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Archive for the Ronny’s Travels Category

Pacific Northwest Trip 2014 – Part 5: British Columbia –Three National Parks, Vancouver & Playland at the PNE

Yoho National Park, Glacier National Park (Canada) & Revelstone National Park On Wednesday, August 27 we entered British Columbia as we drove from Banff National Park into Yoho National Park. We stopped at the Spiral Tunnels, a railroad engineering feat, in hopes of seeing a train cross itself. These tunnels were built as a solution to a grading nightmare that caused many accidents due to the steep grade. The train enters a tunnel and then crosses itself, allowing for a much more acceptable grade. There are 2 such tunnels and we stopped for a picnic lunch at the lower tunnel […]

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Pacific Northwest Trip 2014 – Part 4: Alberta – Calaway Park, Galaxyland, & Jasper & Banff National Parks

Calaway Park On Monday, August 25 we arrived at Calaway Park in Calgary, AB around 3:30. With only 2 coasters we made the decision to only spend half a day here. We met up with fellow ACE members Michael & Celia Horwood who live nearby. The Vortex: (Arrow, Corkscrew, 1982) Previously named Turn Of The Century and Corkscrew, this standard Arrow corkscrew was pretty smooth and as the largest ride in the park, still attracts a crowd. They give double rides, which although it made the line take longer, was nice – 2 rides (1 double ride). Mini Express: (Zamperla, […]

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Pacific Northwest Trip 2014 – Part 3: Montana – Glacier National Park

Glacier National Park On Sunday, August 24 we drove through Idaho to our hostel in Columbia Falls, MT. On the way we saw the most beautiful scenery imaginable of this “Big Sky Country” with mountain, river and lake views around every turn. After arriving at our hostel around 8:00, we went to dinner in Whitefish, MT at The Craggy Range for a very good meal. On Monday we got up early to begin our drive through Glacier National Park, the first of 6 national parks from 2 countries on our tour. Entering the park from the west, we drove along […]

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Pacific Northwest Trip 2014 – Part 2: Idaho – ACE Day at Silverwood & North Idaho Fair & Rodeo

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ACE Day at Silverwood On Saturday, August 23 we drove to Idaho for the only ACE event of our trip, at Silverwood in Athol, ID. This was the largest park on our trip and with 2 highly regarded coasters, it was greatly anticipated. We purposely planned the trip to coincide with the regional ACE Day at Silverwood to maximize our time here. We were very pleased with the theming, rides and beauty of the park. I will review it by its themed sections. Main Street Steam Engine Train: Historic Engine No. 7 travels in a large loop around the park’s […]

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Pacific Northwest Trip 2014 – Part 1: Washington – Seattle, Country Mercantile & Riverfront

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On Thursday August 21 I flew to Seattle, WA to join some friends for a tour of the Pacific Northwest, an area I had never been to. Our trip would include 4 U.S. states and 2 Canadian provinces. While we would visit 10 amusement parks, most of them small, we would also visit 6 national parks and sightsee in Vancouver and Seattle. I met up with Richard Bostic and Vanessa Thomas that evening and we would meet David Lipnicky the following evening in Spokane. Although our Washington visits involved parts of 4 days at the beginning and end of the […]

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Magic Springs & Crystal Falls Water & Theme Park

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While I was in Texas visiting my aunt in Tyler I made the 4 hour drive to Magic Springs & Crystal Falls Water & Theme Park in Hot Springs, AR on Friday, July 25. My only other visit to this park was in 2009 and the park was having significant issues. The park’s ownership had just transitioned the previous year from Parc Management to CNL and for various reasons about half of the rides, including 4 of the 6 coasters were closed. Later that season they got their act together and got most of the rides open, but it left […]

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ACE Coaster Con XXXVII – Epilogue – Baseball, Mystery and Exploration

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On Friday afternoon, June 20, following our time at Gilroy Gardens we made a quick stop at Oakland Zoo. We knew we could not get there in time to see the zoo as it closed at 4:00, but since the separate entry amusement park stays open an hour later, our intension was to get there before 4:00. We arrived about 4:20 and walked into Adventure Landing to the ticket booth. The attendant said she could no longer sell tickets although the rides were still open. We talked to a manager, who took us to the coaster to allow is to […]

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ACE Coaster Con XXXVII – Part 3: Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk & Gilroy Gardens

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On Thursday, June 19 Coaster Con XXXVII moved to Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. I was looking forward to returning to this park as my visit in 2006 was somewhat short. Perhaps the best seaside amusement park for a number of reasons, this quintessential piece of Americana has been lovingly preserved. From its classic wooden coaster to its Carousel ring machine, from its plethora of dark rides to its kitschy Boardwalk foods, from its beachside views to its well preserved Cocoanut Ballroom, few seaside parks have the total package that this park does. Rides The park has 3 coasters: Giant Dipper: […]

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ACE Coaster Con XXXVII – Part 2: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom

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On Wednesday, June 18 Coaster Con XXXVII moved to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, CA. When I first visited this park in 2006 it was Six Flags Marine World. That day was rainy and crowded and I arrived later than intended, so I was looking forward to having a full day in the park to get more of a feel for it. This day was to start around 7:00 with breakfast and special tours offered before ERT. Because of the late night and the long drive from San Jose, we opted to get there in time for ERT. The […]

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ACE Coaster Con XXXVII – Part 1: California’s Great America

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On Sunday, June 15 Coaster Con XXXVII began at California’s Great America in Santa Clara, CA. Opened in 1976 as Marriott’s Great America, it was one of two almost identical parks built by Marriott that year. In 1984 it was sold to the city of Santa Clara who contracted with Kings Entertainment to run the park. It was known as Great America until Kings Entertainment was bought by Paramount and it became Paramount’s Great America. Once Cedar Fair bought the Paramount parks in 2006, the name was changed to its current name. We arrived about 4:30 and made our way […]

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