Photo Trip Report

Fun Spot America

May 28, 2013

I had not heard of Fun Spot until a few months ago after reading about a major expansion. It would include two roller coasters: a GCI woodie and a Vekoma junior suspended. So after spending the day at SeaWorld, I headed to Fun Spot, which is just across Interstate 4 from the Universal parks.

I parked (parking is free) and paid for a wristband, which was $41 with tax for people taller than 54 inches. The ticket was good on every ride except Sky Coaster. The two coasters cost $9 a ride, so the wristband was a great deal for the number of rides I got.

I started on the wooden coaster, White Lightning. I went to the back seat and rode on the right side, which the ride operators told me was the best seat. This ride is amazing. The first drop is steep and twists to the left. There's plenty of airtime in the back. It quickly twists to the right under the structure and enters a double-up and double-down. There's some air in the double-up, but the better air in the back seat is coming out of the peak and in the double-down.

The ride then climbs into a high, swooping turnaround. It's highly banked, possibly 90 degrees, and dives down to the left. That's followed by some quick airtime hills and a small twisting hill that ends in a small double-down. There's a turn under the lateral supports of the lift hill, another pop of air and some turns into the brakes.

White Lightning is a great little coaster. It's among the best wooden coasters smaller than 100 feet that I've been on. It's got a great pace, is incredibly smooth and is loaded with airtime. There are only two issues I have with it. One: The seats are a hard mold. This is the first GCI I've ridden that used this. All the others with Millennium Flyer trains have extremely soft cushions, but these seats are hard. No idea why. I imagine if this ride isn't maintained well, those seats will become an issue. Two: There's an odd bump or pothole in the turnaround. I didn't notice it at first, but after a few rides it became a little distracting. I don't know if the coaster doesn't have enough momentum for the banking or if it's deliberate (it doesn't feel deliberate). It's odd, really, but doesn't take much away from the ride. I don't think anyone would notice without multiple rides. 10/10.

But those two criticisms aside, it's an outstanding addition to an unknown little park that has a go-kart track and a few other rides. After White Lightning, I went to the other coaster, Freedom Flyer. I went to the back seat and sat on the right side. The lift hill is powered by tires and drops to the left over the midway. It rises into a turning hill and then into the figure-eight over the midway. There are some pretty high G-forces in those turns, which surprised me. For a coaster this small, the forces were nice. It turns over the station and ends with a helix. There are good forces there too. 7/10.

I went back to White Lightning and rode in the front seat. I got a solo ride, so it was running a little slowly, but it wasn't terribly noticeable because the trains are so short. The airtime entering the double-up in fantastic in the front. The hills on the return run also have a nice push of air in them in this seat. But the back seat is better, as is usual with most coasters.

I rode Freedom Flyer again in the next to last seat. It's fun. I walked around and took pictures. There was a breathtaking sunset that illuminated the sky. Then I went to White Lightning and rode twice in the back seat. I got a reride and didn't have to exit. I walked around some more, and an employee handed me a free piece of funnel cake. It was good and a nice way to get guests to buy park food.

Then I rode Bench: The Ride. I went to White Lightning again. As is typical of wooden coasters, it came alive at night. I rode five more times. Four of my rides were in the back seat, and each was a reride. My fifth ride was in the fifth row, and I moved because two other people wanted the back seat. It's an extremely rerideable coaster.

Fun Spot has two real winners here. It's a great value to get the wristband and get multiple rerides on the coasters. Orlando's only wooden coaster is an outstanding ride, and I only have two minor criticisms. Other than the seats and the pothole, it's great. I had a fun time at Fun Spot.