Still here. But mostly in 140 characters.
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Saturday, August 16, 2003
 
Star Tours to be Themed to Star Wars Holiday Special

Following what Disney sources claim was a "catastrophically awful reaction" to the new Star Tours II, the management of Disney Studios has shut the ride down yet again for a complete retheming after only a few short months. Says one inside source, “although our Imagineers were certain that a new attraction featuring non-stop playback of the video of that idiot who filmed himself with a lightsaber would bring in swarms of guests, it actually proved rather unpopular. However, we are now prepared to unleash Star Tours III.” Further information about the new attraction was gleaned the next day in a surprise press conference held by Rick McCallum, the executive producer of the three new Star Wars "films."

“We at Lucasfilm are proud to announce a new agreement for a brand-new, first-rate update of the current Star Tours ride,” he stated. “The new attraction will be themed entirely to the underrated 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special. While this film has been reviewed fairly negatively in the press, and George Lucas has told people that he’d love to take a hammer to each and every copy in existence, the two of us got together and decided, well, at least it’s better than the excrement we’ve been passing off as prequels. I mean, really, would you rather experience a thrilling ride that features both Bea Arthur trying to sing and a Wookie who looks like Adam Rich, or would you prefer that f&*king JarJar and that total garbage Attack of the Clones dialogue about the sand being rough and coarse? So, I got George to file away his hammer and embrace this bastard offspring of the Star Wars pantheon, and I know he and everyone else will adore the new ride.”

Star Tours III will begin with a preshow featuring Wookies with crappy costumes mumbling incomprehensibly in their native tongue without benefit of translation. This will set the mood for the ride. Then riders will experience a series of themed rooms: first, they will experience that bizarre and not-family-friendly porno chair that Chewie’s dad “Itchy” uses. Second, riders will be assaulted by the “voice” of Bea Arthur. Then the action really doesn’t let up until the end; riders will experience such thrills as Mark Hamill’s God-awful hairdo, evil stormtroopers breaking Chewie’s stupid son’s toy, Boba Fett galloping around on the back of a big lizard, and a coke-addled Carrie Fisher singing the beyond-hideous Life Day song.

McCallum continued: “We are unsure at this time whether all the major stars will make appearances for the ride. We know that Mark Hamill needs the work, for sure. Count him in. Harrison Ford pretty much phoned in his performance in the original Holiday Special, so we aren’t worried about it this time around. And Carrie Fisher may make a cameo, but we’re going to have to put the vocal coaches on her right away, since, due to our desire for a gritty, more realistic presentation this time, she’ll need to sing the Life Day song in the original Shriiwook instead of English. Er…I mean Basic. Sorry.”

In other news, the Disney Studios additionally announced that the Great Movie Ride would also be shutting down for rehab on September 1st. Said our source, “it’s not a full retheming like Star Tours III. This one is only for a modest expansion; we’ve simply got to update the exciting movie scenes in that ride to reflect the great cinema of today. After we add such important works as Freddy Got Fingered, Battlefield Earth, Gigli, Enough, and Extreme Ops, we’ll have it up and running again by early October."

--JCK

[Author's Note: Hey! Look at that...amusement park toolishness and Star Wars über-geekery combined in one article! Now if that doesn't get me laid tonight, I just don't know what will!]

Posted at 11:31 PM | Link |

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Hulk Coaster Denies Culpability in Blackouts

Appearing at a press conference today, the Incredible Hulk roller coaster, based at Islands of Adventure, denied any involvement in the recent blackouts that crippled New York City and substantial portions of states from Michigan to Connecticut, as well as parts of Canada.

“I am appearing before you today to assure all the media, my friends, family, teammates, and fans that I am blameless in the events which transfigurated in the Northeast,” said the ride. “Although I do use a great deal of power, I would never be irrepressible with it and cause these terrible blackout conditions. I am hurt that people believe these is my doings and I will be proven innocent eventually.” Hulk then began sobbing uncontrollably and heaving its manly shoulders. Cat in the Hat then came over to console the despondent thrill ride.

Authorities questioned the coaster Friday, but released it without making any official criminal charges against it. “Hulk is not under arrest,” stated Anita Hoare, the lead detective assigned to the case. “However, we certainly consider it a suspect. IOA continually brags about how they had to build a huge separate power station just to handle the coaster train launches of Incredible Hulk, or else every launch would black out the city of Orlando. This certainly seems suspicious to us.”

Returning to the podium after its sobbing and blubbering had tapered off, Hulk announced that it had dramatic evidence the blackouts were caused by the enormous power drain caused by the Lil Whipper Snapper, a twelve-foot family steel coaster located at Hoffman’s Playland near Albany, New York.

--JCK

Posted at 1:01 AM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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Friday, August 15, 2003
 
ThrillNetwork Club Announces Event, ERT

In a press release issued to all major news outlets, world-famous amusement park website and constant source of amusement ThrillNetwork announced its 2004 Club event. Surprising all those who noticed that the ThrillNetwork Club had disappeared from view, the announcement features exclusive ride time at not one but two venues:

"First up is a full hour of ERT on the Python Pit at up-and-coming park Jeepers!, in West Nyack, New York. We all have heard the stories about the Jeepers! in Olathe, Kansas, getting a flying B&M themed to the Faces of Death video series -- here's your chance to ask the management at this great park whether the Freddy vs. Jason dueling B&M inverted coaster rumors are true for this spot! ERT starts at 3:00 a.m. on February 21, 2004, and is contingent on more people than just that one dude named Roman showing up."

The press release continues:

"On the next day, a convenient 23-hour drive away, we'll have full run of the Chuck E. Cheese in South St. Paul, Minnesota, for a full 90 minutes. We're not quite sure, but we think they at least have some of those little cars you can ride for a quarter, and, well, there's pizza!"

A small-print disclaimer notes that nine-year-old Bobby Fleming of North St. Paul will also be holding a birthday party at the facility and asks members to refrain from eating his cake or friends.

Upon receiving the press release, the American Coaster Enthusiasts, CoasterBuzz, Thrillride!, Knoebel's, Cedar Point, and every other coaster group, website, or park planning an event for 2004 cancelled it. "Why bother trying to compete?" asked ACE President, Godmother of Soul, and Hardest Working Woman in Midlevel Poorly Managed Group Business Carole Sanderson.

Posted at 9:55 AM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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Thursday, August 14, 2003
 
Howl-O-Scream Schedule and Attractions Announced

Busch Gardens Tampa made a veritable passel of information available this evening, as the park launched the website for the 2003 Howl-O-Scream event. Featuring scare zones, haunted houses, and night riding on certain coasters and other attractions, the event will take place on October 3rd, 4th, 10th, 11th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 30th,and 31st, as well as November 1st. ARN&R is pleased to give the exclusive scoop on what the six haunted houses will unleash upon horrified guests.

Returning from last season will be the popular Ripper’s Row and Mortuary houses. However, there will be four all-new haunted attractions that will, in the words of one confidential spy from high up in park management, "scare the living s%$# out of everyone."

First off will be Lorikeets of Utter Damnation. Guests will enter the Lorikeet Landing area to view the brilliantly colorful birds, after which the small, Satan-possessed avians will violently pluck out guests’ eyeballs for use in merry games that our source assures us “the children will just love.” There will be the usual extra charge for the little cups of nectar the guests can use to feed the Lorikeets.

Next will be Serengeti Hunt, where guests will be rubbed down with ripe meat drippings and then locked in the lion paddock in Edge of Africa. “Many of our guests have mentioned that the Universal parks have had a haunted house that featured a lot of running around in the dark past scary rooms,” said our source. “This is our version, and we assume that the incentive of not being ripped limb from limb and devoured by a hungry pride of big cats will keep mood-spoiling troublemakers from having a negative effect on those parkgoers who are really trying to have fun.”

The third new haunted attraction will be the Swamp of Unholy Terror, where visitors negotiate a complex obstacle course through mud, gurgling water, and fog. The ultimate peril of the swamp lies in a climactic encounter with a deadly river otter. “We’re still working on this one,” admits the source. “Although our marketing indicated the river otter would be an excellent choice for loosening the vocal chords, and bowels, of our scared-stiff clientele, it appears that many people find the river otter to be ‘amazingly cute’ rather than ‘the most horrifying nightmare beast they could ever imagine.’ We’ve had to fire some of our design team over this one, but we’re tinkering with the thing and it’ll be really good by October. Just out of curiosity, lots of people are really freaked out by soft, fluffy little bunny rabbits, right? No? Oh well.”

And finally, the source indicates a fourth haunted house will be King Tut’s Tomb. When confronted by the information that this is a standard BGT attraction that has been operating at the park for a number of years, the source claimed that “it might not be the least bit scary, but King Tut’s Tomb is definitely the most horrifying thing we could think of to subject people to. We think that pile of crap’ll be the hit of the Howl-O-Scream!”

--JCK

Posted at 1:37 AM | Link |

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Wednesday, August 13, 2003
 
Six Flags Finds Billion Dollars

In an announcement that company spokespeople insisted had nothing whatsoever to do with the recent collapse of its stock price, Six Flags Theme Parks Inc. issued a press release today informing the investing public that it had "found" roughly one billion dollars.

"It was the wildest thing," said Gary Story, chain COO. "This one guy who's run the Dippin' Dots stand at The Great Escape for the past three seasons had never quite learned how to turn in his till at the end of the day, and nobody ever noticed. Well, he finally called in sick one day and the person who took his place told us he'd found a lot of money stuffed in the cash register. And, since Dippin' Dots is pretty much free to make -- you know, one part cow urine, one part sugar, and a whole lotta dry ice -- that's pretty much pure profit. You hear that, Wall Street -- profit! From us!"

Company accountants counted the money carefully and determined that the stand had collected $1.05 billion dollars over the past three years. "It's been pretty hot here," said Great Escape food service manager Katherine Danke in an interview with Gary Story standing directly behind her. "For, um, three years. And there have been some serious lines there at the Dippin' Dots booth, and I don't need to remind you that Dippin' Dots is the ice cream of the future."

Six Flags's stock price was up 85% on the news.

In what we are certain is completely and totally unrelated news, thirty-four banks in a ten-mile radius around Six Flags's corporate offices in Oklahoma City reported being robbed by criminals dressed in Time Warner cartoon character outfits, with a total loss of just over one billion dollars.

Posted at 9:56 AM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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Monday, August 11, 2003
 
Breaking News -- Six Flags Magic Mountain to Run for Governor of California

While details are still sketchy, ARN&R can exclusively report that Six Flags Magic Mountain has decided to enter the race for governor and filed the necessary paperwork quietly several days ago. "Heck, we only lost $100 million last year -- that's a whole lot less than Gray Davis has!" said the park in an exclusive interview. Initial reports have the park's platform being based on spending billions of dollars on experimental highways that will never actually operate as designed.

--AT

Posted at 9:46 PM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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Hersheypark to Build World's Fastest Hydraulic Elevator

Hersheypark amusement park, in world famous Hershey, Pennsylvania, announced yesterday at high-noon that something big and exciting would be coming to central Pennsylvania's largest thrill park in the year 2004. The announcement came along with an announcement that its launched coaster plans had been cancelled due to "a really slow year of sales at the roasted nuts booth."

"We're absolutely thrilled about our newest, currently unnamed attraction for the 2004 season," said a Hersheypark public relations official. "Our planning and development department keeps up on all the latest trends and new technologies. Of course when we heard about the latest thrill ride technology, hydraulics, we were overjoyed. We knew that we would want to be among the first to install one of Intamin's exciting hydraulic beasts so we set to work on a concept for an amazingly fun and amazingly reliable ride."

Hersheypark noted a few days before the announcement that their new thrill ride would be a "third of a kind" attraction. "Of course the first two installiations of Intamin's hydraulic technology are Xcelerator at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California and Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, but we wanted something to really push the envelope," quipped Hersheypark's vice president of planning and development. "We wanted to thrill the socks off of our guests, hopefully increasing sock sales in our gift shops, and what we came up with was a super-high capacity thrill machine that we've codenamed "2004 Attraction."

He continued: "'2004 Attraction,' whose name will be chosen by park guests at our website, will defy gravity in not one, but two totally opposite directions! Not only will '2004 Attraction' move up, but it will also move down! It's going to be the most amazing and extreme thing anybody has ever seen!"

Yesterday at noon the park unveiled its monstrosity. Citing inspiration gained on a trip to Walt Disney World's Disney/MGM Studios and taking a spin on the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror and going for a ride in the Hershey public library's elevator to the basement, the park's P&D department, in conjunction with Herbert Schmeck and the crew at Intamin, designed the world's fastest and highest hydraulic elevator.

Hydraulic elevators, known for their lack of speed and limited height due to the deep shafts that must be bored into the ground for the car's support tubes, are often used in small commercial buildings such as office complexes, libraries, and some hospitals.

Sandor Kernacs, President of Intamin AG, had this to say about "2004 Attraction":

"We at Intamin were faced with several challenges. First, traditional hydraulic elevators cannot normally service beyond five stories due to the deep shafts that must be dug for the equipment. Second, they cannot normally travel at speeds beyond 2 km/h because of the hydraulic mechanisms that are employed. For '2004 Attraction' we were able to, after much thinking, double both of those figures. Our new hydraulic elevator will stretch ten stories and travel at speeds of up to 4 km/h! All of this with a minimal support structure that will admittedly have to be modified after a year of operation."

The marketing department at Hersheypark encourages all Hersheypark guests to vote on the name of their new ride at www.hersheypark.com. The three name choices are "Rent-a-guy," "Elevator Stampede," and "Storm Walker." Voting ends August 15th.

--WCT

Posted at 9:04 PM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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Six Flags Over Georgia Blows Settlement Money

According to sources close to ARN&R, Six Flags Over Georgia managed to spend over 454 million dollars within a period of approximately seven months. The massive sum was allegedly the entire settlement won by the park in a long-running lawsuit over Time Warner mismanagement of the property while the company owned Six Flags Over Georgia.

Although many insiders assumed the SFOG settlement would mean payments to stockholders or new rides for the park, all the money was apparently diverted into a special slush account for the park, which managed to live a life of incredible excess and debauchery until the funds ran dry. Among the purchases made by the park were a dozen Bengal Tigers and assorted wild game for them to hunt, hundreds of thousands of dollars of gold jewelry, a Bentley, a million dollars of cell phone calls using various calling plans, Claude Mabillard, and an oceanfront luxury home formerly owned by Absolutely Reliable before construction was completed on the brand new Absolutely Reliable Mansion last year.

Speaking in a high, squeaky voice and appearing before cameras with a new tattoo across its forehead, Six Flags Over Georgia claimed in answer to questions about the pile of dough it had spent, "At times, I come across as crude or crass, that irritates you when I come across like a Neanderthal or a babbling idiot at times. But I like to be that person. I like to show you all that person because that's who you come to see." SFOG also added, for no apparent reason whatsoever, that it "can sell out Madison Square Garden masturbating."

The park also reportedly spent 113 million dollars on Strawberry Boone's Farm and Thunderbird, 19 million dollars tipping "Tiffani" at the nearby Meow Mix Club, 14 million dollars on Girls Gone Wild Videos, 23 million dollars for tattoos and body piercings, and most shocking of all, a $20 membership in the AbsolutelyReliableClub. In response to a reporter's question on "how could a park spend millions on low class trash like that and neglect to hire anyone to even clean its toilets once in a while," SFOG responded that "I want to rip out Six Flags America's heart and feed it to itself. I want to kill parks. I want to rip their stomachs out and eat their Batman Stunt Shows."

The clearly deranged park then leapt onto a nearby Dollywood and bit a large chunk of its ear off, essentially ending the press conference.

--JCK

Posted at 2:31 AM | Link | 0 comment(s)

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