Thursday, May 28, 2009

Call me crazy. Tod told me about his school’s 5th grade class' trip to the A M A Z I N G Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio (which is ironically north of Upper Sandusky, Ohioans are apparently geographically challenged) so I jumped on it and booked some places on the bus. So tomorrow, Miss Anna and I, along with her BFF Chloe and her Grandma Beth will venture to the Buckeye State to soak up the wonder that is the Point.

I can’t wait.

I grew up going to both Cedar Point and King’s Island as a kid but love CP for its charm and amazing roller coasters. The Beast is the best coaster in the world, hands down, but I won’t drive all the way down there to Southern Ohio for just one coaster. Millennium Force is my second coaster, with Michigan’s Adventure’s Shivering Timbers a close third. And, my chiropractor loves the fact that I adore the Mean Streak at CP, or as my friend Dale calls it, the Spine Crusher 2000. While some of the pussy coaster purists call it too rough, I love it. It’s a grand ride with a great presence in the park. Buck up ACE nerds, your weak spines will survive. Oh, and don’t forget the Cyclone in New York. A great ride, worth every minute.

Call me callous, but I can’t wait until Anna is tall enough to go on the big ones. Tod is apparently coast-challenged and almost tossed his cookies on the return loop on Magnum XL 2000. To his defense, we had just done Top Thrill Dragster a moment before… and his little tummy was upset. As he was holding in his lunch, I was yelling at him and warning him that if he puked on the crowd below he would totally spend the rest of the day in the car. I love Tod, but I wish I would have known about this coaster issue before I put a ring on it.

My expectations for tomorrow are lowered. In the past, the trips to the Point have been guerrilla in nature. Get in; get in line, GET IT DONE. Tomorrow will be about exploring the park from a three year old’s eyes.

I can’t wait.

My folks were patient with my brother and I, it’s my turn now to show Anna and Chloe the sublime wonders of this great place. While some of the greatness is gone, much remains from my childhood.
What do I miss?
• the Earthquake Ride and the Pirate’s Ride.
• the Fun House.
• the Jumbo Jet
• the Frontier Lift
• the artists on Frontier Trail. I took pottery because I watched a guy throw on the wheel for an afternoon once when I was in high school.
• And who could forget the Schwabinchen and the Rotor?

My brother called CP and booked a special trip on the Space Needle to propose to his bride a few years back, so yeah, this park has a history in my family. I have many fond memories from the park as well, some with folks who are still with us, some with folks who have passed on. I will never forget my high school band trip to Cedar Point with my dear friend Christopher. We laughed, we explored, and we took it all in. The black and white images from the photo booth in the massive arcade are one of my prized possessions. He left Toledo shortly after high school and died a few years later from HIV/AIDS. I miss him dearly. And, from a trip with my old friend Terry, I don’t recommend doing poppers prior to dropping on Demon Drop.

Just sayin’.

But, I will recommend laughing hysterically watching a group of nuns go down that perilous drop and seeing their wimples fly up as they catapulted to earth. We lol’d.

Tomorrow will be a new chapter, and I can’t wait. Anna is stoked and is delaying going to bed as I write this. But we’ll survive. When she hears the clack clack clack of the Blue Streak going around its end curve as we walk into the park, she’ll know that she is in a different place and all will be good. That’s why I love amusement parks, it’s suspended reality and in times like these, that’s a good thing.