Today, Mira woke up as a seven year old.
Wait. Wasn’t she just a curly-headed toddler not that long ago?
Last year, Mira insisted on the big party with all of her friends from school there. This year, she traded in the big party for the chance to spend two days at Cedar Point over Memorial Day weekend. We were already going up on Saturday for Blogger Day (disclosure: Cedar Point furnished our park tickets and provided lunch on Saturday), but Mira was interested in making it a two-day long trip, and willing to give up a chance at having a big party in favor of an amusement park adventure.
So, we did. We spent two days at Cedar Point, staying at the Sandcastle Suites resort on-site. Even though Cordy was firmly against the idea of riding anything other than the Tilt-o-Whirl, she agreed to come along, too, just because it was Mira’s birthday weekend.
We arrived shortly after opening on Saturday. Mira was a little disappointed that she was half an inch too short to meet the 52″ height requirement. She was still tall enough for most of the rides, which only require 48″, but it still meant the GateKeeper – quite possibly MY favorite roller coaster – was still off-limits for her.
Our first ride of the day was the Cedar Downs racing carousel, which at this point is a tradition for us. It’s a carousel, so it’s a gentle enough first ride of the day for Cordy, but it also goes faster than a typical carousel, and the horses in each row go back and forth as well as up and down, so there’s a winner in each row by the end of the ride.
After our first ride, we stopped for our sponsored lunch. Cedar Point, having been tipped off by me that we were celebrating Mira’s birthday, had a little surprise for Mira.
She was thrilled to have a chocolate Dairy Queen ice cream cake. She had asked us for cake and ice cream for her birthday, and was stunned to realize she could get both all at once.
After lunch, it was time to get back to the rides. Mira had asked her sister to ride just one roller coaster with her for her birthday. Cordy has only ever been on one, the Cedar Creek Mine Ride, and used to love it, but then last year became scared of it and refused to ride it anymore.
Cordy wanted to ride the Mine Ride as quickly as possible to get her obligation to her sister over with, but then something amazing happened. We all rode it…and Cordy loved it. Then asked to ride it again with her sister.
We then went to Camp Snoopy to allow the kids some time to ride the Tilt-a-Whirl a few times. (That ride never gets old.) Right next to Camp Snoopy is the redesigned Midway area, where we couldn’t pass up the Monster and the new Pipe Scream.
At that point, Mira was ready for her next roller coaster. She went for another favorite of hers (and mine): the Iron Dragon. Cordy had never been on this suspended coaster before, but we talked her into it. And? She loved it! Score! Two for two!
At this point it was getting really warm, so Aaron convinced Mira to go on Thunder Canyon to cool off. It’s a water ride where you will get wet on the ride. Mira was the unlucky one on their raft to pass under every waterfall. She was drenched.
While they enjoyed having water dumped on them, Cordy and I made friends with the petting zoo animals in Frontiertown. Cordy met her hair-twin, an alpaca she named Andrew.
It was late in the day at that point. Before we could have dinner, though, the kids insisted we visit the dinosaurs in Dinosaurs Alive. It’s a cool area to learn about lots of dinosaurs, with full-size dinosaurs that move and roar and generally look menacing. All of us love reading about the dinosaurs. But we also love being goofy around them, too.
Mira finished the night with the Corkscrew roller coaster, and then we called it a night.
The next morning, though, we were up bright and early to take advantage of the one hour early entry for guests staying at the Cedar Point resorts. Our first stop: GateKeeper. (Well, for those of us who could ride it.) It’s definitely my favorite – it’s a winged coaster, and probably the smoothest roller coaster in existence.
Meanwhile, Cordy and Mira went on the Iron Dragon again…all by themselves. I’ll admit that freaked me out a little, because I’m not ready to consider them standing in lines and riding rides without us, but they were fine. They ended up riding it twice together, because Aaron and I had another roller coaster to conquer: Millennium Force.
Over 300 feet tall, 93 miles per hour top speed, and voted the best steel coaster. It’s intense. I’ll just leave it at that.
At that point, Mira had yet to ride any new roller coasters. Millennium Force was a little outside of her comfort zone, so we offered to take her on the Mean Streak, Cedar Point’s big wooden roller coaster. I was sure she’d be scared of it, but apparently turning seven years old gives you a lot of courage. As soon as it was over, her first words were, “Can we ride it again?” (Cordy decided she was done with coasters for this trip and refused to ride. She drove me around on the antique cars while Aaron and Mira took a second turn on the Mean Streak.)
After two trips on the Mean Streak, we then suggested Magnum XL-200. It’s only 200 feet tall instead of the 300 of Millennium Force, and not quite as fast. Mira trusted our opinion of it, and we stood in line again. I was concerned Mira was going to change her mind on this one. It’s tall. But she decided to be brave and go through with it.
As we were going up the first hill, I could see the worry on her face. I held her hand and told her it would be fun. And then by the end of the ride: “That was awesome! Can we ride it again?” We did ride it again, and even tried to be cheesy for the ride camera.
Before we left Cedar Point on Sunday, we bought Mira her first Ride Warrior t-shirt. She had earned it. As we started the drive home, I asked her what she thought of our trip to Cedar Point as her birthday present. “Best. Birthday. Ever!” And then she promptly fell asleep, holding tight to her pink polar bear and her newly purchased stuffed blue dinosaur.
She may be a ride warrior, but she’s still only seven. Happy birthday, Mira!
Thank you to Cedar Point for the park tickets and lunch, and for helping to arrange for Mira’s surprise cake. Also, thanks to Wiccy and Steve for joining us on the trip, helping with the kids, and taking photos. Mira’s summer plans include growing half an inch so she can ride the GateKeeper when we’re back later this year!