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Your Favourite Ever CF Lives

Howie

Active Member
Ahh yes, ranking threads. We all love 'em. But let's do something different; instead of just compiling lists of coasters and parks that everybody posts in but nobody actually reads, let's talk about some of those old CoasterForce trips we've all been on and reminisce about some of the adventures, japes, larks, pratfalls, ERT's, drunken stupors, tat raffles and takeovers that make up a typical CoasterForce Live.
Of course, all CF Lives are awesome, that goes without saying. But which were your favourites?
Whether it's at Dollywood or Pleasurewood, the laughs, banter and welcoming atmosphere at a CF event are always on point, but let's be honest, some Lives are more awesome than others. There could be many reasons for this: maybe one was at a particularly good park, or you had a particularly good ERT session on a fab new coaster. Maybe one in particular marked the start of a lasting friendship, or maybe you even met your future spouse at a CF Live?
Or maybe you just have a soft spot for the first one you ever went to.
What about the 'bad' ones? Were there any that were hampered by, say, bad weather? Or slow operations? Or spites? Or illness? Or arguments? Or maybe you just got so drunk you can't remember any of it?
How many Lives have been on?
When and where was your first one?
Not been to one yet? Why the hell not??

I'm hoping some of the old skoolers get in on this one, with tales of olde and humble beginnings. Post links to old trip reports, dig up old group photos and ORP's. Go to town on this one. What were the classic Lives that all us newbies missed out on?

I joined the forums in 2014 after a chance encounter with Ian and ECG one day, but didn't venture out to an official Live until the Spring of 2016 when I shimmied up to Blackpool for 'Rock n Roller Coasters'.
To be honest I wasn't quite sure to expect. Wasn't nervous or anything, but I did kind of worry that everyone attending would be a bespectacled, anorak wearing nerd with a notepad and pencil. Or worse, I could have been spending the day with about 30 Robb Alveys! 😮
But no, everyone (well... nearly everyone) was surprisingly normal and, much to my delight, I wasn't the oldest person there. Yay!
It was fab, a great introduction to the world of organised goonery and that year I went to 3 more - Paulton's, Sweden and Alton Towers Fireworks.

Ah yes, Sweden 2016 - Liseberg, Kölmarden and Grona Lund. I think that has been my favourite one so far, loved it. Day trips to Blackpool and Paulton's is one thing, but this was a long weekend away in a different country, a new country, with 2 absolute bucket list parks on the agenda, parks that I probably wouldn't have been to if it wasn't for CoasterForce. Got my 200th cred, got my first RMC and I class that as the trip where I truly became "one of us".
Ian and I even had matching shorts! 😁

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I'd also like to mention the Cedar Point Live in 2018 - that one was awwwwesome! Me and Delly P had been bombing round Murica for about 10 days before meeting up with cool folks like Edward M, Liveforthelaunch, Youngster Joey and the legendary Snoo at the greatest park in the world to ride the greatest coaster in the world. That night time marathon on Steel Vengeance with Tom and Davidm will live with me for a looong time. Epic!

Those are 2 of my favourite CF Lives (so far), but let's hear about some of yours?
 

HeartlineCoaster

Active Member
Not been to one yet? Why the hell not??
Nope.
a) I'm too proactive with my own trips
b) I'm fortunate enough to have grown up with a ready made goon best friend, so never really found the need to seek out 'other like minded people' through events in the same way most would
c) I'm actually super shy, no good at social mingling and still feel like a bit of an imposter here to be honest

Since you've declared this to be a ranking thread and I've never failed to have something to submit for those, I'll do my best to scrape something together.
#1 Paultons Park 2016. Around when the dinosaur stuff opened - I assume you had a live for this? Coincidentally I was on park the same day, completely unrelated, hadn't joined, didn't do forums.
I remember seeing a rabble of people at various points during the day and having a vague idea of what they were about. One of them was wearing a cowboy hat. Was it you?
#2 Ghosterforce 2017. I wasn't actually there, but it seems at the time that several people believed I was. This fascinates me - I can only assume the name came up in conversation and was projected onto another person (poor them) or someone actively pretended to be me.
 
I have a soft spot for my First - which was Ghosterforce 2016 - It's still hard to believe it's ONLY been 4 years since i started going on CF trips - feels like I've been going on them decades!

On this particular trip I hit 2 lifetime Bucketlist parks - Phantasialand and Efteling........ so there's that first time magic of discovery, but also introduced me to Toverland which has since become a firm favourite. It was also the first time doing any scaremazes or Halloween events outside UK, and definitely boosted that obsession!

the weather was Gorgeous the whole time - walking through an empty misty yet bright Efteling for the morning ERT on Baron 1898 really sticks out as a magic moment.

And of course there was the group - open, friendly, curious - It was so refreshing to just talk openly about rides with people who ALSO wanted to talk about rides and offer their own opinions.......there's a lot to be said about finding people who are you own kind of odd!

Taron was also freshly open and was a new Cred for the majority of those on the trip - quite a seminal moment when you consider it is still in many peoples top 5 - just image the Vibes of 20 Goons discovering Taron......yep!!

And then.......the nightime ERTS .....a full Autumn moon was high in the sky over a moody, steamy Klugheim....... everyone was a little....HIGH..... no class A's in sight!



Then From first to last...... my second favourite was probably the last OFFICAL CF trip we did last years Pre-Christmas trip to PA.

I finally got to do PA (yup was that basic........WAS) A strange park that had never really excited me or motivated me in going - But loads of cool people were going - this was THE opportunity!

And it was a blast - so chill, good Banter, winter sun, Spanish xmas vibes and SHAMBALA - f**king hell I love this coaster, If one could marry a coaster - I was on the verge of dropping down on one knee.

Much in the same way to Taron in 2016 - there's nothing like the frenetic atmosphere of a group of Goons freshly off a cracking coaster - who all just want to run around into the queue line again and again - like giddy 11 year olds..... getting in those dusk rides!

The main difference with the 2019 trips VS 2016 is that now i had no imposter syndrome - no newbie anxiety, no shyness or feelings of being the outsider - and it does make a difference, you can just relax into the experience, hanging out with familiar faces and welcoming new ones - or indeed old faces you've not crossed paths with before!

There's a lot to be said about going on a cred run VS just Chilling in a park where a few people need the odd cred here and there - and thats what this trip was all about!
 

Hyde

I Lied About My Age!
Staff member
Moderator
Social Media Team
Lots of favorites over the years, but the top ones I'd mention:

Cedar Point, 2006 - Sweet 16
Ahhh yes, the very first American CF Live we ever coordinated. And yes... that is a hand-written shirt to commemorate. 😅 And remember the custom swag wristbands? It really was a "reckoning" for the ages moment, and so fun looking back at our humble beginnings.

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Kings Island, Kentucky Kingdom, Holiday World, 2019
Flip forward to one of our last American Lives, and the largest one we have ever convened. This was such a fantastic and fun trip with everyone, especially as we drew in some "outside of CF" folks who were just interested to meet up with the group. Having a massive Airbnb rental and lots of dedicated waterpark time (RIP my sunglasses in the Big Kahuna) only added to the fun. Missing the revamp of this Live is probably the biggest personal downer for me this year, and can't wait till we bring folks back together.

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furie

SBOPD
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
One of them was wearing a cowboy hat. Was it you?
It's not a cowboy hat, but that would have been me :)

I still have a video in the making of that Live... I'm getting worse than Slade!

Too many great memories. I think Yorkshire Tripper really stands out for me. That was kind of the height of CF-Lives for me. Perfect weather, the right goons, everyone still quite new and excited. Really great. Plus the gift bags, party poppers, inflatable mallets, etc.

Liseberg was also fantastic Dave and another one of my favourites. Though the first one to Liseberg and Tusenfryd I would rank a little better. Germany (2014?) was also a cracker. Being abroad is something special.

2006 and the "Save the Scenic" Live had some great memories. Again, glorious weather, water fights, beach and getting chucked off the fun house for... having fun! :)

I'll have a think about digging out photos, etc on the weekend while I'm doign a forum upgrade.

I still have the badges and wristbands scattered all around the house too :lol:
 

Peet

Member
1) Thorpe Park 2019
End of list

To be fair it was a really great day, and I feel like I got to know lots of members including @Howie, @jayjay, @pvnks, @Serena, @Slamming Coastercore, @Hixee and @HeartlineCoaster* to name just a few.

I had planned to attend Towers, Paultons, Mingo and Poland this year but, you know, 2020 happened.

* this is a joke after reading this:
I wasn't actually there, but it seems at the time that several people believed I was.
Is a joke funny if you have to explain it? Probably not but you decide.
 
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Serena

Miss CoasterForce 2016
Staff member
Social Media Team
Honestly? All of them.

I've met some of the best friends I've ever had through CF Lives and I genuinely treasure all the happy, goony memories. There simply hasn't been a bad Live in my eyes!

Here's a highlight reel:

The time we all made masks of @Ian 's face and wore them on Dual at Alton Towers
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When Ghosterforce used to be a routine trip to Thorpe and Chessie and glowsticks would come out in abundance:

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The time we met up with fab Spanish theme park community PAC in Madrid:

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("Sexy carrot!")

The time we dressed up as Sci Fi characters at Thorpe:

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The time we had a 5 hour tour of the lockers at Plospaland:

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("Chillax at the waterpark!")

The time with the f***ing DOLPHIN at Hansa Park @ATTACKHAMMER I still laugh about this now!

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My birthday at Paultons Park (still best birthday I've ever had!)

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The amazing weekend in Poland where the campsite staff told us off for being too loud!

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Getting the celebratory handshake from Ian in Spain!

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The time when we all crammed into the Zufari photobooth:

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Every trip to Blackpool where we all have a cheesy night out afterwards:

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Yearly meet ups with Geology Dave @roomraider

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The lovely Christmas meets in London always get me in the festive mood:

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My first ever CF Live. A Ghosterforce some years ago. Little did I know that day that I was meeting people who I would travel the world with, have so many laughs with, ride so many creds with in my future. Thank you for making me feel so welcome right from the beginning.

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(I am dressed as 'Revenge of the Mummy')

And finally, our last CF Live - the wonderful weekend we had at PortAventura last November. Happy memories of us all sat in the hotel bar howling with laughter. What a trip! Loved it.

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Smithy

Well-Known Member
I can't actually remember how many I've officially done and how many I've unofficially done, or which weren't actually lives (there's not a lot to choose from I'm just a bit tired).

I think my first official was Oakwood which was a laugh, particularly the death slides of doom and the water trays. My first unofficial was heading down to Billing Aquadrome to meet a few people in the middle of a cred-run.

I know I was at Alton the same day as a live way back when, rode Nemesis on the same train as Jordan without realising, and introduced myself to a baffled Furie before running off to grab another ride in leaving him trying to convince people he had actually seen the elusive Smithy and it wasn't just a mirage.

Thorpe Live last year was a really good day - definitely felt more at ease within the group.
 

Howie

Active Member
#1 Paultons Park 2016. Around when the dinosaur stuff opened - I assume you had a live for this? Coincidentally I was on park the same day, completely unrelated, hadn't joined, didn't do forums.
I remember seeing a rabble of people at various points during the day and having a vague idea of what they were about. One of them was wearing a cowboy hat. Was it you?
How strange that you were there on the same day as us lot. If only we'd known. That was only my second Live, still a relative newbie at that point.
And yeah, I don't do hats... unless they're on donkeys, of course. You know this. ;)


Then From first to last...... my second favourite was probably the last OFFICAL CF trip we did last years Pre-Christmas trip to PA.
And finally, our last CF Live - the wonderful weekend we had at PortAventura last November. Happy memories of us all sat in the hotel bar howling with laughter. What a trip! Loved it.
Yes, that one was a belter for sure. Love PA anyway, but that weekend was sooo fab. Night rides on Shambhala! ❤❤❤

1) Thorpe Park 2019
End of list
That's a good shout too, Peet. I know it was "only" Thorpe Park, but lots of cool newbies turned up to that one - yourself, Slamming', Pvnks etc... and I seem to recall we were blessed with decent weather, low crowds and no spites. At Thorpe! I know, right? Seems incredulous... but it's true!


Some great posts in this thread, loving seeing all those old photos where certain members had noticeably more hair (not mentioning any names... but you know who I mean). ;)

Keep 'em coming y'all!
 

Nicky Borrill

Active Member
Ahhh my first, only and best live... Travelling with no sleep for over 48 hours, squeezing into the back of a tiny car with 2 other fully grown men, sharing a bedroom with Benny and keeping him awake with my snoring all night...


...Wouldn’t change it for the world, was a great experience, had a lot of fun, and even got to ride an enjoyable AND smooth Gerst Infinity coaster!!!

Not been to another live since, but I have met up with lots of you CF’ers here and abroad and have enjoyed every minute of it... Great bunch of people.
 

ATTACKHAMMER

Well-Known Member
There's been so many good moments for me over the years. I still cannot believe that my first live was 2012!! Gosh I am getting old.

Italian (2015?) really stands out for me. A small group but quality over quantity on that occasion. The whole trip was such a laugh from start to finish and I rode my current number 1, Katun!! The food was also excellent!

Any live involving Phantasialand has also been amazing!

I think it was ghosterforce one year where @Ian made amazing CDs for the cars, which featured an exclusive interview with the Queen of UK theme parks!
Possibly the same trip, but Hansa with that ****ing sining dolphin was an experience! I was absolutely pissing myself throughout that show!

There's so many moments that I know I will have forgotten to mention! All of the lives I have attended have been brilliant and I look forward to lives returning when it is safe to do so. I never thought attending a ride opening at Thorpe would lead to making some incredible friends to travel the world with!
 

nadroJ

Well-Known Member
Serena mentioned some of my all time favs but top of the shop absolutely has to go to Denmark '09, or Farup my Frikadella as I believe the Live was called? It was my first proper theme park trip outside of a family Orlando do and lit a fire inside my cred-hungry mind and I've never looked back.

Shout out to:

That Ghosterforce with the Gingerbread man costume. You know the one.
Pass the Duchy - my first ever visits to Efteling, Phantasialand and Toverland. Magical.
Sweden 2016 - Swedish take on an Irish bar, giant chocolate bars & HELIX
Finland 2013 - The mother of all hangovers, indoor cred where we had to take our shoes off and ride barefoot and (I believe) the first year of Goon Points so stupid competitiveness

Let's face it they're ALL good though aren't they?
 

furie

SBOPD
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
I think my first official was Oakwood which was a laugh, particularly the death slides of doom and the water trays.
Definitely was - I remember it clearly :)

I know I was at Alton the same day as a live way back when, rode Nemesis on the same train as Jordan without realising, and introduced myself to a baffled Furie before running off to grab another ride in leaving him trying to convince people he had actually seen the elusive Smithy and it wasn't just a mirage.
Nobody belived me - the bastards!

So, my first live was a Thrills'n'Chills - early open Blackpool back in 2005. Pretty unremarkable, but I had no idea what to expect. It's so daunting just turning up into a big group of people and trying to "get along". Obligatory Ian handshake and we were off. I remember Martyn and Nadia asking about how to pronounce Furie and getting stuck with some goons for most of the day (nobody I can remember :) ). Really got on with Ian, Martyn, Nadia and Karen though and could see potential.

I then followed up with the Thrope/Chessington Live, I think in April of that year. Much better time. I brought along a friend of mine who lived close by who'd never been to a theme park. He enjoyed himself, but wasn't getting caught in the enthusiast trap :D I didn't do the Chessington day, but I always wished I had. We did a member's meet there not long afterward.

I remember doing the Coastal Coasting Live then in July. Madame_Furie was a week overdue with Maxi-Minor_Furie. We had numbers of local hospitals in case she went into labour while we were at the park.

It's worth mentioning at this point, that in just a few short months of going to my first Live, everything had changed. It was easier to interact with people on the forums, we were meeting up in smaller groups at parks. Those years that followed were something special that I hope a lot of people are experiencing now.

We did GhosterForce later that year too. Just an evening at Thorpe (I did London with a three month old instead - I don't advise it :lol: ), then Chessington.

So, photos and stuffs?

I was just looking and I have very much a split on this. I started doing videos at Coastal Coasting. I have a fair number of CF-Live videos. I would take a few photos, but they're few and far between.

Unfortunately, if I wasn't videoing, I was taking photos for the guide pages on here. I tend to have lots of photos of rides, few of people.

I have thousands of photos and days of video footage :D

For videos, I can:

- Post a link to my YouTube channel and you can watch the CF-Live playlists
or
- post videos for live on here chronologically over the next week or two

For photos, I'm thinking how about you pick a user and a year, and I'll see what photos I have of them from those years (and whaich Live it was from). If I don't have a photo, I'll maybe pull one from a video.

I can possibly (if ayone likes) do a year by year of a user so that you can see them grow old :)

Just give me a user and I'll see what I have. Most though will be video.

Oh, I can also do rides I guess. Want to see Knightmare in situ? I can do that :D

Oh, I have to admit, I have a lot of missing Lives (espeically the last four years) - so I can't do every Live of every year...
 

ECG

East Coast(er) General
Staff member
Administrator
Every one I've had the pleasure to attend has been great! There are standouts of course, like Liva Italia (2011), Finnish Me Off (2013) and the best U.S. Live Forbidden Rush (2012) with our largest European contingent, but one stands out above all - Farup My Frikadella (2009)! Stellar park lineup with so many CFers - so much fun during the days at the parks and even more laughs at the pubs every night. Too many epic moments to mention, that those who attended will never forget.
 

Ian

From CoasterForce
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Social Media Team
There are, of course, a lot of "big" things that happened at Lives that are very memorable - track walks, ERT, backstage tours, meet & greets etc. The "perk" stuff. They're all great and add to the day, but without wanting to sound too cliched, it really is the little things that stick in my mind, usually the stuff that nobody else outside of CF would understand and find funny.

Landscape ponchos, farting on Spanish concrete, dead celebs on Pirate Ships, the faffle oohs ahhs and lols, the milestone banners, stupid quizzes, getting stopped by the police and having bags, cuddly toys and travel kettles searched (you know the story!), the stinking hangovers (or "heatstroke" as I call it), fat boats, 10 people in a Travelodge room, clipping pegs on jackets, the Hex story, bouncing a balloon or beach ball along a queue, fancy dress (mentioning Slayed!), water fights, kids play areas and creds, practicing Italian but ending up talking French, the polite way everybody shares front/back seat rides during ERT, camping in Wales during a storm, glowsticks, pizza with a knife and fork, the games on the long drives (credabet, counting whilst going through a tunnel), rubbish shows (the Hansa Dolphin singing, and the magic show at Greenwood), the OPRs especially the Bath Tub on Duel with furie and Hoyer. I could go on and on! Then there's all the words and expressions that only make sense to CFers that have become part of my everyday lexicon. It's brilliant, I love it all.

There are two things that make a Live special for me. I say this whenever there's a discussion like this, but it's true - It really is about the people. There are so many characters and personalities, and everybody can be themselves. I remember being in a lift in a Finnish hotel with six CFers, we were all silenty going down to the ground floor. I farted but nobody seemed offended, in fact everybody grinned. The point I'm making is it's so easy to relax around everybody that I can fart as if I were sitting on my sofa at home. I've shared so many good times that I've stopped breathing through laughter.

The second thing is seeing goons in their natural habitat having fun. The sheer joy of everybody "discovering" Taron at the same time. The slightly nervous looks when most of us did Karnan for the first time. The look of discomfort from a ride on a SLC. The pointing and laughing when somebody gets soaked on a rapids...before they get spited themselves. I love it when I see a bunch of goons all stood in the same spot with their cameras ready to take the same photo. People sometimes ask why I sit out some rides and I do because I like to watch. I can't describe how good it feels to see and hear people having a good time, all in the name of CF.
 
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