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June 9, 2012

Nunn on the Run:
X Y & Z Flight

BY
JERRY NUNN

X Y & Z Flight
Six Flags Great America is located at 1 Great America Parkway in Gurnee, Illinois. This theme park offers a variety of entertainment with a focus on roller coasters and a section for water fun called Hurricane Harbor.
The newest ride that has been advertised everywhere is called X-Flight. This double wing coaster takes a trip to the future with 3,000 feet of steel with no track above or below. This makes for a thrilling ride with loops and a zero G corkscrew in the middle that is unforgettable. It is of course a bit of a wait with being the newest ride but a Fast Pass is offered if you want to shell out the bucks or a little patience will be required. The line moves fairly fast with two machines running at the same time. The announcer at lift off was a bit irritating and the line longer for the front seat but it's worth it. The security and smoothness shows the power of the design. This is a long way from the rickety American Eagle ride of yesteryear. Gone now is Splash Mountain Falls to make room for the big X.

X Y & Z Flight
The road to X-Flight was loaded with a few perils on the way. Here's what happened on the day I went, which was on a Wednesday when the park opened. After paying twenty dollars in the parking lot, the line to get into the theme park itself was incredibly long. Think airport security to go through metal detectors with only limited entrances and lines backing up into the ticket purchase booths. If you have spent $199.99 for an Extreme Pass you can skip the line though. To me it felt like the park should fix the problem by adding more gates and employees not upselling. The security is appreciated though and line jumping that was a problem years ago has been settled with ejection from the park for violators and mostly adhered to, of course this now happens at the front of the park since ejection is no option.
Upon entrance it is recommended to head to X-Flight right away as this is very popular. The Flash Pass, which ranges from $45.00 to the platinum that is $95.00 per person makes the wait time shorter. Parks such as Disneyworld offer this same feature using tickets with no additional price. This really makes a difference in your experience with long wait times for rides like Superman Ultimate Flight and Raging Bull.

X Y & Z Flight
Batman The Ride continues to thrill but skip The Dark Knight Coaster since it still seems a little lackluster even in the dark. If you like your stomach in a twist go for the Giant Drop or Vertical Velocity.
Discover credit card and season pass holders are given discounts throughout the park also a Season Dining Pass is offered to eat lunch and dinner for a set price. The sports bottle is another option with free refills the day of purchase and $.99 after for you thirsty birds but glasses of water and water fountains are readily available. To capture your photos a USB keychain can now store your memories and cuts the hair-raising price down.
Shows even include local bands as well as movies in the park throughout the year.
Hurrican Harbor looks like lots of fun but remember there are limited hours so plan accordingly.

X Y & Z Flight
Overall, X-Flight really shows where roller coasters are heading so make the trek to check it out this summer. It's a real scream!
Look for Fright Fest in the fall along with an "Out at the Park" gay day in the works. Hopefully there will mirrors installed in the men's bathrooms by that time so we can fix our hair after a windy thrill ride!
More information can be found at www.sixflags.com.

 
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