Wow Chuck! That is a ghastly picture of me on this page! I can see the viewers at home either backing away from their screens in shock and fear, or showing their friends and making drag queen remarks. I'm really sorry everyone! Chuck, please find a way to redeem me!
funkybadger wrote:Wow Chuck! That is a ghastly picture of me on this page! I can see the viewers at home either backing away from their screens in shock and fear, or showing their friends and making drag queen remarks. I'm really sorry everyone! Chuck, please find a way to redeem me!
Mel, it's really not all that bad, at least you have a cute bathing suit on.
Chapter 12: So, You Mean this Isn't Indiana?--Holiday Park
Two things make Holiday Park stand out:
1. Burg Falkenstein, a very good dark ride through medieval depravity; and
2. Oh, do I really need to say its name? Do I need to say its name! DO I NEED TO SAY ITS NAME?
Expedition GeForce--Yes, the cream of the crop! The top of the line! The Intamin steel coaster that stomps all other steel coasters into the dirt, ties them to the bumper of its car, and drags them down a gravel road--where it really hurts them! This is the most insane airtime machine I've ever ridden this side of Balder. There are no dead spots. And what's better than ERT on Expedition GeForce? How about free beer--and "extra, extra" ERT on Expedition GeForce? Yes, the ride's crew kept that bad boy going for an extra 15 minutes or so. And we had free hot dogs and beer! Thank you, Holiday Park!
Super Wirbel--That being said, what the hell is this thing doing there? Yet another pile of steaming Vekoma corkscrew.
So, how does one kill time when waiting for ERT and beer on Expedition GeForce? Well, let me show you some of the interesting weirdness to be found at Holiday park.
Goin' down to Holiday Park, gonna have ourselves a time . . .
As a prisoner of Burg Falkenstein, I am entitled to one ice-cream cone.
Hmm--that sly minx was a bit too fast with the sheet for me.
Oh, well--there's always bestiality.
"Oh, god, I knew that last leg of mutton didn't smell right! Why the hell did I eat it?"
"Remind me not to eat the fat guy who ate the bad mutton."
The rapids ride was OK.
The leader of Team Larry worked hard to earn himself . . .
. . . his very own "larrygator."
Well, there's one other credit to be had. May as well get it over with.
"Please don't force me to ride Super Wirbel, Mr. larrygator, sir." He needn't have worried--Larry already had this lousy credit, so he bailed.
Oh, how I envied Larry.
"Hey, sorry about the 'Wirbel thing.' I'll ride this monorail though. You'll love it!"
Hmm--let me see if I have this straight . . .
. . . this is Living with the Land, . . .
. . . only on LSD.
"Please, please tell me it's time for GeForce!" More to come.
Chapter 13: “Gonna Have a Big Mac(k) Attack”—Europa Park
I’m just gonna say it right now: Europa was the best park of the whole TPR trip. Yes, it was better than Paris Disneyland (which comes in second, in my opinion). Best hotel, best operations, best food, best landscaping . . . what else can I say? My congratulations to Mack—this is one helluva showcase they’ve put together.
Europa meets my main criterion for any great theme park—Does it have a good mix of “stuff”? That is, the park doesn’t rely on just coasters or a few big thrill rides, and it goes that extra mile with themeing.
As you’ve probably guessed, the park uses the countries of Europe as its theme, including France, Russia, England, and, of course, Germany. (Hey, it’s no stranger than Disney’s California Adventure—in California.) One of my favorite dark rides of the whole trip, Ghost Castle, is in Italy, and Holland has my favorite POTC ripoff yet—Pirates in Batavia.
And there’s a good mix of coasters, too.
Euro-Mir—To call this a gigantic spinning mouse just doesn’t cut it. With its enclosed spiral lifthill, techno music, twisty layout, and series of drops, swoops, and banked curves, Euro-Mir is, well, Euro-Mir, and that’s quite good enough. I enjoyed this ride immensely, and the “party train” during the TPR takeover was one of the highlights of the trip.
Eurosat—Hmm . . . Space Mountain meets Spaceship Earth? Sort of. This knockoff of the classic Disney coaster is pretty cool in its own right, with yet another bizarre spiral lifthill and a good, twisty layout with some cheesy space effects (and, yes, a rough spot here and there). We got to ride it lights on and lights off, too.
Silver Star—OK, here we have a mild, over-braked disappointment. Europa’s one B&M ride, following a Mack layout, I understand, is a hyper that looks like it should be so much better than it is; both Apollo's Chariot and Nitro in the States are better rides. That being said, it’s still fun, with some floater air and a catchy, 1980s’ style theme song: “Rock on, Silver Star!”
Swiss Bob Run—This ride was a bit disappointing, too. It seems rather ironic that my least favorite Mack Bobsled of the trip is in Mack’s own park. Still, this coaster does have some cool drops, which are unusual for a ride of its type. But the pacing seems a bit off. Still, not bad.
Roller Coaster Matterhorn-Blitz—Mack does a very good job of tarting up one of its Wild Mouse rides by using an elevator lift and themeing the queue and loading station to a farm in the Swiss Alps. A good, solid ride.
Pegasus—Greek myth provides the theme for this family coaster, and Mack, once again, does an excellent job. The trains look particularly cool.
I’ll let the pictures do the rest of the talking, but I want to mention something else that makes this park special. In the Austria section, there is a walkthrough called World of Diamonds, which features gnomes, trolls, and a mechanical dragon toiling in a gem mine. But it also provides scenery for a powered mine-train coaster and a log ride. It is very well done.
Welcome to Eruopa--and the best hotel of the entire TPR Europe Tour.
You can sit up here and give "thumbs up/thumbs down" to the juvenile gladiators doing battle in the fountain below.
Er, you're not going to have much of a future as a gondolier until you put that gondola in the water. Just a suggestion.
"You're not actually going to wear that in public, are you, sir?"
We got a bit of monorail ERT before our Eurosat ERT.
Hey, you know what would make this look even better? A giant magic wand and some sparkly lights!
Hmm--what loading station in some other famous theme park does this remind me of?
Off TPR goes into the trackless, er, tracked, void of space.
"Good ride, but I lost my pack of C4 back there someplace."
Here's a look at Eurosat's layout, courtest of the park's Mack museum.
We were the first riders of the day on Silver Star.
"Rock on, Silver Star," right guys? Actually "Float, Float On" might be more appropriate.
Hmm--we don't have a mountain . . .
. . . . but we do have a guy sleeping in . . .
. . . while his kid does actual work while being attacked by a rabid goose.
Er, I hope that's "themeing" running down the sides of that light.
"As do we all, Chuck."
Here we see the cars coming off the ride's elevator lift--a rather cool system, I think.
"Yep, time to air out the ol' groin. Yeah, that feels good."
Hmm--I do believe this area is meant to represent Switzerland.
I thought this was really cool--a little creek that runs down a street.
Rich observed that the guy who came up with these "guys who climb ropes or poles" animatronics must've made a fortune. Damn near every park we visited had at least one. Much more to come from Europa Park.
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