The shortest Exclusive Ride Session in known memory got underway at Silver Star a little before nine in the morning, during which my group managed just one ride. This was partially because we elected to wait for front seat, but more due to the fact that only four club trains went out before the public began to pour in. The front seat was for Ethan, who has been working hard to beat a fear of heights for some time; we all felt he should get the full experience full time round. He certainly appeared to enjoy himself!
We learnt later in the day that the gate for the park this day was somewhere around the seventeen thousand mark, but not too many of these had arrived during our first hour. For this reason it was possible to make a whirlwind tour of several rides in short order; Matterhorn Blitz, Schweizer Bobbahn, Kassandra's Fluch, Pegasus, and Eurosat, which was decorated for the season as a giant pompkin. There were, apparently, more than one hundred and fifty thousand pompkins deployed around the park for the hallowe'en season, which does raise several interesting questions:
- What happens if someone (or some company) in southern Germany wants to purchase a pompkin at this time of year? Do they need to order it six months in advance?
- What precisely does one do with such a large quantity of pompkins at the end of the season? Perhaps it could be the name of a band? Rotting Pompkins?
The park has solved a major problem with their 4D theatre since my last visit. The previous show worked well for those who could speak german, though the rest of us could be slightly confused by the plot line. The new show does not have spoken dialog; Haunted House is a animated cartoon set to music. The fourth dimension effects were all working well, more unusual than you might expect.
The run up to lunch was taken by the two better dark rides; the Ghost Manor and the Pirates in Batavia ride. After eating, we went back to Atlantica Supersplash, which Tony had missed out on the previous evening. Riding a splash ride like this a second time after not getting wet the first time was arguably tempting fate, and this time Ethan got the best of it, winding up drenched. Fortunately the sun had come out in force by the stage, which made this a temporary situation.
We were treated to a guided tour of the park by monorail from one of the park "suits", who also arranged for us to have some lights-on rides on Eurosat. The latter is always a fun experience, as the clearances are pretty small. Tall people dumb enough to raise their hands could potentially hit some of the struts, and one or two are actually covered with rubber padding presumably for that very eventuality.