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Ultimate Rollercoaster > Discussion Forums > Roller Coasters, Parks & Attractions > Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice

Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice

drachen drachen Profile

Posted:
5/16/12 at
6:36:32 PM

So, as I've mentioned before, I, for some reason, have never been to Kings Island. It's embarrassing for me to admit. But I plan to finally go next week.

I originally had plans to go to Chicago to ride X-Flight, but they fell through and will have to wait until later on. So, I have this 5-day Memorial Day weekend, and nothing to do. The wheels are turning for this trip to finally happen.

My plan would simply be to drive out to Mason on Sunday, go to the park until close, return to the park for a few hours on Monday, and drive home. But I have some questions for the Kings Island pros.

I have an agenda for this first-time visit. It looks something like this:

1) Beast - for obvious reasons

2) Racer - very excited for it

3) Vortex - may be endangered, love Arrow Loopers

4) Flight Deck - may be endangered, love Arrow suspendeds

5) Diamondback - haven't met a B&M I didn't like

6) Adventure Express - see Fan, Arrow...

7) Woodstock Express - I don't do kiddie rides, but I'm on a mission to ride every wooden coaster in the country.

8) Invertigo - will complete my U.S. invertigo trifecta

9) Back Lot Stunt Coaster - if there's time, as I already rode KD's version.

10) Flight of Fear - see Back Lot Stunt Coaster

11) Flying Ace - I would normally skip it, but I have yet to experience this family ride from Vekoma in any park. So, I may give it a whirl.

I already rode Firehawk at Geauga Lake, so I won't be riding it here. I'd rather give the Beast a few more spins.

Questions:

1) What kind of crowd should I expect on these two days? Is a late-May Sunday crowded? Is Memorial Day? Should I plan on purchasing the dreaded Fast Lane...?

2) Where's the best place to eat inside the park? Outside? Is there a Culver's nearby?

3) I plan on getting there early on Monday, is there a good way to navigate the park to beat the crowds? Does everyone head to Diamondback first?

4) Which coasters run with three train operation?

Thanks in advance. If I have anymore questions, I will post them here.

* This post was modified at 5/16/12 7:46:50 PM *

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.87 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.57 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
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Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by Geauga_Dog Geauga_Dog Profile at 5/16/12 7:33:38 PM

1) What kind of crowd should I expect on these two days? Is a late-May Sunday crowded? Is Memorial Day? Should I plan on purchasing the dreaded Fast Lane...?

It may be packed but Soak City opens that weekend and may take some of the crowd away. As for Fast Lane I think I'd wait it out to see how the park fills up before I'd get it (that's just my opinion though).

2) Where's the best place to eat inside the park? Outside? Is there a Culver's nearby?

I usually get some LaRosa's pizza at the Festhaus just so that I can get out of the sun plus LaRosa's is decent (not carboard like park pizza can be). They also have a Panda Express in the Festhaus and if you're looking for a break in the action they do have two shows there you can watch while you eat if timed correctly. There is also a Chik-fil-a near Planet Snoopy but they are closed on Sunday.

Outside of the park there's Chipotle on Kings Island Drive and an Outback, Taco Bell, McDonald's on the south side (park side) of I-71 on Kings Mills Road. There's Wendy's, Frisch's Big Boy and Perkins on the north side of I-71 on Kings Mills Road as well as Bob Evans and Skyline Chili on Waterpark Drive, which leads to the now closed Beach water park.

Sorry, not familiar with Culver's.

3) I plan on getting there early on Monday, is there a good way to navigate the park to beat the crowds? Does everyone head to Diamondback first?

I will have to say, yes, they do run to Diamondback but Action Zone, where Invertigo, Delirium, and Drop Tower are, can get a good crowd first thing in the morning. Best bet would be to head towards the back of the park first and hit Flight of Fear, Windseeker, Vortex and Beast though Beast may not be fully warmed up yet.

4) Which coasters run with three train operation?

Vortex, Diamondback, Backlot and Beast run three trains. Not sure if Adventure Express still runs three.

Hope this helps somewhat. Have a great time.

G-Dog

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by drachen drachen Profile at 5/16/12 7:53:48 PM
Geauga_Dog said:

It may be packed but Soak City opens that weekend and may take some of the crowd away. As for Fast Lane I think I'd wait it out to see how the park fills up before I'd get it (that's just my opinion though).

I thought of that too, but they only sell so many Fast Lane passes, and I'd hate to miss out if I need it. So, I will probably purchase it ahead of time with my tickets.

Geauga_Dog said:

Sorry, not familiar with Culver's.

Culver's is a large mid-west burger and custard chain - home of the butter burger, which is one of the best fast food burgers I've ever had. There is one in Columbus. I'll have to check their website for a location near Cincinnati. There has to be one...

Thanks for the tips. These are all very tentative plans, pending approval (the wife's).

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.87 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.57 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
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Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by Geauga_Dog Geauga_Dog Profile at 5/16/12 8:49:09 PM
I should have stated that if you want to avoid a slow moving line at Invertigo go to that first and hit the stuff in Action Zone before the crowds do. I did that last Saturday after a couple of early rides on Diamondback and worked my way up through Coney Mall hitting Drop Tower and Adventure Express along the way.

G-Dog

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/16/12 8:52:22 PM
drachen said:
I'll have to check their website for a location near Cincinnati.
There has to be one...

Never heard of it, and I've lived here my whole life. My pref if the Panda.
If you've never had it before you might try Skyline. BTW I work in the ticket booth Sunday morning if you want to stop by and say Hi.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/16/12 8:58:07 PM
Geauga_Dog said:

I should have stated that if you want to avoid a slow moving line at Invertigo go to that first and hit the stuff in Action Zone before the crowds do.

Might not be a good idea. This year KI dropped early ride time on the Beast and instead added Invertigo, so those Gold and Platinum pass holders who do not want to head back to DB will be in AZ when the park opens to the public.

If it were me I think I'd head back to Coney Mall first.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by d-lo775 d-lo775 Profile at 5/16/12 9:53:52 PM
There is a Culvert's in Mason, about 5 miles from KI on Tylersville Road. Just go south on KI drive and make a right at the light just before the entrance ramp to I-71 south. That road is Western Row which turns into Tylersvill Rd. after about a mile. It will be on the right hand side of the road. Just look for the huge, WLW, diamond shaped radio tower (you can't miss it). The Culvert's is right next to the tower.

As far as the park goes. If you have a platinum pass, get to the park at 9 for ERT. You can get Invertigo, Flying Aces, Woodstock Express and Diamondback before the general public gets in at 10. Then my suggestion would be hit FoF at 10 then move to Backlot Coaster, then the Beast. The Racers, Adventure Express, Flight Deck and Vortex don't usually produce long lines. By having already having the Firehawk credit from GL you're saving yourself from the longest, slowest moving line in the park. I myself don't think a fast lane pass is a necessity for KI, but then again I've been there hundreds of times and only live 3 miles away. I think if you follow the plan I laid out, you could get every coaster, minus Firehawk, in about 3 hours (9 a.m.-noon).

* This post was modified at 5/16/12 10:01:06 PM *

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by drachen drachen Profile at 5/16/12 9:54:46 PM
Thanks, RobLec. I probably won't get to the park until after 5pm or so. You might be gone by then.

Does the park crowd die down by that point in the evening?

There is a Culvers right there in Mason after all. I would suggest that you guys give it a try some time. It's just wonderful food and custard.

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.87 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.57 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
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Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by drachen drachen Profile at 5/16/12 10:00:22 PM
d-lo775 said:

There is a Culvert's in Mason, about 5 miles from KI on Tylersville Road. Just go south on KI drive and make a right at the light just before the entrance ramp to I-71 south. That road is Western Row which turns into Tylersvill Rd. after about a mile. It will be on the right hand side of the road. Just look for the huge, WLW, diamond shaped radio tower (you can't miss it). The Culvert's is right next to the tower.


As far as the park goes. If you have a platinum pass, get to the park at 9 for ERT. You can get Invertigo, Flying Aces, Woodstock Express and Diamondback before the general public gets in at 10. Then my suggestion would be hit FoF at 10 then move to the Beast. The Racers, Adventure Express, Flight Deck and Vortex don't usually produce long lines. By having already having the Firehawk credit from GL you're saving yourself from the longest, slowest moving line in the park. I myself don't think a fast lane pass is a necessity for KI, but then again I've been there hundreds of times and only live 3 miles away. I think if you follow the plan I laid out, you could get every coaster, minus Firehawk, in about 3 hours (9 a.m.-noon).

Wow, thanks for the info. You posted as I was typing that last one, hence the Culvers cross up.

I do not have a Platinum Pass. The only other Cedar Fair park I'll get to this year is Dorney, but I don't usually pay to get in. But you laid out a great plan otherwise.

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.87 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.57 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
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Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by d-lo775 d-lo775 Profile at 5/16/12 10:40:53 PM
Drachen, if you're interested in getting in for ERT on that Monday shoot me an email at davehester@yahoo.com. I can't get you in for free, but I can get you an extra hour of ride time that morning.

The crowds the last couple years on Sunday night before Memorial day have been pretty busy.

I would suggest making the Beast your last ride of the day on Sunday. As it is a far better ride in the dark than it is during the day. Just be aware that they stop running the Beast around 9:45 for the nightly fireworks. They keep the line open until 10, when the fireworks start. They reopen the ride about 5-10 minutes after the fireworks end. You just don't want to be stuck in that line right before they temporarily stop operations at 9:45 when you could be doing something else. Just make sure you make it to the line before the fireworks start, as that's when they close the line. So ideally get there about 9:55.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/16/12 11:01:56 PM
drachen said:
I probably won't get to the park until after 5pm or so. Does the park crowd die down by that point in the evening?

Yes and no. Families usually take their kids and go home for dinner, but then a new crowd arrives to take advantage of reduced price Starlight admission after 5.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by beastmaster beastmaster Profile at 5/17/12 5:48:45 AM
d-lo775 said:


I would suggest making the Beast your last ride of the day on Sunday.

But...but....but I thought that was the park RULE, EVERY day...

Mike

The amusement park rises bold and stark
Kids are huddled on the beach in a mist...
Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by d-lo775 d-lo775 Profile at 5/17/12 9:13:49 AM
beastmaster said:

d-lo775 said:



I would suggest making the Beast your last ride of the day on Sunday.

But...but....but I thought that was the park RULE, EVERY day...

Mike

For anyone driving any significant distance or that has never had a Beast night ride. It is a "must do" and unwritten park rule to make it your last ride of the night. For someone who can watch the nightly fireworks from their driveway...not so much a priority.

The majority of my last ride of the night are actually on Diamondback. There is just something about getting back home at 10:15 or earlier that is WAY more appealing than getting home at 11:00 or later.

That's not to say that I've never gotten the urge at 9:40 to drive over and sneak in a Beast night ride....lol

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/17/12 10:01:04 AM
Best to get in your Beast night rides before the end of May... come June the lightning bugs (fireflies) will be all over your face. The old motorcycle adage of "bugs in your teeth" applies.
Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by ray_p ray_p Profile at 5/17/12 12:55:42 PM
drachen said:

There is a Culvers right there in Mason after all. I would suggest that you guys give it a try some time. It's just wonderful food and custard.

It's so wonderful that my brother and I drive from Eastlake, OH to Powell, OH (about 150 miles one way) to eat at Culver's 4 times a year. Their burgers are good, their fried chicken and fried fish are outstanding, their beef pot roast is awesome, and their custard is smooth as butter. Their food is a little more expensive than the usual fast food joint, but in my opinion, it's worth it.

Oh yeah, Kings Island is nice too. :)

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/17/12 4:36:06 PM
drachen said:

There is a Culvers right there in Mason after all. I would suggest that you guys give it a try some time. It's just wonderful food and custard.

I'll keep that in mind. It's located on the road about midway between my day job at Union Centre and my seasonal job at KI. Normally I'm either at one or the other, but occasionally I have to drive between the two. Maybe worth a try.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by frontrow frontrow Profile at 5/17/12 7:52:23 PM
beastmaster said:

d-lo775 said:



I would suggest making the Beast your last ride of the day on Sunday.

But...but....but I thought that was the park RULE, EVERY day...

Mike

I've been to Kings Island over a dozen times and I have never had a night ride on The Beast. Out of the 12 to 14 visits to Kings Island I can only think of 2 occasions where the park was packed; both were mid July visits. I know that I have been fortunate. From my understanding that park can generate a huge crowd. I usually visit in early June or late August on the weekdays. If you go early in the season, it shouldn't be too crowded. As for the ride order. Most people go to Diamondback for their first ride, including myself. Diamondback's line moves super fast. If The Beast is only running 2 trains, the line will move slow, because the ride itself is so long. Firehawk always has a slow, long line; usually 45 minutes on a slow day. I haven't rode Invertigo since it's 1999 first season. The line always seems to be at least 30 or 40 minutes. Flight Deck is almost always a walk on and so is Racer, if they are running both sides and 2 coasters on each side. The Vortex always has a line, at least 20 minutes on slow days. Flight of Fear is hit or miss, it seems the lines have gotten longer after Firehawk was installed. Back Lot Stunt Coaster will have at least a 20 minute wait, due to low capacity and it is a family coaster. I have only ridden Adventure Express, Woodstock Express, and Flying Ace once. Have fun and hopefully the crowds will be at a minimum.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by drachen drachen Profile at 5/17/12 9:27:07 PM
RobLec said:
Maybe worth a try.

Definitely worth a try. I'd love to hear what you think of Culvers. My meal of choice is the bacon double cheese burger with fries. I also usually get the S'mores sundae with vanilla custard. It's a seasonal sundae, but they always have the ingredients to make it.

The burgers are called "butter burgers" because they put butter on the bun. The thing just melts when you take a bite. I'm getting hungry...

Thanks to all for the great advice... keep it coming if you have more.

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.87 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.57 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
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Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by d-lo775 d-lo775 Profile at 5/17/12 9:39:17 PM
RobLec said:

Best to get in your Beast night rides before the end of May... come June the lightning bugs (fireflies) will be all over your face. The old motorcycle adage of "bugs in your teeth" applies.

I can handle the fireflies better than I can handle walking up on a skunk while going down the exit path. Which has happened to me on 5 occasions in the last 2 season (fortunately I've yet to be sprayed). I'm also not too fond of the occasional deer(s) near the track that I have seen during the day when making the right turn before the second lift hill. Is it possible they could get on the track???? I doubt it. But then again I use to doubt that a deer would jump off an interstate overpass into the windshield of an oncoming car.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by GoYanks34 GoYanks34 Profile at 5/17/12 10:15:09 PM
And add Drop Zone or Drop Tower or whatever it's called now to your list - the line moves quickly and it's spectacular - the best drop tower I've ever been on and I'm pretty darn picky!

Have fun!

Jen

p.s. If you eat in the park don't get the burgers at the place by the Delirium - it was so bad I threw it out and only ate the fries!

And for what it's worth no matter how long the line for Diamondback it moves ridiculously fast so I'd hit the ones mentioned above that don't first.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by Judy_P_in_Pgh Judy_P_in_Pgh Profile at 5/17/12 10:42:54 PM
beastmaster said:

d-lo775 said:



I would suggest making the Beast your last ride of the day on Sunday.

But...but....but I thought that was the park RULE, EVERY day...

Mike



The ultimate ... after dark with a new moon ... last train of the night ... last seat ... with Beastmaster himself. It does NOT get any better than that, not even on El Toro!! When the temp. and humidity are just right and the train is full, that baby just SCREAMS through the woods!!

If you don't like taking a beating in the last seat, the next-to-the-last one is quite nice and doesn't rattle your bones nearly as much.

Oh yeah, don't forget to keep your hands up. Enjoy!

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/17/12 11:12:56 PM
GoYanks34 said:

And add Drop Zone or Drop Tower or whatever it's called now to your list - the line moves quickly and it's spectacular - the best drop tower I've ever been on and I'm pretty darn picky!

Yup - best ride in the park, and probably the best drop tower in the country..... DZ became my favorite ride at KI back when first they neutered the Beast. And as Beastmaster knows, I even appeared in the Travel Channel video of Drop Zone!

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by d-lo775 d-lo775 Profile at 5/18/12 12:28:29 AM
I personally prefer the Drop Zone/Tower at Kings Dominion over the one at KI. It is so much more forgiving to us with upper body measurements over 54", plus the rider capacity per cycle is much better (over 20%) with the KD version.

With the exception of 1 Beast ride I had with Gary (gad198) a year or two ago. Where the sun retired for the evening and a heavy fog had sunk into the valley. I would take any of the rides I had with beastmaster on El Toro a couple of weeks ago over any ride I ever had on the Beast. And that includes the 2 a.m. rides on employee ride night.

I guess the grass really is always greener on the other side.

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by Geauga_Dog Geauga_Dog Profile at 5/19/12 5:27:41 PM
I would like to add that they have done considerable track work to Beast this year. It seems all the turns either received new track or were completely rebuilt thus making the ride great again.

Night rides should be even better this year!

G-Dog

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by GoYanks34 GoYanks34 Profile at 5/20/12 10:27:26 AM
d-lo775 said:

I personally prefer the Drop Zone/Tower at Kings Dominion over the one at KI. It is so much more forgiving to us with upper body measurements over 54", plus the rider capacity per cycle is much better (over 20%) with the KD version.

The reason KI's version is the best IMO is because you go to the top then spin and get a spectacular view of the park and the drop is a complete surprise, which adds to the thrill element (I'm sure there is a method to determine when it will drop but unless you're a regular you won't figure that out with a few rides and I LOVE that so if you know don't tell me!). The one at KD you go up, stop, and drop just like all the others. Rider capacity is probably worse because there is that extra element of the spin/view, which I have no problem waiting an extra minute for. Can't speak to comfort in regards to height since I'm a 5'5" female.

Jen

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by beastmaster beastmaster Profile at 5/20/12 11:35:52 AM
You're 5' 5"? Huh. I'm 5' 11" and you sure don't appear to be six inches shorter than me.
The amusement park rises bold and stark
Kids are huddled on the beach in a mist...
Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by GoYanks34 GoYanks34 Profile at 5/20/12 11:37:34 AM
beastmaster said:

You're 5' 5"? Huh. I'm 5' 11" and you sure don't appear to be six inches shorter than me.

Technically I'm 5'5" and 1/2. Do I appear to be 5 1/2 inches shorter? :~)

Jen

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by RobLec RobLec Profile at 5/20/12 7:47:11 PM
GoYanks34 said:
(I'm sure there is a method to determine when it will drop but unless you're a regular you won't figure that out with a few rides and I LOVE that so if you know don't tell me!).

I know but promise I won't tell ;-)

Mike, do you remember how you found that video from the Travel Channel shoot?

Re: Kings Island Questions - Looking For Advice by beastmaster beastmaster Profile at 5/20/12 8:35:06 PM
RobLec said:

GoYanks34 said:
(I'm sure there is a method to determine when it will drop but unless you're a regular you won't figure that out with a few rides and I LOVE that so if you know don't tell me!).


I know but promise I won't tell ;-)

Mike, do you remember how you found that video from the Travel Channel shoot?

I barely remember what I had for breakfast. Sorry, Rob. I got nuttin'. I mighta seen it on another site.

* This post was modified at 5/21/12 7:36:28 AM *

The amusement park rises bold and stark
Kids are huddled on the beach in a mist...