So, upon hearing the news of the impeding closure of The Vortex, I managed to arrange a year end trip to ride this classic one more time. For this trip, it was only my son and I that went. The wife stayed home to pack as we are moving on October 31st. It was not just a chance to ride Vortex one last time, but also would be the 1st time that he was tall enough to ride anything in the park.
This will not be a long trip report. Just going to give some highlights. We arrived at 11am, right at opening. For the first 2 hours, we rode quite a bit. At 1pm, the park gates just flooded with a ton of people. Made for some very long lines as I did not have the money to splurge for Fast Lane. I hadn't been to KI for a Haunt in many years and it was nowhere near that busy.
Now for the highlights. We went to Invertigo 1st and were met with a very short line. He was excited to try a new coaster as our first ride of the day. He really enjoyed it as did I. Rode Racer and noticed that it was noticeably smoother. Later, we rode the Blue side and it was as rough as ever. Normally, it wouldn't be noteworthy to me, but after riding the Comet at Hersheypark, there's no good reason for Racer to be as rough as it is. Comet is way older and far less bumpy.
The next new coaster for him was Flight of Fear. He was genuinely nervous about riding. Maybe it's the indoor atmosphere, I don't really know. On a personal note, I would like to detract an earlier statement I made about this coaster and its theme. It still looks good and was groundbreaking at that time. Trey loved this new coaster as well.
We had LaRosa's in Rivertown for lunch. Was really good except for the fact that we had to move twice due to bees hounding us endlessly. I don't care for the no lid, no straw thing they have going on. I would like to enjoy my lunch in peace. I had obtained a 2nd cup to split a drink with him since I have a cold. I wound up throwing mine away after one drink. The bees were so annoying, one landed in mine, so I trashed it.
We went around to Diamondback since that was the last new coaster for him. It has been a number of years since I had been on it. We both loved it. DB has some great floater air time. This is his new favorite. Later that day, I paid $10 for 2 chances at winning Fast Lane passes. The 1st time, he landed on winner's choice, so he picked Diamondback. 2nd time, he landed on Banshee. Last summer, he spun the wheel and landed on Mystic Timbers twice. So, for the record, he's 4-0 against the wheel.
We had our mandatory night ride on The Beast, which was epic as always. On our last lap for Vortex, also a night ride, as we waited maybe 40 minutes at most, I couldn't help feel a little bit sad at this coaster's impending doom. I also understand why it has to go and I am happy that for 3 seasons, Trey was able to enjoy this classic, iconic coaster.
As a final thought, a friend of mine pointed out something that I have taken granted for years. The sheer size and area that Vortex now resides in stretches from Coney Mall to Rivertown. That's going to be a huge gaping hole left empty for at least another 2-3 years. That will be a sight to see. It does leave me with excitement for future expansion in this area. My mind goes nuts thinking about all of the possibilities of what may come.