Johns Incredible Pizza Riverside19th February 2012
America is the spiritual home of all-you-can-eat buffet restaurants, and John's Incredible Pizza Company caters for this market. Half of the building is devoted to food, and the other half to arcade games, rides, and bowling. Entry requires purchasing the buffet, so in a reverse of the usual order I took the opportunity of a quick meal before my laps on Incredible Express (#1733). The plural here is rather pertinent, as it felt like we completed at least twenty circuits!
Castle Amusement Park19th February 2012
My last visit to Castle Amusement Park was a rush stop crammed into a ridiculously busy day, made possible only due to the park having free admission supported by individual ride tickets. For better or for worse, the business model has now changed, meaning an unlimited ride wristband is required for entry. I'd love to know how this change has affected profitability; the weather was very pleasant today, but despite that the park wasn't even close to being busy. Furthermore, several rides were closed, including the Screamin' Demon roller coaster.
The consolation prize for me was the Little Dipper (#1734), a surprisingly lively ride for its size. The operator didn't even bat an eyelid when I approached, other than to ask politely whether I was a member of ACE. When I admitted as much, he told me that I was the third member today, an impressive if slightly worrying number; it was after all less than half an hour after park opening!
Most of the other rides in the park are cookie cutter attractions, including Merlin's Revenge, which was running well today. Other than the miniature golf the only really interesting attraction is Ghost Blasters, a target shooting dark ride over two floors that has good quality scenery and a catchy soundtrack to boot, even if the latter is mostly obscured by gun noises. The entrance to this ride is inside the nearby arcade, allowing its operation outside of regular park season.