Snake River Expedition is running!

Wednesday, September 1, 2021 10:17 AM

The queue, preshow and boats are indeed well done. The queue music helps sets the tone nicely too.

I agree it feels like the experience could be a bit more streamlined, perhaps either by shortening the preshow or removing the stop at the dock partway through the course. I do get though that much the pace of the whole thing is dictated by the operational nature of a boat ride.

Perhaps it might work best as just a classic lap around the island like Paddlewheel Excursions with simple scenery and corny jokes. While the attempt to have more involved story is admirable, most guests are probably just looking to get off their feet and have a pleasant boat ride.

All that said, I definitely appreciate the effort to do something new and unique for the park, particularly something that aims to be a broad-appeal family attraction.


"Thank the Phoenicians!"

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Wednesday, September 1, 2021 12:35 PM

I watched a YouTube video of SNE and my first thought was, "Nobody who's been slogging around a hot amusement park all day is going to feel like getting involved in some LARP (live-action role play) kind of thing. Just loop the boat around the island and call it a day!"

The basilisk subplot is baffling - why is it even there? If it's a riverboat, why not alligators? Doesn't make sense.

What CP should have done is have a riverboat ride like Disney does. Disney's Magic Kingdom has a riverboat where you get on it and it just loops around while a voice-over talks about life on the Mississippi. Maybe CP should have kept the animatronics and set it to a soundtrack that talked about Ohio's canal and wilderness history. Something soothing, nonconfrontational, and relaxing. And educational!

Even when I was a kid, the riverboat was where we went when we just wanted to get off our feet for 15 minutes. Cedar Point missed the mark by assuming everybody wants to be part of some corny story. They don't.

(this is, of course, not meant as a criticism of the actors who are doing their best with what they're given.)

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Wednesday, September 1, 2021 3:41 PM
Uncle Steve's avatar

Well they can't all be winners...
I rode SRE (aka SNE) once, and that was plenty for me.
The same goes for Adventure Island. I checked it out when it first opened and haven't been back.

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Wednesday, September 1, 2021 4:39 PM
Dvo's avatar

I think SRE is exactly what I expected out of boat ride. Sure the jokes might be corny, but it's still a pretty relaxing boat ride. Maybe it doesn't.... float everyone's boat..... but I had fun, and would absolutely do it again.


374 MF laps
Smoking Area Drone Pilot

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Wednesday, September 1, 2021 6:53 PM

SarahB1863 said:
I watched a YouTube video of SNE and my first thought was, "Nobody who's been slogging around a hot amusement park all day is going to feel like getting involved in some LARP (live-action role play) kind of thing. Just loop the boat around the island and call it a day!"

Except that's exactly what Forbidden Frontier is, and, in case you haven't noticed, Cedar Point is now making an effort to integrate Frontiertown. They are treating the Snake River Expedition as an extension of Forbidden Frontier.

The basilisk subplot is baffling - why is it even there? If it's a riverboat, why not alligators? Doesn't make sense.

Because it is the Snake River.

Cedar Point has never been a theme park. In accordance with the Post-Disney Theme Park Rule of the 1960's, they did establish a Western-themed section (well, what park didn't? Heck, even Americana had a Western town in it). It's an easy way to integrate some theming into a park; put in a few distressed-wood buildings, add a "saloon" (preferably with live entertainment) and even though it makes very little sense, you have a great place to put your obligatory Runaway Train roller coaster. So over the years, Cedar Point has ended up with this massive hodgepodge of individually themed attractions and elements: the Cedar Creek Mine Ride, the Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad, Frontiertown itself, Snake River Falls, even the Crystal Rock theming (which is related to park history) attached to Shoot the Rapids II. In developing the new attractions, they've made a *huge* effort to tie all of this together, even tying in existing well-remembered elements from Paddlewheel Excursions like the non-animated mumble-mouthed Buck Skinner. It's such a hodge-podge of elements that any reasonable themed entertainment developer would have just blown it all up, developed a totally new theme, changed the names on all the rides, and started over. Personally, I am quite impressed that Cedar Point *didn't* do that, and really has been...with some success...slowly tying everything into an integrated Frontiertown and Forbidden Frontier. Because the only connection to "Cedar River" was a building on Paddlewheel and the only connection to Cedar Creek is the Mine Ride, but Snake River Falls is adjacent to and over Forbidden Frontier, it made sense to just call it the Snake River.

So why is it called the Snake River? That's where the basilisk subplot comes in. Yes, it's forced. But so is everything else in Frontiertown.

What CP should have done is have a riverboat ride like Disney does. Disney's Magic Kingdom has a riverboat where you get on it and it just loops around while a voice-over talks about life on the Mississippi. Maybe CP should have kept the animatronics and set it to a soundtrack that talked about Ohio's canal and wilderness history. Something soothing, nonconfrontational, and relaxing. And educational!

The Western Cruise was a shameless rip-off of the Jungle Cruise. That's OK, of course, because Disney returned the favor by ripping off the Pirate Ride some years later. The truth is, if Cedar Point had merely resurrected Paddlewheel in more-or-less its final form, most of us would have been happy with it. But I think we have to give them credit for trying to do something more with it.

I can do without the performers telling me that they'll see me real soon, though. That's a little over-the-top.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.



/X\ *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
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Wednesday, September 1, 2021 7:59 PM

A "shameless rip-off of Jungle Cruise? OK, as an adult, Dave, maybe I get that. But the Western Cruise sure made a lasting impression on me as a little kid. (See my PointBuzz user name!). "Don't worry folks, those are wooden 'Guardians' shooting wooden bullets, so if they hit you, it wouldn' hurt....And they're from Cleveland, and we all know the Cleveland 'Guardians' can't hit a thing."

But Dave--I agree with you 100%. Even though I'm not sure how I feel about the pre-show and storytelling of SRE, I applaud the park for trying to tie together all of the theming. For a park that clearly isn't a theme park, I think they've done a bang-up job. I think Jason McClure really liked Frontiertown, and may have been one of the driving forces in embracing and extending it. I hope the park continues to show it the love it deserves, even if there are some growing pains.

Last edited by Western Cruiser, Wednesday, September 1, 2021 8:01 PM
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Thursday, September 2, 2021 12:46 AM

I totally forgot about the basilisk subplot. I have to admit that I also didn’t understand the point of it while on the ride.

Ultimately, count me in as someone who would prefer a less interactive river boat ride. But if the interactive element is here to stay, I think the story needs to be reworked. I just don’t see it landing with adults or children currently, and I’m not sure who’s left.

Also, does the theme have to be frontier related? Since the ride’s entrance is by the Gemini midway, I think a more modern Ohio river cruise theme could be interesting and more bespoke.

(And whoops, I have no idea where I got “SNE” from!)


Thrills Around the Corner!

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