As expected, things got very busy at the park in July, with full parking lots and healthy lines inside. Once school started back up, the park returned to weekends-only operations, but the crowds will still be heavy for a bit longer.
On August 26, they were parking people along the roadways, with the parking lots nearly full before noon.
The park was still open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., but the water park side was running reduced hours from noon to 5 p.m. Many of their lifeguards and workers return to school so the have to scale back operations a bit.
Only three rides were down for maintenance.
The Inverter ran for a few weeks early this season, then has been down ever since.
Lady Luck has been disassembled since last Tuesday. If you’ve ever wondered how it worked, now you can see.
Storm Chaser was being worked on, and it seems a safety system kicked in and halted the ride with people on it earlier in the day. Proving that it must have been a slow news day, WHO-TVreported on it … at least on their website:
…as did Channel 5:
“The fire department was not called out. A maintenance worker climbed to the top to fix it. The ride was stuck for about 25 minutes. Everyone got off safely.”
Never a dull moment for the full time maintenance staff that keeps these things running day in, and day out for our entertainment!
Over at Iowa Cafe, new digital menu signs have been installed:
With more menu space, they now list the formerly “secret” 1 piece meal for $5.75. Since Iowa Cafe honors the season pass discount, this low cost meal is a great way to get a real good bite to eat for less than some fast food burgers!
The park was also busy with various corporate outing groups occupying the Palace Theatre and picnic areas. Since the Theatre was being used, it’s restrooms were unavailable to the public.
These large groups help explain the large crowds. Earlier and later in the season, you can go to the park and have almost no wait at most of the rides, but if you prefer waiting in lines, peak season is for you!
There was a healthy line for the A-Train (practically down the steps) and also for the Sky Ride.
And, there was also a line at the Iowa Beer and Wine Shop.
Pro-tip: If you are just wanting a canned domestic drink, and there is a long line, you can get those at many other places (including food locations like the Chicken Shack).
Meanwhile, over at the Bier Garten, there was no line at all 🙂 The new Iowa Beer and Wine location seems to be doing really well with the new tent and live entertainment this year. There has been live entertainment later in the day at the Bier Garten as well, so perhaps the lines shift over there later in the day.
As others reported earlier in the Facebook group, the Fried Fish game has moved from Dragon Island to near the Tornado entrance. It is in the spot where the Octopus game with the mermaid used to be.
They had to remove the “handles” from the “frying” pan to make it fit in the location, but it seems most folks didn’t even realize it was supposed to be a giant pan anyway.
In the location where Fried Fish used to be is now a brand new game: Lucky Puck. This pachinko-style game is so large you have to climb stairs to play it!
It costs $5 to play, and you get two pucks to drop down the pins, hoping they land in Small, Medium or Large Prize spots. Every game is a winner, and the prizes here are possibly the best in the park. A small win gets you a bottle of water ($2.50 in the park), so even if both your pucks go in to small, you get two bottles of water for $5 (the same as if you bought them).
Pro-tip: If you ever want two bottles of water, play this game. You will at least get that, and possibly more!
Speaking of more, the Medium Prize was either a free tube rental at Adventure Bay water park, or an Arcade Card. I did not ask how much credit the card would have loaded on it, but I am guessing it’s probably around $5 (I think that’s the cost of a tube rental).
The Large Prize was the real winner: an Adventureland ticket!
It’s quite random, and there is only one large slot, but it can be done. During the ten or so minutes I was there watching people play the game, someone won!
There has also been some great new T-shirts added to the Clothing Shop on Main Street this year! It seems the park has settled on a new park skyline design to update from the original one that has been used since The Tornado opened in the late 1970s. I really, really like this one:
Even though I’ve been visiting the park since 1995, I had never bought a T-shirt until last year for The Monster opening. This year, I’ve added several more to my collection.
Pro-tip: Be sure to check the Clearance Store on the corner of Main Street near the Giant Sky Wheel. You can find older Adventureland shirts there for as little as $4!
That’s all I have for this update… Did I miss anything? Be sure to let me know in the comments.