Yesterday was Media Day for the amazing new ride RailBlazer at California's Great America. I'm still trying to wrap my head around what an amazing event it was. Thanks to California's Great America not only for inviting us out, but for building RailBlazer.
I'm also still trying to wrap my head around how much I absolutely LOVED RailBlazer. Because I really did love it. It's just a very fun and unique ride.
Written by Gregg Condon
First let's start off with some videos, the first being me making a fool out of myself on the Reverse POV.
Note: We also took some Reverse POV in the back row but are having some issues (old SD card). Going to try and recover it but it's not looking good. Stay Tuned!!
And of course, the actual RailBlazer POV!!
Lastly, some of the most amazing B-Roll footage I've seen from any park on any ride. It's seriously amazing and you should all watch this. Like a lot. =)
Let's get on with the Media Day Festivities!!
Good Morning CGA!!
Why Hello There!!
It was a perfect morning
Some pics of the ride in motion, be sure to click through the slide show
Test Seat!! I didn't have any issues with the leg room. The shoulders are a bit snug, but not too bad.
More pics of the ride in motion. Honestly enjoyed taking pics of this ride so much!!
As you can see, those in attendance were having a blast!
It's just beautiful to look at
Oh yeah, they fed us, and fed us well. Sausage Wrapped in Funnel Cake Batter was a favorite.
The new stage looks great, food festivals in this area are going to be awesome.
Berserker and Whitewater Falls also got some new signs and landscaping!!
Merchandising, Merchandising, Merchandising!!
RailBlazer the T-shirt. RailBlazer the Water Bottle. RailBlazer the Hat. RailBlazer the Teddy Bear.
RailBlazer the Magnet. RailBlazer the Keychain.
Quick shout out to Flight Deck. Happy 25th!!
Now back to our regularly scheduled ride pics!!
And of course, the opening ceremonies complete with fireworks!!!
We had such a great time at the park, RailBlazer is amazing. I think we were all happy with it and almost kind of shocked at how much we totally loved the ride. It's probably in my top 20. It's THAT good.
Hope you all enjoyed!!
Hey there, Park Journey Readers!
This week, we had a wonderful time touring California's Great America courtesy of our friends at ACE NorCal. There is a ton of work being done at the park right now, including the construction of the highly anticipated Railblazer and land clearing for yet-to-be-announced future attractions.
Come with us as we check out the coasters, construction, and new offerings coming to California's Great America for the 2018 season.
Written by Andrew Cunningham
We began the morning with a walk-back into Patriot's ride area. The blue pain still looks fresh and vibrant, adding great color and brightness to the surrounding midways. We spent much of the day being ushered back and forth through Patriot's service road since Hometown Square is undergoing a massive repaving project.
Now, we know you may have come here for Ralblazer photos, but we came for some food!
The park is debuting a new funnel cake and churro location in the French Quarter, complete with some wild flavors. I really enjoyed the "strawberry shortcake" funnel cake and "hot chocolate" churro.
And yes, that is a pulled pork funnel cake you see there. It actually worked really well, as the sweetness of the funnel cake and barbecue sauce paired nicely with the saltiness of the pork.
Next up, we took a peak back in the coaster shop, where the park performs maintenance on the various trains that run on their rides.
The shop was really fun, as it is decorated with signage from some of Great America's past attractions.
Oh, and there may be some new trains parked in here...
Alright perverts, we know what you came here for. Despite the Florida Legislature recently declaring pornography to be a public health risk, we know our audience, and we're here to deliver for you.
Take your time.
Did you know that Great America has a secret apartment in the middle of Orleans Square? A remnant of the park's original days as Marriott's Great America, The Consulate is a vacant apartment that is being revived as a private event space for the 2018 season.
Did you know that the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship Game will be held at Levi's Stadium (in Great America's parking lot)?
The park was kind enough to put together a concept board for how they will be remodeling the apartment in time for my inevitable Clemson tailgate. Thanks Great America, I appreciate you!
Moving back out to the park, there is still work being done on the removal of Logger's Run and the looping starship. While we are really sad to see the flume leave, these removals open up a ton of space for new additions.
Speaking of new space opening up, we were also informed that 2018 will be the final season for the go-kart track
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the park, the map above shows all the space that will be wide open by the end of 2018.
I'm thinking maybe a waterpark expansion for 2019 and a hyper coaster for 2020?
To wrap things up, we have your daily dose of Railblazer construction. The ride is coming together quickly, with the rockwork and theming being the main focus at the moment.
I can't wait to come back and ride it soon! Hopefully we'll sneak in another construction update or two before the ride opens.
Thank you for reading, and thank you to ACE NorCal and California's Great America for putting together such a fun tour!
Happy Friday the 13th everybody!! Hope you all have some scary things planned for the weekend whether it's just watching scary movies or attending a Halloween event. Hopefully it's not something super scary like having to work.
Today we have another update from California's Great America where my wife and I made our first visit to their Haunt last weekend.
Written by Gregg Condon
Prior to Haunt we made our way over to the park in the afternoon to do some riding and check out the Great Pumpkin Fest.
Lots of graves to mark mazes and scare zones no longer with us
The Pumpkin Patch!! Super cute.
After heading back to the hotel for a nap it was time to head back to the park for Haunt
Believe it or not, in all our visits to this park, we had never been here at night. Weird right?
Our first maze of the night was Massacre Manor
We had actually gotten a tour of this earlier in the day and it did NOT disappoint
Cornstalkers was up next
Nothing creepier than walking through cornstalks ... we had a great time in this maze.
This looks like something
Our first "surprise" maze of the night. Seriously, I love this maze, may have been my favorite of the night. The song is catchy (it's in my head now) but the maze itself is just a whole lot of fun!!
Wonder if Ed Alonzo went back to Bayside?
This looks different at night ...
I know this is supposed to be Humpty Dumpty, and maybe it's because it's Friday the 13th ... but ...
Doesn't this look like Corey Feldman in Friday the 13th Part IV? Google it. Seriously. Do it now!!
Another really fun and inventive maze
Time for Ed Alonzo!! We've missed him at Knott's Scary Farm!!
Believe it or not, this was the only good shot I got of the show. You don't believe me do you? =)
The lighting and effects around the park were awesome
Definitely the "Grossest" of the mazes at Haunt
We also took a ride on Demon Re-Ignited!! Not only are the effects for the ride amazing, but I probably had the best ride I've ever had on it, at least in the past 15 years or so. It was running amazing.
Kudos to the park for not only adding some amazing effects, but for maintaining this classic coaster to such high standards.
If you missed our Demon Re-Ignited Behind The Scenes Tour earlier this week, be sure to check it out.
Last but not least was the all new Backwoods.
And if this is any indication of the future of Haunt, it's going to be one of those can't miss events for years to come. I thought the maze was a bit on the short side, but it was phenomenal nonetheless.
CGA's Haunt has an amazing entry area
Fire makes everything better
Probably my favorite picture I've taken this entire Halloween season
Overall we were very pleasantly surprised with Haunt. The event is a LOT of fun, the talent is into it and the mazes are unique.
One thing I will say is there needs to be more scare zones, they had a couple but they were kind of small. But other than that, we definitely recommend this event and can't wait to go back next year!
Today we've got a bit of an exclusive behind the scenes look at RailBlazer construction at California's Great America. We aren't going to try and guess what's going where but we figured you'd all like to see the progress that's been made so far.
And more progress has already been made in the past few days.
Written by Gregg Condon
Lots and lots of walls up around RailBlazer
Normally this is all we'd be able to show you in a construction update
But exclusively for you Park Journey readers ... we have dirt!!!
And piles of dirt!!
Thanks to the amazing PR staff at California's Great America for allowing us the chance to get a look at construction, we can't wait to see more very very soon!!
Be sure to come back tomorrow as we'll have our Haunt update from last weekend!!
Well, it's official- California's Great America has elevated their special offerings yet again with the introduction of Demon: Ignited, a special reinvention of their classic looping coaster for Halloween Haunt. Much like Disney, who has made a successful model off of holiday overlays, Great America has taken the opportunity to elevate The Demon for a limited engagement. While most of the ride takes place out of site from the midway, the park was kind enough to walk us back for a special look into the reinvention of this classic attraction.
By Andrew Cunningham
So- first thing to know- there is fire.
I'm not talking about a little torch in the queue or something, I mean a full on fireball. You'll feel the heat as a fireball erupts just to the left of the train just before you dive into the Demon's cave.
Second thing to know- there's blood, and lots of it.
Just like the park didn't hold back on the fire, they certainly didn't hold back on the blood. The Demon's waterfall has returned, but this time with some sinister red coloring.
The combination of the fire, lighting effects, and blood red water makes for a colorful, spooky ride through the Demon's wooded area.
The fog and lighting really elevate the atmosphere. Aside from maybe The Matterhorn, is there a better looking Arrow coaster out there?
I can't think of any.
The tunnel that immediately follows the double loops also got decked out with some eerie interior lighting.
A train whizzes through the Demon's cave, with a bloody waterfall just above the rider's heads. So spooky and awesome.
Another train flying through the corkscrews in the dark.
The Demon cave also features projection mapping, but it was hard to capture a picture that did it justice in the dark.
But fire... did we mention fire? Yeah, it's pretty rad.
It's dark, it's spooky, it's bloody, it's fiery, it's The Demon: Re-Ignited. Check it out during Haunt at California's Great America.
Huge thank you to the wonderful team at Great America who made this update possible. You guys are doing so many exciting things, and it's always a pleasure to come down and check them out!