|To the left of the entrance to Frontiertown is the Wave Swinger. This
old ride has been spinning away at the park for many years.
After getting soaked on all those Frontier Trail water rides, the Wave Swinger is a great place to dry off. Just don't expect the ride hosts to laugh when you call it the "spin cycle." They've only heard that joke about 500 times each day since the opening of Thunder Canyon.
Next to the Wave Swinger, you may notice Undertaker U., which is a HalloWeekends fun house. This location used to house the Haunted Carousel. Hmmm, sounds like another Cedar Point ghost story is coming up.
There are actually multiple versions of this story, but I'm going to tell one of the more interesting versions. As the story goes, when the ride was being built, around the turn of the century, the builder murdered his wife. He put her remains inside one of the horses. Only one horse on the ride has any weaponry painted on it. It is that horse that contains the corpse. It is said that every midnight of a full moon, the wife comes back to ride on her horse. The carousel mysteriously begins running, with her apparition seen riding the horse.
Ah, but the tale does not end there. There have been times when the park was open at midnight when there was a full moon. It seems that the ghost does not like this situation! First, it should be stated that the horse is located on the outside ring of the carousel. The outer horses do not move up and down. As midnight approaches, riders have claimed that the horse has started to move. I, in fact, was riding the carousel with some friends about an hour before midnight. One of my friends rode on the spirited horse, while I rode on the horse next to her. She claimed that she could feel the horse move up and down, and, I must admit, it looked to me like she was moving! When midnight gets closer, the ghost gets more aggressive. There have been cases where a person has left the ride with a horse bite on the leg. Ooh, eerie!
There have been times when the ghost became a bit playful. There was one work crew shared between the Wave Swinger and Frontiertown Carousel. One night, the crew was getting ready to go home. One of the girls went to the carousel to turn off the lights, while the others waited near the Wave Swinger. After about five minutes, they began to get concerned. The girl had not returned, and the ride's lights were still on. They went to investigate, and discovered that the girl had gotten locked into the room in the center of the carousel, so they needed to let her out. Of course, the room is only supposed to lock from the inside in order to keep people out, so the unanswered question remains, how did she get locked in? To this day, no one knows why she was unable to open that door. I have some additional questions, however. When the ride was relocated to Dorney Park, did the ghost follow? Or is she still roaming around Cedar Point, looking for her carousel? We may never know!
Frontiertown contains one of several interlocking midway loops. We have
a choice of turning right or left to traverse the loop. We're going to
go to the right.
|As we travel down the Frontiertown midway, we see the Antique Cars
on the left. These cars are very similar to the Cadillac Cars on the Main
Midway, but with a quieter, more peaceful atmosphere. On the left, you
can see my nephew driving the car, while I relax and enjoy the scenic beauty
|At one point along the Antique Cars path, you will be able to see a Guessing Game just before entering a covered bridge. For some reason, the cars occasionally get stuck on that turn, usually if the driver isn't steering properly! While I was working at that Guessing Game location, I would frequently play "Super Guesser!" Leaping the rail in a single bound, I'd hurl myself in front of the car and, with Herculean strength, pull it back on to the track, allowing the riders to continue their journey! Just another day in the life of the mild-mannered Super Guesser, keeping the park safe for continued fun. Gee, sounds like a great concept for a TV series! Perhaps it could be called, "Real Stories of the Guesser Patrol." Or perhaps we could get Dick Martin to host it, and it could be called, "Harper and Martin's Guess-In." Well, maybe not.|
|In 2006, Skyhawk came soaring into Frontiertown. This ride is
one mighty big swing, taking riders 125 feet into the air, and whooshing
them through at 60 miles per hour. It's like the neighborhood swing
if it were built by the Jolly Green Giant! However, I'm not sure
if Sprout is tall enough to ride it. Riders must be 48 inches tall
to be gripped by the claws of Skyhawk.
The best part of this ride... every seat on Skyhawk is a front seat. Each arm holds 20 people, 10 facing each direction. So, no matter where you sit, you'll get a great view and a great ride. The only difference is that you may be facing Frontiertown or the rest of the park.
When at the very top of the arc, try tilting your head back as far as you can. You just might see the other swing looking as if it is looming above you.
||Cedar Point does something that I think is remarkably kind when they
open a new ride. The park allows the Firelands chapter of the American
Red Cross to auction off the first one or two rides for charity.
All proceeds go to the Red Cross.
For Skyhawk, I was one of the 40 Inaugural Riders. As a result, I was onboard on Saturday morning, May 6, 2006, sitting in seat 5 Blue. That's the 5th seat from the right in the photo to the left. In each of these three photos, I'm wearing the Detroit Tigers jacket. The photo on the right shows a group of the Inaugural Riders just after we exited the ride. As seen on the left, Mr. Dick Kinzel, the CEO of Cedar Fair, allowed me to get a picture with him. He looked like he was having as much fun as the Inaugural Riders!
As part of the Inaugural Rider experience, Cedar Point drove the riders to the Frontier Inn restaurant (now Chik-fil-A), where a continental breakfast was provided. Fortunately, no one ate too much, or the Inaugural Ride may have come complete with the Inaugural Mess! We were also greeted by Snoopy, Charlie Brown, Linus, and Lucy.
The ride's "opening ceremonies" didn't happen until the Inaugural Riders had finished with our ride. Then the ribbon was cut, and Skyhawk was officially opened to the public.
Look out on the right, it's a runaway train!
|Welcome to the only ride that takes you up 50 feet and drops you three,
the Cedar Creek Mine Ride. This ride is a bit sprawling, making it very
difficult to photograph. However, the ride is like an old runaway mine
Cedar Creek Mine Ride, built in 1969, was one of the first coasters to use tubular steel rail track, paving the way for a whole new generation of roller coaster excitement.
|At one time, the Cedar Creek Mine Ride had five trains. Now, the park never runs more than three trains due to safety reasons. Have you got a stiff back? Well, this one's the ride for you! I call it the Chiropractic Coaster. I may have mentioned that the beds at the employee housing are terrible. Then, again, maybe I didn't mention it. Take my word for it, those beds are the pits. Well, when I worked at the park, it was rather common for me to wake up with a stiff back. This exact situation happened one day when I was planning on playing in the park with some friends. I wanted to see if my back would be up to the coasters, so we started out at the Cedar Creek Mine Ride, being a smaller coaster. As we were riding, I felt my back crack one way, then the other. When the ride was done, my back felt better than new! From that point on, if I woke up with a stiff back, I'd head straight out to the Mine Ride. It's cheaper and more fun than any chiropractor I've ever been to! (Note: While this story is absolutely true, and I still use the Mine Ride for adjusting my back, use caution if you have back troubles. Cedar Point's rides are not recommended for guests with back problems. If you use the Mine Ride for adjusting your back, do so at your own risk.)|
|Being a rather small coaster, the line is often short for the Cedar Creek Mine Ride. As a result, you may notice that the back cars are closed. If you should arrive at any coaster and find the back seats closed, don't be angry. Cedar Point is just trying to ensure that you get a full ride. When the front is empty and the back is full, the trains have trouble latching on to the chain systems. There have been times when I have seen the Mine Ride stuck at its second lift due to improper loading.|
Lookin' for another coaster? Well, you'd better smile when you say that, pardner! There's a new sheriff in town!
|In 2005, on this site, the Town's water baron, White Water Landing,
was shot down. The Townsfolk cried, "Oh, who shall thrill us now?"
Hearing the pleas for help, in 2007, a legend rose in the west... Maverick
rode into Frontiertown. The Old West was never this wild!
Maverick is Cedar Point's 17th roller coaster. This one bucks the trends a bit. At 105 feet tall, it's nowhere near the world's tallest roller coaster. Reaching speeds of 70 miles per hour, it's also nowhere near the world's fastest. However, Maverick's 4450 feet of track packs quite a punch, proving that a coaster doesn't have to break records in order to be a great ride! Note that riders must be at least 52 inches tall to ride Maverick.
|Maverick has six trains, each with a name. On our first ride
ever, my wife and I rode in Bart. The other trains are Bret, Beau,
Brent, Ben. and Sam. Cedar Point's not mentioned a TV connection,
but it's an interesting coincidence that all of these names appear in the
cast of characters for the 1950's TV series starring James Garner.
If you're looking for a chain lift on Maverick, you're not going to find it. This ride is launched using magnets. The train cruises quitely up that first hill, then drops 100 feet at a 95 degree angle, reaching a speed of 57 miles per hour.
"Hey, I thought you said this thing goes 70 miles per hour!" Well, just hold onto your horses, buckaroo. We're getting there.
|After that first drop, you'll twist and turn in some canyons, race
over a great airtime hill, and follow that up with flipping upside down
twice. The average plate of spaghetti has fewer twists and turns!
Following the second inversion, it'll look like you're slowing down as the train pulls into a tunnel, but this ride's not over yet!
||Within the tunnel, Maverick gets launched a second time, this time
hitting a speed of 70 miles per hour! (I told you that speed was
coming!) The train rounds the corner as it shoots out of the tunnel.
It rises, then drops over the pond.
But look out! Someone's trying to out-shoot the new sheriff! The bullets narrowly miss, sending water splashing up from the pond. The train races into a canyon, and then darts out of sight, defeating those nasty outlaws!
This little canyon was responsible for delaying the opening of Maverick. Originally, the train went through a heartline roll in this canyon. It looked really fun, but it put too much stress on the trains. If the trains are feeling too much stress, the riders probably will, too. Instead of giving a painful ride, Cedar Point ripped out the heartline roll and replaced it with the S-curve seen in the picture to the right. I was looking forward to that heartline roll, but, I'll tell ya, the S-curve gives a pretty wild ride at this point -- the heartline probably would have been too much.
|After exiting the canyon, the Maverick goes through a few more twists
and turns, including one near inversion, before it heads back to the bunkhouse.
Keep on smiling on this ride -- Maverick takes your picture twice. In the photo on the right, my wife and I are riding Maverick for our first time -- it's about the only time I won't be hamming it up for the cameras, since I did not yet know where they were. In this photo, we were in the front seat. With Maverick's location on the Sandusky Bay, the front seat provides some stunning views. Well, provided you can keep your eyes open, that is! (If the guy behind my wife squeezed his eyes any tighter shut, his ears would have popped off!)
Oh, by the way, White Water Landing is not entirely gone. The building housing the queue for Maverick is the former White Water Landing loading platform.
|Frontiertown has the second station for the Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad. If you board the train at this point, it will take you back to the Funway Station, located on the Wildcat Midway. In addition, you will get to see Boneville, an animated town of skeletons living, er, uh, un-living (un-dying?), in the old west. While riding, you can enjoy the music of Mr. Bones and his jug band, and Mr. Possum and the Polecat Pickers, plus the skeletons singing while they are working on the railroad. Look out, those are real flames in the burning building! Too bad the skeletons don't have very good aim with their water hose!|
|That huge wooden structure, built in 1991, is the Mean Streak. At the
time of construction, it was the tallest, fastest, and steepest all-wooden
roller coaster ever built.
The picture to the upper left was taken from the Giant Wheel when it was on the Wildcat Midway.
|Prior to 2000, Mean Streak was ROUGH. If the Mine Ride fixed
your back, Mean Streak was sure to get even! Now, however, the ride seems
to have new shock absorbers. It's not nearly as smooth as Millennium
Force, but the ride will no longer loosen your fillings!. Part of the fun
of a wooden coaster is the way its personality changes with the weather.
When the wood is wet, as on days when it has rained, the track gives a
bit, providing a much smoother ride. On dry days, the wood doesn't give
as much, causing a bumpier sensation.
Smile when you ride that, Pilgrim. Once again, your picture is being
taken while you ride.
If the line is long for Mean Streak, you might want to take in a beverage. The queue is surrounded by the wooden structure. The wind doesn't make it through all that wood, but the sun keeps on beating down, so it gets HOT in there! This coaster is similar to the Texas Giant at Six Flags over Texas, with only minor differences. However, when I was on the Texas Giant, I couldn't help but notice that it was a bumpier ride than Mean Streak. I can't be certain, but it felt like there were quite a few wheels that needed replacing. The ball bearings do wear out. Cedar Point is very good with their maintenance, which is why the park has such a fantastic safety record. The feel of the Texas Giant led me to believe that Six Flags may not be quite as tight with their maintenance. Keep in mind, this statement is merely my impression. Others may have different beliefs.
I actually wish I could have worked at the park in 1991, when the Mean Streak was new. I can imagine that many people asked, "Where's the Streak?" Well, being a bit of a joker, had someone asked me that question, I would naturally have sent them to the Blue Streak, back on the Main Midway. After all, it was there first! Just a word of warning. If you ask directions from a guesser, make sure you use the correct names, or you might find yourself going in the wrong direction!
Have a 48" tall child who is a bit nervous about roller coasters? The Cedar Creek Mine Ride might be a good place to start. If they do well on that one, then move up to some of the bigger roller coasters.
|At the Palace Theatre, you can see the Misadventures of Molly and Maverick,
running from May 24 through August 17 (except Mondays). Enjoy this
Old West misadventure in air conditioned comfort.
Prior to 2002, this building had a much more colorful name. It was previously known as Lusty Lil's Showtime Palace. I guess someone decided that "Lusty Lil" is just a bit too racy a name for a family amusement park! Whatever the name on the front may be, it'll always be Lusty Lil's to me.
||It's not really a show, but the Town Hall is a nice place to visit. This site is often overlooked, which is too bad. You can see some memorabilia from Cedar Point's long history. There are pictures, models, movies, old game machines, and various old souvenirs and artifacts. Included in this area is an original wood horse from the Kiddy Kingdom carousel. This horse was featured on a U.S. postage stamp. (The horse on the carousel was replaced with a fiberglass replica so the original could be preserved.)|
||Draw, pardner, 'cause yer in my territory now! I spent two of my four
Cedar Point summers working at the Frontiertown Guessing Game, commonly
referred to as the Town Scale. The picture on the right was taken early
in the summer of 1987, shortly after I arrived for the season. For about
the first half of the season, Violetta Severkoski (guess which one she
is!) was running the scale. For the second half of the season, I took over.
All summer long, however, Vi and I worked together, along with two first-year
guessers, to make the Frontiertown Scale crew the best crew in the park.
(Of course, I may be just a tad biased in that assessment!)
I could tell many stories about that summer, such as the time that some men carried Vi away as the "consolation" prize, but left her sitting on a trash can because they decided she was defective. However, if I were to get started, I wouldn't stop. I don't have enough server space for all those stories! Despite having to walk very briskly to its remote location, my two years at the Frontiertown Scale were, without a doubt, my favorite Cedar Point summers. Don't get me wrong -- the other two summers were great, also, but the first two were extra special.
That storm was a small one, even though it damaged my location. The
next storm, happening later that summer, was quite a bit more potent. I
was stocking the scale, getting ready to take over the microphone, when
I noticed some fast moving clouds coming from the north. I called the office
to see if a storm warning was in effect, and was told, "Not yet, but there
are some things coming over the radio." Well, considering the speed with
which those clouds were moving and the fact that Cedar Point's worst storms
come from the north, I decided that was good enough. I contacted the other
scales, telling them something big was coming, then, as I took the microphone,
I instructed my first-year guesser to start pulling things down to get
ready for a storm. Being that my scale was the only one with a clear view
of the north, I was the only one who didn't lose any merchandise! As my
first-year was pulling things down, I continued to survey the situation.
At one point, I looked up, and saw a funnel cloud directly overhead. This
funnel cloud proceeded to tear out a large tree and part of the entrance
to Thunder Canyon, nearly wrecking the glass shop, as mentioned on the
Frontier Trail page. It then ripped out a guard booth just outside the
park. As soon as I saw the funnel cloud, I dropped the mic and started
working with my first-year to prepare the scale to shut down in an instant,
if needed. Once we were ready to close, I got back on the mic, hoping to
look calm and sound calm, thereby trying to reduce the panic that was quickly
forming in the crowd. Then the storm hit in its full fury. I immediately
pulled down the prize door, and my first-year and I took cover behind the
scale. Trash cans and light posts went flying horizontally down the midway.
The scale has a heavy rubber mat on it, which started to lift up to fly
away. I reached around from behind the scale and grabbed it. My first-year
then grabbed my arm to keep me from going with it! I pulled the mat into
the back, and tossed it into the store room. About 15 minutes into the
worst of the storm, the phone rang. The office called to tell me that there
was a storm warning in effect. Gee, thanks. They did have some useful information,
however. They said to head to the office when the storm let up enough.
The Sunday night inventory was canceled. That was the only time during
my four summers that we did not do inventory on a Sunday night. After the
storm ended, I took a tour of the park. There were lights and trees down
throughout, with trash cans strewn all about. The maintenance crew lived
up to their reputation, however -- they put in a long night to get most
of the park back to normal by the next morning. Here's the moral: if you
see a storm coming quickly from the north while at Cedar Point, find a
safe place and fast!
|The scale isn't all to the gaming in Frontiertown. Across the way is the Jitney Arcade. The arcade even includes Skee-Ball. So, test your skill, and have some fun!|
|Where the Frontiertown Hat Shop used to be now stands the Frontiertown Shootin' Gallery, added in 2007. Take aim and see what reactions you can get by hitting the various targets.|
|Also added in 2007 is the Frontiertown 3-Point Shoot-Out. Think you've got what it takes to be a basketball star? Well, you've got 40 seconds to find out! You'll take 12 shots total, 4 from each of 3 positions. Make the shots, and be a hero! Get an air ball, and you just might hear the taunting for the rest of the day! Are you up to the challenge?|
|There is all sorts of food in Frontiertown. If you continue past the Wave Swinger, you will see Chick-fil-A, formerly the Frontier Inn. Their chicken is mighty tasty! I'm having cravings just thinking about it! Be aware, however, that Chick-fil-A is closed on Sundays.||
|Next to the Town Hall is Los Gatos, featuring burritos and other Mexican-style food. Next to Los Gatos is the Engine Company ice cream parlor. So, start with something spicy, then move to something cool!|
|There are a couple of hot dog and hamburger stands, including Round
Up, which is the building that actually got hit by lightning when the charge
went racing through my scale. Try the Sugardale footlong hot dogs
with cheese. That's mighty good eatin'!
Right next to the crossing gate heading towards Gemini is the Stockade. It has burgers and other standard amusement park fare. Those Elephant Ears will give you a sugar buzz that'll last a week!
|If you're looking for pizza, you used to be able to find it at the
Frontier Inn. Now that Frontier Inn is Chick-fil-A, however, the
pizza has moved to the Chuck Wagon Inn..
Don't forget the Sweet Tooth Ice Cream Parlour located next to the "Comfort Station". It's in a small alcove, so it's somewhat easy to miss if you don't know to look for it. It's attached to the right side of the Chuck Wagon.
|Near the train station, you'll find some quick snacks at Sagebrush Sue's Frontier Food Company. Sagebrush Sue has hot dogs on a stick, cheese on a stick, and nachos.|
|The main gift shop of Frontiertown is the Trading Post. It has all
sorts of interesting stuff, including quite a few items with a western
theme. One year, the trading post was robbed just after the park closed.
I was walking towards the office when someone went running past. A few
moments later, one of the Trading Post employees hurried up to me, asking
if I'd seen someone run by. I indicated that the guy had quite a head start,
but he was heading for the front of the park. Feeling ambitious? I don't
suggest trying this move. He was caught by the Cedar Point Police, which
is an actual police force, not just security guards. He was arrested and
prosecuted. People seldom get away with stealing anything from Cedar Point.
In other instances, I was personally involved in nabbing someone who attempted
to steal a Skee-Ball, and in getting someone who stole a 35 cent hurricane
lamp from my scale. In both instances, Cedar Point prosecuted.
In 2004, the old Frontiertown Shooting Gallery was converted into the General Store, located right next door to the Trading Post.
|Formerly known as the Frontiertown Emporium, the Discount Depot, located next to the train station, is another nice gift shop. It includes some unique items that are not found in other Cedar Point stores.|
|At the exit of Maverick is the Hitchin' Post. It's got the Maverick on-ride photos, plus a variety of Maverick souvenirs. Be sure to take a look at your ride on Maverick. My wife was quite surprised to see that she was screaming. Will you be surprised, too?|
|Return to the Frontier Trail||Go to The Point Tour||Continue with the Gemini Midway|