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    • 29yrswithaGApass

      RECENT SITE UPDATES   11/03/2017

                                                   

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How many of you old-timers remember the days when GA opened at 10 a.m. and closed at midnight? They actually stayed open until 12:30 a.m., but how many of you stayed there from the minute they swung open the gates until the last seconds of the park being closed?

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Prior to getting my drivers license in the mid 80's, my friends and I got to and from the park by getting dropped off and picked up. Usually someone would drop us off before work so we would arrive around 9am. My dad would usually have night meetings (he was the municipal engineer for a couple of towns) and would pick us up after the meeting let out - around midnight.

 

Even though we spent 15 hours at the park, it just flew by. We would spend the morning hours hitting the Log Flume, Runaway Train, and Rolling Thunder - riding them over and over. We would then take the Skyride over to the other side of the park and hit the Moon Flume, Lightnin' Loops, and all the flats.

 

Afternoons were usually spent watching the shows and going in and out of the Haunted Castle continually. Whenever we would exit the Castle and notice the lights were lit on the Big Wheel, we would run all over the park once again taking in all the rides at night. Great Adventure at night was a very different experience than in the daytime during those years. All the lights really did make it seem like "Magic 'til Midnight"!

 

It was those GREAT times that really gave me my admiration for the park!

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Pun! That sounds like quite a day! I've had similar experiences like that in other parks and things like that... but never Great Adventure.

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It would be cool if they did that now, even if it was only a few times a year. Since I got a season pass, I don't think I have ever spent more than 6 - 7 hours at the park with most trips being around 5 hours. Usually I can get multiple rides in on everything I want in that amount of time.

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Harry, you 100% correct, back in the late 80's early 90's the park was a completly diffrent place at night, all the lights on the rides was great, i hope they bring back some of those flats with lights and have them updated to the led packages, it would be sweet

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I seem to recall that the park would start making the early rounds of closing down around 11:30-11:45 p.m. However, the rides near the front entrance (Flying Wave, Enterprise, Bumper Cars and the Carousel) would keep going right up to midnight. IF the ride was a minute or two long, the operators usually made sure to get everybody on the ride who was on line. IF they could spare a couple of extra minutes, they'd let them go on the ride again without having to get off it. That happened to me one night with the Flying Wave and a couple of times when Magic Mountain stayed open late and we could ride a coaster twice.

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You can still kind of do this today during Fright Fest when they close at 11:00. First go to the Safari park at 9:00 when it opens then right afterwords go in the theme park. If you stay in the park until 11:00 pm it would be the same amount of time as 10am-12 midnight, but you are starting out an hour earlier and ending an hour earlier. I did it before, you may get tired towards the end of the day, but it is still worth it.

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I should try that. I always wondered what it'd be like to stay in the park all day. Waiting in lines wouldn't be an issue because there is no hurry, but I might have to leave the park mid-day to relax in the car for a while... fright fest really requires a lot of energy!

Edited by ThemeParkRider

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The years with the midnight closings were awesome. I also remember back then all rides were always open at opening. Seems like now some rides open later. In my opinion, that's unacceptable.

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^ Hi Dan, welcome to GAH! :)

 

Check out this operating calendar from Great Adventure's 1981 season. I would love it if the park stayed open until 2AM like it did in the early '80s!

 

gallery_2_579_211663.jpg

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This is kinda off topic but a great idea would be Great Adventure doing a 24 thing from 2am to 2am

 

 

Food & Beverage Revenue would be pretty good.

Didn't one of the Disney parks try that recently?I don't think the turnout was as good as they were expecting...

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The Disney parks both did it for three years and this year they stopped. It was one of those things where fans loved it but it was a logistical nightmare for the parks.

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The problem about keeping a park open for 24 hours straight is staffing, night attendance, and electricity used to operate rides at night. Rides use more electricity at night because of their lighting packages aligning catwalks and in restricted areas. Most employees at theme parks are college or high school students and could be involved in something in the morning, thus causing understaffing, and attendance late at night could be so low that it isn't worth keeping the park open. The park can make a loss of money as they have to pay the employees, electric bills, and whatnot.

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