We saw, earlier this year, that Hoffman's Playland of Colonie, New York succumbs to the Opportunity Cost Principle, while Conneaut Lake Park in northwestern Pennsylvania is subject to a sheriff's sale, now scheduled for February.
There are, however, still some amazing rides in Pennsylvania. We start at Waldameer Park, on the west side of Erie, Pennsylvania. Erie has long been a first night stop on Cold Spring Shops road trips to the east, which generally begin with a morning departure, a prayer to the Patron Saint of Fluid Tollways, and some fast running to get into Erie before the amusement park closes. The running is faster now that Indiana and Ohio allow legal 70 mph driving.
A check of the archives, though, shows that Waldameer has not been the subject of a post. There's opportunity to correct this oversight. and recognize the resurgence of Waldameer as a place for the roller coasters.
For years Waldameer operated as a picnic grove, with attractions primarily intended for the younger set. The Comet roller coaster started running sometime in the late 1940s or early 1950s.
The Comet has cousins operating close to Cold Spring Shops headquarters. Here's Meteor at Little A-Merrick-A near Waterloo, Wisconsin, which was moved from a private picnic park southwest of Chicago.
And here's the story of Little Dipper, moved to Six Flags Great America, from the late, lamented Melrose Park Kiddieland.
And yes, I did get one last ride on Little Dipper, and the free Pepsi, before Kiddieland closed.
At Waldameer, on the other hand, everything old is new again.
There used to be a gully coaster called Ravine Flyer at Waldameer. There's again a gully coaster, in the same place, with a different layout, called Ravine Flyer II. I'm more careful about bringing cameras onto roller coasters than I once was, thus you'll have to take my word for it that it doesn't let up.
That first drop leads into a gully and thence to a right hand turn. I wonder if this Bob & Tom is the same drive-time duo that used to push the envelope in Indianapolis.
But that's not the only new coaster at Waldameer. Steel Dragon shows the track configuration of a Galaxi with a few Wild Mouse-like hairpin turns. But the four-passenger cars pivot!
And on a pleasant Wednesday evening, July 30, there are clear skies and a waxing crescent moon, also shining on the riders at Cedar Point to the west.
The next week brings us to Knoebels Grove. We've been following progress on the Flying Turns for years. It's now open, and queues form before the attractions open. Knoebels, if you have never been there, is a large picnic grove with a collection of attractions of various kinds. Free parking, too, and visitors can buy unlimited riding, or tickets to suit their fancy.
I'm told that this Flying Turns is neither as tall or as long as the originals at Euclid Beach or Riverview, and I didn't see any blue grease on the tracks, a feature someone who rode the Euclid Turns recalled. Whatever the reason, this Turns runs short trains with a weight limit on each car.
Used to be, I'd buy the unlimited ride pass and enjoy the park all day. This time, I purchased a bundle of tickets and rode selectively. That included the Turns.
On this Friday, August 8, though, that did not include the Yellow Submarine.
It's there, though, along with numerous other attractions to please any constitution, and crafts, and food. And summer is coming.