Cedar Point 2018 Opening Day (May 5th)
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Life in the Fast Lane…PLUS

 

On Thursday, June 11, 2015, my family and I headed down to Cedar Point for an impromptu day at the park. We decided that we were going to purchase Fast Lane Plus for the day, as most schools were done for the summer by now and we wanted to get the most riding as possible done in a day. As Platinum Passholders, my mom, brother and I, as well as other Platinum Passholders, are able to upgrade to Fast Lane Plus for the price of regular Fast Lane. As far as I know, it says on Cedar Point’s website that this is a limited time offer.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE AND VIEW PICTURES!

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#KIBestDay

 

On Saturday, June 6, 2015, my family and I departed from Roseville, Michigan, to Cincinnati, Ohio, to spend the weekend at Kings Island. Kings Island is owned by Cedar Fair and is one of Cedar Point’s sister parks. My mom, brother, and I hit the road about 3 p.m. on Saturday and arrived at our hotel room in northern Cincinnati at around 8 p.m. When we visit Kings Island, we stay at the Red Roof Inn & Suites Cincinnati North-Mason. I highly recommend this hotel as your place to stay when visiting Kings Island if a hotel is needed. The employees are very friendly, the entire hotel is clean, and there is free Wi-Fi, parking, and a continental breakfast, as well as an outdoor pool, and an indoor fitness room with exercise equipment. Smoking and non-smoking rooms are available. This Red Roof location is also pet-friendly.

 

Once we checked into our room, we decided to head over to Kings Island for the last hour and a half that they were open on Saturday night, as the park closed at 10 p.m. During that time, we were able to enjoy our very first dark rides on The Beast and Diamondback. After that, we made a quick trip into a few of the gift shops before heading back to the hotel for the night. Upon our arrival back to the hotel, we relaxed for a bit then went to bed to rest up for the full day at the park the next morning.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE AND VIEW PICTURES!

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It Feeds On Screams…Literally

On Saturday, May 9, 2015, Cedar Point debuted Rougarou, the first floorless coaster EVER at America’s Roller Coast. Over these last few weeks, I’ve heard various opinions on coaster enthusiasts’ thoughts on what some would call the rebirth of Mantis. Some enthusiasts are big fans on Rougarou and others preferred Mantis more than Rougarou. Personally, and this is coming from somebody who really enjoyed Mantis, I LOVE Rougarou. It’s a totally different ride experience than Mantis was. To me, the ride is smoother as a sit-down experience than Mantis was as a stand-up experience. Rougarou, although the same speed as Mantis at 60 mph, feels faster to me now, which is really cool. The trains are comfortable and I find that there is less head-banging than there was when the ride was Mantis. Of course, there is still a little bit of head-banging towards the second half of the ride, but this is expected with the track layout being as intense as it is, and can be reduced a little bit by moving your head with the elements of the ride. Those of my friends that like Rougarou agree with me on the above.

Now for the negative feedback I’ve heard. Some say that the ride wasn’t as fast as they expected it to be. Well, maybe that could be true in their eyes. As far as I know, it was never said otherwise that Rougarou would be faster than Mantis. Among other feedback I’ve heard was that the ride theming could be better. I can partially agree with this in that I feel the fog at the bottom of the lift hill’s drop could be a little thicker. Also, I have not had any sightings of the “Rougarou” anywhere throughout the ride or the swamp but I am not sure if Cedar Point had intended on any animatronics for the ride or anything of that nature. One of my favorite things about Rougarou is the sound effects of the Rougarou monster. I love the howling that can be heard near the coaster. It gets me even more pumped up and excited to ride.

One of the park’s slogans for Rougarou is “It Feeds on Screams.” That it does, Cedar Point, and I couldn’t agree more, if you couldn’t already tell by the name of my blog. On the evening of Friday, May 8, 2015, I took my first ride on Rougarou during Season Passholder Preview Night and instantly I fell in love with the ride. I recently invented a new hashtag term you will hear for the first time ever here that I like to call the #RougaFLU, and it’s for anybody who loves Rougarou as much as I do. We have the #RougaFLU and there’s no cure. We could ride Rougarou over and over if we were able to.

To me, it is a brand new ride. I don’t think of it as a re-themed Mantis at all. I think of Rougarou just as the park intended for their guests to do…a new (and very first) floorless coaster at Cedar Point with a unique theme and ride experience. I could ride Rougarou all day and still have just as much fun on the ride as my very first ride on Rougarou during Season Passholder Preview Night. My favorite roller coaster in the park used to be Top Thrill Dragster until I rode Rougarou for the first time ever. Top Thrill Dragster was knocked to my #2 favorite coaster and Rougarou now holds the spot as my #1 favorite roller coaster at Cedar Point. It may be the coaster in the park I’ve screamed with excitement the most on throughout the whole ride, and that’s every time I conquer Rougarou, not just my first ride on it. In my opinion, the speed is perfect, the duration of the ride is great, the track elements are intense, and the airtime is amazing. When I ride Rougarou, I really do feel the need to “Scream like a kid again,” and if you have not yet had the chance to experience Rougarou, then you need to soon. It’s an experience that you’ll never forget.

-Jordan Smith

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Kings Island hosts first Coasterstock

 

On May 16th and 17th, Cedar Point's sister park to the south, Kings Island, hosted the inaugural event of Coasterstock. This event was open to several coaster enthusiast clubs from around the country. Pre-registration was required for this event, and the fee to attend was minimal based on your need for a ticket or being a passholder. Over 500 people from 24 different states and Canada showed up for this event.

On Saturday morning, check-in began at 6:30 in the morning, allowing registered participants to pick up their lanyards that would give them access to the planned events, as well as all of the free stuff. Each participant received a t-shirt, lanyard with itinerary card, a pin, a drink bottle with free refills on first day, and two free ride photo cards, one for Banshee and one for Beast. The front gates opened up shortly before 8, and we had exclusive ride time (ERT) for two hours before the park opened to the general public. Banshee was a popular spot, as riders raced off and ran around to get in line again and again. The Bat, Delirium, Drop Tower, and Adventure Express were also open for riders to enjoy. Lines were short, and everyone took full advantage of it. Later on in the morning, there was a behind the scenes photo tour of Banshee, where we got to go along a back path and take photos of Banshee as she screamed down the tracks.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE AND VIEW PICTURES!

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The Perks of a Platinum Pass

Over the last few years I have been making frequent visits to Cedar Point. I visit multiple times a season thanks to my Platinum Pass. The Platinum Pass at Cedar Point is an upgrade to the regular season pass. In 2013 I purchased my first Platinum Pass. This was something completely new to me as I was a regular season pass holder for a few years. The upgrade to a Platinum Pass is worth it for every Cedar Point fan and every coaster fan. There are a lot of things you can do with your Platinum Pass. When I first purchased my Platinum Pass, it was a big difference from the regular season pass. I realized there were many more perks.

The perks of a Platinum Pass include things such as Ride Nights. You can stay an hour after the park closes to ride a select ride. My first ride night was on Top Thrill Dragster and it was worth the purchase of a Platinum Pass. The fun doesn’t stop there! Another major perk you can get with a Platinum Pass is free parking. But not just at Cedar Point! You can get free parking at any Cedar Fair park. A Platinum Pass will also get you into other Cedar Fair parks as well. One of my favorite perks of having a Platinum Pass is Early Entry. Early Entry lets you enter the park one hour early before the public to ride GateKeeper, Iron Dragon, Lake Erie Eagles, Maverick, Millennium Force, Midway Carousel, Ocean Motion, Pipe Scream, and the rides located in Planet Snoopy. Early Entry is nice because you get the chance to ride those rides with very little waiting. This is extremely beneficial to pass holders, especially with the summer crowds at the park.

Have you ever been through Dinosaurs Alive! at Cedar Point? If you have a Platinum Pass, Dinosaurs Alive! admission is included with your Platinum Pass. This is a really great perk. Dinosaurs Alive! is a great way to relax and learn a lot about dinosaurs. With a Platinum Pass you can see dozens of animatronic dinosaurs! This is a great perk for anyone who has an interest in learning about dinosaurs.

These aren’t the only perks included with a Platinum Pass. Some of the other perks include things such as, food discounts, merchandise discounts, and game discounts. A Platinum Pass will also get you discounted admission on RipCord, Skyscraper, Challenge Golf, Challenge Racing, and North Coast Parasail. Soak City admission is also included with a Cedar Point Platinum Pass. The Platinum Pass also includes admission and perks to other Cedar Fair parks as well. If you like to visit Cedar Point a lot each season I highly suggest that you purchase a Platinum Pass or upgrade your regular season pass to a Platinum Pass. I am a huge Cedar Point fan and I am very happy that I purchased a Platinum Pass because now I realize the great perks that come with them.

-Andrew Smith

 

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Cedar Point launches new app

Recently, Cedar Point launched their new app for iPhone and Android users. This new app is a much needed improvement over the old one. The old one constantly crashed, was hard to read at times, and wasn't updated very often. While it remains to be seen how the new one will be at updating things, it's looking good so far. Here are some of the features of the new app.

Everything comes up in nice, easy to read, categorized menus. The main menu or open screen has everything from buying tickets, park hours, to a few fun things. You can use the map to locate your friends or car like on the old app, but the map comes up a lot faster and has more detail to it than the old one. The new app allows you to buy your tickets right on your phone, and scan them directly at the turnstiles, eliminating the need to print them out at home or wait in line to buy them. Click for more!

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As we know, Cedar Point is just one of the many amusement parks owned by Cedar Fair. For us Ohioans, we are fortunate to be so close to Cedar Point and Kings Island, both of which are amazing parks. However, this summer I had the opportunity to go to Kings Dominion, another Cedar Fair park in Doswell, Virginia. While Kings Dominion can be compared and contrasted to Cedar Point, it was one of the best experiences I had at any amusement park.

During the summer, my family usually vacations in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. While we drive down there, we always pass Kings Dominion, seeing the tip of the sign above the trees that line the highway. We’ve been going to the Outer Banks for more than a decade, and with each year we’d pass the Kings Dominion sign, we’d become more and more curious about what the park was like. This past summer, we decided to change things up and went to Colonial Williamsburg for a week in July. During our stay, we decided to spend a day at Kings Dominion, as it was only an hour away from our resort (we were aware that Colonial Williamsburg had Busch Gardens close by, but my brother, who is as big of a Cedar Fair nut as I am, was working at Cedar Point that summer and got free admission to any Cedar Fair park). Tickets were a little pricier at Kings Dominion than they were at Cedar Point, but that didn’t stop us from going.

At first, I was skeptical about going to an amusement park in July. From working at Cedar Point in 2012 and 2013, I knew how crowded it would get around the 4th of July week. Also, it was extremely humid in Virginia and I wasn’t looking forward to waiting in long lines in extreme temperatures. But we were in for quite the surprise.

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The Rundown on Winter Chill Out

Have you ever been to Winter Chill Out at Cedar Point? This was my first time attending the event and it was one I will surely return to in the years to come. I had many questions before submitting my ticket request this year. Why should I pay to get into Cedar Point during the off season? Is it really worth the money spent? What makes it so special? I surely gained the answers to all these questions and more!

My son Robbie and I attended this amazing event on February 21st, 2015 with excitement. We anxiously awaited being able to get into the park to be able to see what happens when all seems to be sleeping. Tickets in hand, we walked into the Season Pass Center to check in. We received our lanyard with a credential, a ticket with the tour schedule, a new Rougarou hat, and a voucher to return at the end of the tour for a surprise thank you gift! Cedar Point knows how to welcome everyone with open arms!

We then began the snowy walk towards Midway Market where the groups were waiting to start their tour. We gathered in front of the Cedar Point sign for a quick group photo. As we stepped inside the gates, I heard the roar of Raptor inside my head, although no trains could be seen. We met with other park enthusiasts inside Midway Market. We were treated to hot chocolate and granola bars to warm ourselves up before the chilly walk. We compared each other’s schedules to see whose tour we were walking with. Our group was lead by Michael and was scheduled to leave at 10:45 AM.

Our tour began by walking down the main midway past Raptor. Cameras and video recorders were out trying to capture each exciting moment. We noticed many construction vehicles scattered about along with a snow covered police car. The Derby Downs horses were shrink wrapped as if they were swaddled in a blanket to avoid winter’s cold grip. Something we noticed was part of the building near Pagoda that housed a small gift shop was obviously under construction. What was going on? We looked through Corkscrew’s inversions to see the Dragster Midway and started to walk towards Millennium Force. Stop number one on the tour did not disappoint in its surprises!

As we rounded the corner we noticed that the Good Time Theatre was completely demolished. The only reminder of its existence was a sign on the walkway directing guests to where the theatre stood. Another shocking disappearing act was Dodgem! The entire structure was missing from this area of the park. The sign carefully placed on the ground out of the construction site. Was Dodgem the next on the list of rides to be removed from this mystery area? We continued walking until we reached stop #2. This stop included a brief look at Cedar Point’s newest attraction, Rougarou! We were not permitted into the station, but we learned that the tracks to Rougarou needed to be widened to accommodate the new floorless trains!

We had a long walk to get to stop #3, but the scenery was breathtaking. We stood before Millennium Force in awe as its snow covered structure begged for its riders of course, of course! We meandered through the Frontier Trail decorated in snow. Many people stopped to get their picture taken in the famous pillory, laughing as they captured the moment. We walked past Maverick and Mine Ride. We crossed the train tracks and behind the gates by Slingshot.

We were lead into the Planning and Design office building for stop #3. The sign outside of the building directly stated that there could be no recordings of what we were about to hear. We were ready to hear inside secrets from two of Cedar Point’s best – Jason McClure and Tony Clark. While waiting for other groups to arrive, Jason entertained questions from the crowd. The presentation began by having us raise our right hands and swear that we wouldn’t disclose what we were about to learn until 2PM. What are the things we learned before the rest of the world?

Most importantly, the ticket sales for Winter Chill Out went to an amazing organization that provides sick children the chance to enjoy an all-expenses paid trip to a Florida theme park. $27,000 was raised through our event alone! It feels good to be able to not only enjoy ourselves, but allow sick children to enjoy themselves along with their family.

Here’s a breakdown of the remaining announcements that were made at Winter Chill Out.

1. The Wicked Twister Midway is getting a huge makeover! The Dodgems are making a move to this midway where the Krazy Kars used to be in Kiddy Kingdom.

2. Speaking of Kiddy Kingdom, Sir-Rub-a-Dub’s Tubs have been retired.

3. The Krazy Kars are being renamed Joe Cool’s Dodgem School and will be moved to where the Gazebo food stand used to be. It will be connected with Planet Snoopy.

4. The Calypso is also being moved to the Wicked Twister Midway.They will be renamed Tiki Twirl.

5. The Turnpike Cars have also been retired. (This leaves a huge gap in this area – what can go there? It’s open for future expansion!)

6. Remember the area next to Pagoda that we noticed was under construction? This will be created into a candy store called “The Sweet Spot” where you can watch candy being made and of course purchase! Yum!

7. Friday, May 8th will be a HUGE day and night for Cedar Point. It’s not only the day before the park officially opens, but it holds many exciting events for everyone!

  • The media will officially be in the park from 5AM to 10 AM. Some of the Winter Chill Out attendees will win a spot to be at this event.
  • There will be a first rider auction on Rougarou benefitting the LeBron James Foundation. This will take place from 5PM to 7PM. The auctions are set to begin in March.
  • There is a Season Passholder Preview Night from 7PM to 10PM. You can be one of the first season passholders to ride Rougarou! There will be other select rides to be open, although the rides are subject to change.

8. Millennium Walkback will only be taking place on Saturday mornings this season.

9. Maverick is getting new restraints that are similar to Intimidator 305 at Kings Dominion.

10. Hotel Breakers is being remodeled. There will be many exciting changes inside and out!

We were also treated to be the first “sitters” in a Rougarou train. Of course we were allowed to have our pictures taken on the train, but we couldn’t post or send them until 2PM. We all kept our promise until Tony sent a tweet that we were allowed to post those pictures!

After we discovered as many secrets as we could, we were then bused back to Chickie and Pete’s for a catered lunch. We had a salad, choice of sandwich, tortilla chips, white chicken chili, and even cookies for dessert! It was a perfect time to meet up with other groups to discuss what our favorite parts of the tour had been so far. When our lunch had settled in, we were then bused back to the Planning and Design area to continue the tour.

Our tour guides lead us down the Gemini Midway where we got amazing views. The snow was a perfect backdrop for pictures! Stop #4 was a quick peek at the Hotel Breakers construction. We weren’t allowed too close, but it’s amazing how much they already have done! Stop #5 lead us to the Maintenance Department. Here we were able to see coaster trains taken down to the chassis. It was fun to try to figure out which chassis went with a specific coaster. There was a wall of wheels from each coaster. A station was set up to help explain how Top Thrill Dragster launches and why specific wheels and parts are put on various coasters.

The tour continued past Planet Snoopy towards Wind Seeker. Stop #6 gave us a closer look at what’s going on with the new the new Lakeside Pavilion area. This promises to be a breathtaking view of Lake Erie and an amazing place to hold catered events! We continued down the Wicked Twister Midway to see more renovations in progress at stop #7. The Gazebo food stand is gone in preparation to relocate Joe Cool’s Dodgem School. The main structure of Dodgem stands in its new spot just waiting to return to operation. Calypso wasn’t still not visible. We were able to continue to admire Gatekeeper’s beautiful profile against the lake and in the snow.

The Giant Wheel’s cabins lined the entire gaming area under the awnings. It was like a guiding path to lead us to the end of our tour. We reentered the Main Midway, to finish where we began. We again walked past Raptor, Midway Market, and the Midway Carousel. We left the gates of Cedar Point, anxious to return in warmer weather. We were then able to return our voucher for special thank you gifts. We received a Winter Chill Out glass and a 2015 Cedar Point Calendar!

I return to my thoughts when deciding whether or not to purchase tickets to Winter Chill Out. Why should I pay to get into Cedar Point during the off season? Is it really worth the money spent? What makes it so special? It was worth the donation to an amazing cause to be able to experience Cedar Point during its winter slumber. Everyone benefits from Winter Chill Out and it is special in so many ways. Thank you Cedar Point, Tony Clark, Jason McClure, and the entire staff for allowing us to step into your winter wonderland! I will never forget it!

Click to see the rest of our Winter Chill Out photos!

By - Britt Hageman

 

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Before and After Part 1

Before and After: Mill Race (1963-1993) to Raptor (1994-Present)

Do you recall the view of Cedar Point’s midway before Raptor was constructed? It seems as if Raptor has always ruled the skies at Cedar Point. I often think back to try to recall what Cedar Point looked like without the iconic roller coasters and various other rides we know and love today. I remember the days when my dad would get tickets to Cedar Point once a year to attend his company’s work picnic. Every time we would visit, we would be sure to take a ride on Mill Race. The sound of families laughing and shaking off water are memories that come “racing” back.

The Mill Race was a log flume ride manufactured by Arrow Dynamics that was in operation between 1963 and 1993. In 1963, it was the second in the world to be in operation and was voted a top attraction at Cedar Point numerous times in the 1960’s. It had a single lift hill that was 28 feet tall and had a total length of 1,230 feet. The total cost was around $300,000 to complete. In 1982, White Water Landing, Cedar Point’s second log flume ride, was built with a 50 foot lift hill. Snake River Falls became Cedar Point’s third log flume ride in 1993. At the end of the 1993 season, Mill Race was taken out for the construction of Raptor to be unveiled in May of 1994.

Raptor is a steel inverted roller coaster that was designed by Bollinger & Mabillard. It was a record breaking roller coaster with many firsts in its design. It has a 3,790 foot track layout. It was the tallest, fastest, and longest inverted roller coaster in the world when it began its operations in 1994. Raptor’s chain lift hill reaches a maximum height of 137 feet with a 119 foot drop. It reaches speeds of 57 miles per hour and has 6 inversions, including a cobra roll, which was a first for inverted roller coasters. There are 117 sections to complete the track for Raptor. The total cost to complete this record breaking roller coaster was between $11,500,000 and $12,000,000!

Raptor will forever rule my sky!

Click the link below to watch an amazing time lapse video of Mill Race’s clearing and the construction of Raptor!

 

 

                 

Before: Mill Race

After: Raptor

 

By - Britt Hageman

 

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Why should you follow Tony Clark on Twitter?

Why should you follow Tony Clark on Twitter?

Tony Clark is the Director of Communications at Cedar Point, and you should follow him on Twitter. Why, you ask? Because by doing so, you will get to enjoy many more benefits of the park that non-followers of Tony Clark do not get to participate in. The most popular, of course, are tweet-ups.

Tweet-ups work like this: all throughout the operating season, sometimes at random and sometimes planned, Tony will tweet a time and location where followers must find him or another park employee in the park. Those who find him in the time given will receive a prize such as line skippies, commemorative coins, and even free food vouchers. There is one simple rule to keep in mind while playing this game…absolutely NO RUNNING IN THE PARK. This will disqualify you from the game.

Not only does Tony Clark use Twitter to organize tweet-ups, but from time to time he will tweet exclusive park updates both during the operating season and when the park is closed in the winter. During the operating season, you may exclusively find out from Tony the weather conditions that may affect which rides will be open or closed for the day. You may even be the first to find out about exclusive Cedar Point contests that you surely won’t want to miss out on. During the off-season, you will get to see pictures of the park during the winter and hear about the latest construction updates throughout the park.

Enjoy reading the blogs on Cedar Point’s websites? Do you find it thrilling to watch new PointCasts on Cedar Point’s YouTube channel? Be the first to find out when new blogs and videos are released from Cedar Point just by following Tony Clark on Twitter. You may find out about these things in advance before they are posted on Cedar Point’s Facebook page, or even Cedar Point’s website and their YouTube Channel.

If these reasons haven’t convinced you to follow Tony Clark on Twitter by now, then how about this? Tony Clark is an asset to the park because he loves interacting with fans and many of his tweets can put a smile on your faces. I know they do for me. If you ever have a quick question regarding the park, feel free to send Tony a tweet. Chances are, if it is a question he can answer for you, he will do so, or even direct you to the appropriate park personnel that may have the answer for you.

So, if you haven’t already done so, head on over to Twitter, and follow Tony Clark (@TonyClarkCP) on Twitter today!

By - Jordan Smith

 

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