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.
My original goal for the summer of 2004 was to visit at least one theme park every month from May through October. But because of car trouble and an overall lack of funding I had to skip the Beast Buzz event in June, and my planned trip in July to Cedar Point was pushed back to August in order to spend that day with friends that would be visiting the area that same week. I also ended up skipping a visit to Dollywood in late July. Because of so many setbacks, I was determined to get to Kings Island in August. I hadn’t been to the park since my 8th grade field trip in 1994, so it had been just over a decade since my first and only trip to the park. Since I ended up having a 4 day stretch off of work I decided to use that to my advantage.
I had thought of going to Coney Island Park in Cincinnati the evening before, but after a grueling drive to OH all I wanted to do was set up my tent and sleep after I arrived. Driving by the park right before it closed, I was able to watch the fireworks, get a look at Son of Beast, and watch Drop Zone cycle a few times. I had discussed meeting up with Danny from CoasterBuzz and, though we were going to meet that evening, I had to get some sleep. So I checked in at the Kings Island Campground, got my lot, set up my tent, and went to sleep after my 6 plus hour trip to Kings Mills, OH.
The next morning I couldn’t sleep past 6 AM. I went to the bathhouse and took a shower, popped some ginger pills and aspirin for the pain and nausea that I didn’t want to have later, and since I was up I figured I’d go over to the McDonalds around the corner and have breakfast. After that I went back to my tent to lie down & make a few phone calls before I walked over to the park. I could have waited for the shuttles to start running but I figured I could use a morning walk to get me going. Continue reading →
I’d known for months that I would be visiting Carowinds in May as I would be in NC for the weekend of the 14 so I made plans with my good friend (and then roommate) Jon to go again as we had the year before. It had been announced that the park would be adding the world’s first Star Trek themed ride, which would be opening in May and as a Star Trek fan, I was excited. That I had ridden a near clone of the ride already and had enjoyed it made me even more excited to ride.The original plan called for Jon to head out to NC and spend the week with friends, and he and his friends would meet up with me on Friday at the park, after which he’d head back to Salisbury with me for the weekend.
As the beginning of May rolled around, though, Jon realized that he lacked the funding to travel to NC for a day, much less a week, so I was without a riding partner as all my other friends weren’t going to be able to make it till Friday evening. That same week Andy Wong messaged me on CoasterBuzz to let me know that he too would be at Carowinds on the 14th, and wanted to know if I wanted to meet up to meet in person and hang out, and of course I said yes. We spent the 2 weeks before making plans over instant messenger and phone. Finally it was the day before the trip. I called and made final plans to meet Andy at the front gate. We were to meet at the park, but if one of us got there signifigantly early, that person was to get in line for BORG, and we’d meet up after we both rode.
That morning at 4 AM I woke up, got ready, went in to town to gas up, and at 5 AN headed out from the tiny town in WV where I reluctantly called home for the North Carolina sun. I had planned to stop around 6 AM for breakfast in WV, but the place I had wanted to get breakfast at hadn’t opened yet. I put off breakfast for a while, and decided to head for the interstate.
It had been since May of 1999 on one of my senior trips since I’d last been to my former home park, Paramount’s Carowinds/ And since I felt the need for a Top Gun fix I planned a trip to North Carolina and added Carowinds to the list of stops. I left home on Thursday around 5 PM when my friend Jon came to picked me up. It was a 5 hour trip to my parent’s place. We arrived around 11 PM that nite and stayed up watching TV, knowing full well I was too excited to go to bed.
The next morning we woke up and headed south around 7 AM. After an hour we stopped for breakfast then found our way to the interstate heading straight to carowinds Carowinds. The drive was nice, weather was great, traffic flowed nicely, and around 11 AM we got past Charlotte and went looking for coupons at Wendy’s and Bojangles near the park.
We pulled into the parking lot and noticed school busses. I had been warned of this already that it was Math, Science, and Physics day at the park, but there were slightly less busses than what I’d imagined. I was glad to see the regular parking lot fairly empty so we went and paid to get in. Once we got inside the park I noticed that it wasn’t too crowded. In fact, we had decided to head to Top Gun first but, upon passing by the new Runaway Reptar and seeing a VERY small line, we couldn’t resist passing by.