Saturday, August 18, 2012

Road Trip! Quassy Amusement Park

The final stop on this Summer's road trip was a rainy one, rainy as in it rained from when we pulled up to when we left, which was sadly about less than an hour later!  Bummer yes, but with our final park poised to continue expanding in the future I have no doubt that our travels could include another visit.

Rain, rain, go away - it didn't.
According to the park's history page Quassy Amusement Park was once known as Lake Quassapaug Amusement Park - doesn't really roll off the tongue, does it?  I can see why it's going by the shorter version these days.  Quassy has a history as a trolley park dating back to 1908, but it wasn't until 1937 that the park was really 'born' when three local business men purchased the property and started to add attractions.

The small park feel is evident at every turn.
Make no mistake, a visit to Quassy Amusement Park today is not going to give you the experience of a large corporate park, or even a large family park for that matter. Quassy has long functioned as mainly a picnic park - corporate outings, family reunions and the like.  And I don't say that in a negative way, because the selection of rides and attractions the park offers are perfect for those events.

Round and round on the Grand Carousel.
Over the years numerous rides and attractions have been added, with an emphasis on something for everyone.  Naturally you won't find any 200 foot tall coasters here, but you will find classics like the Grand Carousel, Frog Hopper, Yo-Yo, Paratrooper, Tilt-a-Whirl, and Pirate Ship, among others.

New for 2012!
Quassy Amusement Park has been steadily expanding over the past few seasons, with additions that include the Free Fall-N tower ride, the Wooden Warrior coaster, and for this season, the Crazy Cups.  The park also offers some neat wet/dry slides, named The Big Flush, and there's also a Kiddie Land for the little ones.

The much anticipated Wooden Warrior.
The main reason for our visit was to check out the Wooden Warrior, the family-sized wooden coaster added to Quassy in 2011.  The coaster was designed by the Gravity Group, and features the all new Gravitykraft trains.  Scott & Carol recently published a story on the ride, so for a detailed look make sure to check that out here

Luckily for us despite the steady rain that was falling the park kept the ride running!

The train heading up the lift.
I was worried that the ride might be closed when we arrived, but employees at the park calmed those fears by assuring me that not only does the Wooden Warrior run in the rain, but that many fans say it runs better in the rain!  The ride takes advantage of a small hill at the park to make a 45 foot drop using a shorter lift, which leads to the rest of the 1,200 feet of track.

The far turn-around section.
The Wooden Warrior is zippy, to say the least.  After the first drop the train hits a quick air hill then turns left to run out toward the tunneled turn around, seen above.  On my rides the tunnel wasn't much more than a blur, as the ride was really keeping its speed up throughout the course.  The train performs a double-up, roars past the station, and heads to the final low to the ground curve.

Check out the riders - everyone loves it!
I'd like to point out the hair-time that is being experienced by the rider in the last row, she seems to be enjoying herself in the photo!  Another note on the new Gravitykraft trains, they're great!  I really enjoyed them and cannot wait to see them on more rides in the future.

Not much fun on a day like today.
Another important piece of the Quassy puzzle is the shores of Lake Quassapaug and Saturation Station, the park's water area.  Granted it wasn't open on my rainy visit, but under sunny skies the slides and play structures are extremely popular.  And if anyone needs even more water fun, they can swim around in the adjacent lake!

New for 2013!
The water area is so popular in fact that it will be the recipient of next season's capital expansion.  Saturation Station will see the addition of both a bowl slide and an extreme body slide, as well as another small children's area.  Despite the less than desirable conditions I liked Quassy's small park charm, and can't wait to see how they continue to develop in the future.

And with that we've wrapped up our coverage of this year's road trip.  Next year's quest is not yet planned, but of course I'm already thinking... thinking that a plane is going to have to be involved this time!