There are a few of those “You know you are from Toronto when….” posts floating around the internets. Many of them state that you are from Toronto if you had a season’s pass to Canada’s Wonderland. I had a season’s pass for a number of years in the late 1990’s. It was the thing to do back in the day – and was a pretty affordable entertainment option for young teens. We would sometimes go as a family, but I was also allowed to go with a few friends on our own – with one set of parents driving us to Wonderland, and another seat bringing us back. We didn’t play any carnival games or even buy food there – We just went on the rides. If I look real hard in my office, I could probably find one of those coaster photos of my friend and I just staring ahead with no expression on our faces.
After high school started – I no longer had a pass, but I still went to Wonderland quite often – mostly for band trips and for Wondergrad, which is when Wonderland is open all night for graduating students (an awful night in my opinion). After high school I don’t think I went to Wonderland again until after university – and only for Halloween Haunts (a great night, in my opinion). I have not been to Wonderland since 2008!
Six years later I made my return to Wonderland! Not much has changed. Almost all the rides are still there, and only a few have been added. There are fresh coats of paint and new names – but the park is essentially the same. I would say that they have added more food options and shops – making the walking areas a bit more crowded. They also took out Jet Scream for whatever reason – which is disappointing because I liked that ride!
We took half of the track team to Wonderland for a few hours on Monday. We had from 10am-2:30pm to go on as many rides as possible. I told the older kids my mission was to go on the two HUGE roller coasters, Leviathan and Behemoth because they were the only two rides I had not been on yet. Of course, they were totally game at by 10am on the nose, we were on Leviathan. Leviathan was amazing – I did have my eyes closed for the initial drop (and did some breathing to limit that sinking stomach feeling) but after that drop, my hands were up for most of the ride. It was a really great ride and not scary at all. We went on a few other rides, then tackled Behemoth. The roller coasters are very similar but Behemoth has more drops than Leviathan and was a bit more jerky. After breaking for ice cream, we went on some spinny rides that made me feel awful and then onto Top Gun/Flight Deck where we were jostled around so much that it hurt. I will probably never go on that ride again, it was that bad. We tried to go on one more ride, but the incoming thunderstorm made the park close the rides, so off to the bus we went!
(the first drop of Leviathan)
It was a lot of fun being at Wonderland again. Most of the kids had only been once or twice and had no idea on what rides were good or not. They were also pretty cool with having me hang out with them for the day. Being at the park reminded me of eating funnel cakes, waiting hours for certain rides and just having fun. The lines were not bad at all – actually the scarier the ride, the easier the line up! We were discussing whether being older made rides worse, and I was the guinea pig. I do have to say that I still love roller coasters – but the rides that spin are not as fun. I have to close my eyes for those too – otherwise I feel just awful! Guess that is part of being older, right?
Have you ever been to Wonderland?
Do you have a theme park that you go to often?