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Fall Amtrak Vacation 2003 - A Visit To Cedar Point - September 20th, 2003

Fall 2003 Amtrak Vacation
A Day At Cedar Point Amusement Park
Saturday, September 20th, 2003

Cedar Point's Top Thrill Dragster
A 420 Foot Tall World Record Breaking Coaster

   This was my 12th year in a row visiting Cedar Point, and after riding the new roller coaster they put in this year, it was worth the 7 hour bus ride to get here! The new ride is called "Top Thrill Dragster" and is built to simulate a drag strip. The ride was designed by Intamin AG of Switzerland. The trains go from 0 to 120mph in an amazing 4 seconds, then travel straight up a tower measuring 420 feet before heading over the top, then going straight down through a spiral then leveling off, and going back into the station (That is serious High-Speed Rail if you ask me!). One ride on this coaster will give you a new found respect for the laws of physics! This ride officially made Cedar Point the first park in the world to break the 200, 300, and now 400 foot height barrier with roller coasters! Here you'll find a collection of photos I took this year, as always, Cedar Point once again lives up to its ranking as "Best Amusement Park In The World" as ranked by Amusement Today Magazine and is, as their catch phrase says "Absolutely Amazing" and trust me, it is! You won't find a better collection of roller coasters anywhere else, enjoy the photos...
Top Thrill Dragster's tower, measuring a mind-boggling 420 feet tall, this coaster is a true achievement of science, nobody could have dreamed 20 years ago of building something like this!

I set my camera to 1/2000th of a second shutter speed (the fastest setting on my camera!) and still couldn't completely freeze this train, it was going that fast! This view is from the bleachers set up just past the ride's loading platform. You can sit here and get a great view of the entire ride if you're not quite ready to ride the coaster yourself! Underneath the bleachers is a food stand selling hot sandwiches & Pepsi.
To the left is Cedar Point's 300 foot tall "Power Tower", new in 1998, this ride lets you decide if you want to be lifted to the top of the tower, then free fall for about 2 seconds before "bouncing" back up the tower a few times, or be shot up the tower and bounce back down again a few times. A truly great ride, designed by S&S Power of Logan, Utah. To the right is "Mantis". Opening in 1996, this coaster has you STANDING UP through the ride, with 4 inversions, this great ride was designed by Bolliger & Mabillard of Switzerland.

Built in 1970, Cedar Point's "Wild Cat" is a figure-eight style coaster manufactured by Anton Schwarzkopf of Germany. These coasters are just plain fun! This ride received a new neon green paint job this year.

Chaos, now in its new location across from Wicked Twister, a great twisting, spinning ride with the ride spinning and each car on the ride spinning perpendicular to the spinning of the ride, it lives up to its name!

Troika, now in its new location near Disaster Transport sports a new paint job this season. This ride was designed by Huss Rides of Germany.

And Finally, here's Cedar Point' official railroad, the Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad. This Narrow-Gauge Steam Train takes you from the top of the Main Midway to Frontiertown in the back of the park, a nice little ride that has you riding through the "Town of Boneville", lets just say, there's a few skeletons there!
   Once again this year, Cedar Point provided some great entertainment both with its collection of World-Class Coasters as well as its HalloWeekends Entertainment that featured Haunted Houses such as Pharaoh's Secret, The Toxic Tunnel Of Terror, Undertaker U., Werewolf Canyon (New This Year) and the ever popular Fright Zone. Aaron Radatz was also back this year to do his magic show in the Centennial Theater, another great production! I had another great time this year at the park and as always will be back again next year. There's something about this place that just keeps you wanting to come back every year, I don't know if its the rides, the food, the entertainment, but whatever it is, you always want to come back for more! Check out Cedar Point's official site in the table below for more information on The Best Amusement Park In The World!
   As for me, I spent Sunday taking a nice long walk through Sandusky (something I did countless times in my spare time when I worked at Cedar Point in 2001). I visited a facility I used to work at for a bit as well as relaxed at the hotel, watched some football and ate another lousy pizza delivered from some place in town. I tried to get a nap but that proved to be next to impossible as I was too excited about taking my first trip on Amtrak's Capitol Limited. Washington, D.C. was my next stop, and it would prove to be another great ride on Amtrak, please read on...