(Press play on the musical interludes as you read for the full trip-report experience)
*disclaimer: this part of the trip report has nothing to do water-filled tents
If you’re just here for some Cedar Point park observations/opinions, let’s do this here. 1) The new Boardwalk area/Pavilion looks spectacular. 2) We got a lap on Wild Mouse and enjoyed it. It’s a much-needed family coaster that perfectly toes the line of thrill/fun. 3) Steel Vengeance consistent 3-train operation makes all the difference. 4) Cedar Point’s food has most definitely leveled up (see “Wednesday” below) 5) Top Thrill Dragster 2.0 still isn’t done. Lots of pretty new paint on the supports that matches the magic keychain. 6) The Forbidden Frontier playground is still present on site (this was a main concern of my daughters). I can also confirm simply by eyeballing the real-estate from the lift-hill of Millennium that an epic log-flume would be the best solution to filling the vacant space on the island. Now onto the other stuff…
This song makes me happy, and is part of an album we always listen to on family road trips. Out of all the songs, though, this might be my favorite, and it brings back memories of all the miles we have put in as a family over the years, many of which are captured in trip reports.
What else makes me happy is that the weather from night one is really all the weather I need to type about, because after that it was beautiful. Until, well…that’s at the end.
East Harbor State Park
I’ll just say a quick something about this place. It’s a really beautiful state park with lots of nature things to do (trails, beach, etc.), and it’s close to some sweet seafood joints (Crabby Joe’s and the Crows Nest). It’s been updated a ton since we were newlyweds, so I’m more than happy we came back. If it’s your thing, I can’t recommend a better place, even if it isn’t for visiting Cedar Point. Cool place on the lake. I also offer free tips on waterproofing your tent.
A (thankfully) quiet Monday
This second part is not intended to be a play-by-play of anything in particular; just a collection of things that feels report-worthy. First and foremost, the sun did come out that first day, we did manage to get our zombie bodies to Cedar Point, but we all agreed to get back to camp early so we could enjoy a nice campfire. Also I snuck along a bottle of champagne and some tiramisu that thankfully was not lost in the great flood. See?
Then we slept. And slept. And slept. And it didn’t rain. We were so exhausted it felt like the champagne contained a shot of hibernol.
Tuesday (or, The Day Mother Nature Gifted us an Anniversary Present)
Even as late as Monday night, Tuesday’s forecast looked kind’ve…well…miserable. Nothing like Sunday evening/night, but it called for cooler temps and light to moderate rain all day. What do you do in Sandusky when it rains all day? You guessed it; the man-with-the-tarp-idea had a plan. We would visit the Merry-go-Round museum, we would hit up the Ghostly Manor (really, I’m just frickin’ curious), we would find a cool place to eat/drink, and have some family time in the big tent playing some games.
None of those 4 things happened.
When we (finally) woke up around 11:00 AM, we noticed it wasn’t raining. We also noticed it was sunny, and not humid. Just a lovely June day (so far).
So huddle up Meyer family; what do you want to do? We know it’s going to rain, but should we just hop over to the Point for a little bit until it starts? The kids vote yes (of course). Wife votes yes. Husband votes yes. To the Point we go.
Turns out, just like Indiana in the Last Crusade, we chose wisely.
The Cedar Point regulars know what I’m talking about, and most of you reading this know what’s up, but to make a long trip report a little bit shorter, it never rained. Not a single drop. That combined with a miserable forecast meant that the crowd that day at the park was like a classic mid-May weekday (when that was actually a thing), and we rode anything and everything we wanted. Everyone in the park had a Fast Lane Plus. Even Steel Vengeance was as little as a 10-minute wait. The kids were happy. Mom and Dad were happy. I posted something about Bud Light not being in the park and Pointbuzz went all crazy for 24 hours.
In fact, we rode so much that we agreed to call it a day by 7:00ish so we could get back to camp and enjoy a nice long campfire.
So far after one night of pure human survival on Sunday we had enjoyed two perfect days and nights. To Mother Nature I can only say, thank you. You owed us, b%$#@.
Wednesday was a busier day in the park, so we focused on just playing around with whatever had a short wait. But what made this day unique for us was that for the first time the Meyer clan tried the All-Day-Dining plan. For context, we rarely eat much of anything at Cedar Point, grabbing a little something here and there as we go. But now with the addition of the Pavilion the food seems to be at another level. With all-day-dining you get a meal every 90 minutes. If you’re there all day that’s a ridiculous amount of food for one person, so we bought one with a plan; we’ll do a tour of the park’s food and split each meal between us (yes, all four of us), so we will be grazing/snacking all day without ever being annoyingly full.
For 34 bucks we fed a family of four, and everyone was satisfied, and I have to say we were impressed with the variety and quality the park now offers. Personal favorites of the family were the shrimp (mine), brussels slaw (mine) and turkey (wife) at the Pavilion (the turkey/pesto sandwich was also very good), the gourmet chicken tenders (kids), the entrée salad (wife), and wood-fired steak (kids) at the Farmhouse. By the time we were done we actually had food to take home we were so full; we ended with the Detroit-style pizza at Hugos, which we all liked. Those slices are huge.
Great weather again, and after another campfire dad (that’s me) had to get up early to start packing up the campground. Plan was to hit up the park Thursday until 3-5 (rain in the forecast) and then head on home to Louisville.
Thursday. The Ending is the Beginning.
First, look who we found.
MAC is Back:
Yes, RCMAC joined the Meyers on their last day at the park. We got a lap on Millennium together, and then he hung out with us while we made our final laps around the park. He taught the girls (and me as always) a few things about the park’s history. Awesome hanging out with you, RCMAC! We went our separate ways around 4:00 (somewhere in there), and now the forecast was saying no rain. Free and clear. So of course the plan shifts to stay later.
With the rain in the original forecast the crowds were like Tuesday and we rode anything we wanted at will.
Future Pointbuzz subscribers:
After a last lap on Steel Vengeance we headed up to the front of the park with a plan to leave at 7:00. Home by 9:00. We grabbed some fish tacos at Chickie and Petes (these are part of the new menu and were excellent) while the girls ran over to get one last lap on Atomic Scrambler.
That’s when it happened.
The alarms in the park went off and instead of heading to the parking lot we headed to the Pavilion to finish our food while whatever this was blew over. I checked the radar and it looked like a strong storm was going to blow north of Cedar Point; close enough to shut down rides with lightning but that’s it. Then the storm cell blew up and within 15 minutes there was a tornado warning and we were (literally) locked in the pavilion. What was interesting to us is that when the tornado warning went off, there wasn’t really any reaction from the employees. With all of Cedar Point’s policies I figured we would be directed somewhere or given a spiel of some kind, but instead we all just hung out on the second floor watching lightning strike Rougarou (really, it did, and the whole place shook). The all-clear (with the rain finally lightening up) was given just after 8:00, and we headed home.
The only problem? The storm was headed directly for Louisville where we live, so we ended up driving home in a hard rain, ending our little getaway exactly where it started. The ending was the beginning.
I really I thought I would be typing “the end” here, but it turns out this is actually a trilogy. Turns out there is a little more.
I didn’t know there was going to be a part 3, but there is.
Promoter of fog.
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