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Thread: Ioa/usf/swf 12/28/01 - 12/29/01

  1. #1
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    Ioa/usf/swf 12/28/01 - 12/29/01

    TR: IOA/USF/SWF 10/28/01-10/29/01
    Cast:
    DH (37) Me. Stands for Dear Husband on another board.
    DD (10) Stands for Dear Daughter on another board.

    10/28/01 Ė Arrived IOA from Ft. Lauderdale at 8am, driving by car. Went in and processed our AAA AP tickets. Front row ride in Hulk (10 minute wait) , back row (5 minute wait), then to Spiderman (walkon), which had a few glitches. The cars weíre stopping after the scene ended, so we ended up seeing a blank screen a few times. My daughter and I laughed it off and moved to doom drop (10 minutes), fun. Then to the Christmas stuff in Dr. Seuss land. Went on the slide, it was short, barely gets moving, and then you hit the bottom. Daughter played in the snow, but only for a few minutes. I dunno, if theyíre gonna spend all that time to build a slide, then go all the way and build a big one. If you havenít see the slide, then you canít understand what Iím talking about. Thereís just nothing to it. You get in this big raft thing, like they have over at USF. You go down a snow hill, but itís short, a twist to the left, back to the right, and youíre done. Iím looking at this thing and Iím thinking, My gosh, they have all the technology of a raft ride, but itís so short, why? This thing should be 50 feet high, and go just like the water slide thing over at USF. It needs to be taller and longer. You know what I really want them to do? Tear out that defunct ride and all those shops along the edge of the park, and put something else in there. I scratch my head everytime I walk by it and see that station that has never been used. The rails over head that are not running anymore get rid of it. The Christmas trees in this area looked nice.
    Posidens Fury was next (30 minutes), again, I dunno. Trying to scare us. I liked the old show better. I donít think there was any reason to change it. Most people go to see the water vortex. How much money did they spend to change it, plus all the down time? If anything, it scares the crap out of the little kids, not the adults. And then they bring the devil aspect into it. Iím sure the Christian people are gonna notice this. The bad guy (Drakon) is red, and looks like the devil, not that I care, but Iím sure others are gonna complain. The problem I have with this is that IOA is spending money to change good rides, or for Christmas rides that donít do anything, but yet, we have no news of a new roller coaster. I want another B&M roller coaster. Where is the B&M flyer? Oh, they cost too much, yeah, they cost too much because the money is being spent to change existing rides. Rant finished.
    Watched the talking fountain, funny, daughter got a kick out of it.
    Deuling Dragons (DD) was down for about an hour, got an express pass, rode Flying Unicorn, then we came back and it was back up. Great ride, I love DD (B&M rules).
    Now weíre tired and our feet need a break, so we walk out to the garage and eat sandwiches from a cooler.
    On the way out we make a reservation at Mythos at the dinner reservation stand just before you enter city walk.
    12/28/01 Ė USF Ė Same day, we walk in and get a fast pass to ET, then see if passes are availble for MIB. No, theyíve run out, and itís only about 1pm. This is the problem with fast pass, they run out by the afternoon, and the line was 1 hour, and my daughter didnít want to ride seperately from me (single rider).
    This brings back the same complaints I had from last summer. The fast passes for the big rides are gone by the afternoon. Went on Kong and waved goodbye (rumor). Saw the Wild West Stunt show, good, seems to be a hit if every show is sold out. Used our fast pass on ET. Now this was worth it, got on the ride in 10 minutes versus a 1-hour wait.

    12/28/01 Ė IOA Ė Mythos. Got there at 6pm, showed our reservation slip, and we go right in to our table. Atmosphere of the restaurant is nice, we can see views of Hulk and Doom Drop running out the windows. As the managers are walking around, I ask for the 2nd chef and Randy comes out to say hi. Itís very busy, so he canít stay long. My daughter and I share the Ribs, and the oven pizza of the day. Needless to say, itís da bomb. The ribs have plantains shooting out of them as a presentation, with a special sauce, and they taste great. For desert, we have the oooooey goooey chocolate cake with banana., DA BOMB. This definitely finishes the meal. Iíll attempt to explain it. A chocolate cake covered with more chocolate, vanilla ice cream, plantains shooting out from the middle and cinnamon powder on the corner of the plate. You take a piece of each, dab it in the cinnamon powder, and it all melts in your mouth.
    Went to Deuling Dragons, rode it a couple times, queue looks nice at night, parts of it have real candles around the top of the room.

    12/29/01 USF Ė MIB Ė Since my daughter and I didnít get a ride on MIB the previous day, we came back at 8am for this one ride. Entered the park and a few people weíre walking to MIB. My daughter and I jogged and quickly made it back there. Ride was a walkon, got two rides winning both times thanks to the tips of MIB999999. Daughter was very happy about this. That was it, left the park, noticing tons of people on the walkways arriving.

    Final thoughts on IOA/USF, Express Pass will have the same problems it did last year. Tickets will run out by the early afternoon. There has to be a better way to move people thru the park faster. The early opening at 8am definitely helps, and the later closing is also nice, gives people a chance to see the park at night, which always looks better.

    12/29/01 Ė SWF Ė Arrived at 9am, parked for free showing our gold AP card, and went in. Signed up for the Polar Bear tour, it was only $8 for two of us using our AP. Walked to JTA, got two walkon rides. Then over to Kraken, wait time was 20 minutes, front seat wait was 30 minutes. They weíre adding a 3rd train. This kinda irked me, they should have had all trains running from the start. I sent them an e-mail about this, because I had to drag my daughter on the train for a 2nd ride and she wasnít happy about it, saying the line would be too long. I didnít drive 215 miles to ride Kraken once. Ate lunch early, at chicken and biscuit, good. Fed the seals, theyíre so funny the way they bark for the food. Did the sky tower ride, flashed our AP and got on for free. Saw the horses, took our picture with one. The professional photographers no longer do this, a worker will take a picture using your camera. Fed the dolphins, then went on our tour at 02:40pm. This is definitely worth going on. For the Polar Bear tour, you see the behind the scenes stuff of Wild Artic. You learn how the bears are fed, how they are cared for, and how they are kept active with toys. There are some holding tanks behind the exhibit, 4 seals weíre in them, and when the tour guide opened the next door, they all came out of the water looking for food. A row of filters, pumps, and air handlers are seen next. They donít put chlorine in the water, itís ozone, which does a better job of killing bacteria. You learn how it all works and walk past the kitchen area. Then a bus takes you over to another building where penguins are kept. Let me tell you something, itís freezing in this room, 45 degrees. Everyone walks in, a handler takes a penguin, sits down, and then everyone gets to pet it. The penguin fur is very soft, thatís the best way to describe it. Other penguins are walking around the room and you are close enough to get some good close up pictures. The tour ends and you are led back into the park behind Shamu Stadium.
    Daughter and I weíre tired, and by this time the park was packed. There was a traffic jam on I-4 heading west near Disney because of all the merging lanes. Took half an hour to get to US-27. Arrive home 3 hours later, end of trip, weíll be back. Some of you may be saying, gee, they didnít see any shows. Well, we went 4 times last year, weíve seen them all, and we did the tour instead this time.

  2. #2
    Suspended Poster THECHILLER's Avatar
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    WOW! You sure were busy these past couple of days. Just to tell you though: it's Doctor Doom's FearFall, not Doom Drop. Just to tell you. Again great trip report. But I think why Kraken had to have the 3rd train installed was because in the morning they add 2 trains normally, and if the line gets really crowded, then they'll add the third train. It was just probably just really crowded when you got there. Good job!
    Tim
    Favorites: Amusement Park: IOA, SFOG, BGW | Wooden Roller Coaster: Georgia Cyclone, GASM (Georgia), American Eagle | Steel Roller Coaster: Apollo's Chariot, V2, Raging Bull, S:UF, Hulk

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the kind words.
    I had gone a couple months ago to SWF and they did the same thing. Started Kraken with 1 train, which caused the line to form in the queue. A person was standing next to me grumbling about it. I was frustrated because I wanted some rerides in the back row. Now you can usually get some exit re-rides if noone takes a seat, the rule is that you are allowed 2, then you must go around. But in this case, the back row was filled because more people we're entering the queue. Waiting for the back now took a few minutes because the ride time is about 3 minutes, and with only 1 train on, and waiting for a couple cycles, this took about 10 minutes to get that back row ride.
    So I leave, and then 30 minutes later see that 2 trains are running, but now it's too late, the park is packed.
    I'd rather have them start with too many trains on the track and give the early morning riders a bonus to make them happy.
    Instead they're worried about maintenance or other excuses.
    I don't see this happening at BGT, Montu starts off with 2 or 3 trains and they get it right. So it irks me that SWF has done this twice, like it's ok to put the next train on the track after the park has opened, even though they know the park is gonna be packed for the holiday weekend.

  4. #4
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    Nice TR, despite my having a deja-vu moment; I've just read it on rec.roller-coaster as well!. I'm going to these parks in a few weeks, so it's good to see what everyone thinks of them
    Andy Rathe
    Favorites: Amusement Park: Europa Park | Wooden Roller Coaster: Ghostrider | Steel Roller Coaster: Expedition Ge Force

  5. #5
    I just went to BGT-IOA and will prob. go to SWO all I have to say is great report...

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