Tidal Wave Memories (lots of pics!)

All about the rides at Marriott's GREAT AMERICA and post-Marriott rides, too
User avatar
RLAiello
Tidal Wave
Posts: 207
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2005 8:23 pm
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Contact:

Tidal Wave Memories (lots of pics!)

Post by RLAiello » Sun Aug 28, 2005 12:51 am

It seems that most everyone here has a soft spot in their hearts for the Tidal Wave. I do too. There was nothing better than getting in line close to the end of the day and riding it over and over and OVER again. It was the most fun, even if it was the shortest ride.

I took a good number of pictures of the Tidal Wave when it was standing. I also took some pictures when they were taking it down, and then a few when they were building Batman in its place. The cool thing is... I didn't realize until later on that I had taken a few of those pictures in the exact same spots.

For instance...

Image
Here's the Tidal Wave entrance in 1989, just as we all remember it.

Image
Here's a picture of the same spot, with the entrance closed and the ride gone.


Even more cool were these pictures I took in the Service Corridor:

Image
Here's a 1989 shot of the Tidal Wave from north end of the Service Corridor.

Image
Here is almost the exact same view, with the Tidal Wave gone.

Image
Finally, here is the same spot again, while they were building Batman.

Here are some other pics of the dismantling of the Tidal Wave from the Service Corridor perspective:

Image
Here's the former station area, after they removed the station. Kind of cool (yet sad) to see all the workings that were underneath it.

Image
I can't recall if these columns held up the loop or another portion of the ride... maybe someone out there can help with this. The rusty look is sad against the blue paint.

Image
When I saw this section of the loop just laying in the corridor, I knew that I couldn't just leave it there without getting a memento. So I snuck over and ended up bringing home these:
Image
I initially had two blue and two white bulbs, but I ended up using one of the white bulbs in a lamp (what was I thinking?!?)... in any case, these came right off of that section of the loop, along with a few stones I found underneath the ride-- in three different paint colors to represent the varying shades of blue they had painted the ride over the years. They've survived five moves and 14 years (GOD has it been that long already!?!) in a little box of memories I call my "Great America Box" that has stuff like this inside. I'll be sharing some of my "Great America Box" mementos in these boards as time goes on. :-)

It's a sad truth about rides-- rides come and rides go. But rides like the Tidal Wave will always be special to us for some reason... maybe it's memories of our childhood... maybe it's good times we had. Or maybe it's just that while change is inevitable, it's not always good.

Thank goodness for pictures!!
Rick Aiello
SFGAm Employee 1988-1999

akorbel
Gulf Coaster
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Jul 16, 2005 1:41 pm
Location: San Jose

Post by akorbel » Sun Aug 28, 2005 1:47 am

The Tidal Wave was one of my faves, too. It was a great, fun ride that had a lot of details that added up to more than the sum of its parts: HUGE and overpowering physical structure--especially the towers, the elaborate chasing lights at night (best of any ride at MGA, you could see it from outside the park in fact), the dramatic "whooshing" sounds (like a siren song luring you towards it), elaborate theming and landscaping, quick turnaround in line (more so towards the end of its life), the anticipation of the launch of the train...I could go on and on.

There are other shuttle loop coasters out there--Montezooma's Revenge at Knott's Berry Farm comes to mind--but none of them have the mystique of The Tidal Wave.

User avatar
SFGAmLover
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 54
Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2005 11:10 pm
Location: Midwest

Post by SFGAmLover » Sun Aug 28, 2005 6:27 am

Rick,

Thank you for the pictures and the memories. You were right about that one photo with the columns being under the loop.
WARNING: This message was composed on a computer in a household where peanuts and peanut products are served.

User avatar
RLAiello
Tidal Wave
Posts: 207
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2005 8:23 pm
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Contact:

Post by RLAiello » Sun Aug 28, 2005 4:23 pm

OH I forgot to mention... I was working at the park the night that Tidal Wave ran for the last time. They put out a call to everyone working that night to come and ride it one final time, so all the employees got a chance to ride it after the park closed. People were pretty emotional. It was like losing a friend.
Rick Aiello
SFGAm Employee 1988-1999

User avatar
redfishpaw
Tidal Wave
Posts: 510
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 9:58 am
Location: Milwaukee
Contact:

Post by redfishpaw » Mon Aug 29, 2005 10:29 am

Nice photos Rick. Like you, I was working at the park at that time. I do not recall if I went on the final Tidal Wave ride or not. Tidal actually was not one of my personal favorites, I didn't mind seeing it go and I prefer Batman over Tidal Wave. When I started in 1985 I worked one year in rides and I had to fill in for someone at the Tidal Wave for there days. I had to stand at the load station and speak over the mic. I was quite nervious at first, but after a while, it was fun.

Here is my Tidal Wave removal photo
http://www.pbase.com/redfishpaw/image/47517074

User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Contact:

Post by m11stephen2 » Tue Oct 25, 2005 3:29 pm

RLAiello wrote:OH I forgot to mention... I was working at the park the night that Tidal Wave ran for the last time. They put out a call to everyone working that night to come and ride it one final time, so all the employees got a chance to ride it after the park closed. People were pretty emotional. It was like losing a friend.
At least the ride wasnt scrapped. Was tidal Wave fun?

segerken
Gulf Coaster
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 2:37 pm

Post by segerken » Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:09 pm

Here is some Santa Clara Title Wave trivia:

1) I was part of the crew that waxed the train on the morning that it opened to the public the first time. Trying to get it perfect, I used a little rubbing compound on the logo on the first car. The Title Wave logo was painted on, and as you would guess, started coming off. Before too much got rubbed off I stopped and cleaned up the little that smeared onto the white paint of the car and then just waxed the logo. Nobody found out what I did.

2) On the night before it opened to the public, there was an employee party so that the employees could get the first rides on it. The door prize was a trip to Hawaii for two. The party started at 11 p.m. after the park had closed. Since I had to be at work at 6 AM the next day, I just stayed long enough to enter my name in the box for the door prize, ride the ride, and go home. The next day nobody knew who won the trip. A couple of days later when I was getting my pay check from the pay trailer, I was told to see someone in employee relations. I went and saw this person and introduce my self. She pick up an 8x10 picture with the General Manager at a microphone and said you should have been in this picture. As it turns out, I won the trip to Hawaii. I ended up taking the trip in December between semesters of college.

User avatar
that_guy
Tidal Wave
Posts: 482
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2005 9:10 pm
Location: Pacific Grove, California

Post by that_guy » Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:31 pm

Are you saying you started to rub off the logo and then waxed it to keep it from coming off? Or that the logo was coming off and you waxed it and it stayed on longer? I'm kinda confused

Also, I know when the train launches they want your head to be against the head rest so you don't injure yourself but what is wrong with this riding position:

http://www.greatamericaparks.com/sg/rid ... ave016.jpg

?

User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Contact:

Post by m11stephen2 » Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:51 pm

That looks like a brace position if youre going to make an emergency landing in an airplane. So is tidal wave fun?

User avatar
jonrev
Tidal Wave
Posts: 428
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 12:42 pm
Location: Grayslake, Illinois
Contact:

Post by jonrev » Tue Oct 25, 2005 7:07 pm

They could've been going backwards you know.
Gurnee Ride Op - 2007

User avatar
twixmix0303
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 72
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 10:47 pm
Contact:

Post by twixmix0303 » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:10 pm

Good point. That's probably the case as a few of the riders are doing it. If they were going forward, you can get whiplash from not having your head supported. So basically, it would leave you with an unfortable ache after riding.

segerken
Gulf Coaster
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 2:37 pm

Post by segerken » Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:34 pm

that_guy wrote:Are you saying you started to rub off the logo and then waxed it to keep it from coming off? Or that the logo was coming off and you waxed it and it stayed on longer? I'm kinda confused
?
The logo was not a sticker, it was painted on. The rubing compound started rubibng off the logo. When I saw this, I stopped using the rubbing compound, after cleaning of the white part next to log where some of the logo color smired onto, and just waxed it.

User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Contact:

Post by m11stephen2 » Wed Oct 26, 2005 1:39 pm

jonrev wrote:They could've been going backwards you know.
I think they were going forward because the girls hair is "flowing" backwards.

User avatar
UAORDStew
Gulf Coaster
Posts: 19
Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2005 1:25 pm
Location: Chicago, Illinois
Contact:

Post by UAORDStew » Tue Nov 08, 2005 1:49 pm

Just came across this site today and all I can say is that this is awesome!!

Hey Rick!! Yeah, what great memories of the Tidal Wave!! Riding it over and over as a kid and then working on that ride in 87/88/89...before going over to Power Dive. It was my first rollercoaster to run!!! There are quite a few of us that worked on the T-Wave crew back in 88 that still keep in touch. Heck, I still keep in touch with your sister Rick...LOL!!

Thank for posting those pics. Even though they are sad to look at, I vividly remember watching my baby come down in pieces. :cry:

I also remember the last night she ran. Brought a tear to my eye after taking that last ride. :cry:

Been on the T-Wave out in Cali, and was on the Viper (T-Wave) at SFOG, but recently rode Greezed Lightnin at AstroWorld in the beginning of October before they close their doors for good.....wasn't quite the same as our beloved Tidal Wave, but I sure got goosebumps once I sat in that Anton train!!!

User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Contact:

Post by m11stephen2 » Tue Nov 08, 2005 2:50 pm

If you can you can go to sfkk and ride it there.

Post Reply