Last weekend we made a trek out to Riverside to check out the amazing Castle Park which is definitely one of our favorite small parks. Well run, clean, an amazing collection of flat rides and family coasters ... what more could you want?
Be sure to check out our report along with a construction update for what is coming soon!!
Written by Gregg Condon
Welcome to Castle Park!!
First stop is Merlin's Revenge. Be sure to check out our POV below.
Some of the amazing flat rides at the park.
In addition, they used to have a falling star which has been removed.
There is a "Rock n' Tug" in the parking lot that we assume is coming to this spot.
The parks resident peacock
Don't go on the train tracks
Like many small parks Castle Park has an amazing Arcade and Mini Golf area
In addition the arcade features an awesome custom Ghostblasters from Sally Corp.
Let's head back to the ride park
Sadly the awesome log flume was closed, but looks to be getting some extensive work done. Hopefully this will be back soon, it's a fun one.
Lastly, our fun POV of the Little Dipper which is a great small ride as you can tell below.
If you are heading out to Castle Park be sure to check out our discount page below, in addition we have some great discounts to other parks in the Palace Chain like Kennywood, Idlewild and Raging Waters.
This last Saturday since we had so many out of town guests due to Mountain Madness 2.0 we decided to join them on a trek to some of the smaller parks in Southern California.
One that was new to all of us was Scandia in Ontario which is a great stop and is more than just a "credit run" park.
Written by RD Sussmann and Gregg Condon
Video and Pictures by Gregg Condon
RD: I had long ago heard of Scandia - and their addition of the world's biggest Miler coaster. And I have to admit, it was interesting to me to see this in person. It is MUCH bigger than I'd anticipated. In fact, a junior coaster this most certainly isnt. The grounds & facilities of Scandia are much more akin to the modern theme park - but with more attention paid to smaller details. By far, the miniature golf course was certainly a stunning experience, complete with central fountain, terrain hills & holes, and Nordic/Scandinavian touches that go with the Scandia names. At the same time, this carried through to many of the other rides & attractions in the park.
Gregg: As a Southern California Native but from the north/western part of Southern California I had actually never had the chance to get to Scandia. As with so many things you take your local area for granted and don't see things until you have out of town guests. Such was the case on my first (and definitely not last) visit to this park.
Gregg: I was impressed that they took what could have been a very normal run of the mill family fun center and have been able to plus it not with the standard bumper boats, mini golf or batting cages that you'll see at other such centers but with a great place to hold parties as well as the amazing rides that accompany the aforementioned Golf and Cages.
RD: Unusual for me was seeing the idea of rotating staff on slower days. In this case, one group of attendants made their way around the park from attraction to attraction instead of being soley at one spot. With a park that had less than 100 people in it so early in the day, this made brilliant sense. Fortunately Scandia Screamer had an attendant first thing in the morning, making it easier to gain this needed & rare credit. And so, with crew in tow, it was time to grab my first new credit in many months. It did not dissapoint. In fact, for something 90 ft. tall & 2600 ft. long, it packed a bigger punch than other coasters longer, taller & more signifcant. In the back seat though it is advised to protect one's assets carefully... Very carefully.
Gregg: As I was explaining to some people at our event the other day, I'm not the "facts" guy. So if people are writing to the site about facts, those usually will go to others besides myself. And whenever you see a blog post that contains those facts I'm usually getting them from others.
That said, not knowing the stats about Scanda Screamer didn't take away my enjoyment of the ride. It's a much different animal in the front and back row as you can tell from the difference from our mounted front seat POV (above) and our non-mounted back-seat POV (below). We obviously had a bit more fun with the back-seat video. =)
Be sure to watch the front seat POV before this one. Trust us. =)
RD: An honest treat at Scandia beyond Screamer is their Little Dipper junior coaster. Tucked into the structure underneath Screamer, this small Herschell dipper is a lot of fun, and gives a great experience. What you don't notice - or rather don't see - at Scandia are attractions that look faded or unkempt. In fact, the majority of the park looks amazingly fresh & well taken care of, including areas hard to keep looking good in a part of the valley known for exceedingly hot temps & blinding, fading sunshine. I can say it was a treat beyond words to encounter a F.E.C. that cared about who they were - and how they operated.
Gregg: I'll be the first to admit, if I'd been here by myself I would have likely skipped Little Dipper. But when I'm with friends and we're just being silly it makes these things even more fun. And this was actually a really fun ride.
More of the park ...
And of course the mini golf. If it hadn't been 105 degrees we would have easily spent a few hours playing a few rounds.
Arcade complete with awesome video games and ticket games. I believe Gary scored a Ring Pop. =)
Overall we had an amazing time at the park and we're looking forward to heading back this October for what we hear is a pretty awesome haunt.
For more information on Scandia be sure to visit their website here.
We're always happy to share reports from far off places and recently Chris sent us a whole bunch of pictures from Colombia including some of the theme parks there.
There is a LOT to get to so we're going to split this into a few updates.
Written by Christopher DeRosa
Hello, I’m Chris. I took a trip to Colombia to see some culture, ride some roller coasters, and have a good time. While I’ll be reporting on the amusement parks in the area, including Parque Del Café, I’d like to show you some of the trip besides parks as well. So here we go!
We checked out some night clubs and the area in general. The city didn’t seem ‘unsafe’ but it didn’t necessarily feel safe, either. One of our main goals of the trip was to go to a music festival called Estereo Picnic. One of the parks I was going to skip was way north of the city. Fortunately, the concert was also way north of the city…in fact, it was right next door to…
So I may be slightly off on this, but apparently at some point in the past, some graffiti artists were killed by the police, which caused a riot, which caused graffiti to be legalized. And let me tell you, it was everywhere. Some was incredible, some was alright, and a lot was just chicken scratches like the ones you see on OTSRs.
And with that, there's the end of Part One of Christopher's trip to Colombia. Part two will feature more fun and Parque del Cafe and of course includes Montaña Rusa.
Thanks again to Christopher for the pics, we hope you enjoyed!!