Well, Maggie and I went out to Cedar Point, Ohio this past Fourth of July weekend.
As did nearly everyone else in five states, apparently.
We went out there because her sister had insisted that on Fourth of July people stayed with their families and didn't go to the park. I had my doubts, but Cedar Point is located pretty far from any city of real size, so maybe...
(On our last night there, we went to Friendly's (a more or less New England based chain of ice cream and sandwich shops - great!) and our waiter told us he had worked at Cedar Point for five years and NEVER to even go in July, let alone the Fourth weekend - what were we, nuts?)
BUT - I had pre-purchased two-day tickets, just in case. We really hadn't planned on using them on the same weekend, but they were a lifesaver. The park was open until midnight and we just walked around and took in the coasters - anything with too long a line we skipped until the next day.
For thos eof you who aren't too familiar with Cedar Point, it bills itself as America's Roller Coast. It's no idle boast. There's something like 17 roller coasters. Yeah, no kidding. Even if two or three could be considered junior versions, that still leaves 14 full-size coasters.
And some are way bigger than full sized. Millenium Force stands over 300 feet tall and is nearly 7000 feet long. Top Thrill Dragster goes 120 mph, 420 feet straight UP. The Magnum is considered a steel coaster classic. And on and on.
Suprisingly, people lined up for hours for the newest rides - but left the Magnum, the Mean Streak, and the Gemini twin coaster relatively abandoned. The Gemini is my new favorite ride - racing twin wooden coasters, what's not to like?
Maggie even talked me into going on the Ripcord. That's where you get pulled 15 stories into the air with a cord attached to your back (through a steel hitch), in an arc; you pull the ripcord, and fly/fall 15 stories to within 6 feet of the ground, then swing up again, then swing back and forth for awhile. It was fun, but I don't think I'll tempt that again. It's like skydiving - all you need is one thing to go wrong and WHAM.
I DID hold out my arms like Superman and shout "Daht dah dahhh!" or something similar as I flew. Figure if I might die I might as well enjoy myself.
Anyway, the fireworks were terrific and literally fifty yards in front of our faces (were they SUPPOSED to be that close?) and they even played the music I'd chosen for Americana's theme song (which I'll post up soon's I can make a good recording) which considering it's not a true patriotic music thing I rather enjoyed.
In the end we got on almost all the coasters we wanted (exception - Maverick and Top Fuel Dragster, though we did them last year) and had a wonderful, wonderful time.
And having a Friendly's across the street from the hotel CERTAINLY didn't hurt. :)
(How small town is it? They had a Rally's Hamburgers, but it closed at 8. And those are summer hours. Eight o'clock?!)