Photo TR: Matt and Derek in Minneapolis

Nickelodeon Universe and Valleyfair(!)
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Photo TR: Matt and Derek in Minneapolis

Postby DerekRx » Tue Jun 10, 2008 4:18 pm

Last year seemed to be as good a time as any for me to finally venture into Minnesota to rack up some credits with the addition of Renegade, but with high airfare prices and Nick Universe's announcement of 2 more coasters coming in 2008, I decided I may as well wait. Matt was only too happy to make the drive out from Chicago to meet up with me, especially after I told him of all the beer places I hoped to hit. After picking me up at the airport, it was off to the Mall of America.
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Time to check out the newly rethemed Park at Mall of America, now called Nickelodeon Universe, with lots of characters we old Nick people don't know much about. Where's Ren and Stimpy!?
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I was shocked how the park is just right there in the center of the mall, all opened to the world and all
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More construction, or deconstruction of the old theme. Something tells me this won't be used for a hypercoaster or a strata, though an Aquatrax isn't out of the question!
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The first stop, the new coaster on the block, SpongeBob SquarePants Rock Bottom Plunge
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I know little about SpongeBob, but I know I likes me Eurofighters
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especially ones with big ole loops
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It seems these drops are becoming more and more present
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Vertical loops are the norm these days too, though they're on their way out it seems, replaced by Norwegians and such.
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The zero G rolls on the Gerstlauers sure are spread out and leaves you saying "omg! wtf is that!?"
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after the midcourse, it's right back to the action
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like a severe cutback
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it works better here than on Drachen Fire, but these restraints were a little ouchy too
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I think the trains are sort of themed to evil tikis or something
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but in any case, the ride is really fun and pretty thrilling
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SpongeBob's house doubles as a bouncy house for the youngins
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next on the agenda was the Pepsi Orange Streak. A fun family coaster with a random darkride section, and probably the best thing with Pepsi affiliation in the US
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Avatar Airbender (mmmm...Bender) was next and was also a lot of fun with some airtime and spinning goodness
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the halfpipes are definitely more intense and fun than diskos, and they count as credits to boot!
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it's cool how close to the ceiling this is
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here's a shot for all you control console geeks out there
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Cedar Fair's last coaster addition before leaving was a good one and really fits the place nicely, even with the bright orange track, but at least they weren't the ones to give it the pretty unoriginal name of Fairly Odd Coaster.
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spinning seems to be the in thing in Minn
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to some this thing is more intense than it seems, like to the emo people who rode with me and screamed the whole time.
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the park has a flume complete with a moose with SpongeBob on his back
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I really liked the flume, especially the giant Babe and Paul Bunyan animatronics, and the storyline was pretty cool.
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shame they're taking them out and redoing the whole ride to some barnyard characters I never heard of
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at least Ghost Blasters is still the same, and running very well, with all the targets and props working!
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and though it has a new name, it's good to see this thing still runs
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how's your tumbler, Knott's?
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speaking of rare rides that are still running, hello Mighty Axe with a new name
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the park is a LOT bigger than I figured, with lots of other rides plopped down, but it also still has a nice openness about it, and you can totally forget that you're indoors and at a mall
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this one goes out to you, Big Mike
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above Nick Universe and off to the side is some indoor mini-golf, gotta try that!
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hello friends!
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the course was pretty boring, but we still stink at mini-golf
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and it was nice to get more shots of the park from
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I blame my crappy score on all the distractions coming from the park, totally not on my Happy Gilmore style of golfing
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by the end of the night, Matt was just a bump on a log saving his energy to release a fury of excitement at Valleyfair the next day
All clear....

Dispatch, enjoy your ride.

Derek
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Postby downunder » Tue Jun 10, 2008 4:37 pm

Love the look of that Eurofighter, I'd definitely make the effort if I was in the Minnesota neck of the woods.

Disk-o's count as credits? I go off whatever is on coaster counter so unfortunately not for me.

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Postby Sticky Nicky » Tue Jun 10, 2008 5:33 pm

^No, disko's don't count as credits, but Avatar is not a disko, it is an Intamin Surf Rider/Half-Pipe. Those count as credits.

Looks like you had a pretty awesome time at the park. It's a shame you couldn't make it to the mall when it was still Camp Snoopy though.

Can't wait for the Valleyfair photos.
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Postby Cameron » Tue Jun 10, 2008 6:50 pm

?!@@# - I completely forgot that you were coming up here, and that I was planing on tagging along. DAMN MY SENILITY!

Looks like you guys had a really awesome weekend! That EuroFighter does look fun - and I agree with you that the park there is surprisingly entertaining.

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Postby noyzz » Tue Jun 10, 2008 7:36 pm

Looks like a killer time guys! I smell a road trip sometime soon....Love the golf pose Derek! Wheres Bob Barker when you need him? lmao!!!!
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Postby TheRapidsNerd » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:03 pm

This is just a cool park, even with the Nick stuff. Lots of good wallpaper shots of the rides. =)

Looking forward to the rest.

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Postby DerekRx » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:16 pm

On Sunday we ventured to Valleyfair (sometimes without an !), another park I hadn't been to but was really in no hurry to get to...at least up until last year with the addition of Renegade. Being a Cedar Fair park, I was expecting lots of concrete, trash cans, blandness, lack of crowds, and a bunch of coasters that were just average at best. Well, almost everything was as I expected, except there was less concrete (just found in the newer sections of the park) and it wasn't as bland, there was actually some charm and character to parts of the park, and some of the employees were pretty friendly, especially the girl in Guest Services who knew how to get Platinum Passholders in. With the lack of people, we racked up the coaster credits within 2 hours, but we also took plenty of rides on Renegade and enjoyed some of the other rides in the park. While it's not the greatest park in the world, it isn't terrible and isn't a park I'd dread to get back to. I think I could have a good time at Valleyfair even without getting credits, as long as the crowds aren't bad.
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Leave Minneapolis, head southwest, and when you think there's nothing around, Valleyfair should show up in front of you
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This entrance looks very Cedar Fair inspired
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but the disco ball fountain is unique
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first stop, ALLLLLLLL the way in the back of the park, Renegade, which just was finishing up testing as we got back there. Got the front seat on ride 1
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with the weather sort of iffy, the park was dead in the late morning, so they only ran 1 train at first, but there was never more than a 1 train wait for any row.
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Renegade was a lot better than I was told by some friends. While it's still no OzCat to me, it's one of my favorites from GCI. I liked the semi-out-n-back beginning, and the airtime pops and turns were good
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The flyby wasn't as noticeable as Thunderheads, but it also wasn't nearly as loud
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after a few rides on Renegade I remembered I needed more credits, so while we were in the back of the park, time for Excalibur
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Being an Arrow with wood structure in a Cedar Fair park, I figured this would be more like Gemini. I was stupid to think that
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I think they need more than 4 trims on the first drop
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Mad Mouse had walk-on conditions still, time to get that credit
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The Arrow mice are weird, with all the typical wild mouse characteristics along with banking and trick track. Odd, but amusing!
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High Roller was nearby, I totally forgot it was an IAD coaster
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Not exactly sure what's up with these trains, but it was nice to see no seat dividers on a CF woodie
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as for High Roller itself, I could see where it had the potential for airtime (well, not really "see" as much as "hear")
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here's some of that charm I noticed in the park
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more scenery and peacefulness
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are you sure we're at a CF park!?
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Corkscrew, looking so much like it wants to be like its brother at CP, but it's not quite there
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what an unusual station for Corkscrew, not sure what they're going for here.
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People were getting soaked on the shoot the chutes, not an acceptable amount of wetness to me
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Yay for Steel Venom, just one big old fun coaster. I just love Impulses, as every seat offers a different experience
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and unknownst to me, this one uses the holding brake too! Joygasm!
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one more credit, and it's the tallest one in the park
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and we decided to sit in the last car, my favorite spot on Steel Force
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I vaguely remember something bad about this back car though
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up the lift, I can't wait to make our return through the vinyl-sided tunnel shed of doom!
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but first, we must go down at a really (not so) steep angle
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and then prepare ourselves for the entry into...
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THE MOST RANDOM TURNAROUND EVER! Really wacky, but semi-thrilling and fun. Still, glad Dorney's neighbors complained and delayed the delivery of the hyper so Valleyfair could get this and we could have Steel Force
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how's it going, Cameron.
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I've been a sucker for log flumes lately, and this one looked nice
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but after the hidden waterfall on the exit of the tunnel that soaked me, I had a different opinion
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bad log flume! I hope they take you out and replace you with a Maverick!!
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With no line, we decided to ride the Xtreme Swing. Fun and thrilling, but the cycle could be a bit longer
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The park had a couple of nice kiddie areas not themed to cartoon shows from 30 years ago, but with nice older rides from that era
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no Mild Thing credit for me, unless I chop off my legs at the knee. Hey, that rhymed!
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Heading back to Renegade they were adding the 2nd train, so we checked out the rapid instead. Seeing these waterfalls, and knowing my luck since the log flume, I decided against a ride
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it was warming up a bit, and some peoples were enjoying the emptiness in the waterpark. Fearing Big Mike was around though, all the women had t-shirts on over top of their bikinis
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I think the only thing missing from Renegade is a killer finale airtime moment, or maybe a jo-jo roll, or possibly onboard audio that plays The Styx. Now that'd rule!
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But it's definitely a great coaster with good pacing, nice airtime pops, out of control feelings, and still smooth and rerideable.
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random vertical loopage
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as we were heading out we caught a roving band playing Madonna's new song
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more scenery they forgot to take out and replace with another 12 trash cans
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This ferris wheel looked too scary for even me to want to ride, even if it was only like 50 feet off the ground.
Power Tower was fun, even though Matt was too afraid to ride :P
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goodbye Steel Venom, I'll say hi to your older younger brother Voodoo soon!
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Farewell turnaround of wandering randomness! Adios, Valleyfair, thanks for the credits. Now it's time to get our beer on! (but you can check the Beer Thread for that update, already done). Thanks, Matt for sharing in the fun!
All clear....

Dispatch, enjoy your ride.

Derek
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Postby youthink? » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:58 pm

Great TR! I'm going to both of these parks next month and am so excited! :b

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Postby mcjaco » Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:07 am

I was going to do a Photo TR, but I think we have almost the exact same pictures! :lolr:

This was a much needed extended weekend, and Renegade IMO, is worth the drive.....as long as there's beer involved. I like Valleyfair, but it's not a park I'd go out of my way to get too. If I'm in the area, then yes.

It's just not as exciting without the ! :Pr

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Postby Vffreak07 » Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:33 am

Hey! Nice to see that someone enjoys the park as much as I do!

Renegade was a lot better than I was told by some friends. While it's still no OzCat to me, it's one of my favorites from GCI. I liked the semi-out-n-back beginning, and the airtime pops and turns were good


Yeah ever since opening day last year it's been my favorite woodie in the park. Night rides on that thing are beastly.


I think they need more than 4 trims on the first drop
:lolr:

Not exactly sure what's up with these trains, but it was nice to see no seat dividers on a CF woodie
I love the trains. Very comfy, and yeah no seat dividers are huge pluses.

Corkscrew, looking so much like it wants to be like its brother at CP, but it's not quite there
Aw come on I think it rides better then CP's. . .

what an unusual station for Corkscrew, not sure what they're going for here.
Being a regular, I should know, but I don't, and I don't think anyone ever will.

but after the hidden waterfall on the exit of the tunnel that soaked me, I had a different opinion

Yeah it's either a hit or miss, sometimes they have that waterfall off which is nice cuz you don't get wet, but on a summer day it's a great ride.

bad log flume! I hope they take you out and replace you with a Maverick!!

I hate myself for agreeing. :(

You're lucky you didn't visit on a busy day, you woulda had to wait for Renegade probably 30-45 (Yes, here in MinnEsota, we consider that a semi-long line. Well, glad to see you had fun!

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