speed boats

 Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

"Family & Friends" Boardwalk Memories

Best Birthday Celebration--ever, 2014

My best friend surprised me with a two-day trip to the Boardwalk as a birthday gift. We arrived the evening before my birthday, checked into our hotel across the street (our room had a view of the Undertow coaster, the Carousel, and the beach), and headed over to the Boardwalk. We had not yet tried the new Undertow coaster, and, while the queue was long, it was moving quickly so we jumped in line. Our first surprise was boarding the coaster car facing backwards--and then immediately heading up the lift hill facing backwards! Right off the lift hill the car veered around a sharp turn and plummeted down a hill, again surprising the heck out of us. It was dark, so we really couldn't see anything, and all I remember about that first ride was how hilariously disorienting and fun it was--especially when the car began to spin! This is a wonderful new addition to the collection of rides at the 'Walk, and we rode it at least half a dozen times that night and the next day. We had two wonderful days of great rides, delicious boardwalk food, and fun. A few of our other favorite memories included riding the classic Giant Dipper coaster (celebrating its 90th birthday in 2014!), grabbing for rings on the Carousel and trying to throw them in the Clown's mouth, the new-to-us two-story Haunted Castle dark ride, the FrightWalk walk-through haunted house (genuinely scary!), WipeOut, the Bumper Cars, strolling the beach and sand when we needed a brief break from the rides, and eating dinner on the nearby Municipal Pier (celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2014!) with a view of the ocean from our table. Here's hoping this birthday celebration becomes an annual event!

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