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Six Flags Great America 2011 Trip Report
Sept. 20, 2011

Here it is, the last of the Season Pass "Wheels on I-80" trip reports, our final day at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, IL. This was the only park on the trip I'd never been to, and I was excited about a bunch of new credits and seeing this former Marriott themer in the flesh. (Especially since it may be the ONLY former Marriott park in the not-too-distant future...)

The weather was gorgeous and many of the rides were delightful, but the day had a melancholy edge. Darrell and Deanna couldn't be with us, I was leaving for the airport later in the afternoon, everyone was getting a wee bit tired, and the start of a nasty cold had gripped me (that cold moved through almost everyone during the trek.) All things considered, though, I came away with favorable impressions of this Flagger.

Shannon drove Doug and I to the park while the others slept in a bit longer (check-in at the hotel the night before was well past 1:00 AM), and we stopped to fuel up with some Dunkin' Donuts grub and coffee. Just through the main gates, a very polite park officer asked us to finish drinking said coffee before proceeding any further. We did so, a tad chagrined.

But this view of the grand double-decker carousel and reflecting pool improved our dispositions in no time.

What a greeting, really beautiful. Love this. Kind of sorry I didn't get a chance to ride, especially on the upper level.

I'm also sorry we didn't make it up in the observation tower. Ah, well, all the more reason to make a return visit (X-Flight, baby!).

Like most Six Flags parks, the "theming" here is somewhat mishmosh, but there are still remnants of the distinct "lands" Marriott originally commissioned. And the landscaping is very nice.

A goodly quantity of trees in the forward section was most welcome on this warm, sunny day.

It all made me sorry I hadn't been to either of the Great Americas back in those first seasons, when they were still the parks Randall Duell had designed.

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© Robert Coker
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