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Liberty Adventures: Discovering Thorpe Park

CHERTSEY, England - The "Samurai" is one of Thorpe Park's attractions for thrill seekers.  Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park on April 24, 2011.  The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England - The "Samurai" is one of Thorpe Park's attractions for thrill seekers. Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park on April 24, 2011. The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England - Visitors walk through Thorpe Park as the rollercoaster, "Colossus," zooms by overhead on April 24, 2011.  Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park. The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England - Visitors walk through Thorpe Park as the rollercoaster, "Colossus," zooms by overhead on April 24, 2011. Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park. The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England - "Neptune's Beach" is one of the many family friendly attractions offered at Thorpe Park.  Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park on April 24, 2011.  The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England - "Neptune's Beach" is one of the many family friendly attractions offered at Thorpe Park. Liberty Warriors in an RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip visited Thorpe Park on April 24, 2011. The RAF Lakenheath ITT offers trips and guided walking tours to destinations throughout the United Kingdom. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Cory Payne)

CHERTSEY, England -- Being stationed in England, away from comforts and familiarity of home, Airmen and their families are constantly on the look-out for activities to fill their weekends with fun. With blue skies and sunny weather, what better way to enjoy the weekend than to take a trip to a theme park for a great American favorite: roller coasters.
 
On April 24, 2011, Liberty Warriors went on a RAF Lakenheath Information, Tickets and Travel trip to Thorpe Park, just shy of 100 miles away from RAF Lakenheath. The park offers a variety of rides and attractions that are similar to rides from theme parks in the U.S.

"Logger's Leap was my favorite ride because it reminded me of Splash Mountain at Disneyland," said Tara Ponte, 48th Contracting Squadron purchasing agent and trip leader.

Aside from the typical theme park attractions like Logger's Leap, merry-go-round and a train for the younger children, Thorpe Park has roller coasters that were a favorite of the adults. The roller coasters are Stealth, which goes 0 to 80 mph in 2.3 seconds, SAW, which has a 100 foot vertical drop at a 100-degree angle, Colossus, which has 10 loops and Nemesis Inferno, which is themed around a volcano.

"I would have to say the Nemesis Inferno was my favorite," said Airman 1st Class Sean Dunn, 48th Aerospace Medical Squadron Bioenvironmental Engineering technician.

Without the assistance of RAF Lakenheath ITT, the cost of driving and ticket purchases for Thorpe Park could cost more than $150, but for an all-inclusive trip for transportation and ticket, Liberty Warriors can go for about $66.

"ITT is a very useful resource for trips and vacations," said Airman Dunn. "ITT's most useful aspect is how easy it makes to organize trips with friends. There's no need to coordinate travel or hotels."

In addition to Thorpe Park, the RAF Lakenheath ITT also hosts trips to many locations throughout the U.K. and also coordinates for tours out of country.

"I've used ITT a few times and enjoyed trips that I probably wouldn't have gone on without them," said Airman Dunn.

At the end of the day, sunburnt and tired, the group climbed on the bus to head back to RAF Lakenheath.

"The event was successful; everything went smoothly and everyone seemed to have a lot of fun," said Mrs. Ponte.

The next scheduled RAF Lakenheath ITT trip to Thorpe Park is May 30. For more information about travel opportunities, call the RAF Lakenheath ITT office at 01638 522 979 or DSN 226-2979 or visit their website at www.ittlakenheath.com.

(Editor's note: No federal endorsement is intended or implied concerning places of interest covered by the 48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs.)