Theme Park Thrillers

Photo by Fatema Sachek

The thrill of plummeting to earth from 70 feet high, being twisted upside down at high speeds, and the sweet scent of cotton candy and baked pretzels can be experienced only at a great American Theme Park.  There is truly nothing I enjoy more than a full day of exhilarating rollercoaster rides, screaming while travelling rapidly in multiple directions, my stomach churning with fear and excitement. 

The one and only good thing about this despicable virus, is that theme parks can only operate at a limited capacity, which means little or no lines for rides. A true dream for a thrill seeker! Over the summer, I ventured across state to Hershey Park for a day trip. Whilst driving into town you can smell hints of chocolate in the air, which makes for a fantastic start to the day. Once parked, it was a breeze entering into the Park and making our way to the first ride, which was only a ten-minute line wait. The limit on people in the park is fantastic, although it does cut down on the hub of energy. One some rides, once you step off, you can get back on after a couple of minutes. That used to be unheard of! Masks have to be worn at all times in the park, which makes screaming on rides not as enjoyable. However, at the Waterpark, masks are not needed, and everyone is playing in close proximity to each other in pools and on slides as if there was no virus. That was probably the scariest part of the park. After a short terrifying trip to the water park, I was determined to fit in a few more rides to end the day. The rapid drop at Skyrush and the crazy twists and turns at Fahrenheit had me holding on for dear life; the fear makes you feel so alive. To top it all off, I was in the land of chocolate, therefore as an extra treat to end the day, I bought a bunch of candy and fudge so that the memories and joy could last past one glorious day. 

 I wanted to take my next theme park excursion on Halloween, where I envisioned trick or treating around the park, and scary creatures popping out of bushes in the spirit of the holiday. Unfortunately, trick or treating was cancelled this year, and besides one scary clown at night, there weren’t any dressed up staff at Six Flags in Maryland. I was so excited for this Halloween adventure that I dressed according to theme, in a scary clown costume and put on my make up for the part. Little did I know that I was the only one of my friends to dress up. It was too cold to not wear my coat the whole time, and when we arrived at Six Flags, I was told to my dismay that I had to take off the makeup on half my face for reasons unbeknownst to anyone. Nevertheless, the sun was shining, and I strode with my half face into the park.

We started off on the baby rides, which are just almost as amusing as the big boy rides. We joined little babies with their parents on the Merry Go Round and got a few stares from children and parents when we screamed on the baby rollercoaster. After the child’s play was over we scurried towards the larger rides, where we went in a continuous loop, dropped from hundreds of feet high, flew through the air at speeds over 60mph and became queasy from whirling around in tea cups.

After many rides, and the sun fading, I still wanted to experience the best ride saved for last, the Superman. There was only one trolley very the line moved so slowly, and it was starting to get cold and dark quickly, but I was sure the deadly drop would be worth the frigid wait. As soon as I reached the ride, I hopped on eagerly, ready for the most exhilarating minute. I could hear the chatter of excitement and fear behind me as the wheels of the trolley rolled high up and came to a complete stop. Silence. For one short breath nothing could be heard at the top. I looked down to see my friends hundreds of feet below, pointing and staring up. And then, in the blink of an eye, they were out of sight and I was flying down rapidly. I could feel my body drift slowly up from my seat as I gripped the handles tightly. My long hair was flying in the gush of wind blowing upwards. I brushed it aside and looked down at the track and pavement below. I heard the screams of the passengers sitting behind me and along with them I started to shout as well, lifting my arms from the handlebars. The speed of the trolley grew faster as we plummeted downwards headfirst. Then suddenly the trolley turned abruptly upwards and twisted. I was hanging upside down for a split second, completely off my seat, only held together by a hard plastic restraint. Before I could take a breath, the cart flew back down sideways and upside down. And then, as quickly as the trolley dropped, it came to a halt and turned horizontally back on the ground. Perfect end to a whirlwind of a day.