Geauga Lake 2007

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June 17, 2007
Aurora OH
Final Season

Another summer, another coaster trip planned. I’d decided that with the purchase of the 5 former Paramount Parks by Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, and with a Maxx Pass from Carowinds costing around $80 I could easily visit all three big parks in Ohio. I was looking forward to a re-tracked Villain, Maverick, Wild Cat, and Italian Job: Stunt Track. So I requested off work and planned months ahead of time. I decided to take my vacation during the week of a paid holiday and head to Ohio. I didn’t know it at the time, but this would be my last visit to Geauga Lake, as the park would announce it’s closing a few months later, with the water park continuing on for a couple more years.

Already in Charleston WV for the weekend, I drove to Macedonia, OH on Sunday evening. Arriving around 8:30 PM, I checked into the motel, showered, changed clothes, and headed to Cleveland. I’d never been to Cleveland proper before and I must say it was nice. I didn’t have very good directions to where I was going and made a wrong turn on the way, but eventually I made it back to the room after a fun evening. The next morning I packed up, checked out, and headed to Walmart for disposable cameras & a bottle of water, and then to Geauga Lake.

I liked Geauga Lake. It was a pleasant, clean, and very un-crowded park, although that isn’t the best for business. Arriving at the gate I showed Guest Services my season pass, and headed in. Two major coasters had been removed since my last visit. I’d hope to see what the track work done on Villain had done to one one of my favorite wooden coasters, so that was where I headed first.

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Carowinds 2007

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May 12, 2007
Charlotte NC

My original spring plans included a visit to Carowinds on Friday the 11th, but due to circumstances beyond my control that didn’t happen. The main reason for the trip was my Season Pass processed. This was the first time I’d ever had a season pass to any amusement park in all of my 26 years. I considered stopping by Carowinds in March of 2007 while heading north from Florida, but decided to wait.

I knew I’d be in Salisbury in May and needed to get my Maxx Pass processed before June so that I could use it at other Cedar Fair parks. So on Saturday evening I visited with friends for about 15-20 minutes and then drove back to my grandmother’s house to change clothes and head out. The closer I got to Carowinds, the darker the clouds were. It wasn’t pouring, but it was sprinkling. I wasn’t super enthused about the trip and honestly, with the rain, I kept thinking “I’ll process my pass and leave. Maybe I’ll ride Top Gun before I go if the weather isn’t terrible”.

I had similar thoughts when I went to Kentucky Kingdom a couple of years prior, but that ended up being a really fun, short trip. This trip to Carowinds would prove to be just as enjoyable. After arriving I parked and noticed that a LOT of people were already leaving due to the light rain.

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Universal Orlando Resort 2007

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March 21, 2007
Orlando FL

Islands of Adventure

Wednesday was the day of our Universal Resort visit. We met up with Josh and Daniella just before we got to Islands of Adventure so that Daniella could get our free parking with her Season Pass. We arrived later than I had wanted to, but oh well. Once we arrived I picked up our tickets and Josh and I headed to Guest Services, which took forever, but they were very kind to us and refunded my non-refundable tickets so we could get cheaper tickets to both parks with Josh & Daniella’s season passes. I had paid $63 for IoA tickets, Josh & Daniella were pass holders and there was a special deal that they could get us 1 day, 2 park hopper tickets for only $41 each. So we got our tickets and met Jeff inside the gate. That took a bit of time, but at least there was the opportunity to go to Universal Studios later.

After meeting up with Jeff we decided to head back to Dueling Dragons, by way of Suess Landing, as we took pictures and goofed off. We also stopped by the talking fountain and the restrooms on the way. Eventually we made it to the Dragons. The queue was massive, though I was told by Jeff that it had been shortened since it originally opened. It was very well themed, but we rushed past most of it. The sign in front said it had a 10 minute wait. Yay! Or was it…

We planned to have me and Jeff in the front of Ice, and Jon and Josh in the front of Fire. The line was all the way in the station, but they were only running ONE train on each side. This made waits very long. Then, as we were getting ready to get on, they decide to add another train to each side, which took a few minutes. Then they had to test the trains. As we were finally getting on, and Josh and Jon were sitting on Fire, we were stopped as some VIPs were going to ride in our spot. That was annoying. Not that the VIPs were there, I didn’t mind that, but we’d waited so long and timed everything just right, waited thru 1 train operation and them adding a new train, only to have to wait again. Put the VIPs in the middle, where there wasn’t any type of wait.

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Florida 2007

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March 17-23, 2007
Orlando FL

In late 2006 I began contemplating a move to Florida. It made sense. I had family there. I had friends there. There are a lot of theme parks there. But I’d never been to Florida. So during Spring Break, since he was off school for a week, my best friend Jon and I went to visit our friends, the Koontz family for a week. My main goal was to go and see if I liked Florida enough to move there permanently, and to see what the job situation down there would be like, but I knew I couldn’t go to the Sunshine State and NOT ride any coasters or have fun. Jon wasn’t sure if he’d be able to get off work or have the cash to go. And I think that, because the trip was in limbo for so long was why I wasn’t so excited to go until about 2 days ahead of time.

So in February we came up with the definite dates, I made reservations at a motel and purchased 2 one day tickets to the parks at Universal’s Orlando Resort. Jon had to work on the Sunday before we were leaving, so we planned to leave that nite after he got off around 9 PM.

Then Jon called using his serious voice. I just knew he would tell me he couldn’t go at the last minute. Thankfully, though, he was calling to tell me that he would be doing a culinary show at the Stonewall Jackson Resort in central WV that weekend, but he would be back home and would be working on Sunday so that our plans didn’t change. I made the comment that perhaps I could just meet him up there on Saturday instead of meeting members of my family in White Sulfur Springs on Sunday since this was still about the same half way point, and he made arrangements for us to have a room.
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