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Messages - HikerDan

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My wife and I finally took the time to ride TT for our first time on Mother's Day, Sunday morning at park opening.

We got there at 9:15 and walked down the hill expecting to arrive at a chain somewhere along the way. We were surprised that SDC let everyone go ahead and line up in the station building queue areas. We skipped the photo and went right upstairs onto the 2nd level where we waited 10 minutes for the ride to open and just another 10 or so to board the ride. 

We didn't know that you are assigned a seat, so when I saw that we hoped for the back row. That's exactly what we got!...row 8. Once on the 3rd level we actually had to wait for the next train as the back row seats on one of them weren't functioning.

We dropped out of the station turning slightly to the right and we were pretty surprised at the pull of the drop from that angle. It was a lot of fun in the back. On one early ride hill we were looking straight to the ground. We were also surprised how much our back row car rotated. We turned several full revolutions going through the ride. I also thought both launches came to a full stop before the launch, so the 2nd one was also a surprise.

Of course the ride is very short in duration and we knew that, but the people in front of us said, "Is it over? That was quick.". We came into the station now on the seventh row.

We only rode TT once and moved on. We both thought it was a fun ride and will try to ride again next week on some other spots on the trains to see where we like riding the best. After one ride I don't think that TT will replace PK as my favorite in the park, or replace OR as my wife's fave, but we'll give it several more rides and see how it goes. Hopefully TT will be a reliable ride for the park so everyone can usually expect the ride to be running at park opening for years to come. It seems to us that Wildfire has always been the most reliable so far (except they had problems Sunday morning just as we boarded and had to get off without riding...rare.)

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2018 Trip Reports
« on: May 06, 2018, 10:55:53 AM »
My wife and I decided to head south for the City yesterday just for the hell of it... SDC trip #7 for 2018.

We read the heavy attendance warnings and were fully aware of the impending crowded day before us. The SDC website even had suggestions for Saturday visitors and what route to take coming to the park. They wanted folks to come through Branson West (our route) instead of coming from the east, and encouraged anyone who could to come early.

A couple of weeks ago we visited on a cold day when there were maybe 1000 people in the park total. So why not also experience 20,000 people in the park?

We arrived at 8:30 a.m. and the entrance road was already very busy, almost backed up to the fork in the road that early. We zipped into our preferred lot at the bottom of the metal stairs and were the first car parked down there. However, before we even gathered up our stuff and locked the car the lot attendants were already beginning to park cars in our lot. Wow!, that was quick.

As well as knowing that Mercy and ACE would be in the park, we saw several school buses unloading at the time and quite a few obvious Bluegrass fans heading in as well.

Went through the ticket scan pretty quick and into a busy Gazebo area. We were lucky enough to grab a couple of seats to watch the Pickers at the Gazebo before opening.  The Pickers participated in opening ceremonies as well. There was the pledge and the anthem and then the stampede to the thrill rides. We never even looked to the right down Valley Road heading towards TT and instead went left down Hugo's Hill Street for PK, etc.

For the second time this year the crew at PK were running three trains at opening. The operators were doing a great job loading and unloading and things were running smooth as we got front row seats for our initial morning ride.

Of course we knew things would get crazy busy really fast yesterday morning, so I asked my wife, "FiTH or WF?". She chose WF this time. Walked right onto that one and took two back row seats for that awesome pull down the big drop. FiTH was already backing up far out of the building, so we took off for Wilson's Farm.

Things were going well until we entered Wilson's Farm. Stunningly the crew at the Barn Swing had started up the swing with only one side swinging yesterday. The line was already winding through the railings and so they decided they needed to close off the ride to incoming visitors, empty the queue, start up the second swing, and then reopen the ride. That was a real head scratcher. We bailed on that one.

Upon arriving to OR they were still testing the ride and it had yet to open. Not good. We decided to wait a few minutes as we saw a ride operator riding one of the trains as it came out of the barrel roll, and that short wait paid off as they opened the ride once that train entered the station. Great timing for us as we got to ride in the front. Walking back past the swing we noticed they were still trying to empty the queue with the single swing and the operator at the closed chain was giving lots of explanations to quite a crowd gathering around the area. "We have to close the ride to start the 2nd swing, yada, yada, yada..." over and over to raised eyebrows and eye rolls from those being turned away. 

We were over at Fireman's landing 15 minutes later and overheard someone saying (while looking at their phone app), "Outlaw Run is still closed".  I guess I should have stopped and informed them that the app was wrong, but we were in a rush to get up to the Boatworks for some Bluegrass.

The group called Farm Hands at the Boatworks were very experienced musicians and we enjoyed a few tunes before heading towards the Heritage Hall. We passed through the Frisco Barn and were surprised what we saw in there. In past years during the BBQ Fest the barn was always full of wares that they were selling for grilling and BBQ purposes. Yesterday the Frisco Barn simply had maybe fifteen or twenty dining tables set up in two rows for folks to sit and eat. I like that. An indoor eating area for overflow from the Heritage Hall BBQ Fest. It was roomy in the barn too, as there was absolutely nothing in there but the rows of tables with tablecloths.

We stopped in the Culinary Craft School for some quick munchies with the pretzels, dips, and crackers. There were quite a few members from ACE inside the Culinary School, like more than a dozen. Maybe a complimentary cooking session with the school was part of the ACE experience? We saw many, many people wearing shirts of different types referring to ACE throughout the park yesterday. One of the shirts that quite a few of them wore stated something about riding TT in the dark.  Must have been late last night they gave the ACE folks a night ride on TT.

The Heritage Hall was already fairly busy with people eating BBQ at 10:50 in the morning. Man, those folks must really like some BBQ. We grabbed a couple of seats and watched another band for a few songs.  Interesting that this group was more of a country band than bluegrass. They played a cover of a Johnny Cash hit and then a Willie Nelson hit song. They all wore cowboy hats and were dressed in the cowboy western style. I wanted to catch the bluegrass group at the Dockside theater at 11:15 so we cruised on back to that area hoping that the theater wasn't already full.

I think most of the show goers were in the Opera House for the featured group at that time as we easily found seats for Remington Ryde at Dockside.  They were an entertaining bunch who mostly kept the show pretty lively. I tend to doze off on the groups who slow it down for too long and drone on and on. This group was pretty peppy though and the lead vocalist did a great job. We stayed for the whole 30 minute show.

Of course by now the crowd was getting bigger, all of the rides were swamped, and the eateries were bustling. It really wasn't too bad in the park before noon though and we were pretty much able to do most of what we wanted. The veteran SDC group Horsecreek Band is back at the gazebo for the festival and we took a whirl up the walkway heading towards midtown and on to Main Street and the Gazebo at noon for Larry Sledge, Butch, and the gang.

There was quite a crowd coming from the entrance and onto Main Street now, a steady stream of folks four and five wide.

After 30 minutes of Horsecreek we chose to mosey around a few shops near Main Street, watched the shenanigans of the Street Troupe (Hatfield/McCoy love potion skit), and went partially down Hill Street for some shops around there. We then poked around Homestead Ridge and the animal area waiting for the Pickers at 1:30.  Visitors were still steadily pouring in, so of course we weren't gonna go back down any hills and back into the park. There was a good crowd for the Pickers, but no problem finding a seat. The guys played a little longer than the 30 minutes and we were heading out of the park around 2:15. 

The wave of visitors continuing to enter the city was amazing. We were swimming upstream against a strong current of eager SDC arrivals. We eventually made our way out though and made the walk to our parking lot. A lucky, lucky young fella and his girlfriend were part of a steady stream of vehicles circling our lot hoping for a parking space to open up. As we walked down the metal stairs many cars passed our little car parked right up front and this lucky guy drove up just as we approached our car. I waved at him and signaled that our spot would be available. Some smiles, clapping, and fist pumping ensued between the young couple as they waited for us to back out.  Obviously the new arrivals were desperate for any parking spot to open.

Earlier we saw a sign attached to the Gazebo promoting some kind of Mercy employees dance on the square from 8:30 - 10:30 pm.  There were a huge amount of cars coming into the area as we worked our way out. On our way towards Branson West we noticed several SDC employees alongside the highway holding signs pointing the fresh arrivals to grassy parking areas off 76 highway west of SDC. There were cars filling them up and we saw a white bus full of people leaving one of those improvised lots . The City and Mercy Health must have planned for large groups to visit not only in the morning but also in the late afternoon and evening hours. SDC was prepared and ready to receive those folks in the afternoon.

It was a fun day in the City and we were glad we went ahead and visited. Also glad we left when we did.

Will be ready for another visit next weekend for Rhonda Vincent and the Rage. Hopefully we can manage to do all of our Mother's Day stuff on Saturday so we can enjoy a much quieter day in the park on Sunday.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: Attendence number....
« on: April 19, 2018, 09:20:30 AM »
Anybody know what a normal attendance total would be for a weekday during WorldFest/Festival of Wonder?  I have absolutely no idea, so there's really nothing for me to compare with the 4,000 through the gate on Wednesday number. It doesn't sound too bad for a Wednesday in April, but maybe SDC is hoping for better numbers this year.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2018 Trip Reports
« on: April 16, 2018, 11:17:01 AM »
My wife and I made our 4th and 5th trip of '18 to the city on Saturday and Sunday April 14 & 15.  Our first 3 trips were of course during spring ride days and we chose some fairly nice days to visit and walk around the park in the mornings looking around and also riding many rides while most everyone else was desperate to ride the new coaster. 

We were curious in March to find out just how much effort SDC would put into having most or all of their rides up and running early after opening, knowing that the majority of their visitors focus would be on TT.  We were happy to find out that most of the rides were ready and running shortly after opening. Lots of new ride operators and some familiar face as well.

It was fun heading back in the park on those mornings and riding WF, PK, FiTH, OR and the Swing at will. When we snuck over to the TT area to look around at the changes and new additions we were able to get on FM and the Train fairly easy as well each day. Everything in the park looks just great and an excellent 2018 at SDC is under way.

We still have yet to ride TT because it's just not a priority for us right now. We did the same thing during the opening season of OR and waited a while until our first ride.  Our number of visits to the city each year is in the 20's (I think it was 26 last year) and we'll eventually ride TT with ease at some point during the year and in the future.  Now days OR is the easiest ride to get on in the park.

On Saturday, April 14 we parked in our usual parking spot, in the lot at the bottom of the hill to the left of the entrance road. I don't even know the number or name of the lot, but we've used it for years. We walk up the metal stairs, under the entrance road, across the road leading to paid parking, hang a right and then on to the city. SDC has been doing a great job of getting folks through bag check and the entrance during our visits no matter the crowd size. We're always on site 5 or 10 minutes before opening and sometimes there's a pretty good crowd trying to get through at that time.  As many of us know it can get a bit congested right after ticket scan as so many people tend to stop right there to organize themselves and gather up the family. But, it's understandable and no big deal to us. I always grab my pathfinder and turn to the left towards the exit area out of the way, remove only the show schedule from the pathfinder and deposit the rest of the paper into the handy paper recycle bin provided by SDC. Meanwhile my wife can get her pass put away, her backpack on, and into the city we go.

As many of you know it was a cold weekend at SDC which kept the crowds down for those of us who visited. When the sun was out on Saturday the cold wasn't too bad and I think they may have eventually got TT running at some point during the day. We walked by at some time before noon and the new ride was down for some reason, but we saw it running later so hopefully all those people who came specifically for TT got to ride eventually. As we passed noon on Saturday the crowds did pick up some and there was a decent amount of folks in the park.

Our visit this past weekend was primarily to catch the 3 premier shows in the large indoor venues, and of course mix those in with the Pickers at the Homestead.  We figured with the low crowds it would be a great time to make the short trip down from Nixa for this festival. 

On Saturday we caught the Pickers at 9:30, rode the swing a couple times and the shot tower over at FL and then back to the illusionist in the Playhouse at 11:00.  My wife really enjoyed the illusionist and wants to go back soon to enjoy the show again. There was a magician and his wife doing a show at the Playhouse a few years back, and I thought that show was better than this one, but to each his/her own. We'll go see Vitaly again at some point. The Playhouse show ended 15 minutes before the start of CirqUnique over at the Opera House so we beat it over there hoping for more entertainment.

Wow!, the Opera House was nearly full as we arrived and we had to wait to be seated and escorted in to a couple of open seats. The place was packed before showtime and every seat was filled to capacity. There was no one with disabilities at the show so the ushers put us in the back row right in front of the exit doors. An after show QUICK EXIT! We loved that opportunity. Unfortunately the old fart sitting next to me obviously hadn't taken his shower this week and attempted to cover it up with some cheap deodorant and cologne. Since we were so close to the exit I pondered leaving the show, but instead I torn a kleenex in half and stuffed a wad in each nostril to get me through the show.  My mouth was quite dry after the show from the direct mouth breathing, but it worked well enough. CirqUnique started with a dud as a kind of clown dressed guy simply marched from one side of the theater to the other clapping along to a song with the crowd for way too long. I guess his role is merely to try and get the crowd excited before the legit acts. There was a lot of talent packed into the show from there on with four or five different performing artists showcasing their skills. I would go back again. The show was done in 35 minutes, a little shorter than the estimated time, so ya'll may be able to take that into account when you're planning your day. Many people walked straight from the OH to the Saloon for the 12:30 show.

There's a bit of a lull between shows from 12:30 to 1:30 so we strolled clockwise around the park burning time until 1:30 Pickers at the Homestead.  We eventually made our way to Main St. just after 1:00 and stood behind a decent crowd to check out the X-POGO stunt guys. Many people, including myself, were impressed with the pogo stunts. Quite a few other people left quickly, not very entertained by young men bouncing around on hopped-up pogo sticks. But, these guys were doing aerials ten feet in the air, doing back flips and front flips and the such...I was impressed and gave them plenty of applause.

The Pickers were their usual entertaining selves of course. Most of our trips end around the 5 hour mark at 2:30 as that is always when the park is at it's busiest it seems. We stopped in for a delicious pizza over at Reeds Spring Pizza and then on home via the short drive to Nixa.

Sunday, April 15 was bitter cold with the wind all day. But, you can always dress for these things and that's what we did. I really wanted to visit Sunday to see just how many folks would come to the park. Man it was empty, and of course none of the outdoor rides opened during the day, too cold. That was as quiet as I've ever seen the park in the morning and most of the day. We caught the Pickers at 9:30 and enjoyed the fire in the cabin while listening to those stringed instruments. At 10 we were on to the FiTH and had a train to ourselves for one ride. Only a few other guests on our second ride. And it was back to the fire in the cabin for the Pickers again at 10:30. The Earth Harp Collective in Red Gold was set for 11:30 and that worked out great for us.

There was probably 200 people or so in the hall for the earth harp and group. We saw this show last year and I had forgotten that there were guitar, drums, violin, and vocalists along with the harp. The movie themed show was different from last year and aside from "The Rose" we really enjoyed the show. Nothing against the female singer who performed "the Rose" (she has a beautiful voice) but that song just puts me to sleep.  I'm a big James Bond fan so I really enjoyed their version of Skyfall and Live or Let Die. There were a few others thrown in there as well and lots of drums for anyone who like drums. It was good, as my wife likes drum solos. We had time after the Earth Harp to beat it across the park and catch the new Saloon show at 12:30.

Unfortunately for us when we arrived at the Saloon the CirqUnique show had just let out and most ALL of them beat us to the Saloon. We could get in the door, but it was standing room only. I don't think they'd ever allowed people to stand in the show without a seat, but they were doing it this time. We actually went inside and up the stairs to the balcony, but it was full and people were standing behind seated people. We just left, no big deal, we'll catch the show some other time. It was nice to see the Saloon performers get a full house, because when we walked by earlier leaving the FiTH there were only about 20 people waiting in line for the show at 10:30 just before door opening.

We walked around the quiet park all bundled up for a while and visited several shops and did whatever. The fire was once again waiting for us at 1:30 in the cabin and the Pickers played a little longer than normal. Each show in the cabin saw a few more folks show up as the day went on. I think there were 7 of us at the first show early, probably a dozen or so at the next, and a good 20 inside in the afternoon. Sometimes when there are fewer people at the Picker shows I am lucky enough to get in a request or two through the day. One thing to mention about the Picker shows this weekend and well into May: there are only 3 of the 4 guys playing right now as Danny Eakin is out until sometime in May recovering from a surgery for medical issues. They say he is doing fine, but needs time to heal up before he rejoins the group. So it's Greg Becker, Greg Bailey, and Walt Morrison for a while.

Thank you so much to SDC (if any of ya'll PTB are reading this) for this wonderful playground you give my wife and I every year and thank you for continuing to bring back our favorite part of this great park, The Homestead Pickers. These fellas are so talented, obviously love what they do, and their kind interaction with their guests and fans is second to none. We've watched a lot of Picker shows over the years and I must say that the group they have at the Homestead right now is the best we've ever been fortunate enough to enjoy. There have been a few very talented guitarists who performed alongside Becker, Danny, and Bailey...but, with all due respect to those who came before, Walt is the finest addition to this group we've seen yet. He is a very talented professional musician.  All you locals can catch him over at Flat Creek Restaurant on Friday and Saturday nights year round as he does a solo act over there for that incredibly popular eatery on the James River arm of Table Rock Lake. 

Anyhow, it's been a fun 5 trips to the city so far and we look forward to at least 20 more. Maybe we'll actually try to walk down and hop on the TT at some point on an early Sunday morning this spring. No big deal, it's gonna be there for years, and so are we.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: November 15, 2017, 09:40:29 AM »
Those cars look very awesome, looks like an incredible amount of detail in the theming there. Looking forward to seeing those trains and the entire theme next year. I really like that they're giving us something in the restraint to grab and hold onto with our hands, if we so desire. 

I wish SDC would have, or could in the future, give us a handhold of some type on Outlaw Run to ease the jarring some.  With OR, my wife and I currently use the slotted rails of the lap restraint on both sides of our knees to hold onto, and it helps quite a bit, along with only riding towards the front.  I used to use the lip of the seat in front of me to hang on, but grasping the rails of my own restraint works better.

As extravagant as those cars look for Time Traveler I'm a little puzzled about the modest and pretty much bland look and current color of the station for this new ride.  I'm sure the inside of the station will be themed heavily and well done as always by SDC, but I'm sort of hoping the outside makes a transformation of some kind over the off season. Maybe it will all come together by next March, and the whole thing will be just excellent.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2017 Project Part 2
« on: November 09, 2017, 09:44:09 AM »
Thanks so much for the video sirwillow! My wife and I likely won't be able to visit during Old Time Christmas this year so we really enjoyed what you shared with us here. Thanks again for taking the time and making the effort with this and sharing it with everyone.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: August 18, 2017, 09:51:12 AM »
 I could ride Time Traveler ten times in a row, eat a greasy burger, and go ride Outlaw Run, no problem.  My wife certainly could not, but she wouldn't mind if I did.

For myself the issue is not that TT could make me dizzy or nauseous, as I seem to be immune to that for now, but rather I just simply don't find spinning (controlled or not) with inversions to be something I'm very interested in with an amusement park ride.

If SDC wants to join in on the coaster/thrill ride wars then more power to 'em and I really hope TT is a hit with thrill seeking visitors here in the Ozarks and surrounding states. I'm sure the park is currently getting the exposure it's seeking on the national thrill ride stage and getting buzz around theme park industry websites.  It will bring in some enthusiest folks from far away to check out the ride and the park next year. But what I'll be watching is 2-3-4 years from now will this ride continue to consistently draw the local crowds to it like I hope.

You'll have to excuse some of us who aren't purely SDC lapdogs whom eagerly await their announcements with pom-poms and cheers on cue, and then whine about those not proudly cheering along with us.

My wife and I love the place and are about to make our 16th visit of 2017 on Sunday. We appreciate and praise many things and people around the city, but are also not beyond criticism and sometimes lack of interest with some things as well. 

Best of wishes to the park with TT in the coming years. I'll eventually ride that thing dozens of times and likely enjoy it in some fashion or another.  I just really hope that the 12-18 crowd ride it hundreds of times and go crazy over this never before seen attraction for years to come, that's the key.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: August 16, 2017, 08:22:26 PM »
That was a great post earlier BackInTime9.

The post stating, "A percentage of the patrons will....etc".

Some pertinent thoughts and well explained points throughout that post.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: August 16, 2017, 08:14:59 PM »
My wife and I probably won't care for this coaster much.  All the spinning coupled with inversions is specifically meant for a younger thrill ride enthusiast crowd.  But that is fine with us if this ride will at least draw some of the crowd away from Powder Keg, FITH, Wildfire area in the coming years.

Outlaw Run will be an old west ghost town in the future. It's already the easiest ride to get on in the city. I assume that's because it has gotten so rough. My wife and I will only ride in one of the first two rows nowadays and usually only once per visit.  This could be good for getting on the Swing as well.

Gonna suck for the awhile though.

The teenagers should love Time Traveler. Gonna be a lot of screamers on that one for sure.

The City still needs a GCI full of airtime and no inversions or it needs a hyper with no inversions. Cedar's RMC's they announced today are heavy on the airtime hills with their barrel rows included. Just give me some relentless air moments for 60 seconds.

We visited Cedar Point several years back and rode the no inversion coasters Magnum XL and Millennium Force A LOT (and of course the Dragster one).  Always hoped SDC could put in some big hyper steel coaster like those someday, but I guess probably not enough room for it, or the terrain isn't suitable for something that expansive. We like the one at WoF as well although it's been a few years since we visited, Mamba.

Anyhow, love the Powder Keg, FITH, and the Swing.  Good with the Wildfire, Outlaw, and TNT. Hoped for a much bigger tower ride, but that one is okay (the Bigfoot tower in Branson is awesome, the real deal).  Don't ever get rid of the Flooded Mine. And I pray that the teenys absolutely love the Time Traveler more than any other ride in the park and are inspired to ride it over and over before moving on to other areas of the city.  That didn't seem to happen with Outlaw after a few months. 

Of course we'll eventually take some spins on TT, but I know right now it won't be a priority during our many yearly visits.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: August 16, 2017, 07:52:41 PM »
My wife and I probably won't care for this coaster much.  All the spinning coupled with inversions is specifically meant for a younger thrill ride enthusiast crowd.  But that is fine with us if this ride will at least draw some of the crowd away from Powder Keg, FITH, Wildfire area in the coming years.

Outlaw Run will be an old west ghost town in the future. It's already the easiest ride to get on in the city. I assume that's because it has gotten so rough. My wife and I will only ride in one of the first two rows nowadays and usually only once per visit.  This could be good for getting on the Swing as well.

Gonna suck for the Thunderation/Flooded Mine/Train area for awhile though.

The teenagers should love Time Traveler. Gonna be a lot of screamers on that one for sure.

I am afraid this will mean increased season pass cost, and major increased crowds making it an unpleasant experience all the time.

Yea the increased crowds will be there for this ride during Spring Ride Days, about any Saturday, and through the summer, but we can still find many mornings through any year to visit the city and enjoy some riding and walking around without the place being unpleasantly crazy.  Things picked up somewhat during the year of the Outlaw Run debut, but it was still tolerable on many days. I expect the same with this new addition.

I guess that's the advantage of being locals, it's easy for us to choose any given Sunday morning for a 5 hour visit to the city, and even some Saturdays now and then aren't too busy.  For instance, this coming weekend there is no festival, the kiddos and teachers are back in school, we're in a gap between summer and fall, so Sunday morning would likely be a great time for a visit.   

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2018 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: August 16, 2017, 06:11:54 PM »
My wife and I probably won't care for this coaster much.  All the spinning coupled with inversions is specifically meant for a younger thrill ride enthusiast crowd.  But that is fine with us if this ride will at least draw some of the crowd away from Powder Keg, FITH, Wildfire area in the coming years.

Outlaw Run will be an old west ghost town in the future. It's already the easiest ride to get on in the city. I assume that's because it has gotten so rough. My wife and I will only ride in one of the first two rows nowadays and usually only once per visit.  This could be good for getting on the Swing as well.

Gonna suck for the Thunderation/Flooded Mine/Train area for awhile though.

The teenagers should love Time Traveler. Gonna be a lot of screamers on that one for sure.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2017 Trip Reports
« on: July 30, 2017, 09:17:36 AM »
My wife and I made trip #14 to SDC in 2017 yesterday, Saturday, July 29 (we're keeping track on a calender this year).  We hadn't really planned ahead to make this short trip yesterday but the weather was mild and what better way to enjoy the cooler temps than a half day at the City.

We pretty much went just to take in three sets with the Homestead Pickers and one with Rockapella. Also whatever other attractions we could manage between sets on what we expected to of course be a busy Saturday in the City.

The Pickers were their entertaining selves as we caught the 9:30, 10:30, and 1:30 shows. Managed to hang out with Rockapella for the 11:30 show.  The Rockapella performance went really quick (30 minutes) as the guys kept the show moving along at a rapid pace. I liked it more than my wife did for sure. The black guy has a great voice and moved to the front of the group for a few throwback medleys from the 60's and 70's. The crowd I think had a bit of a mixed reaction as some obviously loved the group and others maybe not so much.  One performer does drums with his voice, which was entertaining and different. 

The crowds at the City were of course decent, but manageable. There was a large company group from a Kansas manufacturer in park yesterday but nothing like some of the other infamous company days at the park.  We were able to enjoy a float through the Flooded Mine and a spin on Thunderation after the first Picker show. I thought those circular concrete supports behind the new ride was for track coming in behind the building. But we saw yesterday that they're for an entrance bridge for the future riders.

We went straight to the Playhouse after the second Picker set and the theater was barely half full.  Just don't think the summer crowds of kiddos and family fun seekers are very into the musical performances.  Makes it easy to see these types of shows even on busy saturdays.

We didn't expect to be able to do much in the park after leaving the Playhouse at noon because of the crowds and all.  We had 90 minutes to kill before the next show down at the Pickin' Shed, so we just started walking. Stopped and stood along the back fence at Dockside and watched Cedric and the Cajun gang for a couple of songs. Then moved along into Wilsons Farm area just checking on the crowds at the attractions over there. Surprisingly we were able to get a swing at the Barn and a ride on Outlaw Run. The ride operators at BOTH attractions were doing a fantastic job of moving things along, kudos and applause for them. The park was really busy, but it was just a few minutes for a ride over at the farm. 

We knew better than to even try for a ride on Powder Keg (gotta do that one at park opening, if it's running), so we went the opposite direction across the park to nibble on some pretzels and dips at the Culinary School, grabbed a couple dollar root beers, and sat on the back porch for a bit behind the Culinary building. 

The crowds were pretty thick going from the Grand exposition area back up to main street and eventually to the Homestead petting area and then down into the holler for the Pickers at the shed. 

We left after the 1:30 show for a few crafty cold ones and a pizza at Reeds Spring Pizza and the short trip home to Nixa afterwards.  Our favorite pizza pie at this award winning inn is the Long Creek Herbs.  We always get the biggest one so we can enjoy seconds at home later in the evening.

Back to leaving SDC around 2:15ish...there were a lot of people just showing up at the City as we were leaving. That Moonlight Madness at the park must be quite the popular deal.  Must be a lot of fun for the kiddos and teens with all the stuff going on after dark (fireworks, bands, rides, street dance...etc).  I think this nighttime event helps us out a bit too, as the park isn't quite as crowded early in the day during this fest. 

Wrapping this up, we want to say a big THANK YOU to the Pickers, Rockapella, the ride operators, and everyone at SDC who did such a great job of making our 5 hours in the park yesterday a very enjoyable one.  Looking forward to those few weekends in August between festivals when we can stroll the park casually in the mornings and even most of the day. 

Anybody know what Saturday(s) those big hospitals have their employee day(s) at the City this year? I'm thinking at least one will be on one of those August Saturdays. We'll skip that one and go on Sunday instead.   

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: SDC Christmas Ornament Check List
« on: November 05, 2016, 07:15:23 PM »
Sure those aren't ornaments for the Santa pictures you were looking at?

Don't know...just saw frame type ornaments hanging in front of every register and a non-moving stagnant line and bailed on the whole operation. 

After the firedog ornament they gave out last year we weren't too concerned to stick around and figure out just what this year's ornament actually was. 

HUGE crowd this year on opening night of Old Time Christmas though.  SDC is killin' it with this fest.  We were there from 10:45 to 2:30 and left after the ornament deal and when we realized the Pickers were gonna hole up inside of that cabin on a 60+ degree day instead of playing out front like they should have been. 

Great 3+ hours in the park this morn though as we rode every ride in the place easily and visited many shops with very little crowd early.  Great, great morning/noon at SDC in November.  That place was gonna get insane crazy after 3:00ish though.  On our way out through the lot we saw plates from MO, AR, OK, KS, LA, MS, NE, IA, CO, NM, TN, KY, and OH.  SDC is bringin' em in from a dozen states or more for a Christmas Fest on November, 5...amazing!

Ya'll let us know if this years collectible ornament isn't actually a picture frame...thanks!


General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: SDC Christmas Ornament Check List
« on: November 05, 2016, 04:35:57 PM »
We were on park for around 3 hours today and peeked into the building for pass renewal and ornament collection intending on getting our yearly ornaments.  There was a decent line of folks in front of us and we weren't in a huge hurry so we waited around a bit, and the line WAS NOT moving at all. So 20 minutes goes by without a step towards the building and I decide to just move to the entry way and peek into the building to see "what's up?" and I see some ornament looking things dangling from red string off of each cashier area and they appeared to be tiny pewter picture frames...I think. 

We bailed out on the line and left (there was more talking and chatting goin' on inside the building between operators and customers than actual transactions), and I COULD BE MISTAKEN, but what I saw just might be a lil' tiny picture frame ornament with Silver Dollar City, or somethin or other, etched into the bottom.  That's what was hanging from the counters anyhow.  If I'm wrong ya'll please let me know. Otherwise, I think I'll skip the ornament collection this year.   

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: The Festival of Wonder
« on: November 05, 2016, 09:43:00 AM »
I'll definitely visit at least twice during this new festival, and maybe more if my wife and I really enjoy some of these shows. All of these performers appear to be quite accomplished professionals and will likely entertain people of all ages.  Likely even more so for us adults

So it looks like there are four main performances which I'm assuming will all be in the city all four weekends of this fest.  So we'll likely have the Red Gold, Opera House, Playhouse, and at least one of the outdoor venues in use by these four entertainers/groups.  It would help this fest if SDC would also use the Gazebo and the remaining outdoor theater for some type of local performers or whatever.  And the Pickers at the Homestead.

If this is how this fest will happen, then I'd presume we would  be very pleased with our visits come next April. 

Leaving for the Old Time Christmas in a few minutes!  Not sure how long we will last in the city today, but we want to head down from Nixa and at least check things out for a few hours, or maybe more.  I don't think we'll make it to sundown, but ya never know.

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