Saturday, March 30, 2013

Opening day 2013 report

Opening day was certainly busy with plenty of hiccups. But what do you expect from the first day of the season?

We got there around 9:10, hoping to score a free Gold Striker cup. But everyone else had the same idea!

First, the good: Gold Striker looks amazing in person, pictures really don't do it justice.

The new paint and newly paved walkways in some parts gives the park a fresh, new feel. It makes Vortex look that much worse.

20-year-old Flight Deck was running great, and now there's no more netting in the line themeing.

Lots of enthusiasm from most of the ride ops.

The new show in the Action Theater, Happy Feet: Mumble's Wild Ride, is fun, and throws you around quite a bit. The seats also get pretty steep at times.

The bad: Operations were flat out horrible (and painfully slow). Many of the ride ops were new, reading from their scripts and often messing it up. Also, Centrifuge and Rue le Dodge now have magnetic exit locks, which the ride ops always forgot to unlock.

CGA talked about double rides, but the only ride I saw (and rode) that was doing it was Drop Tower. In a way, it was a good thing, because the lines were already slow enough.

Where's the themed music in the different areas? I heard Lady Gaga everywhere. I guess we should give it time.

Happy Feet is a bit of an odd choice to replace Spongebob. It was popular in when, 2006? Also, the 3D is nonexistent. We waited about 40 minutes the first time, and just as we were about to go in, the ride went down due to "hydraulic problems." After 10 years of running the same program, I guess the seats were in shock. The second time around (20 minutes), we were finally able to ride it.

Gold passes no longer have free preferred parking.

Endeavor seemed to be running a different program, where it would take forever to get over the top (about twice as long as normal), and when it did, it would stall upside down for a long time. I watched three cycles while waiting in line, and they all did the same thing.

While opening day was a bit rough, 2013 will still be one of the best seasons this park has had in more than a decade. With Gold Striker opening in May, and a Halloween Haunt expansion in late September, we have a lot to look forward to.

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