Monthly Archives: May 2010

2010 ACE Spring Preservation Conference Report

  • May 6, 2010
  • Uncategorized

We had a great time Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the ACE Spring Preservation Conference. There were great coasters and, of course, great food. This spectacular weekend ended with Sunday ERT on Revolution, X2, Viper, Tatsu, and Terminator Salvation: The Ride during breakfast, and then Goliath, Colossus, Scream, and Batman The Ride shortly afterward. Terminator Salvation: The Ride is a nicely themed wooden coaster from Great Coasters International, Inc. that places you in the Terminator movie at Magic Mountain. If you have seen the movie, you have to ride the coaster. Door prizes were and coaster parts were auctioned during lunch. The ACE conference was our second recent ERT at Magic Mountain because we had also attended Theme Park Review’s West Coast Bash. I highly recommend attending TPR’s Bay Area Bash, which is just two weeks away.

On Saturday, we enjoyed Adventure City in the morning and Knott’s Berry Farm in the afternoon and evening. Adventure City has two Miler coasters: Freeway Coaster and Tree Top Racers which is a wild mouse themed as if the coaster cars were put together with junk parts. This was the best park for our daughters because there were three rides that they could ride, although they are still not tall enough for roller coasters. The three rides they could go on were a train that went around Adventure City, the carousel, and the Rescue Squad.

On Friday, the Spring Conference featured Castle Park and Belmont Park. Castle Park had a prize drawing for a walking tour of Ghostblasters during their delicious barbeque lunch. Following lunch was ERT on three coasters: Little Dipper, Merlin’s Revenge, and Screamin’ Demon. At lunch we learned about Bud Hurlbut who designed a lot of Castle Park after working for Knott’s Berry Farm and Disneyland. He still comes around every once in a while to see Castle Park. In addition to ERT, our visit included a round of mini golf and a bag of video game tokens.

— Emi Pearce

California’s Great America, May 2010 update

  • May 6, 2010
  • Uncategorized

Snoopy boutique

CGA Planet Snoopy

California’s Great America is open weekends this month and on May 31st. Come on out for a spin on Flight Deck (formerly Top Gun) and check out the new Planet Snoopy.

Be in the know on all the latest happenings at California’s Great America. Become a fan on Facebook:

For more information on the park, visit the California’s Great America web site.

— photo: Steven Wilson

Gilroy Gardens, May 2010 update

  • May 5, 2010
  • Uncategorized

Gilroy Gardens 10th Anniversary

Celebrate Gilroy Gardens’ Tenth Anniversary with special offers for children age ten and under from now though 31 May 2010. For more details, see:

Show your mom the beauty of Gilroy Gardens and treat her to a special Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch: (NOTE: link is to a PDF.)

Gilroy Gardens is open on Saturdays and Sundays in May as well as on May 31st.

For more information on planning your visit, go to
the Gilroy Gardens web site.

Gilroy Gardens, 10 years of wonder

— photo: Steven Wilson

Playland-Not-at-the-Beach, May 2010 update

  • May 5, 2010
  • Uncategorized

assembling the clown

Playland-Not-at-the-Beach Celebrates Its Second Anniversary

Playland-Not-at-the-Beach opened its doors in May 2008 and is about to celebrate its second anniversary. “Spring 2010 has been especially busy at Playland-Not-at-the-Beach as we prepare for our anniversary event. We have been breaking records all year long,” explains Richard Tuck, the Master of Fun at Playland. “We just passed the 2500 mark for guests at private parties since January 1st. On top of that we were also able to provide over 560 free passes to Disneyland for volunteers who helped out in our nonprofit for the first three months of the year.

But the biggest success of 2010 is the documentary film “Remembering Playland” which is now held over for a second month at the Balboa Theater in San Francisco. “This new documentary was supposed to play for just one night, but it kept getting held over again and again with every performance totally sold out. Generations of people who remember Whitney’s Playland at the Beach have shown up to see the film, and they then return with their families to see it again and again. Most of the new footage was filmed here at Playland-Not-at-the-Beach.”

The DVD version of “Remembering Playland” has additional footage and is available in the souvenir shop at Playland-Not-at-the-Beach for $20 plus tax or by mail order for $25 including tax, postage and handling. Each purchase comes with an authentic artifact from Whitney’s Playland. To order call (510) 232-4264 ext. 24.

The next big project at Playland-Not-at-the-Beach is a brand new attraction called Roller Coaster Rampage. “We are breaking ground soon,” Tom Wyrsch, the Chief Designer explains. “Being volunteer run and operated, Playland is now appealing to volunteers who want to be involved with making some of the design choices. “This attraction comes about through the generosity of ACE members Nancy Redden and Mike Chew. When we open later this summer, guests will be shocked at the surprises in store for them.” To volunteer, contact Kendra Zien at (510) 232-4264 ext. 30 or email

How about treating your mom to a visit to Playland-Not-at-the-Beach this Mother’s Day weekend? She gets in for half price on Saturday and Sunday with a paid regular admission.

Playland-Not-at-the-Beach nonprofit Museum of Fun, open to the public every Sat, Sun and school holiday. Open evenings for private events 365 days a year. 10979 San Pablo Avenue, El Cerrito, CA 94530 (510) 592-3002. . Admission $10 for kids (to 13), $10 for seniors (55 and up), and $15 for general admission. Admission includes 34 free pinball machines, penny arcades, carnival games, treasure hunts, miniature dioramas, and surprises around every corner. ACE members receive a $5.00 discount on admission upon presentation of their ACE membership cards.

— Thanks go to Richard Tuck for contributing to this article.

— photo: Steven Wilson

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, May 2010 update

  • May 5, 2010
  • Uncategorized


Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk May Highlights:

The new Haunted Castle ride opens Memorial Day Weekend!
Also see in this issue: Photo report: SCBB Haunted Castle Construction — 4 May 2010

More May highlights…

Amgen Tour of California Bike Race
May 18, Boardwalk
Your chance to see Lance Armstrong and check out this huge international sport. The 3rd Stage finish line is right in front of the Boardwalk.

Season Kick Off
May 22, 2010, Boardwalk
Preview all the summer entertainment on this big day. Events include a free beach concert with A Flock of Seagulls, Brazilian acrobats, sky divers, and more!

Did you try the Lazer Maze yet? Its new location is right across from the Pirate Ship. Here’s a short video.

Celebrate Mother’s Day at the Boardwalk by taking your mom to the Mother’s Day Brunch:

The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk’s rides are open daily in May. Some days have limited operation. See the park’s calendar for full details:

Stay up to date, up to the minute, on what’s going on at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk by becoming a fan on Facebook:

For more information on the park, visit
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk’s web site.

— Thanks to Brigid Fuller of the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk for contributing to this article.

— photo: Steven Wilson

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, May 2010 update

  • May 5, 2010
  • Uncategorized

roller coaster toes

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom is open Friday through Sunday in May and on May 31st. Why not take mom to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom for Mother’s Day? The park is offering a special Mother’s Day Picnic:
Also, if you thought you’d missed out on the $49.99 season pass offer, it’s been extended through the 31st of May:

To stay informed of what’s happening at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, become a fan on Facebook:

For more information about Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, check out their web site.

photo: Steven Wilson