All thanks to quantum levitation and Israelian scientists.
In this video, they show off how a frozen disc of special material can float and tilt in mid air using super magnets. They can even make it float around a circular track.
It's only a matter of time before hoverboards start appearing at Target!
If you're wondering how to pronounce bacakonator, it's "bay cake un ay tur".
If you're wondering what it is, it's a funnel cake covered in chocolate sauce and lots of crumbled up BACON!!!
It debuted at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina and my new lifelong dream is for the Funnel Bacakonator to make it's way to Buffalo.
It's super healthy at only 1,300 calories and 77 grams of fat.
See this awesomeness and learn more about it on the Time Newsfeed website. Yes, Time Magazine (the serious news magazine) did an article about it. So this must be bigtime excitement worthy of worldwide attention.
Find out with this new chart, thanks to The Telegraph (out of the UK).
Once at the page, just slide the bar over to your current age and the percentage will be revealed. I hope your percentage is better than mine lol!
I just talked on-air about the upcoming Superman movie. It'll be in theatres in June of 2013. A long ways off.
The new Man Of Steel will be played by Henry Cavill (who recently starred as Charles Brandon in The Tudors and will be Thesues in the upcoming movie Immortals).
See what the new Superman will look like here.
For the following, visit my Blogger page where I'll be embedding the videos after I talk about them on-air...
- Retirement Community Lip-Syncs To Michael Buble's Feeling Good
- Super Intense Fight BetweenA 3 & 4 Year Old
- Gummy Bear Bratwurst!
- Planking videos
The best moments of American Idol were when Simon and Paula were at each other's throats. The singing just wasn't enough to keep my interest.
So when Paula left, I thought the show became unwatchable. But Simon and Paula will be reunited this fall on The X Factor. And it looks like they still can't agree on who's talented and who isn't.
A 2-1/2 minute preview for the show aired earlier this week on FOX during a baseball game. Had I been watching that, I would have been asleep before the first pitch and would have missed this anyways.
It's clever and it definitely sets the tone for the series...
When I lived in California (and at one point in the Mojave Desert), the sand did a number on my poor car engine. Sand made a mess of everything whenever I'd venture through the desert.
So I can't imagine what a nightmare this was for cars, eyes, computer equipment, etc. It's video from the massive sandstorm that hit Phoenix a few days ago.
The third video with a POV shot of driving into the sandstorm is insane!
The video for Coldplay's latest song "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" features tons of special effects, lots of glow-in-the-dark paint, and non-stop stop-motion visuals.
It's the next best thing to a new video from OK Go (which I'm hoping happens soon)...
The only thing better than an iPhone would be an iPhone smelling like Jelly Bellys!
You can have your phone smelling like Strawberry Cheesecake, Very Cherry, Blueberry, Licorice, and Berry Blue Jelly Bellys.
Find out more here. And look for them in stores & online soon!
So the way my day was going, I wasn't going to get to Starry Night this year. After my shift ended on Star, I had to do some computer work so three of our stations would continue airing things right at midnight.
When I finally left and managed to get to the Botanical Gardens, all I heard was the final note of the final Hanson song when I opened my car door. But I did at least get to meet Hanson after that.
They're all nice. We talked briefly about previous trips they've made to Buffalo. Apparently, Zac has never seen Niagara Falls because he wouldn't get out of the bus when they went there. He was too engrossed in video games. And Isaac says it's just very wet.
Taylor is down-to-earth and a really cool guy. Had they not been getting ready to go in the limo, I would have loved to talk to him more about their music and also Tinted Windows, a supergroup he's a part of (Kind Of A Girl is an incredible song that was wrongly overlooked by radio). If I ever do a radio interview with them, he's the one I'll request to talk to.
Rob did get to talk to all of them shortly before I got backstage. See that here.
There's also video of Taylor driving around the Gardens in a golf cart after the show. Isaac decided to stay back when he found out Taylor would be driving (he stayed with Michelle Branch by the limo. See that here.
And get this, the group helped pack some of the stuff in the limo! They didn't have someone do it all for them. That's the kind of artist you want to support. So go buy their recent CD "Shout It Out".
For the record, from the first time I heard MMMBop, I've always thought Hanson was a great pop group. My favorites are Where's The Love, Penny & Me, and now Give A Little. And in case you're wondering, the version of MMMBop I usually play on Star is the Dust Brothers Mix from the 1997 CD single (it's got a slightly different sound than the album version). Either that or the album version is preferable to the radio version, which fades out before the end.
A post on his Facebook page last week has some of his fans seething.
Here's an article about it.
And here's the picture from its natural habitat.
While I didn't get to make it out to his Hard Rock concert last year, I did hear he's a really fun person and has a very weird sense of humor. I have no doubt in my mind this was not meant as a slam in any way.
I've got a lot of fun things I'll be posting about tonight. I just have to wait to play the right song before I talk about them all.
First up is my current obsession: deep fried cherry Kool-Aid. See that along with everything else I talk about tonight on my main Blogger page.
Remember the Magic 8-Ball with it's awesome genie-like powers? Thanks to a company called Nixon, it's now in watch form! It's quite a bit more expensive than the original Magic 8-Ball and doesn't look anywhere near as exciting, but if you're trying to find a gift for a person who has everything, this is probably something they don't have. See it and buy it (for only $120) here.
The other videos I talk about on-air this weekend (including the Hula-Hoop POV and Frank and Rita's birthday picture / video) can be found here.
Here's the full article on the guy who recently spent 100 hours and $2100 to rescue his dog from under a boulder.
All the other videos and links I talk about on-air (including the Bigfoot video) can be found here.
The group that runs Wikipedia feels it's "nothing less than the greatest collection of human knowledge". With this in mind, they want Wikipedia to become the first digital World Cultural Heritage Site.
As crazy as it sounds, I have to agree with them. This would insure that Wikipedia stays the way it is now, which I think is pretty close to perfect.
I talked on-air about Penny Wolfgang's Wikipedia page. If you've gone looking for it, sorry - I was just joking about that (I always have to mess with Penny a bit each week before I leave). Despite being mentioned on a few Wikipedia pages, Penny doesn't have a page of her own.
She's in good company - neither do I. And I'm more than okay with that. What I'm not okay with is the Flying Saucer Restaurant on Lundy's Lane not having a page of its own! That's just not right. And I hope something is done to change that.
The Lego Mini Figures: kids love them, but they're a nightmare for parents or anyone who gives them to a kid as a gift.
Nothing's worse than spending $4 or so on one of these only to have the kid open it and learn it's one of the figures they already have.
I talked to someone today who had this problem. Her son wanted a very specific mini-figure for his birthday, but trying to figure out exactly what was in that package without buying it and opening it up was next to impossible.
Until now. Here's a way to know what's in the package before opening it! For series 1 & 2, it's a barcode tracker. For series 3 & 4, it's a dot decoder. Here's the links you'll need to insure you never end up shelling out $4 for a duplicate again...
Series 1 barcode trackerSeries 2 barcode trackerSeries 3 dot decoderSeries 4 dot decoder
There's a new survey online that lets you know how picky, arrogant, and irritating you are.
It's a short 20-question survey, took me about a minute or so to do, and is completely free.
Give it a try here.
On a scale from 1 to 5, I'm a 2.83. That's about average. I'm kind of picky, not very arrogant, but I guess I am a little irritating.
The survey was created by personality psychologist Robert Hogan for the book Annoying: The Science Of What Bugs Us by Joe Palca and Flora Lichtman.
At 6pm tonight (9pm Eastern time as this comes from California), the world will supposedly end. Although technically, what's actually going to happen is the rapture.
This according to Harold Camping of the Family Radio Network in Oakland, California. The original date of his prediction was September 6, 1994. But that came and went and nothing happened other than Michael Jackson & Aerosmith winning awards at the 11th MTV Awards.
See a picture of this crazy person and read more about how he came up with his theory in an online article from The Independent.
I'll put my take on this on my main blog page, safely off the Star website lol.
I was going to put up a video of Harold here, but I like this far better instead (because I know it will be appropriate at 9:01pm Eastern time tonight)...
It seems everyone is obsessed with that Angry Birds game.
I just haven't been able to get into it though. My favorite right now is Frisbee Forever, easily the best game I've found on my iPhone. And amazingly, it's completely free!
In Frisbee Forever, you throw a frisbee and then have to maneuver it through rings to get through the course. There's tons of levels and I just can't get myself to stop playing this.
Eventually, I'll conquer all the levels and then maybe I'll give Angry Birds another try. One thing I do love about Angry Birds is the theme music - especially when Pomplamoose does it!
They're the group that did all the clever Christmas song remakes this past year for the Hyundai car commercials. The Angry Birds theme is done in their trademark style and the short video is pretty funny (and fits right in with the game)...
Steven Tyler is definitely making the most of his American Idol judging experience. It seems like he's been in the news constantly since the announcement that he would be one of the American Idol judges.
And now the ultimate - a memoir titled "Does The Noise In My Head Bother You". It's been flying off the shelves at bookstores.
Here's a quote he had about the book: "I've been mythicized, Mick-icized, eulogized and fooligized, I've been Cole-Porter'd and farmer's-daughter'd, I've been Led Zepp'd and 12-stepped. I'm a rhyming fool and so cool that me, Fritz the Cat, and Mohair Sam are the baddest cats that am."
Based on that, maybe the book won't be the easiest read. I'm not the biggest fan of autobiographies, so I'll probably pass on this one. But if you want to check it out, get it here.
This is so exciting, I just drooled on the keyboard.
Burger King's brand new sandwich has two burgers, cheese, bacon AND a full chicken breast all on one bun. If that's not enough, there's an option to add an egg or a fish patty too!
The calorie count is a nice healthy 1,160 (without the add-ons). After seeing it, I'm thinking I could easily eat two.
I only have one problem with this. I'm kind of fussy about mixing different foods before they're in my stomach and I'm not so sure that burgers and chicken really go well together.
But that's a dilemma that can wait - the Burger King Meat Monster is only available in Japan for now and there's no word on when or if it will make it's way to North America.
She was in town for two different concerts today - one at Shea's and another at Canisius College. And she'll be back July 8th with Sugarland at Darien Lake!
A few years ago, I got to hang out with her on her tour bus before one of her Darien Lake concerts. Here's the interview from that day.
I think everything is on YouTube now. I can't believe I found this recipe for deep frying Cadbury Eggs on there.
It's actually a very healthy Easter treat since it's only 350 calories. And when I say healthy, I mean it's more healthy than eating an entire package of Peeps & six peanut butter eggs (which I've done on many Easters).
Throughout the rest of the night, I'll be posting a bunch of videos and links to things I'm talking about on-air.
You can see them all on my main Blogger page.
Here's some of the stuff I'll be posting...
- The country version of Lady Gaga's Born This Way.
- Darien Lake's Facebook ride battles (and my roller coaster ride announcements the park used throughout the 2010 season).
- The insane Air New Zealand flight safety video.
- The killer tire movie trailer.
I'm getting more and more psyched about the Wonder Woman remake every day. It's between this and Fox's upcoming Terra Nova for what will be the best TV show of 2011.
Here's a scene that was filmed the other day on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles with Wonder Woman in full costume!
This is especially cool to me as I used to live right around the corner from where this was filmed (my apartment was right behind the Mann's Chinese Theater). I would walk right by this area when heading to the subway or going to get cheeseburgers from McDonald's.
Maroon 5's song that was completed with fan help has been finished! The final song will be available as a free download on Coca Cola's website starting Friday (Coca Cola was the sponsor for this experiment). Here's the link for that.
I'll also be talking about one of Five For Fighting's songs being used in a NASA video! John Ondrasik has got to be psyched about this...
Some movies are meant to be seen in theaters. After seeing the trailer for Captain America: The First Avenger, I think this is definitely one of those movies. A regular TV just wouldn't do this justice. Check it out...
Captain America: The First Avenger will be in theaters July 22nd!
He's a cool guy and does a ton of stuff for the show besides hosting it. So he's the perfect person to talk to about certain aspects of the game and why some things make it to the show and others don't.
To make my life easier (always a priority for me lol), I posted the link to the full interview and all the links that go along with it on my main Blogger page (just click on that link to get to it).
CBS is the best with making people available for radio interviews. But for some reason, they don't set too many things up for the Amazing Race contestants. I can always put in a request though, so if you're interested in hearing from any of them, let me know and I'll work on getting them on Star as well. And I'm always up for having you help me out with the interview as well (including asking the questions). Just e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any suggestions.
Red Riding Hood is now in theaters. I'm a huge fan of dark fairy tales, so this is one I think I want to see.
But I originally thought it was only going to be a dark retelling of the story. Then I heard it might be more like a "Twilight" version of the story focusing on a love interest between Red Riding Hood and a werewolf - that I wouldn't be interested in.
Aside from this short 15-second trailer, I haven't seen anything else about the movie as I'm trying to avoid having it completely spoiled. But I'd hate to bother with it if it's too much of a love story. If you've seen it, let me know what you think. If it sounds scary enough, I'll probably go see it sometime this week.
Pilot season has begun for the networks and the fates of those shows will be decided in May. This is one that I hope makes it to the fall schedule for NBC. Especially now that Elizabeth Hurley will be one of the villains in it (according to her at least).
I've been a fan of hers ever since she was The Devil in the 2000 movie Bedazzled. And that's huge for me, since there's very few movies I've actually liked and watched more than once...
So fingers crossed that this show happens. We'll know in a few months...
Mason is 3, Makenna is 5, and Wipeout is one of their favorite TV shows.
Here they are talking about why they like Wipeout.
And just so you know, Mason has been saying the Wipeout sign-off phrase every night before bed. My brother can't stop laughing at this.
Up until a few weeks ago, I pretty much avoided FaceBook. I signed up awhile back, but never did anything much with it.
But then I went completely off the deep end and started posted weird banana Twinkie pictures, videos for songs that will probably never be popular in North America, 80's snowpants pictures, and exciting world-stopping news about TV shows that few people remember.
This of course probably means that the final days are near for FaceBook, because if I like something, it tends to get cancelled or goes away.
One thing I won't do - no games for me. I prefer board games - in person, not online. But I do like keeping in touch with people there as no one seems to bother with e-mail anymore. Although stangely enough, two of my closest friends are not on FaceBook.
Today I posted a thought provoking question which I'd love to know the answer to. I'd ask it here, but then what's the point of posting it on FaceBook? So that's where it is along with all the other deeply disturbing things I mentioned above.
Cursive is gone, over, and probably never returning. I only print, and usually only in capital letters (and that's even very, very rare).
Earlier today, one of my co-workers said my handwriting was impossible to read. I disagree. It may look like a 10-year old wrote it, but that's because I don't like to waste time writing stuff and rush write things.
Visit my FaceBook page to judge for yourself.
I just posted the viral video of a girl walking while texting in a mall, who ends up falling in the mall fountain. Too funny!
See it on my FaceBook page.
I'll also be posting the picture of the banana twinkies there (if I find them tonight)!
No, Mama is not going to be making an appearance on Jeopardy - again (that actually happened in a season 4 episode of Mama's Family). These are two separate videos I had to share with you today.
The first is Vicki Lawrence as Mama (from the Carol Burnett Show & Mama's Family). She put together a video making fun of the media craziness surrounding Ted Williams (the homeless guy turned media sensation).
It's funny (I always liked her show), but the language is far from G-rated. And naturally, the video has already angered some people. But people whine and complain about everything, so let's not bother with that and just laugh at Mama.
The embed code won't work, so here's the link to the 2-1/2 minute video.
The other video is a practice run for an upcoming series of Jeopardy episodes.
IBM has spent years putting together a supercomputer that's specifically programmed to be good at this game show. I have to wonder about the money thrown away on such a ridiculous project, but maybe they'll be putting this to good use for something else eventually.
The computer's name is Watson and in the practice run, he competes against two of Jeopardy's most successful contestants: Ken Jennings (who holds the record for the most consecutive wins with 74) and Brad Rutter (who holds the record for most total winnings).
The full episodes featuring Watson will air sometime this February. For now, here's the test...
Anand talked about Donald Trump âcheatingâ and using loopholes in the boardroom last week, but that was cut from the show. I guess they needed more time to hype up Kim Kardashianâs perfume.
I only played a small part of the interview on Star 102.5 tonight. Hear the full podcast from Tyanaâs RealiTyana Talk here.
I tried posting the full story and the links here, but the formatting for Wordpress blogs is a mystery to me - I can't make the paragraphs & pictures show up right lol.
So I moved the post to this page.
The audio from my talk with Mahsa earlier today is here.
If there's anyone left on The Apprentice that you'd like to hear from on Star 102.5, just e-mail me and let me know. I can't promise anything, but at least I'll know who to try to bring on-air here.
Nick & Vicki came in last place last week, but were spared elimination.
Normally when that happens, the last place team needs to complete a Speed Bump along with all the regular tasks and not come in last in the next leg to stay in the game.
But there was no mention of a Speed Bump last night. And looking back at the previous episode, there was no mention of that penalty when they came in last but were spared elimination.
So what's up? There's online murmerings that there might have been a judge's mistake in the previous episode. See more details on that here.
I'm not going to post the spoilers here just in case you don't want to know.
But I think the cheater has been revealed! Find out who that is and one of the people that makes it to the final two here.
And here's the preview for next week's episode...
If crazy high ticket prices annoy you, you're not alone. The people that created this video are mad about that too.
And on top of that annoyance, there's also the fact that the best seats are usually only available presale to select fan groups. So you better research online bigtime long before the concert goes on sale if you want any shot at a really good seat.
The video goes on and on, but the end is worth the wait. And while they picked on Bon Jovi here, this definitely applies to a lot of acts...
Yve was voted off last Wednesday on Survivor. I was sad to see that as I was rooting for her to win - she was such a nice player. But nice doesn't always help win Survivor.
I talked with her this morning about why she was voted off and who she blamed right after watching it on TV (you'll be surprised by that if you haven't heard about it already).
She also talked about some of her tribemates, including NaOnka's vicious confessionals and Dan's laziness.
Here's the full 6-1/2 minute interview (portions aired on Star 102.5).
I always love talking to Linda Hastreiter from Buffalo's Iron Island Museum. Every year I invite her on Star 102.5 and she always brings along the coolest EVP's from the museum.
EVP's are the sounds ghosts make on tape. You usually don't hear them when you're recording. But when you play it back, they're there. Strange. I record tons of stuff at the station and that never happens to me there, so why at the museum does this occur? Maybe electronic equipment is a way ghosts can communicate with us.
She's got a whole new batch from the past year and some of them are kind of spooky - perfect for the week leading up to Halloween.
Hear the EVP's in the full 11-minute interview with Linda (portions aired on Star 102.5). This online version includes three extra EVPs that didn't air (along with the two that did).
If you have trouble with the clip pausing too much, right click to download it to your computer and it'll run smoothly.
See the Iron Island Museum featured on Discover Channel's Ghost Lab Thursday, November 11th at 10pm (or possibly the week after).
And don't forget to visit the Iron Island Museum and try to get your own EVP's. Overnight hunts are available by reservation year-round. Or check out some of these upcoming events (visit the museum website for more info and to make reservations)...
10/28/10 (Thursday) - Candlelight Ghost Tour at 7pm
Yesterday, I did a live broadcast from the Great Pumpkin Farm in Clarence.
This was the first year I've gone to this giant event. I was stunned at how much there is to do in addition to the 5-acre corn maze!
There's a bunch of amusement park rides (which everyone knows I love), pig races, tractor & horse-drawn hayrides, a petting zoo, magic show, singing chickens, giant pumpkins, tons of food, a massive pumpkin cannon, and more.
The event continues today and then ends after next weekend. If you've got kids, this is the perfect place to take them - they'll have a blast.
Yesterday was especially fun because while I was there, they gave away a West Herr Toyota Corolla! It's always cool when my workday involves someone winning a car.
Here's a short video of some the Great Pumpkin Farm activities...
She's loud, obnoxious, and even unprofessional according to Ivanka Trump. But she's one of the reasons this season is so much fun.
I talked with Mahsa Saeidi-Azcuy from The Apprentice earlier today. I had to ask her thoughts on Ivanka's opinion now that she's seen that. I was also wondering if there was anyone on the women's team that she does like. And of course I played the "jealous cow" clip back to her and got the story behind that.
Plus, Mahsa has been in the entertainment news for recently quitting her job at the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office. I found out more about that too.
It's very rare when a network wants a reality show contestant interviewed before they're actually off the show, so I'm wondering what's up. The previews make it look like Mahsa is going to cause trouble in the boardroom on tonight's episode.
After talking with Mahsa, I have to admit I'm a fan. Not only is she adding excitement to the TV show, but she was also a lot of fun to talk to. And not once did she scream or yell.
Here's the full 8-1/2 minute interview with Mahsa. And see more of Mahsa tonight at 10pm on The Apprentice on NBC.
The news of The Munsters remake for NBC just came out last week and already TMZ has hunted down Butch Patrick (who played Eddie Munster on the original series) to find out what he thinks about this.
Read his thoughts & his casting suggestion for Herman Munster on the TMZ website.
In addition to being in The Munsters, did you know that Butch Patrick was also in another strange 1/2-hour show a few years later? He played Mark in a Saturday morning live action series called Lidsville from 1971 - 1973. It was one of the early Sid & Marty Krofft shows (which I'm a big fan of) - the main characters were mostly hats.
Here's the intro to it...
The Macy's and Verizon / Samsung commercials seem to be on constantly the past couple weeks. And because of the awesome music they're using, I actually listen or watch every time instead of just skipping over them.
The Macy's commercial contains a remake of Olivia Newton-John's Magic. The Verizon / Samsung commercial has a remake of The Human League's (Keep Feeling) Fascination.
Find out more about the remakes here...
The reason I love reality shows is because I like crazy. And there was a whole herd of crazy on last night's Survivor!
As I expected, the second episode of Survivor picked up. The first episode is always bogged down by getting to know the new castaways. The second episode is where the drama begins.
And drama there was. Sunken shoes & stolen socks (in two totally separate instances) caused the drama. And neither situation made much sense and didn't further the players (Holly & NaOnka) in any way. But it sure was funny.
And if you're thinking it was familiar - yes, it definitely is something similar to what Russell did during his two seasons on the show. And this season of Survivor was filmed after those two seasons aired, so these Survivors did have a chance to see them. But they also had a chance to see that even though Russell made it to the end both times, he also lost both times.
Anyways, things that make no sense started off the episode and it continued on right through the Tribal Council. That was insane. And it was mostly personal. The goal this early in the game should be to unite the tribe and get rid of the negativity so they can win every immunity challenge.
I knew there would be negativity - I just didn't expect it to come from where it did! And based on the previews for next week, there's still a lot of negative & a whole bunch of crazy left on that tribe. NaOnka should have been the target last night. As miserable as the booted contestant was, I think they're all going to regret keeping her around.
Survivor is back and better than ever! And on Wednesdays (don't forget that). If you missed last night's episode, check it out here.
The group Paper Tongues (four of the seven members) stopped by the station today.
If you're heard the song "Ride To California", you know that's a killer song to perform live. Acoustically, even more difficult. And with the lead singer (Aswan North) just getting over a cold - probably impossible.
But they did it and it sounded unbelievable! Here's the acoustic performance and an explanation of how the song came to be...
Permission to post this video was given by the band's representative.
Three reality shows collided last night. Survivor began it's new season while Big Brother and America's Got Talent finished theirs.
I watched Survivor and Big Brother, then called my friend Mary who told me the winner of America's Got Talent.
I'm happy I didn't watch the two hours of America's Got Talent. A singer won?! Pathetic. Fighting Gravity was easily the best in my mind as they're completely unique and the best fit for a Vegas show. So naturally when America voted, they came in 3rd. I'm sure they'll end up with a Vegas show, just as I'm sure the two singers who came in 1st & 2nd will be forgotten by America within days.
On CBS, Survivor began it's old versus young experiment and it wasn't all that exciting. There are some fun / crazy people this season (it's a miracle Jud / Fabio survived the hour and I'm sure the Survivor medical staff will get to know him well as the season progresses), but one of the crazies has already been voted off. I thought she wasn't much of a people person throughout the episode. Then the end came and she interrupted Jeff at the Tribal Council with a loony speech that helped get her voted out. Have these people ever seen the show before?
I'm sure Survivor will pick up as the season progresses - the first episode of the season is usually one of the weak ones.
After that it was the two-hour finale for Big Brother 12. Two hours is usually way too much for Big Brother, but last night it worked. That was the best finale of the show ever.
The Zingbot was there in the beginning, which was promising. Sadly, that was the only appearance it made in the episode. That's okay though, as the rest of the episode provided plenty of entertainment.
One of the highlights was when the Brigade made it to the end of the game, wearing T-shirts they made for their alliance. Unfortunately, the final two didn't know how to spell the name of their alliance. Maybe it was an intentional misspelling, but I kind of doubt that.
Enzo provided a lot of comic relief throughout his appearance. Especially during his post-eviction interview where he proclaimed his love for CBS, thanked himself, thanked his parents for making him, thanked the audience, etc.
Another highlight - Britney being completely disgusted by Brendon & Rachel. Julie Chen called her on it when Britney mouthed "I am so disgusted" to the camera while they were talking. Julie Chen was at her absolute best last night calling people on a lot of things throughout the finale.
The live aspect of the show was evident when Julie was reading the votes for the winner and was putting the wrong names in the slots. Oops. She had fun with this though - and that's one of the things that makes live shows fun to watch.
As for the ultimate winner, I was happy that Hayden won. Lane already has a lot of money outside the house and recent things that he revealed on the live feeds made me not want him to win (let alone remain in the game). And Hayden did seem to be one of the nicer houseguests. At the end, I was rooting for either him or Enzo to win.
And Britney, who I originally wanted to win, at least got something out of this. She took home the America's Favorite Houseguest $25,000 prize. And the show ended with Rachel's complete disgust over this. Her eye-rolling was kind of funny over the end credits, although completely understandable from her point of view.
Overall, it was a good season of Big Brother, but not great. To be great, it needed a lot more drama. But to have that, they needed more annoying people and there really wasn't many of those this season. Nice people and big drama don't mix. But I'm happy to see another nice person win. And Julie Chen was incredible constantly calling people out for things and making them give better answers than they were giving.
As for the future of Big Brother, get ready for season 13 next summer! CBS announced the renewal of the show earlier this week.
CCH Pounder portrays Mrs. Frederic on the popular SyFy Channel series Warehouse 13.
You never know when or where Mrs. Frederic will pop up next. Until tonight. I know she'll be a big part of the two-part 2nd season finale.
I talked with her earlier today and found out her thoughts on the mysterious Mrs. Frederic. I also asked about Leena and if there's a possible family connection there, Mr. Frederic (who so far we know nothing about), and I brought up the possibility of Mrs. Frederic being killed off the show.
Here's the full 6-1/2-minute interview.
And here's some links and a video that go along with the interview...
WAREHOUSE 13 SYFY CHANNEL WEBSITECCH POUNDER'S OFFICIAL WEBSITEANSA WEBSITE
The video below is a promo from an early FOX network sitcom CCH Pounder starred in. She appears at the 7-second mark...
Finally, something that might even scare Mrs. Frederic - it's mascots that eat humans!!! (This has nothing to do with Warehouse 13 - it's just something else I mentioned on-air tonight.)
The Basil car giveaway is this weekend at Darien Lake. That's always one of my favorite days of the year - I love the excitement of someone winning a car.
I almost always hang out at the back of the line rooting for them to get a shot at picking out the ice cream sandwich with the gold star (the car star I guess). Of course, I'll also be rooting for anyone who qualified with me on Star this summer. :)
On the way to the giveaway, I always have to make a quick stop at my favorite ride - the Silver Bullet / Enterprise. This weekend will be no exception.
The Viper is also one of my favorites - especially this year. This season, I've been the voice on the ride announcements for three of Darien Lake's roller coasters. The Viper is one of them - the Mind Eraser and Boomerang are the others.
So if you go on them - listen for me!
Here's the ride announcements I did for the Viper...
Departing / Returning / Delay / Inclement Weather
Today is a great day for the park. The Blue Streak roller coaster reopened today after being closed the past four years.
The Pennsylvania state inspectors approved the ride yesterday after an extensive summer of ride rehab. The main reason the Blue Streak was closed was money - the park itself was closed for two years, then when reopened the money to restore the ride was slow in coming.
Conneaut Lake Park is just south of Erie, PA (a little over two hours from Buffalo). It's one of my favorite parks as it reminds me of what amusement parks must have been like back in the early 1900's.
It's a small park, but there's quite a few great rides - The Flying Scooters, Devil's Den, Witch's Stew, Tumble Bug, and Skydiver being my favorites.
This is one of those small parks where you feel like they're open just for you and your group when you go. This is kind of like Crystal Beach Park in a way. But unlike that park, Conneaut Lake Park has managed to survive (although barely).
Here's video I took at the park this summer. It shows all the fun rides and some of the devastation brought about by a park fire over two years ago. Me and Mike, Heather, and Mikel Lynn even walked along the outside of the Blue Streak and took video of the first drop and the new track with permission from the park...
I got the press release from CBS earlier this morning. The upcoming season will feature home shopping channel hosts, Ivy League acapella singers, beach volleyball partners, and a birth mother / daughter who were recently reunited after the mother gave her newborn daughter up for adoption over 20 years ago. And of course there will be the usual pairings of newly dating, best friends, etc.
Amazing Race 17 will debut Sunday, September 26th with a 90-minute episode starting at 8:30pm.
This season's cast of racers will travel over 32,000 miles, covering four continents and 30 cities, with first-time visits to Bangladesh, Ghana and the Arctic Circle. Additionally, for the first time in the history of the Race, the team to finish in first place during the premiere episode will be awarded a surprise, game-changing advantage.
The big entertainment scandal this week has been that the UK version of The X Factor (a show similar to American Idol) used Auto-Tune to manipulate the audio of one of the contestants on a performance show.
It's kind of obvious Auto-Tune was used when watching Gamu's aired performance...
The producers of The X Factor UK have admitted they did use sound filters to remove excess background noise, but stopped short of saying it was Auto-Tune. And it wasn't just for this one contestant - others were manipulated as well.
They also went on to say that the process was done in editing after the show was taped to give the aired version of the show a better sound.
Even knowing there's something extra being used there, it's still obvious that Gamu is talented. Unfortunately, the producers must have decided her natural talent wasn't good enough. That's not fair to her or the other contestants, especially when people watching from home call in to vote for their favorites later in the season.
Gamu will continue on with the show. Her next performance will show off her real talent without anything extra being used.
The Hollywood Reporter has an article about Simon Cowell's banning of Auto-Tune. He's taking this very seriously and is making sure the US media knows it as his X Factor show (minus the manipulation) will be coming to Fox next fall.
Wondering about the US American Idol now? Well producers of that show responded to all this by telling the Associated Press they've never used Auto-Tune and never will.
In other reality show news, there was confusion last night on Big Brother when an evicted houseguest said a word that at first sounded inappropriate for network TV. Much like live radio, this is why live TV is so much fun - when disaster strikes (or in this case almost strikes). See the video of this and find out the definition of what turned out to be an okay word here.
You know the show - the short green-screen weird-looking series with a guy sitting on one of Saturn's rings explaining the night sky.
I remember watching it growing up. It used to air just before the PBS station in Rochester would sign off for the night. And it's continued to air all these years. This Labor Day Weekend's episode will be the last though.
The show's host, Jack Horkheimer, was the executive director of a Miami, FL planetarium. He passed away Friday of a respiratory ailment at the age of 72.
Star Gazer was geared to the general public and amateur astronomers and focused on things in the night sky you could see with your naked eye. You might remember it as Star Hustler, but the name was changed to Star Gazer when the show went online (done to avoid confusion with a magazine that has a very different theme).
Here's the final episode of his series (which was produced for this coming Labor Day weekend)...
Visit Jack's Horkheimer's website for more video from the series (including a few from the 70's & 80's), the show scripts, Mars images, and more. And as Jack always said, keep looking up...
One of the best things about season 6 of Lost? Apparently, the squirrel baby according to the cast of crew of the series.
The squirrel baby part starts at 1:21 (after a bonus feature about Lost in other languages)...
Season 6 of Lost (along with the 12-minute epilogue "New Man In Charge" will be in stores Tuesday (August 24th).
The original evil Visitor boss from the 80's version of "V" will be featured as a recurring guest star in the upcoming season two of the revival.
Jane Badler played Diana in the original series. In the new series, she'll be the mother of Anna (who's now the Queen of the Visitors). Her character's name will be Diana, although that's just a nod to the original series. It wouldn't make sense for her to play her original character since this series is a reboot and not a continuation of the 80's version.
Season two of "V" begins in November on ABC. For now, here's some awesome clips of Diana being super evil in the original series (Diana shows up 15 seconds into the first clip)...
Reality shows get slammed sometimes because of the worthless dredges of life they dig up and feature. "The Real Housewives..." series on Bravo is one of those shows that spotlights some of the worst the human race has to offer.
And the worst of the worst would have to be Michaele Salahi, featured in The Real Housewives Of D.C. - you might also remember her from when she and her husband made worldwide headlines when they supposedly crashed a White House dinner last fall.
Now she's made headlines again. This time she's accusing Whoopi Goldberg of assaulting her on yesterday's episode of The View.
Unfortunately for her, it's partially on tape. You can see the "assault" in the video below...
Obviously, Michaele is an attention-hungry loser for trying to play that up as assault. Her motives become a lot clearer when you learn that her season of "The Real Housewives..." debuts tonight.
Read more about this on People Magazine's website.
Discovery Channel is going berserk with their advertising of Shark Week this year.
It's worked on me though. And I'm sure they'll be happy to know that in addition to watching the shark-themed programs, I've also been watching season two of The Colony on Discovery. Once again, a worldwide disaster is simulated and volunteers must attempt to exist despite all the odds against them.
It's not a typical reality show like Big Brother or Survivor as there's no cash prize for lasting - it's more of an educational experiment that's surprisingly entertaining to watch too. That's on Tuesdays at 10pm.
But back to the sharks - here's an amazing video of a guy putting a shark in a trance! Not something I'd ever even consider trying...
Finally, a sequel to one of the biggest movies of all time.
This one won't be breaking any box office records though - it's going straight to DVD on August 24th.
The preview doesn't look bad. It kind of looks like one of those SyFy Channel movies..
I also talked on-air about the Survivor twist for season 21. Learn all about the twist here (I'm trying to avoid spoiling it for people who don't want to know). You'll also find details there on the upcoming season of Undercover Boss.
Last week, I went down to Pigeon Forge, TN with family and friends.
I'm not the best at taking video as I'm not a fan of carrying things around with me. So the camera never made it into Dollywood during any of the three days I was there.
But I did get video of the Seven Springs, PA alpine slide on the way down, the New River Gorge Bridge, a little from the Smoky Mountains National Park, and an apparently popular Pigeon Forge activity. Here's my vacation in 90 seconds...
As for Dollywood, I love that park. The rides are always fun (especially Thunderhead & Mystery Mine). And the shows are incredible (coming from me who usually only wants to be on the rides or eating, this is a very big compliment).
As usual, Dreamland Drive-In was my favorite. The acting & singing in it is Hollywood-quality. If some of these actors tried out for American Idol, they would definitely win.
I'm not really a fan of 50's & 60's music, but this show makes me like the songs. There's two in particular I absolutely love and they're both back to back in part four of the video - Pony Time followed by Mashed Potatoes at the 0:53 mark.
Here's the first few minutes of Dreamland Drive-In...
Sha-Kon-O-Hey was also excellent. The acrobatics, acting, and the set in this one was also impressive. Again, here's the first few minutes...
In addition to Dollywood, there's all the Pigeon Forge, Sevierville, and Gatlinburg attractions. Go-kart tracks, random amusement park rides, awesome diners, indoor skydiving, the Zorb, lots of outlet stores, and tons more. And that's not even mentioning the surrounding areas including the Smoky Mountains National Park.
I'll probably head back in November for the annual Christmas festival. The entire town (along with all of Dollywood) will be covered with Christmas lights - it looks amazing. So now I'm already looking forward to summer ending. Well, kind of - it's more like I'm already set for my next vacation.
The destination isn't always the highlight of a road trip. Sometimes it's getting there that's the best part.
There's the unexpected places you stop at along the way and the roads themselves.
Favorite Road is a website for people who love road trips. And it's completely free. If you've got a favorite road, contribute here. Here's some recent entries...
I talked on-air with Nancy Griffin & Brian Clark from favoriteroad.com today. Here's the full interview (including portions that didn't air on Star 102.5).
And here's one of my favorite roads. Click on the picture for more details about it...
Here's a screencap from Thursday's episode. Could this be the saboteur?
That's either Andrew or Brendon I think. But I'm not sure. I really can't tell a lot of the guys apart yet - they're all like clones of each other (the casting for the show tends to rely on a certain look I guess).
But I'm leaning towards thinking it's Brendon if this clip can be believed. As we all know though, the producers of reality shows have led us off course before. It's possible the lock was put on the door shortly before the blackout and the cast just didn't notice.
We'll find out who the saboteur is for sure on Thursday's episode.
It's been almost 10 years to the day that Big Brother first started on CBS. And it's a very different show than it was in the beginning.
Season one was the one with Chicken George and the potential revolution against the producers of the show.
Here's the first episode...
First episode: Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5
And here's the "Meet The Cast" video for the current season...
The game itself isn't bad, but even before the hour was up I'd already grown bored with the concept.
The funniest part - the audience's reactions. They were not happy to be there. I'm guessing this episode took forever to tape which would cause that reaction. Plus they were probably wondering what would happen if an earthquake hit while they were up there.
As for all the falling stuff, I think that was actually a distraction from the game. Which is too bad since that's what the whole show is based on.
I do like that the contestants get to keep shouting out answers until they get the right one - that was different. The host and the first two contestants were good too.
And one other good thing about Downfall - they didn't use the horrible ABC voiceover guy that was in the promos leading up to it. I don't know where ABC found that guy, but he's the worst. Maybe they realize that too, since this is the only show I've heard him do a promo for so far.
Overall, an okay show but it's already getting old. ABC never should have cancelled I Survived A Japanese Game Show - in the long run, that was a far better companion to Wipeout than this.
Here's the first look at next year's Smurf movie.
It sounded like a great idea for a movie - until I saw the trailer.
The Smurfs in New York City?! This looks awful. Which of course means it will be a giant hit...
A while back, NASA gathered up names and sent them on a microchip in their Lunar Reconnaissance spacecraft.
Now they want to send your picture on a trip into space!
Your face will go up to space on either the Discovery space shuttle in September or the Endeavour space shuttle in November.
Once it returns, you can print up your Flight Certificate - all of this FREE.
So find that perfect picture, upload it to NASA, and get ready to (kind of) visit space.
Sign up and upload your picture at NASA's Face In Space website.
You must be 13 or older to participate, but parents can send in a picture for anyone under 13. And I couldn't find the date this will end, but I would imagine it's soon so rush that picture into them.
WARNING: After your face goes into space, be wary of mysterious lights in the sky at night. Something out there might fall in love and then come here to visit you.
There might be aliens living in our solar system! And they'd be nothing even remotely like human beings, so don't be surprised if something strange comes up to you and says hi when visiting Saturn's largest moon Titan.
This according to a recent article which is based on findings from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Some scientists are extremely excited by all this.
But NASA scientists are being more cautious. And with good reason - the new life form is methane-based, something that's only hypothetical right now. But it's a step closer to aliens in my book!
Here's the full article from AOL News.
To celebrate this, here's a recent alien video from Hannah that makes me smile. And it appears it might even be based on Titan...
I love this show. The big balls obstacle never gets old! And I especially love the spinning challenges.
After watching the show, you'd think the set was massive. But it's not. Check out this aeriel view - the picture proves that the camerawork on that show is amazing.
See new episodes of Wipeout Tuesday nights at 8pm starting June 22nd on ABC.
First, here's the link to the details on the extra 13 minutes of the Lost finale scenes.
Now the new stuff for Darien Lake...
The park has made a bunch of cool changes for the 2010 season.
In addition to the giant waterpark expansion which opens this weekend (Splashtown at Darien Lake), they've also added a new show to the Galaxy Theater.
It's called Sea Lion Splash and starts this weekend. It even includes a pool in front of the theater where you can photograph the sea lions after the show. Find out more on the Darien Lake website.
There will also be the Kris Allen free in-park concert this Sunday. And there's been a few awesome changes to some classic rides...
VIPER: It's back to it's original color! Plus another little on-ride surprise.
CORN POPPER: The original name returns (previously the Rodeo Roundup). Corn Popper describes this ride so much better, so I'm happy the name is back.
SLEIGHRIDE: A new light package and another fun surprise.
ALL ROLLER COASTERS: New rider announcements (which me and Kiss' Shannon Steele are VERY psyched about). :)
We've all been talking about the Lost finale in the building this week.
My theory that they all died when the plane originally crashed (right at the start of the very first episode) made sense thanks to that final scene with the crash footage minus the people (which was shown over the final credits Sunday night).
Brian Demay insisted that wasn't actually a part of the story. And then this morning, I got this e-mail from him...
Hmmm. Well up until I read this article from Entertainment Weekly my theory made sense (at least to me).
Turns out that final scene was added to the end of Lost by the network to make the transition to the evening news easier. Because apparently plane crash footage is far more comforting than someone closing their eyes (in the network's mind at least).
So knowing now that the producers had nothing to do with that final plane crash scene, I guess what Christian Shephard said really is the explanation. Which kind of saddens me - I liked the idea that they were all dead right from the beginning. It all seemed to flow together better that way.
I'm sure it'll make total sense when I rewatch it all someday.
So for all those that responded to my original post, here you go...
I was wrong. You were right.
There's a bunch of Lost theories floating around trying to explain what happened on the finale. These seems to be the ones that make the most sense...
1 - They all came together in the church after their death (whenever that might have been) to pass over together. This is easily the most popular theory and yes, this is what Christian Shephard was talking about.
2 - They all died when Oceanic flight 815 crashed. The island and everything that followed was just a test to determine where they would end up in the afterlife. This seems to be the second most popular theory (Whoopi even talked about it on-air today, so there must be something to it).
3 - They all (or at least most of them) died when the atomic blast occurred at the end of season five. This was from a listener that called in on the request line today. It does make sense - except for the people that were in the future at the time.
Click on the Lost logo above for the Dark UFO site which has even more theories for the final episode. There's some crazy ones and not so crazy ones there. The way I see it, it's all in how you put it together in your own mind. Everyone's theory is right then.
Whether you're happy or not that the Lost writers didn't just definitively answer everything for us, you've got to give them credit. Ending the show the way they did has kept people talking about it even when it's no longer on-air.
And as for that second theory, I've found someone else who agrees with me. Sadly, they didn't attach their name to the article.
One thing I'm pretty sure of - I'll definitely be rewatching the entire series again someday. And knowing how it ends while watching it might result in a completely different theory on what happened.
Finally, to see a video of all the unanswered Lost questions AND to find out why Mr. Eko was not on the finale, visit my other page here (I attached it to the end of the post).
*** If you haven't seen the finale and don't want the ending to be completely spoiled, read no further! ***
It's rare that a TV show actually gets to do a true final episode. And it's even more rare when the producers actually use that chance to wrap up the entire series. But luckily, both of those things happened with Lost.
Not every mystery was solved and that's okay with me. I'd rather still have some things left to the imagination. But I was very happy with the biggest mystery of all being answered and I think the explanation they gave was the only one that made sense. So I loved the finale.
My favorite scene in the finale: the final one (after his eye closing) where they showed the plane crash with no survivors. That was a cool way to end the series.
Now the confusing stuff.
The final revelation made the flash forwards from seasons 4 & 5 pretty much useless. They were still a part of the overall story, but I would have rather seen more island stories than those.
One thing that did annoy me with the resolution is the fact that all the characters who died in the plane crash were interacting with people who were still alive in the flash-sideways. There's no way all the people they dealt with in the hospital, police department, etc. were also dead. So that doesn't make any sense. In the flash forwards, that was okay because that was apparently just all in their minds anyways (like their lives on the island). But that couldn't be the case with the flash-sideways.
And I'm guessing characters like Frank Lapidus and Miles (who were on the plane that left the island but weren't from the original plane crash) managed to return home safely with no memories of the others from the island since no one survived that initial plane crash. Maybe they were never even there and were just imagined characters.
This is now officially getting too confusing for me for a Monday.
Luckily, one mystery I was wondering about after the finale was answered during the Jimmy Kimmel show last night. Michael wasn't in the church because he was still one of the lost souls / voices on the island (that's what the actor who played Michael thought and I agree with that). Maybe that's where Walt was too.
A two-hour edited version of the final episode is scheduled to air Saturday night at 8pm with the Jimmy Kimmel "Aloha To Lost" special right after it at 10pm on ABC. The online Q&A with Jimmy Kimmel and the Lost cast can be seen on the ABC website.
Then get ready for the final season DVD on August 24th!
I barely even took the camera around. Most of the weekend was spent eating, walking around Main Street, and eating some more with friends and family. But here's a few pictures I did take...
I had a S'mores crepe here - mmmmmm. The bobsled in front of the place definitely caught my attention.
A cool building on Main Street.
Three Olympic venues in one here. Up close is the outdoor speed skating rink. Off to the far right is the ski jumping complex. And way out is the Mount Van Hoevenberg area with the luge / bobsled / skeleton track (that's where I'll be spending quite a few weekends this coming winter).
Some fun things to do when visiting Lake Placid...
GOLD MEDAL ADVENTURE: A three-hour family summer program where you learn about the sports of luge & bobsled by actually trying them (on wheeled sleds) along with tours of the ski jump tower and the Olympic training complex.
BOBSLED EXPERIENCE: Go down the bobsled track with a professional driver and brakeman (in a sled with wheels during the summer - in the winter, the real thing with the sled on blades).
SKELETON EXPERIENCE: This is a winter only thing. You go down the track from Start 5. You're on the sled going down the track head-first, on your stomach, and on your own!
GOLD MEDAL GAMES - FAMILY EDITION: Another winter only thing. A friendly family Olympic competition including curling, hockey, skiing, bobsled, speed skating, and more. The 2011 dates aren't up yet, but keep checking.
Make sure to check the websites for height and age restrictions for some of these programs.
The a-ha concert in Toronto last night was amazing! It's like the group has managed to find some way to stop time, as they sounded just like their singles from the 80's!
This was their only stop in Canada on their Ending On A High Note Tour. It was my first time seeing them perform and I sure picked a great concert to see. And a perfect venue too - I love Massey Hall.
a-ha performed for almost two hours and focused a lot on their 80's songs, ending of course with The Sun Always Shines On TV and Take On Me.
I embedded some videos I found on YouTube on my main blog page.
I ended up getting back from Toronto at about 3am to some great news: a-ha's first two albums are being re-released by Rhino with tons of extra content! They'll both be out June 28th, 2010 with lots of extended versions, live tracks, and demos - including both the original version of Take On Me (called Lesson One) AND the original released version of Take On Me (very different than what's always been played on the radio).
Here's the links...
Hunting High and Low (2-CD Deluxe Edition)Scoundrel Days (2-CD Deluxe Edition)
And here's three music videos that have been released from a-ha's recent album Foot Of The Mountain. I think the title track is equally as incredible as Take On Me - a feel-good song that you'll be happy to have stuck in your head...
Finally, Liz called in during the Request Hour and knew that another popular a-ha song was Summer Moved On. She won an American Idol Season 9 CD for knowing that. That's one of the songs they performed flawlessly last night. Here's the music video for that...
As always, if you think I missed something or you find a broken link, please e-mail me. This is not a complete list of all parks - it's just a list of the best ones to visit within driving distance (for the most part).
Always check the parkâs calendar before visiting, as each one starts and ends their daily schedules in a different way. All distances listed are from Buffalo...
DARIEN LAKELocation: Darien Center, NY
Distance: 45 minutes
Opening date: May 8th (Splashtown opens May 21st)
New for 2010:Splashtown at Darien Lake - a major expansion to the water park! Includes a lazy river, a second wave pool, and four new waterslides. Full details here.
FANTASY ISLANDLocation: Grand Island, NY
Distance: 15 minutes
Opening date: May 15th
MARINELAND Location: Niagara Falls, ON
Distance: 30 minutes
Opening date: May 22nd
Location: Just north of Toronto, ON
Distance: 2 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010:Planet Snoopy - a retheming of the kiddie area and Boo Blasters On Boo Hill (formerly Scooby-Doo's Haunted Mansion).
OLCOTT BEACH CAROUSEL PARK
Location: Olcott, NY
Distance: 1 hour
Opening date: May 29th
Similar to: A smaller Midway Park. Features a carousel and five kiddie rides, each costing 25-cents to ride.
MIDWAY PARK Location: Bemus Point, NY
Distance: 90 minutes
Opening date: May 29th
Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island with all kiddie rides.
Location: Toronto, ON
Distance: 2 hours
Opening date: May 22nd
Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island with mainly kiddie rides.
SEABREEZE Location: Rochester, NY
Distance: 90 minutes
Opening date: May 22nd
New for 2010: Revolution 360 - a Mega Disk'o ride just like the one Fantasy Island got last year. This one gives you a great view of Lake Ontario while riding!
Similar to: Fantasy Island
KNOEBELSLocation: Elysburg, PA
Distance: 4.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: Unique and highly recommended for all ages! Free parking, free admission, very reasonable prices, some of the best wooden roller coasters in the country, and a gigantic variety of rides for kiddies & adults. They're still working on opening the Flying Turns roller coaster. Maybe this will be the year!
Video:The vicious Knoebels' Bumper Cars
WALDAMEER PARK Location: Erie, PA
Distance: 2 hours
Opening date: May 8th
Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island
CONNEAUT LAKE PARKLocation: Conneaut Lake, PA
Distance: 2.5 hours
Opening date: May 29th.
New for 2010: Two new kiddie rides for the Kiddieland section.
Returning for 2010: Blue Streak wooden roller coaster (they're trying to have it open by late summer). There's a good chance the Round Up will also return to the park, but in a new location.
Similar to: A smaller version of what Crystal Beach used to be.
Location: West Mifflin, PA
Distance: 4 hours
Opening date: May 8th
New for 2010: Sky Rocket, a launch coaster with a 90-degree drop!
Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland
Note: King Kahuna (a Top Spin ride) was removed from the park.
Video:Sky Rocket promotional videoDELGROSSOâS PARKLocation: Tipton, PA
Distance: 4 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: A small Fantasy Island.
LAKEMONT PARKLocation: Altoona, PA
Distance: 4.5 hours
Opening date: May 26th
Similar to: Fantasy Island. Remember Roseland in Canandaigua? This is where the Roseland Skyliner wooden roller coaster now is. This is also the home of the world's oldest roller coaster, Leap-The-Dips.
Location: Ligonier, PA
Distance: 4.5 hours
Opening date: May 27th
Similar to: Fantasy Island. A unique feature of this park - it features Mister Rogers' Neighborhood of Make Believe, a life-size trolley ride through Mr. Rogers' world.
HERSHEYPARKLocation: Hershey, PA
Distance: 5.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: A "Create Your Own Candy Bar" experience at Chocolate World (which is actually outside the amusement park).
Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland
Video:A virtual tour of the "Create Your Own Candy Bar" experience.
Location: Allentown, PA
Distance: 5.5 hours
Opening date: May 2nd
Similar to: Darien Lake
Location: Lancaster, PA
Distance: 6 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: Fantasy Island, but geared more to younger kids.
Location: Langhorne, PA
Distance: 6.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: Unique. Itâs an entire amusement park for kids based on Sesame Street!
SYLVAN BEACH AMUSEMENT PARKLocation: Sylvan Beach, NY
Distance: 3 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Himalaya (spin ride) & The Screamer (a 40-passenger speed boat on Oneida Lake).
Similar to: A smaller version of what Crystal Beach was.
THE GREAT ESCAPE
Location: Lake George, NY
Distance: 5 hours
Opening date: May 8th
Similar to: Fantasy Island. This is where the Crystal Beach Comet now is. Itâs been modified a little, but itâs still a good ride.
MAGIC FORESTLocation: Lake George, NY
Distance: 5 hours
Opening date: May 29th
Similar to: Fantasy Island with all kiddie rides.
NORTH POLE / SANTAâS WORKSHOP
Location: North Pole, NY (near Lake Placid)
Distance: 6.5 hours
Opening date: June 26th
Similar to: Unique. An amusement park for young kids themed to Santa Claus & his reindeer.
CONEY ISLAND CYCLONE
Location: Coney Island, NY
Distance: 7 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: Unique. The Astroland Park this was part of is now gone. But there's still two amusement parks within walking distance.
Location: Coney Island, NY
Distance: 7 hours
Opening date: May 29th
New for 2010: The entire park!
Similar to: Crystal Beach possibly.
DENOâS WONDER WHEEL AMUSEMENT PARKLocation: Coney Island, NY Distance: 7 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: A smaller Crystal Beach. Itâs within walking distance of the Cyclone roller coaster and has the world famous Wonder Wheel, a giant ferris wheel with some cars that travel on tracks and swing into and out of the wheel structure!LONG ISLANDâS ADVENTURELAND
Location: East Farmingdale, NY
Distance: 7.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: The Ghost House - a ride-through haunted house
Similar to: Fantasy Island
CANOBIE LAKE PARKLocation: Salem, NH
Distance: 7.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2009: MystiQue, The Magical World Of Illusion will be their big show this year.
Similar to: Fantasy Island. They've got a Frisbee, one of my absolute favorite rides right now. And they're still running it great! In addition to that, there's a bunch of other great rides and three arcades, one which features about 30 pinball machines. I highly recommend this park!
Video:2010 TV commercialLAKE COMPOUNCELocation: Bristol, CT
Distance: 6.5 hours
Opening date: May 15th
Similar to: Darien Lake.
SIX FLAGS NEW ENGLAND Location: Agawam, MA
Distance: 6 hoursOpening date: Now open
New for 2010: Mr. Six's Splash Island, a waterpark area for young kids.
Similar to: Darien Lake.
Location: Wildwood, NJ
Distance: 8 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Ignis Fatuus - a mystery attraction that will be revealed Memorial Day weekend.
Similar to: The park itself reminds me of a gigantic Crystal Beach, except itâs all on three large piers overlooking the ocean. The boardwalk is super long and has all sorts of crazy shops.
KINGâS DOMINION Location: Doswell, VA
Distance: 9 hours
Opening Date: Now open
New for 2010: Intimidator 305, the tallest and fastest gravity driven roller coaster on the east coast!
Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland
BUSCH GARDENS: EUROPE
Location: Williamsburg, VA
Distance: 10 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: It's Canadaâs Wonderland with more extreme roller coasters, fewer rides, and a lot more shops & restaurants.
CEDAR POINTLocation: Sandusky, OH
Distance: 4 hours Opening date: May 15th
New for 2010: Shoot The Rapids - a log flume
Similar to: Unique with 17 roller coasters.
Video:Virtual ride on the new Shoot The Rapids
Location: King's Island, OH
Distance: 6.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Planet Snoopy - a retheming of their kiddie section and Boo Blasters On Boo Hill (formerly Scooby-Doo & The Haunted Castle).
Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland with bigger roller coasters.
Note: The Son Of Beast wooden roller coaster is no longer listed on the park's website or maps even though it does still exist. Chances are it won't be open this season.
STRICKER'S GROVELocation: Hamilton, OH
Distance: 7.5 hours
Open: July 4, August 8, September 6, October 10
Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island
Note: Only open to the public four days a year.
BEECH BEND Location: Bowling Green, KY
Distance: 10.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Tea Cups, Quad Runner (kiddie ride), and a major waterpark expansion (wave pool, lazy river, and a water play area)
Similar to: Fantasy Island.
Location: Santa Claus, IN
Distance: 10 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Wildebeest - the world's longest water coaster.
Similar to: Darien Lake, but geared more to young kids.
DOLLYWOOD Location: Pigeon Forge, TN
Distance: 11 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Adventure Mountain - four different challenge courses up to 26-feet in the air that features swinging beams, suspension bridges, flying islands, a tire traverse, and more!
Similar to: Unique. Stores and restaurants outnumber rides here, but the rides are all good.
INDIANA BEACH Location: Monticello, IN
Distance: 8.5 hours
Opening date: Now open
Similar to: What Crystal Beach used to be.
MT. OLYMPUS Location: Wisconsin Dells, WI
Distance: 12 hours
Opening date: Now open
New for 2010: Catapult (their website says it's an extreme ride but says nothing else about it).
Similar to: Unique. Itâs an amusement park made up of nine long wooden go-cart tracks, seven roller coasters, and a gigantic indoor and outdoor waterpark. The entire town of Wisconsin Dells is a giant version of Clifton Hill in Niagara Falls. Nearby, the Timber Falls Adventure Park has an amazing wooden roller coaster called Hellcat (previously called Avalanche). Thereâs also a puzzle-like adventure down the road called Wizardâs Quest which is definitely worth checking out.
Yes, there's now four. The first one is for Owl City's latest single Umbrella Beach (which is a perfect spring / summer song).
The there's Vanilla Twilight (my favorite Owl City song) and Fireflies.
Then the bottom video is Early Birdie from two years ago...
V.V. Brown is already a star overseas. Very soon, she'll be taking over the North American charts.
I've had her songs on my iPod for a couple months now - ever since the first day I heard Shark In The Water. That'll be her debut single here. And I'm already hoping Game Over is her second single.
She stopped by the Star and Kiss studios to perform for us yesterday. V.V. doesn't need a full back-up band to sound amazing as you'll soon see. All she brought with her yesterday was Janek on guitar and backup vocals.
Here's the acoustic version of Shark In The Water from our studios yesterday. And here's a few other V.V. links...
OFFICIAL WEBSITESHARK IN THE WATER MUSIC VIDEOVIDEO FROM V.V.'S PERFORMANCE YESTERDAY
The media hysteria about KFCâs new Double Down sandwich convinced me I had to try it. Just about every article / review Iâve read says itâs one of the most unhealthiest sandwiches of any fast food chain, so I had to see what this was all about.
When Iâm not on vacation, I almost never go out to eat. And when I do, I usually stick to my favorites: Little Caesarâs Pizza, the Flying Saucer Restaurant, Old Country Buffet, Burger King, Wendyâs, Dunkin Donuts, or Tim Hortons.
My original plan was to get about three Double Downs for supper. Then I saw the price. Itâs $4.99 for one or $6.99 for one with the value meal. So I just ended up getting one Double Down and a two-piece chicken dinner (with one of their awesome biscuits and mashed potatoes) - thank you to KFC for online coupons.
The Double Down is cheese and bacon surrounded by - not bread - but two pieces of chicken (either original or grilled - I went with the original). It was excellent!!! I love bacon and was definitely able to taste it in this food masterpiece. And the KFC chicken is always good, so two pieces at once was like heaven for my taste buds. I donât think I could have eaten more than two, so Iâm happy I didnât go through with my original plan. In fact, one was enough (especially since I had the extra food anyways, lol).
Overall, mmmm-mmmm, yummy, yummy - and highly recommended! But this is definitely not an everyday type of food. Not even an every week thing. Once in a while is more than enough. It sure did make for a perfect meal while watching everyone starve on Survivor though (at least until some of them got to feast).
The fact that I was able to write this proves I survived the meal. So most of the reviewers are all just big health-nut whiners. Every now and then itâs okay to be bad and eat something soooo good.
Her new movie Mega Piranha debuts tomorrow night (April 10th) at 9pm on the SyFy Channel. In the movie, she teams up with Barry Williams (Greg Brady) to stop mega piranha from taking over Florida.
She's also been working on a new CD - a country CD! Hear one of the new songs on Tiffany's website.
In between battling piranha and rebooting her music career, she also took the time to talk to me today during the All Request Hour. She talked about being labelled a mall queen, the so-called 80's rivalry with Debbie Gibson, her upcoming country CD, and of course the mega piranha.
Here's the full 10-minute interview including portions that didn't air on Star 102.5.
And here's the Mega Piranha movie promo...
Can you tell I'm a little psyched about this?
Tiffany's movie Mega Piranha debuts this weekend on the SyFy Channel.
I'll talk with her tomorrow during the All Request Hour at 6pm about that, her upcoming CD, and more!
For now, a short trailer for Mega Piranha...
I went to the press conference this morning at Darien Lake and got all the details on what's new this year. If you're a fan of waterparks, you're going to love the new park!
Yes, a whole new park! Splashtown at Darien Lake will open Memorial Day weekend. The waterpark and rides will now be two different parks. Pricing details are at the Darien Lake website. The season pass is the best bet for this, as it's still a great deal regardless.
Here's video from the press conference announcing Splashtown with details on all the new slides and attractions. I'll also list what's new below...
The new attractions include...
FLOTATION STATION: A 1,024-foot lazy river! I've been waiting for Darien Lake to get one of these forever.
LAZY DAYS LAGOON: A second wave pool, this one with gently rolling waves as opposed to the larger waves at their Crocodile Isle wave pool. It's actually part of Flotation Station.
SWIRL CITY SLIDE COMPLEX: Four new waterslides...
* Mister Twister - Features three funnels!
* Cannon Ball Run - A high-speed slide with a giant 40-foot "Cannon Bowl".
* Turbo Twins - Two twisted enclosed slides with some translucent sections thrown in.
In addition to Splashtown, Darien Lake has transformed ten rooms in their Lodge On The Lake Hotel into "Forts-O-Fun" family rooms. They offer kids their own room-in-a-room with a fort-themed play and sleep space that includes its own TV and Playstation 3 console.
Darien Lake has also added 24 lakeside Brown Bear Cabins to the campsite area.
More details on all the new additions are at Darien Lake's website.
The best news of all - nothing is being removed from the park to make way for all these additions! Although Floodgate Falls (the cascading lazy river in the original waterpark) will remain out of operation again this year.
Opening day is Saturday, May 8th (with Splashtown opening Memorial Day weekend)!
Now for something from the early days of Darien Lake. I was looking through some of my parents' old pictures and ran across these.
It was like me and my brother had our own personal paparazzi following us around. No wonder I'm not a fan of getting my picture taken now! But I have to admit, I am happy my parents took all these great 80's pictures of Darien Lake...
Me (right) and my friend Patrick riding the Viper during its first summer in 1982.
I'm patiently waiting here for my parents to take a picture before going back on one of Darien Lake's awesome Rainbow Mountain waterslides in June of 1980. The second slide was called Acapulco Falls and the third was Kamikaze. I can't remember the name of the first one or the kiddie slide.
My brother (along with some random girl) riding the kiddie boats in June of 1980.Here I am putting up with my parents telling me to freeze as I get out of the Enterprise car (now called Silver Bullet) on what I think was its second day of operation in June of 1980. Me and my Dad watched as the German mechanics did the final tests on the ride the day before. My Dad went on the ride in the afternoon that first day, while I finally got the courage to go on later that night. I even remember what I was thinking here: I just wanted to get out of the car and get back in line so I could ride again - lol.
Ilene Graff was Marsha Owens (the Mom) on the 80's sitcom Mr.Belvedere. The show lasted 6 seasons for a total of 117 episodes and she was one of only three of the cast to appear in every one of them (Christopher Hewitt & Brice Beckham as Mr. Belvedere & Wesley were the other two).
No, there's not going to be a Mr. Belvedere themed ride at Darien Lake. Even when the show was actually on the air in the 80's that would have been weird.
The only connection between the two is I'm mentioning something about each today. First up, Mr. Belvedere and one of the stars from the show - Ilene Graff...
VARIETY KIDS TELETHON:
The telethon will be Sunday, March 28th on Channel 7. The true kickoff though is the night before at the Bishop Timon / St. Jude Auditorium on McKinley Parkway in Buffalo. That's when all the telethon celebrities will perform and officially kick off the Variety Kids Telethon weekend.
Ilene Graff, who played Marsha Owens (the Mom) , will be one of the celebrities this year. She's a telethon favorite who keeps getting invited back.
I'll talk with her Wednesday night on Star 102.5 about the upcoming telethon. And of course I can't wait to hear her behind-the-scenes Mr. Belvedere stories!
In addition to that, I'll be giving away DVD's of seasons 3 & 4 of Mr. Belvedere (from shoutfactory.com) during the all request hour at 6pm.
COASTERS FOR CARING:
Kind of staying with the charity thing, it's fundraising now. That's such a boring word. I hope I never have to be on the organizational end of that nightmare. But add roller coasters and spin rides to it and suddenly fundraising becomes interesting.
Darien Lake is helping non-profit organizations by offering discounted tickets to the park. Day tickets get sold for $19.99 and your organization keeps $5 for every one! Plus, you get two free tickets for every 50 sold. Visit the Darien Lake website for more details. But hurry, you must sign up by April 15th to participate.
Cirie Fields, one of the Heroes of Survivor season 20, was voted out last week. This morning, she talked with me on Star 102.5 about what happened.
Cirie also talked about our perceptions of the Survivors based on the shows' editing and the food situation.
Here's the full 7-minute interview (portions of which aired on Star).
All week long at 9:00am with Star Of The Day, I'm giving away tickets to see David Gray at the UB Center For The Arts on March 29th. But who is he?
He's one of the artists many people can't place by the name, but I know you know some of his songs (at the very least the one from the 90's).
Babylon was a late 90's hit. Fugitive was a recent hit on the AAA charts and Stella The Artist (my favorite song from him) is his recent hit.
Hear them all here and then think up someone to nominate for Star Of The Day for your chance to win tickets to see him with Star 102.5...
Remember the board game Mousetrap? The game is actually still around!
I don't think I ever played the full game when I was a kid - instead, me and my cousins would put together the "mousetrap" and set it off over and over.
The group OK Go must have been a fan of that part of the game as their new video is like one giant version of Mousetrap.
By the way, that fun part of the game is actually a Rube Goldberg machine - an overly complex machine designed to produce a very simple result. That's definitely the case in this incredibly clever video...
The pickle you see to the right is now officially more popular than the group Nickelback according to FaceBook.
As of this post, the pickle has 1,504,800 friends while Nickelback only has 1,425, 294 friends.
In addition to being more popular than Nickelback, the pickle has angered the group. Nickelback's lead singer Chad Kroeger posted a message on his FaceBook page recently that said: "Your page will be closing in two weeks".
Even if that happens, everyone will always remember that a random pickle online managed to become more popular than Nickelback!
If you missed the concert yesterday, here's two of my favorite parts.
I love when the group banters between the songs. Here they talk about their daily special. Then later they talked about a sign at the Hard Rock Cafe and how it reminded them of a show they did with Michael Jackson...
I'm still learning how to use my Flip camera - I'll get better as time goes by. But the audio is amazing! And since I'm in radio, that's really all that matters.
Tonight marks the 3rd time on Survivor for all-time favorite (especially of the producers) Cirie Fields. I have to admit, she's a favorite of mine too because she seems so nice.
And as it turns out, she actually is. I talked with her earlier tonight on Star 102.5. She elaborated on her blindsiding method (while still remaining well liked by everyone), the Survivors' reaction to the unknown on the island (evil Russell from last season), if her kids back home affect her game strategy, and if she'd consider trying the game for a 4th time.
Here's the full 7-minute interview (a portion of which aired on Star 102.5).
Then watch Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains tonight at 8pm on CBS.
I know by now you've seen the instant classic with Betty White and Abe Vigoda.
Well, there's already another one. This one stars Aretha Franklin and Liza Minnelli. It's not as funny as the first one, but it's still far better than the rest of the commercials out there. They're getting everyone to watch their Snickers commercial without it airing during a TV show, so that's impressive...
Back in the 90's, I worked with Careful The Kangaroo, The Warm Fuzzy, The Bleacher Creature, Sonic The Hedgehog, and others in Rochester. So I'm a huge fan of character mascots.
This is absolutely one of the best. It's Big G, one of the Harlem Globetrotters' mascots...
I was waiting to see that Betty White / Snickers commercial and it turned out it was well worth the wait. Especially the end - too funny!
The David Letterman promo was hysterical too. I wasn't expecting that.
Another commercial that took me by surprise was the new Vacation segment with Chevy Chase & Beverly D'Angelo. I never even heard about this until seeing the commercial. The full length version goes 14 minutes and is far funnier than the sitcom Chevy Chase is now starring in.
See all three of them here...
Forget a boring movie or dinner out, where you'll just be surrounded by tons of strangers. Not my idea of romantic (unless you go to the Flying Saucer Restaurant on Lundy's Lane - that's good anytime).
The ultimate place to spend Valentine's Day (or in this case the night before) is at Iron Island with all the ghosts! I can't think of any better place to bring a date than somewhere that's haunted. Your date will definitely stay nice and close - lol.
Here's all the info for next weekend...
The producers of Lost didn't even try to hide the fact that Maggie Grace, the actress who played Shannon, wasn't there. No shots of someone from the back who looks like her or shots from far away of someone that might be her but isn't. Nope, nothing. Just Boone saying she was mad at him.
Kristin at E! found a source that says Maggie was asked to return. The only excuse the source gave for Maggie not going back to Lost is that she had just finished filming three movies in a row. But that's from the source, not the actress.
Maybe she just wanted more money than they wanted to give. Maybe she's busy with another project. Maybe she really is taking a break after filming all those movies. Or maybe she's become angry over the years that she was killed off the series.
Until she actually says something to the media herself, it's all speculation. But I hope she changes her mind and returns before the final episode is filmed.
As for Michael and Walt, another post from Kristin says that Harold Perrineau, who played Michael, was not even asked back (and this was from Harold himself).
As for Walt (played by Malcolm David Kelly), Harold offers the best explanation saying that he's grown up so much, it would have been difficult pulling that off.
If you haven't seen last night's two-part season premiere, then the following definitely contains SPOILERS.
Here's my thoughts on last night's two episodes - I thought both were great. The show is back to where it should be.
My theory for the end came to me when Juliet's very important final words ("it worked") were revealed.
Remember when Juliet was about to die and was rambling about "I'll buy you a coffee" to James / Sawyer and he had to remind her who he was. After that, she snapped back to the moment. But I think that's something she's going to say to him back in the real world where the plane never crashed. Maybe at one point he saves her from walking in front of a taxi or saves her from tripping or something and that'll be something she says to him then.
That would mean she's no longer on the island either then. But it could happen at any future time in that reality.
That would also explain the "it worked". Jack's plan did in fact work and made the true reality the one where the plane never crashes. The rest is now just an alternate reality that in the long run won't exist at all.
Just my thoughts. Watch - it'll all crash and burn within the first five minutes of next week's episode. But that's the fun of Lost (when it's at its best) - you never really know where it's going.
Solitary 4.0 will air Saturday nights at 10pm Eastern on the Fox Reality Channel starting this Saturday.
And hopefully, the episodes will be available to watch free starting the day after their original airings on hulu.com.
Licensing is such a pain. Why can't everything be available to buy on the US iTunes store?
The first song not available in the US is a very retro sounding song by a group called The Baseballs - it's now making it's way up the charts overseas.
Then it's a song that's already on the Canadian charts by The Stereos...
Some of the best new songs are never released in the US.
Here's two perfect examples from last year - Nexx with Synchronize Lips and Donkeyboy with Ambitions.
I've been waiting and waiting for these songs to show up on iTunes, amazon.com mp3 downloads, or even in a local store - but it's just not happening.
But don't look for it in stores. It's only available at shoutfactory.com.
Season 4 is when the show really started getting funny and I consider it the highpoint of the series. Season 5 is equally as good.
Season 6 I can't really comment much on since most of those episodes didn't air in syndication or during their original run in Rochester. But Shout! Factory is hinting that the season 5 & 6 DVDs will probably be out soon.
Who knew that Princess Aurora from Sleeping Beauty is actually from West Seneca?! Well, sort of.
Carly Donowick can be seen skating as Priness Aurora in Disney On Ice Presents Princess Classics at the HSBC Arena through Sunday.
I talked with her earlier about who else she portays in the show, how she got started skating, whether she's interested in becoming an Olympic skater, and what skating jumps we can see in Disney On Ice.
Hear the full interview (including parts that didn't air on Star 102.5) here.
And buy your tickets to see Disney On Ice at the HSBC Arena website.
Her new song Young Money is about to make a giant jump up the charts. So I was psyched to find out that Kiss' Shannon Steele set up a lunchtime performance with Vita Chambers in our conference room earlier today!
Here's the video I took of Vita and her bandmates performing Young Money. I didn't have a stand for my recorder, so it moves around a little - sorry about that...
Also check out the official video for the song. There's actually two videos for Young Money, but this is the only one that's been released so far...
You can buy Young Money on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
As for the full album, she's still working on that. Her Mom (who travels with her and is one of the nicest people on the planet) says at first she was putting together a song every 3 - 4 days. Now it's only taking her 3 - 4 hours of studio time to finish a song. So I'm guessing we probably won't have too long to wait for that album.
Want to learn more about Vita - visit her website, which has the links to FaceBook, Twitter, and MySpace.
Tomorrow morning at 10:00am EST, the Doomsday Clock will be moving.
The Doomsday Clock (with a capital D) shows us how close we are to "the end". Pictured here is the Doomsday Clock is happier times (2002 - 2007).
As of now, we're 5 minutes to midnight. Will we get closer or further from midnight?
You can watch a copy of the clock move live tomorrow morning. Yes, a copy. The actual clock is in Chicago, while the press conference will be in New York City. Allowing the doomsday clock itself to travel to New York City could be very bad - anything could happen to it (scientists who are superstitious - hmmm). So the copy will have to do.
It's been three years since the clock has moved (back in January of 2007, we were seven minutes from midnight). With December 21, 2012 getting closer, I've got to wonder if that will influence the clock's latest move.
At one point (from 1991 - 1995), we were seventeen minutes to midnight. That's the earliest the clock has ever been! After that, we've just been getting closer and closer to midnight.
If you're wondering who decides the time on the Doomsday Clock, that would be a group of atomic scientists based in Chicago. I hope they wake up in a good mood tomorrow.
I went to the Rochester Museum of Science over the weekend to see the Titanic Artifact Exhibit.
The exhibit is made up of actual artifacts taken from the Titanic wreck on the ocean floor along with stories about some of the passengers. There was dishes and utensils from the kitchen, a decorative piece of metal from the grand staircase handle, various knick-knacks some of the passengers had brought with them, and various parts of the ship itself.
It sounds crazy to pay to go see these random things (including the lid off a toothpaste jar). But the story that goes along with these objects makes it worth the trip.
I would have taken video to show you what it's like, but they had a strict no video policy. I wavered on that for a bit, then decided to keep the camera off.
It took me and my friends about an hour and a half to see the entire thing (we read every story there was). Be warned though, there was a crowd. In fact, the exhibit sold out both days this past weekend. If you want to guarantee you'll get in, buy your tickets 24 hours in advance on the museum website.
The rest of the museum is also included with the ticket. I prefer the Buffalo Museum or the Strong Museum Of Play in Rochester over this one. But the Titanic stuff makes this worth visiting.
It's taken me forever to post this because I had to find a way to convert the video. But I finally figured it out!
This is from the day after Christmas. A bunch of the family got together and had a great time.
The video is a short clip of my favorite Christmas food - banana cream pie (lasagna being a very close second). Sadly, disaster struck the pie this Christmas.
Lucky for me, I had my Flip camera and was able to document this nightmare...
There was a second banana cream pie and that one fortunately did have all the correct ingredients. My Aunt Debbie (who was supposed to remain nameless here, but didn't) always worries about the bananas getting too ripe if the pie sits too long, so she kind of left that key ingredient out of the one pie. And that's the pie we ate first.
The cookies seen are from my Aunt Char (from her Mom's awesome recipes). My stomach was very happy this Christmas.
The movie I've been waiting over a year to see has finally made it to Buffalo thanks to Dipson Theatres!
This was an absolutely amazing movie! But very, very bleak from start to finish. If you're looking for a movie you'll laugh all the way through, this isn't it. I can't quite say it's a feel good movie either, but it definitely does make you feel better about your life after seeing it, that's for sure.
Without revealing any spoilers, it's the story about a man and boy traveling down a road trying to survive in a world that's dying. Even though the premise of the world dying is sci-fi, the movie isn't. The movie revolves around their survival attempt and the good and bad that come out of people in survival situations.
I have nothing but praise for this movie. Every single actor is perfectly cast and the story is flawlessly written. The movie is based on the 2006 Cormac McCarthy book of the same name, which was also an Oprah book club selection at one point.
I'll definitely buy this when it comes out on DVD. But for now, don't miss seeing the amazing (and yet depressing) scenery on the big screen!
The ultimate way to end a decade is a song about a timelord. Or at least a song based on the theme song for a TV show with a timelord.
This was a giant hit for The Timelords overseas, but a very minor 80's hit here in the US. But with the current version of Dr. Who going into a 5th season soon, I figured many should be familiar with the theme song by now. Myself, I remember the weird tunnel-like intro from the 70's. Such a strange show - but so good.
Anyways, back to the 80's with Doctorin' The Tardis. Happy New Year...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
When ABBA broke up in the early 80's, she attempted an English solo career (she had previously released a bunch of Swedish solo albums). She released three English language albums in the 80's but only managed two hit singles in the US.
The second was an AC hit in the late 80's with Peter Cetera. The first was Can't Shake Loose, which barely made it into the top 30. Not quite as impressive as what she did with ABBA, but it's a good song and deserves to be heard. Enjoy...
You can find this song on Agnetha Faltskog's album Wrap Your Arms Around Me. The single isn't available on either iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Charlie Dore had a lot more success writing for other artists like Celine Dion, Sheena Easton, Barry Manilow, and Tina Turner than she did with her singing career. But I'm sure happy she gave us this song.
The single was released in 1979, but the song made it into the top 20 in 1980. It's Pilot Of The Airwaves...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
In addition to being on-air at Star this week, I'll also be filling in on 107.7 The Lake. I'll be on the morning show from 6am -8am (through January 4th).
I'm familiar with the format because I also program Subterranean HD Radio, an Entercom HD2 station that airs in seven cities around the country. Subterranean features hits and obscure stuff from the 60's - 90's, with some occasional new songs thrown in too (similar to The Lake).
I think my favorite part of scheduling that station is throwing in the obscure 80's stuff. Why is so much of the 80's left unheard on the radio?!
Unfortunately, Subterranean isn't on-air here in Buffalo because we already have The Lake. It just wouldn't make sense to compete with ourselves.
Anyways, if you get a chance, check out my morning thing on The Lake this week. And then at night, I'll keep playing the Christmas music for you on Star 102.5.
Originally, I was only going to do the Daily 80's posts through Christmas. But everyone knows the Christmas season doesn't end at Christmas. Since it lingers right through New Year's Day, so will the 80's posts. Check back everyday for another awesome and usually obscure 80's song.
Today is from one hit wonder (in the US) Wa Wa Nee. They did a little better in their homeland of Australia, managing six singles. Here, there's only the one.
A second single was released, but only made it to #86 on the US charts (since it didn't make it to the top 40, the band still qualifies for that illustrious one hit status).
The one hit was Sugar Free from 1986...
You can buy this song on iTunes (the 12oz Mix is the radio version).
Survivor 19 is getting ready to wrap up. Tonight and Sunday will be the final two episodes of the season. Tonight I talked with Monica Padilla, the latest Survivor cast-off.
On-air she talked about her threat to Russell and what she's based her final vote on.
Off-air, Monica went into a lot more detail on this season. She revealed some Ponderosa secrets, how her eating habits have changed thanks to the show, and of course her opinion of Shambo (who's been a major focus of the show this season).
I also asked her about Ben's accusal of Jaison being a - supposedly - very prejudiced person (which Ben said when I talked with him earlier this season). She didn't have any interactions with Ben during the game, but she did know Jaison well enough to shed some light on this.
Today's 80's song should have been a bigger hit than it was. One of the group's members wrote songs that became hits for Tina Turner and Pat Benatar. Another helped write Animotion's biggest hit Obsession and would eventually become one of Animotion's singers in the late 80's.
And yet, Device's biggest hit barely made it into the top 40. And then the group pretty much disappeared.
Here's their only top 40 hit Hanging On A Heart Attack...
So be honest, was the first song that popped in your head when you heard that group Walking On Sunshine? That's the case with most people I would imagine, myself included. But they did have a few other hits. Unfortunately, the others ones never seem to get played.
While Walking On Sunshine is definitely my favorite (especially the extended mix), the song that was released after that was also good. Remember Do You Want Crying from 1985? Here it is...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
The highlight of a Depeche Mode concert is when they launch into this song and then keep going for upwards of ten minutes. The sad part is it usually means the concert is nearing the end.
The song is Never Let Me Down Again, definitely not their biggest hit, but one that totally captures the essence that is Depeche Mode.
By the way, Depeche Mode recently released their third single from their twelfth studio album - it's Fragile Tension / Hole To Feed (a double A-side single) from Sounds of the Universe. I like Fragile Tension a lot better than Hole To Feed. But it can't come close to Wrong, my favorite from the latest album.
For now though, here's Never Let Me Down Again...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Stephen "Tin Tin" Duffy was the original lead singer of Duran Duran back when they were just playing local nightclubs. Stephen left the group in 1979, eventually being replaced by Simon Le Bon in 1980. One year after that, Duran Duran would hit the charts with their song Planet Earth.
After leaving the group, Stephen formed a couple different groups, one of them being Tin Tin. With that group, Kiss Me first became a minor hit overseas.
About two years later, Stephen recorded a solo album and re-recorded Kiss Me. Then he redid the song yet again about a year later and that's the version that would become his biggest hit. It wasn't anything close to what Duran Duran was doing on the charts, but he did make it on his own.
Here's Kiss Me...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
In the mid 80's, everything seemed to be going great for Duran Duran. They had just taken a bit of a break for some side projects (Power Station and Arcadia) and were about to return to the studio to record a new album. Then ugliness hit.
Andy Taylor decided not to return, but didn't really tell the band. A lawsuit happened, forcing Andy to record a few tracks. But that was the end of Andy and Duran Duran in the 80's.
Shortly after all that mess, his first solo hit came out. It was the theme to the gymnast movie American Anthem in 1986. It ended up being the biggest solo hit of his career.
It's Take It Easy...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Last month, one of my posts had the video for Pseudo Echo's Funkytown. An awesome remake, but not the best Pseudo Echo song in my opinion.
Their best was a few months earlier in 1987 with a song called Living In A Dream. It got some airtime on MTV and alternative stations in the 80's, but never became a giant hit in the US.
If you like their Funkytown, I know you'll also like this. Pseudo Echo's Living In A Dream...
You can buy this song on iTunes. If you're a fan of long versions of songs, also check out their Long Plays 83 - 87 CD. The extended version of Living In A Dream is one of my favorite 12" singles of the 80's.
I've been looking forward to the movie The Road for over a year now. It's based on the Cormac McCarthy book of the same name, which at one point was an Oprah book club selection. That's normally not something I'd like, but this sounds very different.
It's the story of a guy and his son and their travels after just about all life on earth has ended.
Some of the movie was filmed in desolate-appearing places like the abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike tunnels (specifically the Sideling Hill Tunnel), Conneaut Lake Park south of Erie shortly after a fire decimated parts of the park, and even the Presque Isle State Park beaches.
The movie was supposed to come out last November and just kept getting pushed back over and over again until it finally was released last Friday. Visually, this looks like the kind of movie I want to see on the big screen (I caved and finally watched the preview today). Unfortunately, it's an extremely limited release and isn't playing in Buffalo.
Places nearby where it is playing is the Cinemark Tinseltown 17 in Erie, PA and a bunch of theaters in Toronto. Check Fandango for more info if you're up for a road trip to see a movie.
This had to be one of the most tiring videos ever to make. You'll see why.
Peter Wolf is the on again / off again lead singer for the J. Geils Band. His first big solo hit came in 1984 with Lights Out. Then three years later, he had his second and (so far) final top 20 hit on the mainstream charts with this. It's Come As You Are...
You can find this song on Peter Wolf's album Come As You Are. The single isn't available on either iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Another Irene Cara favorite today. After Flashdance, Irene Cara followed up with the top 20 hit Why Me.
I loved this one even more because it was the second 12" single I ever bought (the first being One Thing Leads To Another by The Fixx). The 7:02 version is equally as good as the original (which wasn't always the case with 12" singles - Duran Duran's Monster Mix of Is There Something I Should Know and the Hello, Goodbye Mix of Leave It by Yes being two examples of how bad some of them could be). This long version was done right.
Here's the official video with the single version from 1983...
Only the 12" Mix of this song is available on iTunes.
Chances are, if you recognize this song, you're either one of the group's members or you've heard occasional bits and pieces of it in the background on Star 102.5. It was such a great 80's song, but never charted.
It did make it to MTV though. But that's not how I found out about it. I worked at an alternative station in Rochester at the time (90.5 WBER) and they were tossing a bunch of their records. This was one of them. I couldn't allow this awesome song to just be trashed. I'm happy I saved it as it became one of my favorite songs from the 80's.
In the 90's, I finally bought the album this came from. Why this group (or at the very least this song) never got radio play is a mystery to me.
The song has a definite Pet Shop Boys / Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark feel to it. From 1987, it's The Pop Tarts and Another Grey Day In London...
You can find this song on The Pop Tarts' album Age Of The Thing. The single isn't available on either iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Limahl left Kajagoogoo after only one album. But the group continued on, eventually morphing into Kaja.
Their second big hit after Too Shy was Turn Your Back On Me, which reached #2 on the US dance charts.
But Kajagoogoo / Kaja and Limahl both probably would have done better had they stayed together. Either that or they would have all strangled each other since it was tensions within the group that caused the breakup.
We'll never know now...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download (on both sites, the group is listed as Kajagoogoo for this song).
I just got back from Dollywood, so I've got to put a Dolly Parton song on here today.
In 1983, Dolly Parton should have had another pop hit with this song. But things didn't work out that way. It did well on country stations and got quite a bit of dance club play thanks to a 12" remix (a rarity for Dolly), but no luck with the regular charts.
It's a good song though. Here's Potential New Boyfriend...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
In honor of the awesome banana cream pie I'll be eating today, here's something from Bananrama.
It came out right after I Heard A Rumour and was one of their biggest hits overseas (topping even Cruel Summer). That wasn't the case in the US though. It did well on the dance charts, but never made it to the top 40 mainstream chart (it did get into the top 50 - barely).
It's such a fun song and should have been a bigger hit here. It's Love In The First Degree. Have a great Thanksgiving!
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Something that was a top 10 hit in the 80's can't really be called obscure. But I've gotten so many requests for this over the past few months that I had to include it.
Remember Pseudo Echo? Chances are, you can only think of one of their hits. That's really all they had in North America. Later in the season, I'll post my personal favorite from them. But first, what's most likely yours.
It's a remake of a #1 1980 Lipps, Inc hit. Pseudo Echo couldn't quite make it all the way to #1 with it, but #6 is still impressive. I prefer this version to the original. Let's go to Funkytown!
I'm still traumatized that a-ha is breaking up after their 2010 world tour. Hopefully, they'll come somewhere at least on this continent so I can get to see them in concert (I'm still annoyed that I didn't go to their concert at Shea's when they came in the mid 80's).
As far as the US is concerned, Take On Me was their biggest hit. The second biggest here was their follow-up The Sun Always Shines On T.V.
What followed that? Another great song - Train Of Thought. The video tried to mirror the success of Take On Me...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
Solitary, one of the best reality shows ever, may soon be without a network home.
When it comes to reality TV, I consider The Mole (the first two seasons) to be the best reality show ever. Solitary is an extremely close second (with Amazing Race and Survivor not too far behind).
It's such a cool show. Nine contestants are in solitary confinement and try to remain the longest. Instead of competing against other contestants though, they're actually competing against themselves due to the clever gameplay.
There's been three successful seasons of Solitary already. Solitary 4.0 is currently in production and is set to air in 2010. BUT, the network that Solitary is on will be going away forever on March 31, 2010.
That's the dreaded day that the Fox Reality Channel will become the National Geographic Wild channel. Definitely not a network that would run a reality show like Solitary.
So VAL from Solitary needs our help. If you've seen the show and like it or if you think the concept sounds fun and would like to see it, visit the Save Solitary website and show your support of the series.
Here's VAL asking / begging / pleading for your help...
See the previous three seasons of Solitary free on Hulu.com.
The non-stop Christmas music has begun. I miss the 80's already.
If you do too, visit my blog everyday until Christmas and revisit an 80's classic that you may have forgotten about. And believe me, I've got some really obscure 80's songs that I love (along with some favorites that aren't so completely obscure).
So if you also miss the 80's music (or if you're one of those shark tank-type people that wants to bankroll the start-up legal licensing fees of an awesome 80's music syndicated show), get ready for a bunch of obscure 80's. I'm going to try to stick to songs where I can also find the music videos.
We'll start with Samantha Fox, probably best known for her hits Touch Me (I Want Your Body), Naughty Girls (Need Love To), and I Wanna Have Some Fun.
Here's one her songs that's equally as good as those, but didn't have as much success here in the US. From 1987, I Surrender (To The Spirit Of The Night)...
You can buy this song on iTunes or as an amazon.com mp3 download.
I don't care about whatever is on Sunday afternoon. I'm out having a life then. What I do care about is coming home, relaxing, and watching Amazing Race or Cold Case before sleep. But they're never on at the right time because everything's been delayed from earlier overruns.
Well now you can know when your favorite CBS shows will be on later than usual. The network has created something called Eye-Lert. It'll send you an e-mail or cell phone message letting you know exactly how late your favorite shows will be on.
Once again, Linda Hastreiter of the Iron Island Museum visited Star 102.5 with some new ghost audio (EVP's). Hear the full interview here. This online version of the interview contains two new EVP's and two previously aired EVP's.
Then check out the clips she brought to us in early October here.
Visit the Iron Island Museum website to learn more about their overnight ghost hunts. If you do go, only go with a maximum of five people. Trust me, it's more fun when there's fewer people. Any more than five and the noise level of everyone is just too loud. While you'll still probably get some EVP's, they'll probably be drowned out by talking.
Russell (the nice one) was removed from the game last week after he blacked out twice.
How's he doing now? And who does he want to win the game now that he's no longer in it? Find out that and all the details on his removal from the game in my interview with him here (a portion of which aired on Star 102.5).
Poor Ashley - yet another victim of Russell's evilness. But even worse, she's the victim of some strange editing on last week's episode of Survivor.
It looked like Ashley was a colossal failure in both challenges last week. She was the only one who couldn't finish her sick smoothie in the reward challenge and she failed miserably at getting coconuts in the baskets in the immunity challenge. But that's not how things really happened. Ashley explains a little on what happened there - way more than her brief explanation that aired on Star 102.5. Her reasoning makes a lot of sense.
And of course I couldn't resist asking about Survivor's biggest villain ever. Ashley gives her ideas on what Russell's true personality really is.
** Click here for the 2009 Haunted Houses & Hayrides list ** ** Click here for the 2009 Real Hauntings list ** ** Click here for the 2009 Corn Mazes list ** ** Click here for the 2009 Kiddie Halloween Events list **
I'm really not a big fan of movies. Most of them are soooo boring to me. I'd much rather watch a reality show or TV series.
But this year, there's been quite a few good ones. There's one I'm really excited about in late November called The Road, but even before that, there's The Box.
It starts November 6th in theaters. It's based on a short story by Richard Matheson, which was turned into a Twilight Zone episode in 1986 called "Button, Button".
The story is simple - would you push a button that would cause someone you don't know to die in exchange for one million dollars?
Check out the movie preview. Then below that, the Twilight Zone episode of this story (but watch out, the episode might end up spoiling the movie)...
By the way, all three seasons of the 80's Twilight Zone are on DVD. This episode came from the first season. I think some of the best Twilight Zone episodes ever came from seasons one and two of the 80's remake, so definitely give it a look.
Itâs a local production based on the House Of Horrors haunted house in Cheektowaga. âLocal productionâ might scare you away (normally, that would make me run the other direction) . Don't let it though. This was actually a well done slasher movie.
First, because I work for Star, I have to say that this movie is definitely not for anyone under 17 (as the movie itself states). The problem is language, some minor sexual situations, and of course graphic violence. Also, if you're extremely religious, you definitely won't like it.
I thought it was a good story and it moved along well, although the pacing is a little different than most movies. I never really knew what to expect next, which I like. But at times I didn't realize two things were happening simultaneously. That would only take me out of the movie for a second though, then something crazy would happen and I was back into the story. So much so that I actually jumped a little (it was late at night and I had all the lights out, so thatâs why, okay).
Before I get to the good, the one big bad. The language. Just like with District 9, the constant swearing got old and annoying real fast. Blood, body parts, vomit, and all sorts of awfulness doesn't bother me (which is good, because this movie featured plenty of that). But the constant swearing always annoys me. It's not needed. Proof of that - how often do you hear swearing on the radio? Never. The FCC would revoke our license in a heartbeat.
Now the good stuff. The camerawork, scenery, and production were amazing. I wasn't expecting that. And it was really weird seeing so many Buffalo locations in a movie. I kept thinking, hey I know that place. The church scenes were filmed at the haunted Iron Island Museum - very cool. And of course a large chunk of the movie was filmed at the House Of Horrors in Cheektowaga.
Even weirder though was seeing people I know. Robert Saviola, who hangs out at the station occasionally, was in the movie. He did a great job as the Catholic Cardinal. And I know I've seen âPopsâ Garrison around town, maybe at Tops or a restaurant or something.
For the most part, the acting was good. I've got my favorites of course. Sandra Grover as the cast manager was great. âBluâ Brenton Jamal Harold felt completely out of place in the movie - which is exactly as he should since heâs the new owner of the haunted house, so he was cast perfectly. Kaitlyn Salamone and Stephen Burke were both believable as Lisa and Steve.
And then there's the ghouls and monsters which you might recognize from the House Of Horrors. But one you probably won't recognize is Dan Monroe, the guy who wrote, directed, and produced the movie. His monster persona at the House Of Horrors is a little different than his part in the movie as the TV anchorman. Visit the cast page to see everyone that's in the movie - maybe you know someone in it.
Overall, a good horror movie for October and one that was fun to watch because of all the Buffalo connections. Go support Dan and buy the House Of Horrors DVD. You can get it online here or at the House Of Horrors in Cheektowaga.
The kid is only six years old, so can you imagine what's going through his head with all the publicity happening now. The parents are the ones who are the problem. They're crazy - well, at least the father is (check out one of their Wife Swap episodes to see proof of this).
Here's the Heene family on The Today Show earlier this morning. There's a recap for the first four minutes, then it's the interview. The whole family is there up until Falcon gets sick on camera...
Then you just knew this was going to happen. Someone had to interview the wife that swapped places with the Heene mom on the 100th episode of Wife Swap. Here's psychic Sheree Silver's take on what happened from CBS's Early Show this morning. Harry Smith apparently couldn't take anymore after about four and a half minutes...
Then there's the Wolf Blitzer video from last night where he finally follows up to Falcon's original comment about how "we did this for the show". The father gets really annoyed in this one...
Finally, the Heene YouTube Channel, featuring a bunch of their storm chasing videos and a rap song the kids did. You know, maybe their publicity stunt did work after all. It sure gave radio & TV stations a lot to report on what's been an otherwise dead couple of days.
All along he was hiding in the attic of his house! A happy ending to a crazy story.
The family this involved was on Wife Swap in October of 2008 and then again in March of 2009. Here's the 2009 episode - watch it quick as I'm positive it won't stay on YouTube long. Falcon Heene is the kid everyone was worried about...
Double click on the YouTube video for the continuation links for the episode.
And then here's some footage of the balloon as it was airborne...
UPDATE: The family was on Larry King Live Thursday night. Listen to what Falcon had to say. Oops, I think he messed up the crazy father's plan...
I finally got out to Massachusetts to go on an alpine coaster!
The closest ski resort with an alpine coaster AND alpine slides is Jiminy Peak. It's not far from Albany, so it's not too horrible of a drive (it's a little over 5 hours from Buffalo). And for what you get to do there, it's well worth that drive.
The alpine coaster was fast! It took until my third time down before I could do it without the brakes. I was sure I was going to fly right off the edge of the mountain. As it turned out, I didn't. I was shocked.
I have absolutely no idea how someone could film the experience while controlling the brakes and flying down the course. I know I couldn't do it, so here's a YouTube video of someone who did...
Then there's the two alpine slides. As great as the alpine coaster was, I liked the slides better. It felt more like the experience of riding the luge (which I compare just about everything to since it's so much fun).
My first couple runs down the alpine slides were mellow as I got used to the tracks. But by the end of the day, I was flying up and around the turns. I'm happy to say I never once flipped the sled, launched it out of the track, or crashed into anyone.
The crashing is the biggest worry because you never know how slow the person in front of you might be going. That's something you always have to be looking ahead for.
The alpine slide is only open from May - October on days without rain. The alpine coaster is open year round.
The price is $45 for an all day pass which includes the coaster, slides, plus some additional attractions or $9 per ride. Get the all day pass! If you do a single ride and get stuck behind someone who's scared and goes slow, you'll have just wasted $9 on a really boring ride. Plus, it's not worth driving all that way if you're only going to go down the courses one or two times.
Check out the Jiminy Peak website for a list of all their attractions (there's a bunch) and the operating dates.
And let's hope one of our Buffalo ski resorts installs an alpine coaster and some alpine slides soon!
The worst mistake to make on The Amazing Race is to lose your passport. That's a game killer for sure.
Zev's passport was finally found, but that footage wasn't shown when the show aired Sunday night. Instead, it aired on Elimination Station, the online series that follows the contestants after they're off the show.
The current video also catches us up on Garrett & Jessica's engagement and Marcy & Ron. The very first team eliminated (Eric & Lisa) aren't there as they refused to stay at the sequester area according to Reality Blurred.
Tonight, I talked on-air with Linda Hastreiter of the Iron Island Museum.
We also heard from some ghosts by way of EVPs from the Iron Island Museum.
Throughout many ghost hunts, a recorder is going to listen for anything out of the ordinary. A lot of times, the EVPs aren't even noticeable when the recording is happening but instead are heard later when listening to it!
Some are a wild stretch of the imagination. But others really make me wonder.
You can also buy the House of Horrors DVD there - the Iron Island Museum is featured in four scenes in that movie!
And make sure you're listening to Star 102.5's Retro Show all next week (October 12 - 16) for your chance to win a pair of tickets to the October 30th Halloween Ghost Hunt at the Buffalo Central Terminal & the Iron Island Museum! If you'd like to guarantee you'll be there, go buy your tickets here.
I think he could have been the biggest villain of the season if Russell H. wasn't there.
Ben seemed to annoy everyone. We heard from Marisa a couple weeks back saying how he was the worst one on the island.
Now we hear from Ben ourselves. He explains how he really didn't keep everyone awake chopping wood all night. He also talks about the tribal council that led to his island expulsion. We also learn what he thinks about some of the other players and how his Ponderosa experience was.
Here's the full interview (including parts that didn't air on Star 102.5).
It's not an exact remake of Shannon's 1983 hit Let The Music Play. It's more like a combination of a new Jordin Sparks song and a Shannon remake. But I like it - probably because I've liked just about every single she's released so far. This is the second single from Jordin's album "Battlefield".
Video Killed The Radio Star - Andrew Spencer
I've been loving the dance remakes Andrew Spencer has been doing. Here's another great one. It turns The Buggles' 1979 hit into a dance song.
Fame - Naturi Naughton
Irene Cara performed the song for the Fame movie in 1980. Naturi Naughton did a great job updating it for the 2009 movie.
Dustin Diamond (aka Screech from Saved By The Bell) doesn't seem to have too many happy memories from the show.
Now you can read about all his unpleasant memories in his new book Behind The Bell.
He definitely isn't well liked by many of the other actors now. Recent reports say that the rest of the cast refused to take part in the Saved By The Bell People magazine article this past summer if he was involved.
My guess: he probably didn't get along with the cast too well back when the show was filmed either. So I can't really blame him for now spilling some unpleasant details to make some money off the whole thing.
See him read a kind of PG-13 excerpt from his book on Popeater.com - that should give you a general idea of what's in the book. And of course check out the reviews on the book's amazon.com page.
** Click here for the 2009 Real Hauntings list ** ** Click here for the 2009 Corn Mazes list ** ** Click here for the 2009 Kiddie Halloween Events list **
Here's the 2009 Halloween attractions for Buffalo and the surrounding areas. This is a work in progress as websites are still being updated for the Halloween season. So if you think I've missed something, e-mail me and Iâll add it to the list.
If available, visit the official website by clicking on the name of the attraction. Always check the calendars there before visiting, as each one has different hours of operation. Some even have website coupons...
HOUSE OF HORRORS & HAUNTED CATACOMBS Location: 2343 Union Road in Cheektowaga (Garden Village Plaza) Days of operation: September 25th - November 1st (Fridays - Sundays plus additional dates) Houses: House of Horrors, Haunted Catacombs, and Psychic Therapy
DARIEN LAKE FRIGHTFEST '09 Location: Darien Center, NY When: September 25 - October 18 (Fridays - Sundays only) Attractions: FrightNight Field Trip, The Haunted House, a Trick or Treat Trail, Crazy Cliff's Twisted Nightmare show, Booville, and a bunch of the Darien Lake rides.
YOUR FINAL FEAR Location: At the Hamburg Fairgrounds Days of operation: October 1 - 31 (Thursdays - Sundays plus some additional dates) Houses: Dark Raven Manor, Big Top Terror, Raven Hill Asylum, Slaughter Haus, and Soul Remains
FRIGHTWORLD Location: 3097 Sheridan Drive (in the Northtown Plaza) Days of operation: September 18th - November 14th (Fridays & Saturdays plus additional dates) Houses: The House Of The Dead, Wicked Woods, Return Of Mummies Curse, Phobia'z, and CarnEVIL in 3-D.
NIGHTMARE HAYRIDES ON SOMMERVILLE STREET Location: Ellicottville, NY Days of operation: Fridays - Sundays in October What: A 25-minute tractor drawn hayride followed by a haunted maze & a haunted barn with the vortex tunnel.
LOCKPORT HAUNTED CAVE TOUR Location: Pine Street in downtown Lockport (at the old City Hall) Days of operation: October 14 - 17, 21 - 25 & 27 - 31 What: A walk along the Erie Canal followed by a spooky walk through the haunted Lockport Cave.
BECKER FARMS HAUNTED HAYRIDE Location: 3760 Quaker Road in Gasport Days of operation: October 9 - 30 (Fridays - Sundays only) What: Haunted Hayride, Castle Labyrinth, and Phylotec Biogenetic Testing Station.
HAUNTED HIGH SCHOOL 2009 Location: The Niagara Arts & Cultural Center at 1201 Pine Avenue in Niagara Falls, NY Days of operation: October 30 & 31 from 5pm - 10pm What: Four floors of fright.
THE WADSWORTH HAUNTING Location: 1211 West River Road in Avon / Caledonia, NY Days of operation: October 2 - 31 (Fridays & Saturdays plus some additional dates) What: Haunted House, Haunted Barn Walk-Through, Haunted Hayride
NIGHTMARE MANOR Location: Southtown Plaza on West Henrietta Road in Rochester, NY Days of operation: September 25th - October 31st (Thursdays - Sundays) Attractions: Dr. Limon's Manor, The Grinder, Reaper's Rage, and Buried Alive
HAUNTED HAYRIDES OF GREATER ROCHESTER Location: 3329 Eddy Road in Williamson, NY (east of Rochester) Days of operation: October 2 - 25 (Fridays - Sundays (plus some additional dates) What: A 35-minute hay ride, The Black Hole, The 3D Maze, The Screamatorium, and The Mummy Theatre
SCREEMERS Location: In Exhibition Place in downtown Toronto Days of operation: October 16 - 31 (Fridays - Sundays plus some additional dates) Attractions: The Haunted House, Skull Castle, The Black Hole, The Asylum, The Maniac Maze, Terror In 3-D, Curtain Chaos, and the Field of Screems (carnival rides)
THE HAUNTED ADVENTURE Location: 13953 Ninth Line in Stouffville, ON (north of Toronto) Days of operation: Weekends in October Attractions: Black Cavern, Murder Motel, Howling Hay Ride, and Haunted Barn
This is all about the real thing. The ghosts aren't just at these places during the Halloween season - they live here all the time. So if you truly want a ghostly experience, here's where you want to go.
Don't forget to check each website for up-to-date tour times, directions, and additional contact info...
IRON ISLAND MUSEUM Location: 998 Lovejoy Street in Buffalo Ghost tours: Thursdays at 6:30p and Saturdays at 10:30a Overnight ghost hunts: By reservations only at the website
Cost: Ghost tours - $5 / Overnight investigations - $150 for up to five people Review: My overnight stay was awesome! Read about it here.
SUMMIT MANSION Location: 325 Summit Street in Lockport, NY Daytime views: Saturdays & Sundays from 11am - 5pm and Tuesdays & Thursdays from 4pm - 7:30pm Flashlight views: September 25 from 8p - 11p & October 31 from 7pm- 12mid
Night ghost hunts: Contact through website Donation: $10 for daytime & flashlight views / $140 for up to 4 people for night ghost hunts
MARJIM MANOR Location: Appleton, NY Tours: The winery tour is also a ghost tour. Call Marjim Manor at 716-778-7001 for more info.
Size: 13 acres (3 different mazes included in this) Days of operation: Varies through November 9th
Fright Night Maze: Fridays & Saturdays in October from dark - 10pm Note: This is the corn maze with the head of Rob Lucas shaped into it. Just don't pick his brain if you go, otherwise Rob won't have anything to say during the morning show! Plus, Ressler's would like the corn to stay right where it is.
The first Survivor voted off this season was Marisa from Cincinnati, OH. She was a victim of Russell H.'s crazy scheming.
I talked with her earlier tonight during the Retro Show on Star 102.5.
She revealed a bit more about the Tribal Council process and why she looked so wiped out after it. I also had to ask about what happens to contestants who are voted out so early in the game. And she also talked about someone she thought was way more annoying than Russell H.
Find out all of that and more in the full interview with Marisa here.
I'm always psyched when an obscure 80's TV show is set for DVD release. That was the case with Werewolf, an early FOX TV show that lasted only 28 episodes (plus the two-hour pilot).
Shout Factory planned to release the entire series. They had the cover art ready and were prepping the episodes. And then disaster struck.
Music licensing. That's always such a pain (I know first-hand the annoyances involved with that).
Two of the artists whose songs were used in the show wouldn't allow their music to be used in the DVD release. The scenes the songs were in were too important to the storyline to be edited out and the music track couldn't be separated from the rest of the audio tracks (the unmixed masters no longer exist or couldn't be found). So because of those two artists, Shout Factory had no choice but to scrap the entire release.
Who are the two greedy artists? As of now, the company won't release the names or the problem songs. Hopefully, someone will leak the artists' names eventually.
But the episodes have been aired on TV a couple years ago on the Chiller network (music licensing for TV reruns is completely different than for DVD releases, so the songs could be used for that). So maybe they'll start airing them again and Werewolf won't just be forgotten forever.
Visit the Werewolf website for memories of the TV series. For now, that's the best there is.
And thank you to the tvshowsondvd website for keeping the world up-to-date on all the TV show DVD releases (and in this case, non-releases).
Retro Trivia tonight was all about Styx's Tommy Shaw since it's his birthday today.
I mentioned his biggest solo hit Girls With Guns, but it appears I'm one of only a few that actually remembers it.
Maybe my taste in retro music is too obscure and unknown - Brian Demay (Star's Program Director) is constantly telling me that. I suggested somesongs today for the Retro Show and his e-mail response was the equivalent of rolling his eyes. Our taste in retro music is very different, that's for sure! :)
But Girls With Guns WAS a hit - how can you all not remember it?! It was #33 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and #6 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart in 1984. AND it was featured in an episode of Miami Vice, one of the biggest shows on-air back then.
The video for it is very cool as it's all filmed in one continuous scene. Check it out...
About a week ago, this video was released supposedly showing that Michael Jackson faked his death!
As most reasonably intelligent people figured, the video is a fake. In fact, a press release was released just before the video release alerting the world to the fact that it was fake.
It was a Berlin TV station experiment to show how easy it is to spread rumors online. It worked - this video was all over the place last week. Except on my blog - it was just too ridiculous even for me to post originally.
Ever wonder how we put together all the things you hear on-air? We sure don't play things off CD anymore - haven't for a long time (unless something disastrous happens to our on-air computer).
At Star 102.5, we use a computer program called Dalet. I thought I'd give you a little look at it with a screenprint from earlier tonight...
Sorry about the blurry picture. It's the best I could do with the screenprint. And I probably shouldn't be posting a super clear picture of our on-air computer anyways - that could be bad.
So, everything we need is in the folders you see in the middle. If I want a jingle between the songs, I'll go to that folder and drag it to the left into the playlist. Or maybe I want to swap songs out for requests (which I do all the time during the Retro Show) - same for that, I'd just find the song and bring it to the left.
The carts at the bottom left are for extra things we play like sound effects (Brian uses them during the Mindbender), music beds that we talk over, or audio clips.
There's also a mixer feature (opened up on the bottom right) that allows us to mix different elements together so that a song doesn't completely end before the next one begins.
It's a cool program. There's obviously a lot more to it, as I spend quite a bit of my shift working with the program and preparing our stations for the next day.
Just thought I'd let you see one of the things that helps bring Star 102.5 to you everyday...
This is not a joke (although it sure seems like it after watching the infomercial). It aired overnight on MSNBC once and then they pulled it due to its ridiculous content.
My favorite part - the testimonial / dramatization at 1:15 in the video. They could not have found a better person for that - you can almost smell him though the computer. His last comment (mentioned almost as an afterthought) is absolutely hysterical!
Linda at the Iron Island Museum just posted this video from her security cameras (which roll 24/7 at the museum)...
You can see the ball roll on its own at about 17 seconds into the video. Shortly after that, there's a zoomed-in version of the same image.
The video comes without audio in case you're wondering. If you want a slightly larger image of this, click on the video as it's playing and it'll take you to the video's official YouTube site.
Knowing Linda, I know this video is definitely legit. She disproved one thing me, Shannon, and Jen thought happened on our overnight ghost hunt a few months back!
But because I have to question everything, I do wonder why the ball was sitting there to begin with. There's no question that it moved on its own. But it just seems strange that it was just there in what appears to be the "military" room for no reason.
I'm sure there's a story that goes along with this. Hopefully, more will be posted about it on the museum's website.
Which speaking of, visit the Iron Island Museum website to learn more about the place and to book an overnight ghost hunt (which is SO much fun).
It's not a war with aliens movie, army vs. aliens movie, or non-stop alien combat movie. It's just a straight-up alien movie that was absolutely amazing.
The movie is done kind of like a documentary on what went down in District 9. There was quite a bit of gore, but it was done very well. And the special effects were awesome. The same can be said with the aliens, which were featured prominently throughout the movie.
And the storyline kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. It was very well written - with one exception.
My only complaint with the movie was the constant f-bombs. The reason that's usually used in movies is because the writer just isn't that good and is unable to come up with anything else. In this case though, that was the only flaw with the writing.
Everything else was perfect. The movie shifted from suspenseful to funny to sad, all while remaining filled with non-stop action.
If you want to see one of the best alien movies out there, this is it.
It's rated R. I'm thinking it's fine for anyone in their teens and up. I'm sure it got the R rating for the violence and unnecessary language.
Check out the official preview. I watched it myself before going to see the movie and it didn't spoil anything for me...
After you see the movie, visit the official website to learn more about District 9 (Wikipedia has some helpful hints for the website if you need them - look in the Marketing campaign section).
Also check out Alive In Joburg, the short film that the movie was based on. Wait until after seeing the movie to watch this. If you do see it first, keep in mind the movie had a 30 million dollar budget while the short film didn't even have anything remotely close to that.
If you end up seeing District 9, let me know what you think...
I went to the Ohio State Fair this weekend. I love crazy spin rides and they always have a giant collection of some of the best.
Here's a video I found on YouTube of the rides there...
Extreme was named perfectly. It was the first time I've been on that ride and I couldn't believe how insane that was.
Top Scan / Space Roller (at about :57 into the video) was my absolute favorite though. That was one of the main reasons I went to the fair. Canada's Wonderland actually has the same ride (called Shockwave there), but they run it on berserk mode at the fair.
Combine the rides with all the incredible deep fried stuff that got to visit my stomach, and this was one of my favorite weekends of the year so far!
Maybe FremantleMedia and Fox are trying to make the show take a dive in the ratings. If so, they're definitely on the right track. Paula's crazy antics and her banter with Simon were some of the best parts of the show.
Let's remember some of Paula's greatest moments from the show...
And just because, here's links to my favorite Paula Abdul videos...
Other items in the auction include a few other Madonna items, an original Bruce Springsteen Born In The USA outtake photograph, three outfits worn by Eminem, a ton of Beatles stuff, and a bunch of other cool rock and roll memorabilia.
Get the money ready and visit quick - the auction ends Wednesday, August 5th!
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was gigantic in the 90's. But do you remember some of these similar shows that weren't as successful?
And yes, I actually liked some of them. I might possibly be one of only a very few people on the planet that made it through five or so episodes of USA Network's Tattooed Teenage Alien Fighters From Beverly Hills (there's no way anyone anywhere could have sat through all 40 episodes).
Jericho was a great show. But I think this might be even better.
A reality show about life after a disaster begins tonight at 10pm on the Discovery Channel.
It's called The Colony and features ten strangers thrown together for ten weeks with no electricity, no running water, and no communication with the outside world. The producers try their best to simulate what it would be like to survive in a world that just suffered a viral outbreak.
Check out the promo for the show, read more about it at Reality Blurred, and then get set to see the colonists survive (or not) tonight at 10pm on the Discovery Channel.
Her latest album Startin' Over was finally set to come out this summer (after being delayed quite a few years). The first single was going to be "Love, Honor, and Obey". But after her brother Michael's death, she changed the first single to "Home" (the lyrics do fit in a way).
And this is totally legal and there's no strings attached. I always test these things out before posting them here.
Remember the group Vertical Horizon? They had a few incredible hits about ten years ago (Everything You Want, You're A God, and Best I Ever Had). Well, they're back and they've got a new song called Save Me From Myself which you can hear on Star 102.5.
And the band has made it so you can download their new song FREE from their website!
Just go to their official website, type in your e-mail and zip code, and they'll e-mail you the link for the free song. That's it.
Once you download it, you'll have to extract the file. If you already know how to do that, you're set. If not, download a program that can extract files (I use a free program called 7-Zip that's easy to download and install and has come in handy on quite a few occasions like this).
Here's Matt Scannell of Vertical Horizon and Richard Marx performing the song a few weeks ago. The sound quality isn't that great, but it proves he can definitely perform the song live and acoustic!
This week I'm filling in for Rob Lucas on the morning show. And the week got off to a great start when Michael Tolcher called in!
He was up at Niagara Falls, NY performing at the Hard Rock At The Falls concert Saturday night. After the concert, I got to talk with him and he offered to call Monday morning to talk about the show and his upcoming projects.
I was psyched, seeing as how his song Speed Feels Better is my favorite song right now. The video features a bunch of sports superstars including Olympic swimmer Amanda Beard, football star Barry Sanders, Olympic figure skater Kimmie Meissner, baseball star Rick Ankiel, and tennis star Andy Roddick. See it here...
You can get Michael's new EP "In The Meantime" on iTunes and from his website.
And hear Michael's call-in to this morning's Star 102.5 morning show here.
Sugar Ray showed that after going six years without an album, they've still got it. I didn't realize that when you go to see Sugar Ray perform, it's not just a concert - it's a performance. They totally owned the stage. That was a fun show!
It's now obvious that Parachute is on the verge of taking off and becoming a band that could end up being as big as Sugar Ray. I get calls asking about their music every time I play "She Is Love".
Michael Tolcher did his entire performance solo and proved how great of a singer he is (especially when he turned some rap songs into pop songs). Listen to Star 102.5 tomorrow morning for more on Michael - we might hear from him during the morning show.
The Innocent Bystanders opened the show up. Unlike a lot of other WNY bands, they're not just a cover band. A lot of their originals were really good and they fit in perfect with the other groups last night.
And as usual for a Star concert, there was tons of chances to go up and meet a lot of the performers (even if you didn't win the VIP tickets).
Have you heard the new Geico commercials that feature clips of a remake of Somebody's Watching Me?
I just heard a new commercial from them the other day that had the song playing throughout the entire 30-second commercial instead of just a short clip. So I figured there must be a full version out there somewhere. And sure enough, there is!
Thanks to Geico, you can download the full 3:06 version by Mysto & Pizzi right from the Geico website. And it's FREE!
It's been a great season on I'm A Celebrity. I think this turned out far better than the first version of the show on ABC a few years back.
At first, I was disappointed in the "celebrities". But just like Big Brother or Amazing Race where you don't know the people to begin with, I got used to the players and ended up loving the show.
The same can be said for the hosts - Myleene and Damien made a great hosting team. (I just realized that Myleene was in a music group I used to like about eight years ago. See her in a Hear'Say music video here.)
Lou Diamond Phillips ended up being the obvious winner of I'm A Celebrity 2009. He really did go all out in every challenge and was the voice of reason throughout the entire series.
The biggest mystery as the season wraps up - why Frangela didn't return for the reunion. I thought a reason would be mentioned for them not returning, but there wasn't even a clip from them on the reunion show. According to their Twitter page, it seems like they at least considered it a week ago. Hmmm. Another website mentions their unhappiness with the show's production crew. Maybe that's why they weren't there.
No announcement has been made for the show to return next year. But if it was cheap enough to produce, it could possibly be back. To get better ratings, I almost think there would have to be a ton of controversial contestants next season. That way at least some of the crazy ones would remain until the end. But an entire show of all Spencers and Janices might be a bit much.
Overall though, it was a fun season and I think a great show. I hope it comes back next summer.
It's finale week on I'm A Celebrity! And I'm stunned that just days before the finale, Stephen Baldwin left the game on his own. That was weird.
But now that he's out of the jungle, the real reason has been revealed. Hear it for yourself in his exit interview...
The part about John Salley was a surprise! Maybe that'll get mentioned when the players reunite for the finale tomorrow night.
As it stands now, I wouldn't mind any one of them winning. Even Patti - yes, the producers' plan worked. How could anyone not like her, even though she's a non-celebrity on a celebrity show.
As for the drama, there's none left. Luckily, the gameplay will take up the rest of the show. Without that, the producers really would have been in trouble.
I'd love to see Torrie take the whole thing. But my guess for who will win - Lou Diamond Phillips. He seems like a nice guy and he's dominated the game. Two more leave tonight, leaving only three for tomorrow's finale. I can't wait!
I've always been a fan of shows about myths and legends. And this one is extremely good! It reminds me a little of Smallville, but with magic instead of superpowers.
If you missed the first two episodes of Merlin last night, you can still catch up and watch them on the NBC website.
And if you're already a fan, here's some good news - Merlin has already been renewed for a second season!
The second season will actually start airing overseas in the fall, but there's no word on when it will begin here in North America. No worries though, we've still got 11 more episodes of the first season to see.
Torrie stayed! I'd really like to see her win the whole thing next week.
As for who went, I wasn't too sad to see Holly Montag leave. She seems a lot more sane than her sister, but she was a late arrival and as I've mentioned before, I really think the ones who have been there the entire time deserves to win.
Then Janice Dickinson went. Not a shock after all of America saw her do one thing and then say something totally different in her personal interviews. It's almost like she has a split personality. I'll definitely miss her interactions with the show hosts though - it was hysterical how she was always so nice to Myleene and so snarky to Damien.
With Janice gone now, all the drama is also gone. Good thing this happened with only one week to go, otherwise the show would have been painfully boring to watch.
Although there is that alliance with Patti and John. Stephen seems to think Patti's up to something, but it looks like it's just two friends hanging out and trying to stay away from the craziness. That should be easy to do now as the craziness is on a plane back to the US.
But some crazy will return next week. Apparently Heidi & Spencer Pratt are returning to the jungle for the final episode. NBC must be desperate for a ratings boost. It's sad that they need those two though. I'd rather see them just play back some of Janice's personal interviews to the celebrities - that would cause a reaction!
Catch up on full episodes on the NBC website and then get set for the final week of I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here next week on NBC!
I've been talking about MC Hammer's new reality show Hammertime all week long. It sounds like it's Gene Simmons Family Jewels, but with MC Hammer. That's a good thing as the Gene Simmons show is the best of the "family" reality shows.
Get to know MC Hammer and his family Sunday nights at 10pm on A&E.
In the meantime, I sure hope Torrie stays in on I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here! I'm worried because when I called the number to keep her in last night, I got right through the first time. That might be a bad sign. We'll see tonight.
For now, check out the full-length slasher movie the celebrities made (only a small portion of it aired on NBC). It's actually pretty good when you consider it's done in the middle of the jungle with only a camcorder. And you gotta love all the ketchup blood!
While it was the final episode of the TV series Pushing Daisies that aired Saturday night, it definitely won't be the final story for the series.
Bryan Fuller, the creator of the show, did an incredible job ending the TV portion of the series. I wish all TV shows had endings like this. It's reminiscent of the brilliant ending of Wonderfalls (also from Bryan Fuller).
If you didn't see it, make sure to buy the Pushing Daisies season 2 DVD coming out July 21st. This is a final episode you won't want to miss.
And if you're wondering how season 2 would have ended if the show continued, check out this article on the SciFi website. Then get ready for the 12-book comic series from DC Comics this fall where some of the loose ends will get resolutions.
And there might be a reunion movie too. I'd imagine that's a ways off, but I definitely believe it'll happen. I've mentioned before that another TV series that Bryan Fuller created (Dead Like Me) has had a recent direct-to-DVD movie which reunited most of the cast and continued the storyline. I have no doubt the same will happen Pushing Daisies.
And who knows, maybe there will be even more life for the series after that. This is one show that was cancelled way too quickly. It deserved another shot with a different timeslot (not counting the burn-off Saturday night death-slot). Bad ABC.
But in the same breath I must also thank ABC for bringing this incredible TV series to the air to begin with. Pushing Daisies will go down as one of my favorite TV series of all time.
What a cool exhibit! It's about 100 classic arcade games and the history behind them. I became obsessed all over again with Crystal Castles. I also played Dig Dug and Q*Bert.
There's also Donkey Kong (and its two sequels), Pac-Man and Mrs. Pac-Man, Galaga (my brother crushed us at this game - he had a lot of practice at it when he was a kid), Gorf, BreakOut, Frogger, Space Invaders, and a ton of others.
My brother noticed something hysterical about this room. In most rooms of the Strong Museum (and there's a lot), parents are trying to get their kids to check out some of the other rooms instead of lingering in just one. In the Videotopia exhibit, it's the total opposite - the kids are trying to get their parents to leave to go somewhere else. Too funny!
Upon entering the museum, you'll get a few tokens free. After that, it turns out you have to buy tokens at 25 cents each (with most games being 25 cents to play). It's not completely free as I had originally thought, but still an excellent deal.
Some notable arcade games that were missing - Super Pac-Man, Jr. Pac-Man, BurgerTime, and Jungle King / Jungle Hunt (a personal favorite). I did find a nice attempt to replicate Jungle Hunt online though after I got home, so that was cool that I still got to play one of my all-time favorite arcade games.
I am stunned. I really thought Janice was going home. And her reaction proved that she was sure she was leaving too. Wow.
Of the three that could have left (Patti, John, or Daniel), I'm happy Daniel went. I'm hoping that one of the people that was there from the beginning would win. And Daniel joined late.
Janice will now be out of control with happiness with her arch enemy Daniel gone. I can't wait to see what that results in next week. She already started a bit at the end of the show screaming out a message to her friends while Daniel was saying goodbye.
Speaking of messages, some of the celebrities got to get a message back home with a personal call. And thanks to Lou picking Patti, the producers got their wish and got to have Rod Blagojevich on the show (they must have wet their pants with excitement). Patti seems unbelievably nice and down-to-earth and if it wasn't for the producers' desperation to get her husband on the show (starting months before it even aired), I'd actually root for her to make it to the end. If it was a major celebrity they did that with, I wouldn't think twice about it. But this just makes me think something suspicious is going on. Tainting of the jury pool maybe?
So next week it's more "let's try to get the American public to love Rod" moments, more of Stephen Baldwin just being nuts and hysterically funny (he needs to go on 30 Rock), more of Sanjaya and Holly's love affair, but best of all - more Janice insaneness! I can't wait. Next week it'll be on Monday - Thursday at 8pm on NBC.
Three players have already quit and two have joined the game late while only one has been officially eliminated in this train wreck of a reality show. But it's sure been fun to watch! And we're only halfway through (the series continues through June 24th on NBC).
Last night was a riot. Unlike Heidi & Spencer Pratt, Janice Dickinson is a hysterical villain (similar to her time on Surreal Life in 2005). Her lunacy makes me want to watch every night.
First, there's her "sickness", which magically goes away whenever food is near (she jumps up for seconds and thirds before some have even eaten). Her "sickness" also went away when Holly arrived as Janice instantly tried to get her on her side.
Then the overnight incident, which the camp learned about when they got a note from the producers asking the celebrities to not go to the bathroom right in the camp. The producers didn't name who did it, but most of the camp kind of figured it out on their own. The riot was when Janice started asking around about who would do such a thing. The video clearly showed it was her - wait until the celebrities get home and see that!
Then the ultimate - the granola bar incident. The women won four granola bars in a challenge. As they were preparing to eat them, Janice snuck off for a moment and quickly devoured one and threw away the wrapper. Now the women go to split up the four granola bars and find one missing. As they look around to see if they accidentally dropped it or something, Janice gripes to the camp about how someone could do such a horrible thing. She even complains about this in her private confessional. Does she not realize that every move she makes is being taped?! I was laughing out loud at that!
And notice how she dislikes Damien Fahey, one of the show hosts. And he knows it as he's mentioned it already! His comments about her now that he's aware of this are so funny. The one about her being the only supermodel he's ever known that loves to eat all the time actually made me laugh out loud.
As much as Janice deserves to be voted out tonight, I sure hope it doesn't happen. Her meltdowns, mood swings, and overall insaneness are the highlights of this disastrous reality show. I can't see how the show could even continue on without all her drama.
Wow, I did more this weekend than I usually do in three weekends!
First off, I have to say how awesome the Tour de Cure with the American Diabetes Association was. Every year they top themselves. Rebecca Donoghue of the ADA planned and ran the perfect event. I'm normally not a fan of getting up in front of people, but for some reason I'm not as horribly uncomfortable at this event doing that (I was on the microphone getting the riders started on their treks). Amy also helped out bigtime and made the day a blast.
So that now makes only three things I don't mind waking up and starting the day at 4am for - the Tour de Cure, filling in for Rob Lucas, and a roller coaster trip.
Definitely consider taking part next year! There's six rides you can do ranging from 6 miles to 100 and all the money raised goes towards finding a cure for diabetes. One person came up after her ride and said that she won't do some of the other bike rides anymore because of poor planning, but she'll always come back for this one because it's so well done. You've got a year to think about it now. I hope to see you there next year.
Eventually, they'll post pictures from the event here. MyBuffalo.com also was there taking pictures. But the website has been redesigned in the last few days and I haven't been able to find the Tour de Cure 2009 pictures - I'm sure they'll be easier to find as they continue getting things up and running.
On my way home from there, I stopped by Coasters Ice Cream Parlor. They just opened a few weeks ago in Ellicott Creek Plaza on Niagara Falls Boulevard and I've been dying to get there. I had banana milkshake on my mind all day and I have to say, that was one of the most banana-iest milkshakes I've ever had. Excellent. I'll definitely be going back there. Next up, I have to try the bananas foster sundae.
The next day, it was Conneaut Lake Park. I'm so happy they're back open. The incredibly awesome Blue Streak roller coaster is closed until 2010, but that didn't matter. I was more interested in trying out their new SkyDiver ride (I haven't been on one of those since the 90's) and their Flying Scooters (one of my personal favorites). I met up with two friends from Cincinnati (Jack and Chris) and we mostly hung out on the Flying Scooters throughout the day.
It was a great day. If you haven't been there, I have to warn you that it's kind of a strange park. It's like going to a long abandoned amusement park and then suddenly have it open only while you're there - that's at least the feeling I get. Everything's up to code though, so you'll be safe. There's not a huge amount of rides, but the ones they've got are good. In addition to what I already mentioned, they've also got the scary Devil's Den, Tumble Bug, the Kaylee Belle Tour Boat, and a few others.
Then to end the weekend, I went to see Land Of The Lost. Don't worry, I won't spoil anything for you if you haven't seen it yet (and many unfortunately haven't based on the weekend box office results).
I'm a fan of both versions of the show, so I was a little worried that I wouldn't like a comedy version of it. I went with Kathy, who's never really seen the show. We both loved the movie.
It helps that I think Will Ferrell is funny - if you like his comedy, you'll like the movie. If not, the movie might annoy you a bit.
The special effects and visuals were top notch - the dinosaurs were absolutely amazing. The references to the original series were cool - and they were done it a way that didn't make Kathy feel like she was missing something. The campiness is definitely there which is a big plus. And the storyline itself kept shifting suddenly - you never knew what would happen next.
My one complaint - the sex jokes (mostly with Chaka and mostly visual). They really weren't funny to start with - then after the same joke was repeated five more times, it just became annoying. That and the occasional swear word (which also wasn't necessary) resulted in the movie getting a PG-13 rating. Thanks to that, kids can't go see a movie that really could have been a great family movie.
I'll be buying this when it comes out on DVD - I'm already looking forward to the extras and this is something I'd definitely watch again. But I'm happy I saw it in the theater first - most of the landscapes and special effects were definitely meant to be seen on the big movie screen.
My final thoughts on the Land Of The Lost movie - go see it. It's awesome and a lot of fun. If you're a fan of the original, go in expecting a totally new take on the series and you won't be disappointed then. But don't take the young kids. It pains me to say that, but the writers & producers did that to themselves.
All three seasons of the 70's series are available on DVD (a limited edition set comes in a replica of the original 70's lunchbox for the show).
Also check out a mini Land Of The Lost reunion with Wesley & Kathy (Will & Holly on the original Land Of The Lost). They were supposed to be making a cameo in the new movie, but it appears that scene was cut. Hopefully, it'll end up being an extra on the DVD someday. For now, go see what they look like and hear them reminisce on the Land Of The Lost on Wesley Eure's website.
And you can follow the original adventures in the Land Of The Lost in comic book form soon thanks to Arcana Studio. It'll be out June 24th! I'm sure you can special order it from a local comic book store. Or save yourself the trouble of hunting it down and just buy it here.
Then how about a Sleestak bobblehead for your desk at work? They're only about $10 and this one pictured is so much cooler than the ones I see on other websites.
Finally, Tyrannosaurus Lex is an awesome Land Of The Lost fansite with info on both versions of the series and the new movie.
After all this, don't forget to see the movie - it's in theaters now!
Remember the classic Krofft Saturday morning shows Sigmund & The Sea Monsters, H.R. Pufnstuf, Wonderbug, Electra Woman & Dyna Girl, Dr. Shrinker, The Lost Saucer, and Land Of The Lost?
Marty Krofft and his brother Sid were the driving force behind each of them and a bunch of other shows too (Marty is on the left, Sid on the right in the picture).
Well now they're branching out into big budget movies! The second of their shows to be made into a movie is Land Of The Lost (Pufnstuf was the first back in the early 70's and was just released on DVD a few weeks ago).
The Land Of The Lost movie with Will Ferrell and Anna Friel will hit theaters tomorrow (June 5th).
I talked with Marty Krofft earlier today. We talked about the new movie, the Sleestak, who was almost the star of the movie, what the inspiration was for the original Land Of The Lost, and Marty has a favor to ask anyone who's ever enjoyed a Sid & Marty Krofft show.
Off-air, we continued talking. Marty revealed which Krofft TV shows will be turned into movies next, which Krofft series he's hoping to bring back to TV, he told me a little about a performance he did here in Buffalo back in the 60's, and he talked about the complete original series being released on DVD in a special limited edition lunchbox (a replica of the original 70's lunchbox).
At one point, I also brought up the 2001 pilot for Electra Woman and Dyna Girl with Markie Post. To see some pictures from that, go here. And if you can get your hands on the full 15-minute episode, check it out - it's hysterical!
And then, the giant moment. You can see Susan is seriously stressed out in the clip (understandably of course).
There is a mention in one of the comments for the video that Dec (one of the hosts) tells her she'll get a #1 record anyways. It happens at 1:15 in the video. I do hear that, but not the rest of what the poster claims (asking her to give the dance group a nice comment).
Piers Morgan (one of the judges on the show) was interviewed on Good Morning America and says Susan was hospitalized for exhaustion after the show and she's doing fine. He also goes on to say that a lot of the stories about her have been greatly exaggerated and everyone now just needs to back off from her for a bit.
So I had absolutely no intention of watching this train wreck. But nothing else was on, I watched the first few minutes while eating supper, and now I'm hooked.
I have to agree with Spencer Pratt of The Hills when he was complaining about the low caliber of celebrities. This is definitely Z-list celebrities for the most part. And ironically, Spencer and his wife are part of the reason, even though they are great for the show. Without them constantly quitting and throwing temper tantrums, there probably wouldn't have been anything to broadcast for the first hour.
I was originally against the show for another reason. I thought it was completely moronic that the producers were constantly trying to get disgraced and impeached Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on the show. Why help him? Luckily, they weren't allowed to get him. But instead, they cast his wife. What?! And now I understand why they wanted one of them on the show. At one point in the first episode, the show focused on Patti (his wife) talking about what a wonderful person her husband is and all the great things he's done. This went on for about five minutes. It's obvious now that the producers are friends with Rod and wanted to paint him as an awesome person on national TV. As nice as Patti seems, she needs to be off the show for this reason.
Overall, when you get down to it, this is pretty much what Big Brother would be like if it was in the jungle and they threw in a celebrity or two (Stephen Baldwin & Lou Diamond Phillips easily being the biggest two).
I'm rooting for Frangela (comedians Frances and Angela) as their commentary is hysterical, Stephen Baldwin because he was on a great TV show in the 80's (The Young Riders), and Torrie Wilson, because she seems awesome. Maybe Sanjaya too, because he seems to be going all out to win this while some of the others are just coasting through it.
I guess that means I'll be watching this for the next four weeks. And the ratings for the first episode were surprisingly good, so it'll almost definitely remain on-air until the end (which isn't always the case with reality shows anymore).
There's also casting tips there from Solitary casting directors and tips from one of last season's contestants (#4 - the ultimate fan).
Don't take too much time thinking about this - the application needs to be in by June 24th with filming for a lucky few taking place in late July!
I was also hoping to find some info for this on the official Fox Reality Channel website. But so far - nothing. I guess this is how they're going to go about finding contestants this year. And it seems all the other website mentions for this casting call all lead back to the same place.
So good luck! I know I won't be any competition for you as I already used some of my vacation time for the year, which means no chance at Solitary for me this time. I just couldn't wait for something that I wasn't even sure would be happening.
If you make it on though, let me know how it goes!
It's good news and even more good news for both shows.
For Pushing Daisies, the final three episodes of season 2 (and the series) will air Saturday nights at 10pm starting tomorrow night on ABC. Then the season 2 DVD with the final thirteen episodes will come out July 21st.
For Mr. Belvedere, it's even better news. The seasons 1 & 2 DVD set was a success! So Shout Factory will be releasing the 22 episodes from season 3 on September 8th. Thanks tvshowsondvd.com for the info!
Now if only The Charmings could be released on DVD, everything in the world would be perfect. But that might be asking too much.
I know you remember the brilliant 90's group Aqua and their big hit Barbie Girl.
Well, they're back! And with the ultimate retro song. It's called Back To The 80's and the lyrics are awesome with references to Bananarama, Michael Jackson, shoulder pads, Mr. T, Miami Vice, Cherry Coke, and more.
The song was first played on Danish radio a few days ago. When it will make it to the US is a good question, but I'll be watching for it.
This unfortunately doesn't mean an all new Aqua album is on the way. Instead, it'll be featured on Aqua's upcoming Greatest Hits collection.
I know what you're thinking - what other hits did Aqua have? In the US, they only had one other minor hit with Lollipop (Candyman). But around the world, they had a bunch, Around The World actually being the title of one of my favorites.
And I loved Cartoon Heroes, especially the video with the aliens and the otherworldly giant eyeball with five tentacles! I can't wait to see what they'll do for the Back To The 80's video.
So I have to tell you, I was in a mood today at work. You probably couldn't tell when I was on-air, but I was Grumpy (yes, with a capital G). But a song I heard on the way home managed to put me back in a good mood - the miracle of music.
It was our computers at work that put me in a bad mood. Everything's on computer. I had to delete Star 102.5's Friday stuff and re-import it because of some adjustments we made late in the day. After deleting it, I couldn't get the day to go back in. And our engineers were all out of the building working on some other important issues (really - I'm not being facetious, because we have awesome engineers).
So I had to put Friday back in the computer manually. The full 24 hours. Every jingle, sweeper (the things between the songs), legal ID, news / traffic / weather beds, and other stuff. It took forever. And that was in addition to all the other stuff I was already backed up on. Great.
So that ticked me off. Now I'm wandering down the hall and I see Shy Guy Shawn with a plate of meatballs and he tells me there's some leftover food from an event in the kitchen. That's always exciting. And I love meatballs, so I head to the kitchen to get some. I carefully put them on the plate and somehow managed to get sauce on my shirt - a cool new shirt I was wearing for the first time. So now I'm in an even worse mood.
Two things changed that bad mood. First, the person who won the Coasters Ice Cream gift certificate was so cool and fun on-air. That always makes the day better when someone's excited about winning something. Plus, just doing that Retro Show is always fun each night.
And then I heard an incredible song on my way home (something I had bought the night before on iTunes but hadn't listened to completely then). It's called Crazy Loop (Mm-Ma-Ma) by Crazy Loop. What an awesome song! Just listening to it full blast on the way home instantly dissolved my bad mood. It's so cool how a great song can do that.
I gotta warn you, the video is kind of strange (and a little suggestive at times). But the song is great! And Crazy Loop also has another song I found called Johanna that I love (the lyrics on that one are strange, but after seeing the video they make more sense).
Both Crazy Loop songs are about a year or so old, but the one song was recently released in the US. I can't wait until a full CD comes out. Check it out. It's a new favorite of mine, especially since it decimated my bad mood.
It's kind of like Survivor for TV shows this week. Were you favorites renewed or cancelled for the 2009 - 2010 season?
The Futon Critic website has the best graph listing every show on the major network and their fate.
Some of the biggest surprises for next season...
Without A Trace on CBS was cancelled. It ran seven seasons and I'm really surprised it's not going more. I didn't think it was doing that bad.
My Name Is Earl on NBC was cancelled. I'm one of the few people who's never seen the show, but that seemed like one that would keep lingering on.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles on FOX was cancelled. A lot of people online are very unhappy about this.
Worst Week on CBS was cancelled. I thought it was just on a temporary break. I loved this show and the promos for it kept saying it was the #1 new comedy of the year. Guess that wasn't enough to save it.
Deal Or No Deal and Howie Do It on NBC were both cancelled. Apparently, NBC has grown tired of Howie.
Samantha Who? on ABC was cancelled. Actually, this wasn't a big surprise. But I'm sad to see it go.
Enough with the bad news. Here's some of the surprise renewals...
Better Off Ted on ABC was renewed. I am stunned. Shows this clever (not to mention shows I like) usually don't have this happen to them. Especially shows that freeze one of their major characters (that first episode was a riot).
Heroes on NBC was renewed. After this past season's ratings, I was sure it was toast.
Ugly Betty on ABC was renewed. There were some reports on its possible cancellation about two months ago when the show was pulled from the schedule for a few weeks. And now it's renewed. Lucky producers.
'Til Death on FOX was renewed. Seriously, is there anyone that actually watches this show? It keeps getting pulled from the schedule because of low ratings and then keeps getting renewed. All I have to say on this is blech.
Chuck on NBC was renewed. This was one of those on-the-bubble shows (it was last season too), but it managed to get saved again. Unlike 'Til Death, this one deserved to be saved.
Scrubs on ABC was renewed. But there's a catch - Zach Braff and Sarah Chalke will only be in six episodes each next season.
Parks & Recreation on NBC was renewed. It's good, but I didn't think it would ever last.
That's just a brief highlight of some of the stuff for next season. See the complete graph for all of the major networks and all of their shows at The Futon Critic.
I started off my trip on Thursday. I wanted to give myself a full day to get down to Hershey and just relax before three full days of amusement parks.
On the way down, I visited the Indian Echo Caverns. It's a cool place about five minutes from Hersheypark. The cavern tour lasted about an hour. It's a typical cavern and the tour was fun.
I also stopped at the Quiksilver store in the Arundel Mills Mall in Maryland. Shopping for clothes is definitely the most boring thing to do ever. But I'm obsessed with Quiksilver stuff, so going an extra 90 minutes out of my way to go there wasn't a problem for me.
Then Friday and Saturday, it was all about Hersheypark! I haven't been to this park in about ten years, so there was a lot of new stuff for me to see. It's another perfect family park - I was really surprised at how many rides they now have.
My favorite was definitely Lightning Racer, two wooden coasters intermeshed with each other. And the park actually lets them race too! The Thunder side usually wins, but Lightning (my favorite of the two) finally came in first a few times on Saturday.
There's also two other great wooden coasters there - Wildcat and Comet. I'll never forget the Friday night rides on Comet as we were able to hear Bruce Springsteen playing in the nearby arena. We kept listening carefully to which song Bruce was playing hoping it wasn't his last one as we all wanted to escape the parking lot before the sold out concert crowd did. When we heard Born To Run and then Thunder Run shortly after, I thought for sure we weren't going to make it. But luckily, he kept going. They closed the coaster at 11pm (and yeah, I had to stay right until the end) - Bruce ended about 5 minutes later. As I left the parking lot, I heard him playing Bobby Jean - close call as that was the last song!
There's a lot more than just wooden coasters at Hershey. Some of the other rides...
Great Bear - a very cool inverted coaster, especially at night.
Fahrenheit - a steel coaster with a 97-degree first drop.
Sooperdooperlooper - a classic 70's roller coaster.
Reese's Xtreme Cup Challenge - a cool indoor ride where you shoot at targets and compete against other cars. This is one of the best of this kind of ride as the laser guns worked perfectly.
Frontier Flyers - I love this kind of ride. Especially since I figured out how to fly this one very quickly. The poor nearby tree branches weren't so happy.
Flying Falcon - the same as the Sky Hawk ride at Marineland. I mention this because it was running a fun and fast ride cycle - something I wish Marineland would do with theirs (hint, hint).
Hershey's Chocolate World - This is actually outside the amusement park. They've got a cool tour there explaining how Hershey's chocolate is made. And yes, they were giving out a small chocolate bar after getting off the ride. There's also a giant chocolate store there and an awesome food court with lots of chocolate options (I love the new Heath bar frozen yogurt).
After an incredible time at Hersheypark, we all headed to Knoebels to spend the next 24 hours there. Naturally on my way, I had to take the route that brought me through Centralia, Pennsylvania. It's been a little while since I've been there. I noticed they've taken down some of the warning signs, making it easy to just drive by and not realize what you're passing. It looks like some more of the deserted houses and structures are gone too. And I didn't see any smoke coming out of the ground this time. But it was still strange going through there, seeing all the aging neighborhood roads, driveways, and signs without any buildings. I did get out of the car for a bit and looked down the deserted portion of route 61. I didn't venture too far though. Be very careful if you do as portions are still extremely hot (the fire continues underground) and the ground could potentially collapse at any time. As Knoebels was waiting, I decided it was time to escape Centralia.
Knoebels is the home to the greatest wooden roller coaster on the planet - The Phoenix. I was raving about The Beast at Kings Island a week ago and that is an awesome ride. But The Phoenix is the best of its kind. Crazy airtime, no trim breaks, and a crew that keeps the line moving as fast as the ride does (okay, that's an exaggeration obviously, but they are the fastest and best there is).
I've talked about Knoebels before - the park is 100% perfect. Free admission, free parking, very reasonable food prices, a perfect setting, employees that love their job, and owners that care. When visiting, you'll constantly see the Knoebels family wandering through the park making sure everything is going well (Dick Knoebel can sometimes be seen driving around in a bumper car or flyer car that's been turned into a golf cart - so cool).
There was a strange storm that happened shortly after we all got there. It was beautiful outside and then literally five seconds later, a nightmare of rain. It was almost flash flood crazy - I've never seen anything like that start so fast and without any warning at all. But after about 20 minutes, it became nice again. The rain changed Phoenix from an already perfect ride to a completely berserk ride. It was a great night.
For day two there, me and my friends mostly just relaxed and lazily wandered the
park. We rode the Skooter Bumper Cars (considered the best anywhere and I agree), Haunted House, Frontier Train, the Sky Slide (which is definitely not just for kiddies), and a bunch of the other rides. The Flyer was my last ride of the day (always gotta save the best for last). It was a perfect day and a great weekend.
So if you're going to be roadtripping through Pennsylvania this summer, stop by these parks. I guarantee you'll have an awesome time at either of them. But both is always better!
I spent all day Saturday and Sunday at what is easily Ohio's best amusement park - Kings Island.
I signed up for a special event that Kings Island held in honor of Diamondback, their new roller coaster. Wow, it's an amazing ride with incredible airtime on just about every hill regardless of what seat you're in.
But Diamondback wasn't the highlight of the park. A 30-year old ride remains the park's signature attraction - The Beast. Even after 30 years, it's still the longest wooden roller coaster in the world at 1-3/4 miles! And it's still a great ride. The first time I went on it was when I was 12 (and my brother was only 8) - it was a slightly different ride back then because of the way the braking system has changed over the years. Even so, it's still worth going on again and again. And it's one of the many reasons I keep going back to Kings Island.
Now a lot of western New Yorkers have a bad attitude when it comes to wooden roller coasters because of Darien Lake's Predator (a good ride, but definitely one that shakes everyone up a bit). The Beast is nothing at all like Predator. It does shake around a little as it is a wood coaster after all, but overall it's a very comfortable ride. (A little hint for The Beast: each train on the ride has six cars - if you sit in the middle row on any of the six cars your ride will be less shaky than on the other seats.)
But if you like wooden roller coasters that shake a lot, the park has one of those too. That would be Son Of Beast. It's another record holder as it's the tallest and fastest wooden roller coaster in the world. And it's another really long wooden roller coaster, made even longer I think because it seems to move more side to side than straight down the track. :) Still worth a ride though - I did just one. Try for the front seat if you don't mind waiting a little longer for it. I had to squint during my ride though as the wind was insane (at one point, you go 78 mph).
Flight Deck is another favorite of mine. It's a steel suspended coaster. I'll try to describe it - the entire train dangles from the track and your feet remain enclosed in the train along with the rest of your body. Get your hiking shoes ready to make your way through the long (and I always find empty) queue for this one. You can find the entrance to this one right next to Son Of Beast (it's easy to miss as it's kind of hidden).
Firehawk is a roller coaster you ride on your stomach (it used to be X-Flight at Geauga Lake). I love this kind of roller coaster and this was one of my favorites at Geauga Lake. Unfortunately, I didn't get to go on it this weekend. I put it off until close to the end of the weekend and then it went down for maintenance. I never should have waited - but I'll be going back, so I'll go on it next time.
Flight Of Fear is right next to Firehawk and I went on that a lot. It's an enclosed coaster and highly recommended. I'm not going to say anything else about this one as I don't want to ruin it for you.
I'm also not going to tell you exactly what The Crypt is. It's another enclosed ride and used to be called Tomb Raider: The Ride until Paramount sold the park. I went on this a lot this weekend too as this is my favorite kind of ride.
I couldn't help but laugh on my last ride on The Crypt. Me and some friends were near a family (kids, parents, and grandfather) going on the ride for the first time. No one in the family knew anything about the ride at all. The funniest thing was after the ride when the family was apologizing to the grandfather for even taking him on it. The poor guy was just totally stunned at what he'd just been through. Hysterical!
Overall, there's 15 roller coasters at Kings Island. And that doesn't count all the other great rides too. And they've got a really cool kiddie section, mostly based on Nickelodeon shows.
I've already mentioned how psyched I am about the new Disk'O ride this year at Fantasy Island and Waldameer Park. Well in the Nickelodeon Universe section, they had a Skater ride, which is a step down from a Disk'O in intensity. But it's a step up from a regular Skater ride because it was shaped more like a "W" than the usual "U". It's called Avatar: The Last Airbender. Even if you're not at the park with kids, you've got to go in that section and ride this. I was almost embarrassed to admit I wanted to ride this, but then a few others wanted to too - whew, not so embarrassing after all. Turns out there was almost always more adults on this ride than kids. Such a cool ride.
As for the rest of the park, there's tons of shops and food places, the waterpark is supposed to be really nice (I don't personally know as I usually don't bother with waterparks), there's a 1/3 size replica of the Eiffel Tower you can go up, and the park itself is incredibly clean. At one point on Sunday I saw some important looking manager chasing after a napkin so he could put it in the trash - yes, the park is that clean.
Kings Island is a little under seven hours away from Buffalo and is absolutely worth the visit. It's one of the few parks I highly recommend for the entire family.
And for the day after visiting the park, eat at CiCi's Pizza before leaving Cincinnati. I keep hearing those commercials on Star and Kiss, even though there's no CiCi's anywhere in New York - but they sure have a bunch of CiCi's Pizza Buffets in Cincinnati! And it's not just pizza - there's also all-you-can-eat pasta, soup, salad, and breadsticks too. I was so psyched I just couldn't wait and ate there (and ate and ate and ate) the day before going to the pa
rk - good thing the rides don't make me sick or I would have been doomed.
Let me know if you end up going to Kings Island this year (or if you've been already) - I'd love to hear what you think about the park.
If youâre going on a long road trip this summer and run across one of these parks, itâs definitely worth stopping...
CANOBIE LAKE PARK Location: Salem, NH Distance: 7.5 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: MystiQue, The Magical World Of Illusion will be their big show this year. Similar to: Fantasy Island. They've got a Frisbee, one of my absolute favorite rides right now. And they're still running it great! In addition to that, there's a bunch of other great rides and three arcades, one which features about 30 pinball machines. I highly recommend this park!
LAKE COMPOUNCE Location: Bristol, CT Distance: 6.5 hours Opening date: May 9th Similar to: Darien Lake.
SIX FLAGS NEW ENGLAND Location: Agawam, MA Distance: 6 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: A SlingShot upcharge ride, Joker's Wildcard (a Wipeout spin ride) will return to the park, and Superman: Ride Of Steel has been redesigned to include sound effects, new trains, and a name name - Bizarro. Sadly, the Nightwing ride (similar to Darien Lake's Silver Bullet, but you ride it on your stomach) has been removed. Similar to: Darien Lake.
MOREYâS PIERS Location: Wildwood, NJ Distance: 8 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: The park itself reminds me of a gigantic Crystal Beach, except itâs all on three large piers overlooking the ocean. The boardwalk is super long and has all sorts of crazy shops.
KINGâS DOMINION Location: Doswell, VA Distance: 9 hours Opening Date: Now open Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland
BUSCH GARDENS: EUROPE Location: Williamsburg, VA Distance: 10 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: It's Canadaâs Wonderland with more extreme roller coasters, fewer rides, and a lot more shops & restaurants.
FREESTYLE MUSIC PARK Location: Myrtle Beach, SC Distance: 14 hours Opening date: Memorial Day weekend New for 2009: The park name for one - this used to be the Hard Rock Park last year. They've added a new "Kids In America" area with four new kiddie rides. Similar to: Universal's Islands Of Adventure but all music themed.
CEDAR POINT Location: Sandusky, OH Distance: 4 hours Opening date: May 16th Similar to: Unique with 17 roller coasters.
KINGâS ISLAND Location: King's Island, OH Distance: 6.5 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: Diamondback - a 5,282-foot long steel hyper roller coaster. It'll be a nice long ride, lasting over three minutes and going down ten drops! I'm already planning a trip to go ride this later this month. Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland with bigger roller coasters.
BEECH BEND Location: Bowling Green, KY Distance: 10.5 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: Fantasy Island.
HOLIDAY WORLD Location: Santa Claus, IN Distance: 10 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: Pilgrims Plunge - at 165-feet, this will be the world's tallest water ride. Check out the animation for the ride here to see the very different lift. And don't expect this to be short - it'll go for over 2-1/2 minutes! Similar to: Darien Lake, but geared more to young kids.
DOLLYWOOD Location: Pigeon Forge, TN Distance: 11 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: SkyZip - an hour-long, five-zipline experience (with ziplines ranging from 100 to almost 1000-feet). The upcharge attraction also includes a 100-foot long swinging bridge. This will be in place of the previously announced Adventure Mountain (which is fine with me - this sounds way more exciting)! Similar to: Unique. Stores and restaurants outnumber rides here, but the rides are all good.
INDIANA BEACH Location: Monticello, IN Distance: 8.5 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: What Crystal Beach used to be.
MPUS Location: Wisconsin Dells, WI Distance: 12 hours Opening date: Now open New in 2009: The Almighty Hermes, a SkyCoaster ride. Similar to: Unique. Itâs an amusement park made up of nine long wooden go-cart tracks, seven roller coasters, and a gigantic indoor and outdoor waterpark. The entire town of Wisconsin Dells is a giant version of Clifton Hill in Niagara Falls. Nearby, the Timber Falls Adventure Park has an amazing wooden roller coaster called Hellcat (previously called Avalanche). Thereâs also a puzzle-like adventure down the road called Wizardâs Quest which is definitely worth checking out.
SYLVAN BEACH AMUSEMENT PARK Location: Sylvan Beach, NY Distance: 3 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: A smaller version of what Crystal Beach was.
THE GREAT ESCAPE Location: Lake George, NY Distance: 5 hours Opening date: May 9th New for 2009: Sasquatch - a drop ride with two 19-story towers. Similar to: Fantasy Island. This is where the Crystal Beach Comet now is. Itâs been modified a little, but itâs still a good ride.
MAGIC FOREST Location: Lake George, NY Distance: 5 hours Opening date: May 16th Similar to: Fantasy Island with all kiddie rides.
NORTH POLE / SANTAâS WORKSHOP Location: North Pole, NY (near Lake Placid) Distance: 6.5 hours Opening date: June 27th Similar to: Unique. An amusement park for young kids themed to Santa Claus & his reindeer.
CONEY ISLAND CYCLONE Location: Coney Island, NY Distance: 7 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: Unique. The Astroland Park this was next to is now gone. The Cyclone is all that remains.
DENOâS WONDER WHEEL AMUSEMENT PARK Location: Coney Island, NY Distance: 7 hours Opening date: Now open Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island. Itâs within walking distance of the Cyclone roller coaster and has the world famous Wonder Wheel, a giant ferris wheel with some cars that travel on tracks and swing into and out of the wheel structure!
Pennsylvania is home to a bunch of old fashioned, family owned amusement parks. I'll be spending a lot of time in Pennsylvania this summer!
KNOEBELS Location: Elysburg, PA Distance: 4.5 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: Flying Turns - the most anticipated ride of 2007 & 2008 has now become the most anticipated ride of 2009. It's a prototype and the park wants to make sure it's perfect before opening it. The park is hoping to open the ride sometime this summer, but can't guarantee that (see their explanation here). A new kiddie ride will also open this year - Goin' Buggy. Gone from the park is the kiddie High Speed Thrill Coaster, but it'll be replaced by a similar coaster this year. Similar to: Unique and highly recommended for all ages! Free parking, free admission, very reasonable prices, some of the best wooden roller coasters in the country, and a gigantic variety of rides for kiddies & adults!
WALDAMEER PARK Location: Erie, PA Distance: 2 hours Opening date: May 9th New for 2009: Mega Disk'O. You know this is a good ride when two parks so close together get one! I can't wait to try both of them to see who runs theirs better (and by better I mean more insane - I want ludicrous speed)! Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island
CONNEAUT LAKE PARK Location: Conneaut Lake, PA Distance: 2.5 hours Opening date: May 22nd. These are the rides scheduled to be open: Paratrooper, Flying Scooter, Tilt-A-Whirl, Tumblebug, Skydiver, the Carousel, and the Kiddieland rides. Other rides will open later in the season and the Blue Streak roller coaster will open again in 2010. New for 2009: Skydiver. Similar to: A smaller version of what Crystal Beach used to be. Note: A few scenes in the upcoming movie The Road were filmed at this park.
KENNYWOOD Location: West Mifflin, PA Distance: 4 hours Opening date: May 2nd Returning for 2009: Bayern Kurve. After leaving the park in 2004, guests have been asking for it to be returned. Kennywood listened and brought it back this year! It's kind of like a tilted roller coaster that just goes around a very tight circle at a very fast speed. Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland Note: Even though the recent Adventureland movie is loosely based on Long Island's Adventureland, it was filmed mostly at Kennywood.
DELGROSSOâS PARK Location: Tipton, PA Distance: 4 hours Opening date: May 9th New for 2009: Pharaoh's Fury (a Pirate ride), Yo-Yo, and kiddie ride Dizzy Dragons. Similar to: A small Fantasy Island.
LAKEMONT PARK Location: Altoona, PA Distance: 4.5 hours Opening date: May 16th Similar to: Fantasy Island. Remember Roseland in Canandaigua? This is where the Roseland Skyliner wooden roller coaster now is. This is also the home of the world's oldest roller coaster, Leap-The-Dips.
IDLEWILD PARK Location: Ligonier, PA Distance: 4.5 hours Opening date: May 21st Similar to: Fantasy Island. A unique feature of this park - it features Mister Rogers' Neighborhood of Make Believe, a life-size trolley ride through Mr. Rogers' world.
HERSHEYPARK Location: Hershey, PA Distance: 5.5 hours Opening date: Now open New for 2009: The Boardwalk - The SEAquel will include The Shore (a wave pool) & Intercoastal Waterway Boardwalk (a 1300 foot long lazy river). Both are scheduled to open May 23rd. The picture is from March 27th. Click on the image to see an update. Similar to: Canadaâs Wonderland
DORNEY PARK Location: Allentown, PA Distance: 5.5 hours Opening date: May 2nd New for 2009: A new name for their 2008 coaster - VooDoo will be renamed Possessed. The Laser roller coaster has been removed. Similar to: Darien Lake
SESAME PLACE Location: Langhorne, PA Distance: 6.5 hours Opening date: May 2nd New for 2009: The Count's Splash Castle - a multi-level waterplay castle (see the website for pictures). Similar to: Unique. Itâs an entire amusement park for kids based on Sesame Street!
My favorite time of year is here - the amusement parks are opening!!!
I've put together a list of the best parks to visit with the official park links and what new rides they're getting this year.
This is not a definitive list of all amusement parks - just the bigger ones or the ones I feel are worth visiting. If you think I missed something or you find a broken link, please e-mail me.
In the upcoming days I'll post the Pennsylvania parks, the eastern New York ones, and some others further off.
Always check the parkâs calendar before visiting, as each one starts and ends their daily schedules in a different way. All distances listed are from Buffalo...
DARIEN LAKE Location: Darien Center, NY Distance: 45 minutes Opening date: May 9th New for 2009: Survivor Live - a new show based on the TV series Survivor which audiences members participate in. Scheduled to begin May 23rd.
FANTASY ISLAND Location: Grand Island, NY Distance: 15 minutes Opening date: May 9th New for 2009: Mega Disk'O, the ultimate cross between a roller coaster and a spin ride. To make way for it, Patriot and Nitro have been removed.
MARINELAND Location: Niagara Falls, ON Distance: 30 minutes Opening date: May 16th
MIDWAY PARK Location: Bemus Point, NY Distance: 90 minutes Opening date: May 23rd Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island with all kiddie rides.
ONTARIO PLACE Location: Toronto, ON Distance: 2 hours Opening date: May 16th New for 2009: Wild World of Weather - an interactive attraction simulating earthquakes, twisters, and more. See the website for more info. Similar to: A smaller Fantasy Island with mainly kiddie rides.
SEABREEZE Location: Rochester, NY Distance: 90 minutes Opening date: May 16th Similar to: Fantasy Island
From when I first heard the song last summer until just this weekend, I was convinced Lady GaGa was saying "red wine" in the beginning. It kind of makes sense when you listen to the lyrics and see the video.
But that's not what she's saying.
I started to question this when I noticed three other songs begin the same way...
When It Was Good - Flipsyde
Takin' Back My Love - Enrique Iglesias & Ciara
American Cowboy - Jada
What's being said in the beginning of each song is "RedOne" (one of the song's producers). It's kind of like a little presentation of who's song you're about to hear with a mention of the producers and singers.
And RedOne is suddenly all over the place. So expect to hear this more often over the next few months.
If you're Canadian, you already know who they are. Most Americans (especially those who don't live close to the border) are way late on Hedley, just getting introduced to this incredible band.
It probably doesn't help that Canadian Idol isn't shown on cable the further from the border you live. Jacob came in 3rd during the second season of the show. And true to the usual pattern of Idol shows, Jacob and Hedley have done better on the charts than the winner of that season (Kalan Porter).
Hedley's Dave Rosin and Jacob Hoggard stopped by the studio Monday to play a couple songs from their latest CD "Famous Last Words" (Old School and Never Too Late).
See the acoustic performance of Old School on the Star 102.5 website (on the right side of the page in the video box).
Also check out the video for their first big 2005 hit On My Own.
When Susan Boyle's appearance on Britain's Got Talent became an internet sensation last week, I figured the 3rd series of the show was over before it barely even begun. But now another star has emerged.
This time, it's 12-year old Shaheen Jafargholi. Even though the audience loved him right from the start, Simon cut him off quickly and asked him to sing something else. The kid then stunned everyone by switching gears instantly and doing even better than before.
Check it out here (the performance begins at 1:12).
Apophis is a nice little asteroid the size of a 25-story building that may be stopping by to visit us.
Or it may just pass by - a very close pass by. As of now, it looks like its trajectory will take it closer than some orbiting communication satellites. That's like a cosmic version of a drive-through window when you think about it.
A Discovery.com article reports the chances are 1 in 45,000 that it will hit Earth. If it doesn't, it'll get a second chance in 2036 when it comes near again.
Read the entire article here. And then it might be a good idea to start practicing asteroid defense procedures. We've got about 20 years to become experts at this, so good luck!
Saturday night, me and Shannon Steele (from Kiss 98.5) went and did some ghosthunting at the Iron Island Museum in Lovejoy. The SciFi Channel's Ghosthunters found stuff, so we were hoping we would too!
I would love to believe in ghosts, butI need rock solid proof myself before I'll ever consider that. So I went in with the attitude of disproving everything that happened. I was successful occasionally, but not with everything.
My plan was to go through the place without any technical equipment. I wanted to experience this with just my own senses. But eventually, I did bring out a digital camera to take some pictures for the blog here. And the others did have audio equipment (which turned out to be a good thing I guess).
Here's a rundown of some of the stuff that happened (with all times being approximate - I didn't have a watch)...
7:45pm: We showed up and met with Jen (our guide for the night) and Linda (the president of the Iron Island Preservation Society). Jen previously didn't believe in any of this until she started spending some time in the museum. Her opinions have now changed and she's a definite believer.
10:00pm: After an initial tour and some supper (while watching the Iron Island episode of Ghosthunters), we began in the Kids Room of the museum (I turned the lights on just for this picture - the lighting makes it look like the table was hovering, but trust me, it wasn't). This is my favorite room as this is where all the old Crystal Beach memorabilia is (the museum is a cool place all on its own, even without the haunted stuff). Armed with a KII EMF meter (measures electromagnetic fields that go along with paranormal experiences) and an audio recorder (for the EVP's - electronic voice phenomena) , we waited for the ghosts to contact us. The KII meter did move around a bit, spiking occasionally. The original thought was Shannon's phone camera caused it. But why would it cause the meter to go crazy only sporadically? It should have made it do that consistently. But we stopped debating that when something real did happen. We saw a light go out in another part of the building. Sitting in a dark room waiting for something to happen and then having something actually happen was freaky. Thinking about it at the time, I tried to reason that maybe it was from outside like a car going by or something like that. Just this morning, Linda e-mailed me this...
I checked the cameras and at 10:10 PM the light in the back of the building next door went off (probably on a timer) and it was at 10:12 that we got up and looked around. That had to be it. It was very scary at the time, wish it would have been something else, but we have to try to debunk everything before we put it out there because if we put one thing out there wrong people would think everything is fixed.
That is an awesome attitude she has! I do believe Linda is completely honest about everything that happens at the museum. So that was disproved (which is good, because I didn't think it was anything special), but the audio recording from that room was strange. After we left the room, we listened to it. There was a definite voice on the recording that wasn't there when we were in the room. It sounded like a kid saying one quick thing in between something we were saying. Hmmm. I'm not a fan of audio recordings of ghosts because I think we should also be able to hear them ourselves while there. And there were cell phones around - maybe that had an effect on the recording somehow. Plus, I didn't want to rely on technical stuff - that can be faulty. But whatever, there was something there.
1:00am: Linda went home to sleep - she didn't plan on spending the entire night and had actually stayed a lot later than she thought she would. As she left and goodbyes were being said, I was alone in the house briefly so I went wandering around. I have to admit, I was spooked just being alone in an unknown place and going through it in the dark. This is the hallway I walked all the way down to get to the far room. Sorry for the blurry picture - in addition to not being familiar with this camera, I was holding it with just one hand (the other was holding the flashlight). Nothing crazy happened though. But this was definitely something to remember!
3:30am: Me, Jen, and Shannon were talking while wandering through the place, recording as we walked. When played back, there was something making noise over me and Jen. I even commented on it in the recording, but I thought it was far away. In the recording, it sounded like it was right there next to us. I'd like to say it was because of the strange acoustics where we were at the time, but I'm not sure. Sadly, I don't have the audio recordings to upload here (again, I didn't bring my own equipment). Next time though, I'll bring recording equipment.
5:00am: We went into the basement. Basements can be spooky to begin with. This one especially because there's dirt and stone walls. We did hear a noise from upstairs that stopped us all at one point, but we decided to ignore it and continue on (old houses like this will make noise). We came upon a wall that was in the process of being dug through. Jen said psychics didn't like this area. So naturally, I peeked my head in. Then I reached as far as I could with the flashlight while Shannon video recorded what was in there. At that moment, there was a very loud door slam (or something) from upstairs and Shannon's camera shut off. The camera didn't run out or have the battery die - it just turned off for no reason (it had done it a couple other times while in the basement too). We immediately went upstairs just to be safe (the noise could have been anything, but I'm pretty sure it was from inside the house). No one was there though. And we couldn't find the noise. That's strange. Stranger still - the camera resumed working once upstairs.
5:45am: We went into the Altar Room to investigate. While in there, there was a very loud slam coming from the room next to ours. There was no way anyone was in that room. I immediately checked just to be sure. Nope, nothing. Okay, I really can't explain that.
At 7:00am, we called it a night. Shannon had Kiss music to schedule and I had to drive to Rochester to visit my parents for Easter. Going in, I was just expecting to have fun. We were definitely successful in that (this was one of those crazy things t
hat I'll remember for the rest of my life).
But I do think we had some stuff happen that just can't be explained too...
--- The loud noise and camera stopping in the basement. Sure, that could be someone playing games upstairs. But I really don't think anyone was there and it was too loud of a noise to have just been something random. And how could we explain Shannon's camera stopping exactly then too?!
--- The loud noise from the room next to us while in the Altar Room. That was weird and couldn't have been anyone. I had checked immediately.
--- The unknown voices / sounds on the recordings. That never happens to me when I record stuff at work or home (for station broadcasts). So why here?
Overall, well worth the visit. We had an awesome time and I would highly recommend this! I can't definitely say this place (or anywhere for that matter) is haunted. But if there is a place that could be haunted, this would definitely be it! It even has that feel to it. Hopefully, something more will happen the next time I go (and there will absolutely be a next time).
One thing I'll definitely do next time - take better pictures! I was so focused on just being there, I didn't even get a picture of Linda and Jen (sorry about that)!
Shannon says she'll be uploading her audio soon. I'll put a link here for that when she does.
You can book your own overnights at the museum at the Iron Island Museum website. If you go and experience anything out of the ordinary, please let me know!
It's now available online. And even better - it's FREE!
Get the full 4:10 version of the Shiny Toy Guns remake that's used in the 2010 Lincoln MKZ car commercial here (you'll have to unzip it after downloading it). Once there, click "download it now" to get it.
You can also download the song free at the Shiny Toy Guns website too! Hurry though, I don't know how long it will be available as a free download...
Pete Byrne (half of the original group) continues on as Naked Eyes.
He'll be releasing a new album this August. You can hear "Piccadilly" (the title single from the new album) here. It's actually a video, but it's just of a turntable playing the record, so not worth even calling it a video.
It doesn't have the excitement of the classic Naked Eyes 80's hits - Rob Fisher is definitely missed. But it is a good song and I know I'll be buying the album when it comes out.
The video is actually an extended commercial for Samsung's new UltraTouch phone. It's such a clever commercial, I sat through the entire thing twice. Proof that when commercials are fun & interesting, people will pay attention to the message.
And it's the second Samsung commercial this month that I've loved. Someone knows what they're doing there!