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Archive for February 2019

East Meets ACE – Conclusion: Hirakata Park

East Meets ACE – Conclusion:  Hirakata Park We arrived around 2:30 at Hirakata Park in Hirakata, Osaka, Japan, our final park of the ACE trip.  Operating since 1912, this was one of the oldest parks we visited.  Located on a plush hillside it was also one of the prettiest parks we visited.  It had the distinction of having one of the three wood coasters remaining in Japan.  It would be the second and last of the ACE trip, but not the last in Japan for our group of four.   Elf (Intamin Amusement Rides, Wood-non prefab, 2001) ELF stands for […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 16: Himeji Central Park / 姫路セントラルパーク

East Meets ACE – Part 16: Himeji Central Park / 姫路セントラルパーク On Wednesday, October 3 we had come to the last day of East Meets ACE.  We had two parks on the agenda this day, the first of which was Himeji Central Park in Himeji, Hyogo, Japan.  Operating since 1984, this was the second of two parks not visited on the 2005 Japan trip that ACE did with ECC.  As the trip wound down, it was time to begin reflecting on this wonderful opportunity of a lifetime.  This park is smaller, like many parks in Japan, but unlike many of […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン – Continued

East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン – Continued WaterWorld™ We did not get to WaterWorld™.   San Francisco Backdraft™ was not operating due to Hollywood Horror Nights.   Snoopy Studios™ Snoopy’s Great Race (Senyo Kogyo Co., Ltd., Indoor Family, 2001) For a family coaster, this packed some punch, has really neat theming and is located indoors among other children’s rides and attractions – 1 ride. This area has two other children’s attractions.   Hello Kitty Fashion Avenue This section has two children’s attractions.   Sesame Street™Fun World This section has Elmo’s Go-Go Skateboard; Big Bird’s Big Top […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン

East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン On Tuesday, October 2 we headed to our next park, Universal Studios Japan in Konohana, Osaka, Japan. Operating since 2001, this was Universal’s fourth park and first outside the U.S. We arrived around 8:30 that morning and stayed until closing at 10:00 that evening. Like at Disney everyone was required to arrange their own transportation back to the hotel. This was the first of two parks on this trip not visited on the 2005 ACE trip with ECC. It has a similar feel to the two movie based parks in the […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド – Continued

East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド – Continued This is a nice park and based on our visit, it is run pretty efficiently. This was one of the best park experiences of our trip. I definitely want to get back here to ride the new RMC and try to catch the two credits we missed. David, Richard and I decided to buy a fast pass to get a third ride in on Steel Dragon 2000, and just as we sat on the train, there was an issue and we had to get up. As the […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド

East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド On Monday, October 1, we had survived the typhoon and it was time to resume our trip. We checked out of the Hilton Nagoya that morning as we prepared to move to Osaka.  We had enjoyed good breakfasts at this hotel, although not as elaborate as the ones in Tokyo.  Our park this day was slated to open two hours late due to the storm, so once again we were concerned the storm would impact another day.  We left a little later than scheduled that morning, but arrived at […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 13: Typhoon & Missed Credits at Parque Espana / 志摩スペイン村

East Meets ACE – Part 13: Typhoon & Missed Credits at Parque Espana / 志摩スペイン村 The next morning, Sunday, September 30, we would not be able to go to Parque Espana-Shima Spain Village in Shima, Mie, Japan, as it would close at noon, most coasters would not be running and the three hour drive back could leave us on the road just as the typhoon hit.  We missed four credits (bringing the trip total to 11) including: Pyrenees (Bolliger & Mabillard, Inverted,1997), one of the more anticipated coasters of the trip with its six inversions; Gran Montserrat (Mack Rides GmbH […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 12: Suzuka Circuit / 鈴鹿サーキット

East Meets ACE – Part 12: Suzuka Circuit / 鈴鹿サーキット We arrived at Suzuka Circuit in Suzuka, Mie, Japan early Saturday afternoon, with rain coming down steadily.  With a large number of the rides here being various sorts of go-carts, we expected to see most everything closed.  We just hoped we could get to ride the coasters.  As we entered the park we were happy to find out that not only were the coasters operating, but so was almost everything in the park in spite of the rain.  We presented a plaque to the park, and then we, of course, […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 11: Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens / 東山動植物園

East Meets ACE – Part 11: Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens / 東山動植物園 On Saturday, September 29 we boarded the busses and headed out for a short drive to Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens Nagoya, Aichi, Japan.  Rain was starting to fall lightly as the beginning waves of the typhoon began to be felt.  We wondered how this would impact our day.  From the forecast it looked like only light rain in the morning, so we hoped we would get in the first park, but we worried about the second park in the afternoon when heavier showers were predicted.  Once […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 10: Sea Paradise / シーパラダイス

East Meets ACE – Part 10: Sea Paradise / シーパラダイス Our final park of the day was Sea Paradise in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan.  Operating since 1993, this is a marine park with a few rides spread out over a very large space, somewhat reminiscent of Marineland in Canada.  We had about an hour and a half here. We presented a plaque to the park when we arrived.   Surf Coaster Leviathan (Togo, Steel Sit Down, 1993) Previously known as Surf Coaster, it has a length of 4,170’ and a height of 144’. With a triple helix and 2 double helixes, […]

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