Atlanta 2021

Atlanta | Photos | Videos

The pandemic has obviously been hard. Or, it’s been hard for some people.  Other people decided to go about their lives as if nothing was going on. Which is why the pandemic was going into its second year and people were still getting sick and dying. When it initially hit that we were heading into a full blown pandemic without a vaccine, I prepared myself mentally to be inactive for about a year, as I figured that would be the earliest that we would have a vaccine and start to get back to normal. But around the beginning of the year with revelations that vaccine commitments to the US were far short of what had been stated by the government at the time, I started to worry that it would be far into the summer, possibly the end of summer before I could even begin to think about travel.

Then vaccinations started to roll out quicker and quicker. Then before I knew it, I was eligible. So I was fortunate enough to schedule a shot on the first day I became eligible, then schedule my second shot a month later. In between, I realized that I would be fully vaccinated by my scheduled vacation in June. And then I realized that I’d be vaccinated by Good Friday, a holiday that we get off at work. So I decided to plan a small trip. My first trip since an overnite at the beach in the summer of 2020. My first trip out of the state since February 2020. My first trip to a theme park since December of 2019. To say I was excited was a bit of an understatement.

I’m going to be completely open and honest. At that point, I knew that recommendations were for people to not start traveling yet. The reasoning behind that recommendation by the CDC was that fully vaccinated people can still carry the virus and transmit it to people that aren’t yet vaccinated. And I’m going to be open about my selfishness here in stating that because I had done what was requested of me, because I had stayed home and given up most of the past year of my life to stay safe and keep others safe. Because I had made the right decisions, I was no longer interested in whether or not other people were being safe. If they hadn’t made the decision at this point to not be reckless with their health, its no longer my responsibility. I was vaccinated and ready to go. Then the CDC, just days before my trip, changed their recommendation for vaccinated people and travel. And travel I did.

There are people that were able to safely travel during the previous year, but because of my health issues, I chose not to, for both myself and others. I had a couple of ideas on where I wanted to go; I decided that I would spend the weekend in Atlanta, one of my favorite cities. I knew I could visit Six Flags. I knew I could get some good food. It’s a place I’m familiar with. So I chose Atlanta. The trip didn’t go exactly as I’d wanted or planned, but I had fun nonetheless.

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Busch Gardens Williamsburg 2016

16BGWBanner.jpgBusch Gardens Williamsburg | Photos | Videos

March 26, 2016
Williamsburg VA

The next morning was rainy but the forecast called for the rain to pass over eventually. We had purchased a spring special ticket to BGW that, for an amazingly low $99 included parking, a 1 day ticket, two meals, AND the front of the line access! It was too good a deal to pass up. We got to the kiosks (I love these, and wish more parks had them) to get our tickets and Quick Queues, and headed in to the park. Isaac seemed to love the park from the get go. I figured he would. I love the park too. We headed to Tempesto first since Quick Queue was not available for it at the time and I’d heard horror stories on wait times. We waited 20 minutes for the back.

TempestoThe ride was really fun. Not sure I’d add it to a large park, but I can see why there are a lot of these going in at parks, and good for Premier. It was a fun ride. Even the vests on this one didn’t bother me. The first launch up was cool, then you launch back all the way to the top of the structure, then come back down and launch all the way around. It was great. The slow roll at the top was scary good fun. The non inverting loop had airtime. Dropping off of the top was fun. It was just a great little ride. But not worth more than a 30 minute wait at any park, though it’s still a neat addition, and actually looked great where it’s placed in the park.

We were going to do Apollo, but it had a slight line and we had the QQ for later. We walked thru and saw the new Italian eatery that looked and smelled great (we never ate there tho, maybe next time). So we walked up to Germany. I liked Verbolten quite a bit from the year it opened and subsequent visits. I still hadn’t gotten to experience all three ‘themes’ in the dark portion. We went to get in line, but decided to wait. Again, we had QQ for later. So we did DarKastle instead.

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Wisconsin Parks 2014

14WisconsinBanner.jpgMt. Olympus | Timber Falls | Little A-Merrick-a | Bay Beach
Photos | Videos

August 30, 2014

Boy, how early 7 AM came. But I made it up. Jay had set his alarm too, but his tablet was still on EST so he got up an hour before I did. We both went down for the decent breakfast the hotel offered before we set off. We got in a little construction delay just outside of the city, but just before 10 AM we had made our way to Wisconsin Dells and were pulling in to park at Mt. Olympus Theme Park.

I went in with really, REALLY low expectations, especially for Hades and it’s conversion to Hades 360. I’d heard mostly bad things about the current state of this park for many years and was looking at this as a quick credit stop. It was gloomy with the threat of rain. But as we arrived they were running a special on all day ride bands for $15 (it’s regularly $45). The good thing with the rain was that crowds weren’t horrible. We headed in and then down the hillside first as I needed a quick bathroom break. Then the first ride of the morning was Pegasus.

PegasusThe ride was short. We rode in the back, but it packed a punch. After heading out of the station and up the lift hill you drop down a small curved hill and then up, down, and up another hill, where you turn. Then its a couple of more small hills and turns that go around the infield before you finish with several good bunny hops. I loved the layout and the train was hauling thru the course with lots of pops of airtime. I really enjoyed it, especially because I didn’t know much about it. It reminded me of a tamer Raven, and that was good.

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Myrtle Beach 2006

MB06Banner.pngFamily Kingdom | Pavilion | Photos

September 28 & 29, 2006
Myrtle Beach SC
Pavilion Last Ride

Waking up on Thursday morning I got my things together, ran some errands, and headed south. This was my only major trip planned for the year, and it was a mixture of excitement and sadness because this would be the last time I would visit the legendary Myrtle Beach Pavilion. The drive from my home in southern West Virginia to Myrtle Beach was around 7 hours. Thankfully Janet Jackson had released her then latest album that week, so I planned to give it a full listen on my way south. The weather was rather dreary, but I knew that reports were for sun in Myrtle Beach thru the weekend.

About 90 minutes in to the ride I stopped in Wythville, VA since gas was only $2.08 to fill up and get some food. I wouldn’t stop again until North Carolina to get some directions, and then South Carolina for gas. Just outside of Myrtle Beach, on US 501, something in the other lane caught my eye. The Wacky Worm station and train from the now closed Grand Prix was on the back of a truck being transported elsewhere. I had seen pictures of the track packed up. I guess someone bought it. I had left around 10 AM and expected to arrive in Myrtle Beach around 5 PM and surely enough, at about 5:30 I was pulling in to the parking lot of the Hotel. I had spent the last 3 hours looking forward to arriving and relaxing in the room for a bit. That, however, would not be the case once I arrived.

Once I arrived it seemed as though everyone was having some type of problem with the staff. Sea Crest is a very nice ocean front property where we have stayed for at least 10 years. My parents would be arriving there the day I was leaving, and my mother had made my reservations as well since we were going at almost the same time. Unfortunately, there was an issue with the reservation.

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