer and will be higher than our current peak. Even, St. Louis, the "model city" in the 1918 pandemic, had its second peak end up a bit higher than its first. Then as we get closer and closer to the "old" normal, we will see a series of progressively smaller peaks, not unlike an old out and back roller coaster. As with all roller coasters, the odds are much better than not that we will eventually arrive back at the station where we started. EDIT TO AVOID A DOUBLE POST: They don't really need to block off every other urinal. The universally accepted but unwritten restroom code already mandates that you not use a urinal immediately next to one that is already in use.
  6. I definitely think it would be good business for the fuel industries to dabble in other markets right now, considering the abysmal state that it's in at the moment. Perhaps, with oil prices through the floor, we could take government action to temporarily redirect the ethanol subsidies currently going toward fuel and instead direct them to sanitization products. The demand for ethanol-based fuels at this current moment has to be pretty close to an all-time low with how cheap oil-based fuels are right now. Certainly that might get some pushback from the environmental lobby, but as a temporary solution to a more immediate problem, I don't think the environmental impacts of doing that for a while would be that large.
  7. There are some factors that can help with this. First is that, beg and plead and scream as the parks might, not everyone will use it. That's just a fact of life. Unfortunate, but it lessens the amount needed. Second is that they should avoid putting hand sanitizer stations immediately next to restrooms. Encourage people to use soap and water at the sink instead. Soap and water is both more readily available and also more effective than hand sanitizer anyway. When it's an option, hand washing should be the preferred method of sanitizing. Use this opportunity to upgrade to touchless sink fixtures. It needed to happen eventually anyway, IMO. The interesting question is, how much sanitizer *could* be produced by the manufacturers each day? I suspect the shortages are due to the sudden spike in demand primarily. Maybe production could be ramped up to meet the demand. I don't know that answer, I'm just thinking out loud. It is a *lot* of hand sanitizer. For sure. The quantity needed could be a problem. As I understand it, though, industrial suppliers haven't had their stock decimated in the same way retail has. My workplace has been able to buy some for the essential IT staff still in the actual office (granted, that's three people... But that's definitely more sanitizer than you could find at retail right now)
  8. I don't know how the parks all plan to handle the pandemic, but one thing do I anticipate seeing at all of them is hand sanitizer. This is how I think that will look: Holiday World will add hand sanitizer stations at every existing sunscreen and soft drink location. They will be free of charge and refilled religiously so no customer ever uses a dispenser to find it empty. There will be regular reminders over the PA system for customers to please wash or sanitize their hands whenever possible. Kentucky Kingdom will do the same, but solely because they feel compelled to match what Holiday World does and not because they care about the customers. They will refill the dispensers once a day at best. They also will practice social distancing by only filling their park to 10% capacity and never filling the ride vehicles beyond half capacity. They will also run one train on all coasters. Not for cleaning, but rather, just 'cuz. In short, nothing at all will change at the park other than hand sanitizer being available when they remember to refill it. Disney will hand out small bottles of hand sanitizer for free at all retail locations, with intricate packaging themed to the area of the park that you got it from. Disney will also introduce a limited edition hand sanitizer trading pin. The bottles and pins will sell on ebay in the year 2025 for over $100. Cedar Fair will install hand sanitizer stations, but only two in each of the large parks and one in the small parks. In two years, they will be replaced by a Coke Freestyle machine. At Michigan's Adventure, the hand sanitizer station will be relocated to the other side of the park next season and advertised as that year's flagship new attraction. At Six Flags, there will be a coupon in the app for gold members only, good once per season and only at the member's home park. It will be good for $1 off of a $14 bottle of Purell with the purchase of a $6 bag of Takis. They also will be out of stock at all except the most inconvenient retail location in the park. The flagship roller coaster at each park will have its trains wrapped in advertisements for Purell and Lysol. The Purell bottle will not be allowed to go with you on the rides and you will have to leave it with a non-rider or pay $2 for a locker at each ride.
  9. The problem with that is, how much good will with customers would it cost them? You'd think passholders would be thrilled they get to come at all since they've already been given a 2021 pass. But we all know that there are certain customers who feel entitled to have their cake and eat it too. I don't see them doing that. I could be wrong of course as I have no insider knowledge of their plans. It's a tricky situation. They definitely won't be able to make everyone happy. And unfortunately, there will be no action that can please those who believe this is all a mainstream media fearmongering hoax short of opening up with no changes in operations whatsoever and pretending there's nothing going on. At this point, I seriously believe that some of those people would complain that they "gave in to the fearmongering" even if they just opened up with plenty of public hand sanitizer stations and changed nothing else about their operations.
  10. ^ This entire pandemic is a series of no-win scenarios for businesses. A vaccine is still many months away. Frankly, we've never had great success at coming up with effective vaccines for other coronaviruses, so there's no guarantees that a vaccine will ever exist at all. Basically all theme parks will have to open up for business in a world with no vaccine or go out of business. Even a park as big as Kings Island would struggle to financially survive more than one cancelled season. Companies just don't keep multiple years' worth of operating costs in their war chests. As staying closed until this is all gone is not a viable option, their best option is to open up with as many reasonable precautions as possible. What is a "reasonable" precaution? I'm not sure I have all the answers to that. Some are easy and obvious (shorter cleaning intervals, hand sanitizer stations at convenient locations throughout the park, etc) but some are harder. Queue lines aren't built for 6-foot distances between guests. Neither are ride vehicles. Is it viable to implement social distancing in these places? Parks have to open to stay afloat, and one of the contingencies of that is that they have to figure out how they can operate in a way that maximizes safety within the parameters that will still allow them to make a profit (or at least break even until this blows over)
  11. It is true that it is up to an individual to protect themselves to the extent that they can. In softball or baseball, you can avoid being hit by the ball by being vigilant, but that doesn't mean it's okay for a pitcher to aim for the head. If that happened and someone told that person, "welp, that's just part of the game", then the person saying that is a word that I won't use on a public forum. The only athletes who deserves to be hit in the head with a baseball are members of the 2017-2018 Houston Astros. Personally, when I can do something that requires literally zero effort or sacrifice on my part and is potentially helpful to someone else, I just do it because frankly, I think that's just part of being a good person. Are we going to start lobbying against the "no loose articles on rides" rules? After all, getting hit with a phone that slipped out of someone's hand is just part of the risk that you accept when going to an amusement park, right? I just find it shocking that people are so vehemently opposed to inconveniencing themselves in even the tiniest little way to do something that might help another person. It's not like people are being asked to sacrifice their firstborn child to appease the volcano gods to save the village from the eruption (though some of the social media comments sections sure make it seem that way). It's just a stupid piece of fabric. Just like the shirts and pants that we've been wearing for nearly the entirety of human civilization that very few people complain about (which, BTW, is something you wear for the benefit of others more than yourself, even if you don't realize that). And just a side note that I should add, "love thy neighbor" is a core part of the values I was brought up with. If doing something that is trivially easy for me and doesn't cost anything can be helpful to someone else around me, it would be a violation of my core values to refuse to do it and would make me a hypocrite.
  12. This is how some people look with the way they talk about the mere suggestion of being asked to wear a mask for the benefit of others: I can't believe Cedar Point makes me wear a strap on my glasses to ride their roller coasters. If that's going to be the policy, they should provide them for free. Under the ADA they can't make arbitrary rules that uniquely affect me and my disability. It's my constitutional right as an American to ride any roller coaster I want without a glasses strap and I don't care if they could fly off and kill someone. The bin of broken glasses and phones in the lines is just fake news. Glasses straps don't do anything because my glasses are great and don't come off. And anyway, if other people don't want to have my glasses hit their face at 120 MPH, they just shouldn't go out to a theme park.
  13. Much like Thanos, it was inevitable. John Husted said yesterday that unemployment would become insolvent at the current pace by June 1st. And under Ohio law, we have to balance the budget, which rules out borrowing money. Getting tax money coming in and reducing the amount of unemployment going out is the only way we can really fix that, so to an extent, the restrictions had to be let up somewhat by that point in order to not have people starving to death due to running out of food and money. If people are not working AND unemployment has no money to give out, people WILL starve. And while gambling with the virus isn't a great solution, it is a scientifically verifiable fact that people won't be able to survive if they can't eat. It sounds as if it will be a slow process with select sectors of the economy opening with a few weeks in between to evaluate numbers. The first to reopen would likely be places where social distancing guidelines can be readily accommodated. Since restaurants, theme parks, etc are high risk. I don't expect them to open until close to the end. Since manufacturing jobs are "essential" and are thus still working, and office jobs are mostly working from home (meaning allowing them to work in person would go nowhere in solving this problem), my GUESS is that the jobs that will start back up would be non-essential retail. Arguably specialty stores like electronics stores, craft stores, book stores, etc are much better suited for social distancing than grocery stores are, so this seems like the logical first step. He also made a comment about meeting with superintendents that seems to imply that the plan is to not have students go back to in-person classes this academic year.
  14. During today's Covid-19 update from Governor DeWine (and Dr. Acton and Lt. Governor Husted), there was a brief aside from John Husted that may be of particular importance for Kings Island and Cedar Point. Essentially what he said is that even after they start opening businesses back up, the social distancing requirements (6 feet between people, etc) will remain in place for a while longer to make sure we don't create a second spike. Obviously, it is not exactly possible for amusement parks to operate under those stipulations, so I would expect KI and CP to be among the last businesses in the state to reopen.
  15. Your home park is whatever you want it to be. In general, the park that you visit the most would be the most reasonable thing to call your home park. If your home park is the park closest to you, many people on this forum (myself included) would have Stricker's Grove as their home park. I'm pretty sure that if you polled the entire forum, nobody on this forum would unironically call Stricker's Grove their home park.
  16. I think it would be a good buy for Six Flags. Hear me out. First off, if they bought it, they should NOT "flag" the park (as in, put "Six Flags" in the park's name). Having "Six Flags" in the name of a park implies that there will be high-thrill rides, licensed characters, Flash Pass, etc. If it's owned by them, but does not bear the name, then the expectations are tempered a bit (see Great Escape, Frontier City and former SIX parks such as Wyandot Lake which did not bear the brand name). Not putting "Six Flags" in the name gives them some license to operate and market the park differently from their other properties. They have backed themselves into a corner in that they can't really discount season passes any further to drive sales. They must tap into more markets. Getting IB would help them twofold: first, another park means another market in which to sell passes. That angle is obvious. The second is the Indianapolis market. Most people in Indianapolis probably consider their home park to be either Kings Island, Holiday World, or maybe Kentucky Kingdom. But consider the following: Indiana Beach isn't a terribly long drive from Indianapolis. Sell those folks a season pass, and oh, by the way, that pass is also valid at Great America, and you might manage to pull a significant number of those peoples' occasional "big park" visits away from KI, KK, or HW and get them to instead go to Great America since it's included with their Indiana Beach pass. Heck, you also have the Gary and LaFayette markets who may visit Great America occasionally, but will likely visit more if they get admission free with their pass for another, closer park. More season pass sales and somewhat higher attendance at one of their flagship parks would certainly be welcome considering their recent stock performance. Profitable acquisitions, better sales, and higher attendance all look good on earnings reports and would make the investors happy. And if Apex is truly wanting to sell the park quickly, they might be willing to sell it below its true market value as well.
  17. Sadly, I don't think there is any hope of saving the Woodies. Lost Coaster of Superstition Mountain is weird and unreliable. The other two share a support structure in multiple places and would almost have to be relocated together. Steel Hawg will find a home. It's modern, compact, and still highly marketable at a smaller park. Until Thunderbird opened, it was the only inverting coaster in the state. Tig'rr scares me though. I don't want to lose another Schwarzkopf, but I just don't imagine who's going to spend the money on a nearly 50 year old Jet Star.
  18. If you're willing to relocate to Charlotte, you may be able to get a job that would allow you to work on its trains...
  19. That's not necessarily true. Beast is wooden. You can prolong the life of a wooden coaster basically indefinitely. Beast will almost certainly be at Kings Island as long as the park continues to exist. Now, a day will come when there is no longer a single individual piece of lumber on the ride that was there in 1979. That day is probably not too far away. That day may even have already come, but I doubt anyone can say conclusively.
  20. I got my Vortex from a scalper... I overpaid by like 15 bucks, but in a month, I won't miss that money at all. I will, however, be tremendously upset if they discontinue the model and I don't get one. So I figured the scalper markup is a small price to pay for peace of mind.
  21. Whoever's making these complaints is also probably the president of an HOA. They just seem like the type.
  22. That was part of the fun of the Banshee cam. You could see the entire ride from the camera's position so it felt significantly less pointless.
  23. Unless there are under-the-hood differences in the trains such as different wheels or differences in the way they articulate, they are the same style trains as Vortex. Same body, seat, and OTSR design at least. I kinda doubt there are differences at all though. There's really nothing inferior with Arrow's looper train design when compared to anything else that existed when they were in business. The headbanging reputation that Arrows have is more due to Ron Toomer's design philosophy than the trains. In fact, having ridden Tennessee Tornado and Phantom's Revenge, I would say that their trains are among the most comfortable out there (excluding vest restraints which are an obvious improvement) when a modern track design is used. Tennessee Tornado is less headbangy than many B&Ms with the old restraints and definitely less so than most Vekomas.
  24. Is... Is there an intentional reference in there to a certain KICer who I think we all miss?
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