TR: Fall Affair at Holiday World - 9/17/11

Trip Report: Holiday World - Fall Affair

Santa Claus, IN

September 17, 2011

The weekend started with good intentions. The night before, Rideman and I exchanged a series of texts that read like a Star Wars script, and he noted he was going to TRY to get to my place by 10, which would get us to the park by noon. Well, that didn't happen. In fact, I had time to grab a Chipotle lunch, and then Rideman picked me up around noon. Things got worse when I-75 through the cut of the hill was a parking lot for no apparent reason, then we hit Louisville. The I-64 bridge is closed for repairs. Adding to this I-71 through th city was down to one lane for road construction. Toss in a fuel, and restroom stop, and we were considering ourselves lucky to be entering the park at around 3:30. Did I note the park closed at 5:30?

We managed to get our usual spot in Raven lot by the picnic shelter, got to the front gate, checked in, got our packets, and headed into the park.

We knew we had the coasters during ERT, and being so late, wrote off Wildebest already. We headed to Fourth of July, the line for Midnight Ride was almost a full queue, so we skipped that and instead rode Rough Riders, followed by a ride on Liberty Launch. From there we skipped the carousel, train, Howler, Revolution, and instead took a ride on Eagles Flight. We decided to skip Thanksgiving for now, and headed right to Halloween where we took a ride on Legend (a bit sluggish today), and Raven (top form as always). From there we headed up to the main gift shop to buy our Pat Koch bobble heads ($10), which, of course, needed to be taken out to the car. On the way back into the park, I picked up name tag #2 from Guest Relations, as Legend ate my first one. The second one was actually stapled shut, unlike the first one. From there we headed to Thanksgiving to grab our ride on Gobbler Getaway. Did Grandma really say it was either the 1700or1800's and we were going to ride through the farm in a car. Anachronism, much? We then went to Voyage, where something happened, that I don't think has happened since the year the ride opened. We were directed to basement level queues for the ride. None of the giant queue maze was open, we just had to go down the stairs, straight through, then back up the stairs. When we got to the Voyage platform, the back car was closed off, oh no, it wasn't but the temporary back seat fence was back. Insection of the train revealed the 7th car was again missing. Out on the ride, that does seem to have helped as the ride isn't quite as violent, that and I think they had the mid course brake functioning as a trim. The brutal turnaround didn't even seem as bad. By the tie we exited, the lower level of the queue was closed and we took another ride. I figure we caught the ride at the worst time, as the water park had just closed. After some Voyage rides it was time to hike back up to the Kringles, no wait, check your ticket - the pizza party is in the picnic grove. 

We headed to the picnic grove, and had the usual pizza, chips, veggies, and fudge. The pizza didn't really survive its cross park trip from Kringles to the grove very well, but at least it is food, and it will get us through until we can get better food. The park was also hosting the Amusement Today Golden Ticket Awards today (think Oscars, Emmy's and the like for amusement parks), so that group had a big ceremony in the Holiday Theatre all day, follwed by dinner at Kringles. 

Anyway during the announcements before ERT, it was announced that the Amusement Today group would be joining in on our ERT, and although I don't think it was every announced I think the ERT was extended. So yes, you now have coaster ebthusiasts riding rides alongside park presidents, PR reps, ride salesman, and other high ranking industry figures. 

ERT started out with Raven and Legend ERT. We joined the group heading to Raven and started ERT with several Raven rides. We left Raven just in time to get two Legend rides before that part of ERT closed. We were advised to enjoy some free soft drinks while the park moved ride crews from the other coasters down to Voyage

We headed down to Voyage, and capped off the night and event with a Voyage ERT. I don't have a count, but we pretty much rode continuously until the end of ERT, owing to very short lines. After that, it was time to make the long hike back to the main gate, and then the parking lot. We next headed to Denny's Diner for dinner. After dinner and all that, we still had to deal with getting through the mess that is Louisville, and home. So all said, I didn't get home till almost 2am. We put in the back of our minds maybe next year driving down to Santa Claus the night before and getting a room. 

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