We were the first ones there, and the rest of us soon gathered at the front steps. I waited in a long line to pay, and then a longer line to actually get in, but once there, it wasn't too painfully crowded. I'm surprised, actually, that they don't have a better system for handling folks at the entrance, since it wasn't a packed day and even so it was really slow to get in the gates.
I rode the merry-go-round first off, which was cute; I haven't been on one since I was little. Then we went on to the water park part, where we did a ride called Shark Attack -- your basic water slide, really. Emma, who's 8, and I went on that together in a two person inner tube. Then we nerved up to go try this wild funnel ride, but it was just the two of us in a four person tube. The ride shoots you down a really steep slide into a huge funnel, and you go zooming up the side of the funnel, then up the other side, and back and forth, until you get shot out the end into a pool! It was really amazing and terrifying! I'll definitely have to do it again when I go back there. After that, we relaxed with Adventure River, a relaxing "meandering river ride" with waterfalls and stuff. Definitely more low key :)
By then, it was time to meet folks for lunch, so we did that, and then commenced some frustrating attempts to hit a few rides that either had looong lines or ended up being broken temporarily. We wandered around somewhat idly while trying to find something useful for our purposes, and ended up going on Poison Ivy's Tangled Train, a very low-key roller coaster. This was Emma's first roller coaster, and she wanted to try it to see how she liked it before she tried a bigger roller coaster.
She did like it, so after that, she, osmos and I got in line for Superman, Ride of Steel! Emma was clear that she wanted to try a big coaster, but she didn't want to go on one that goes upside down, which I thought was pretty cool. I'm not sure I'd have had the nerve, at eight, to try this roller coaster -- it's about 2 miles long, and it has a nearly heart-stopping drop at the very beginning. While standing in line, Emma commented to me, "My, that looks like a steep drop!" She was right! I told her she should feel free, at any point, to change her mind, but she didn't! It was really neat. Superman was also a really excellent coaster. They got the terrifying drop out of the way at the start (did I say terrifying? It was terrifying.) and the rest was, while still scary/exciting/fun, pretty easy after that :)
Emma's dad, Kai, is NOT a wild ride person, and I think he was a little mystified that HIS daughter was going on the rides she was. I'm told that while we were in line, he kept asking the people around him, "Emma's going on THAT???" (The Superman track is visible all over the park, and the big drop is essentially front and center relative to where he was sitting in one of the kid's sections with Emma's brother, Pascal.
After Superman, a handful of people got on a swing ride, which normally I would like, but I wasn't up for a lot of spinning, so I sat it out and rehydrated with Liz, who organized the day. We hung around for the kids to do some more kid-oriented rides, and then went on to Blizzard River, which had the longest line of the day. It was a fun, "whitewater rafting" ride, although it wasn't very whitewatery. We all got wet, and had a good time. Then we went on to the Cyclone, one of the old wooden roller coasters, which had been under repair earlier in the day. It was a fun track, but it nearly shook my head off my shoulders! If I could take back any of the rides I did, that would be the one, because it was sooo bumpy and rattly.
We took the skychair ride back to the center of the park, and osmos and I decided to get in line for Flashback. The line was quick, and soon we were strapped in. This is a roller coaster that pulls you up from the starting position so that you're facing DOWN the slope you're about to coast on. Then you do a couple of barrel rolls, a loop, and go up another slope, where the machinery catches the cars, drags them up to the top, and then you do the whole track again, this time backward! Awesome.
That essentially capped our day, and by then it was nearly 9:30! So we said goodbye to Kai, Emma, Pascal and San, and Liz, osmos and I got some treats before heading to the car. Got home, entirely pooped, around midnight. An excellent day! I hope to go back for a weekday later this summer. Let me know if you're interested!