Another Six Flags down...

Wednesday, April 12, 2006 8:40 PM
Six Flags will not continue the lease of Six Flags Waterworld Sacramento after this season. The park will be turned back over to the Cal. Expo to do whatever they want with the park. http://www.amusementbusiness.com/amusementbusiness/industrynews/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1002343364
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Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:38 PM
Ah. Now if Waterworld were to be gone, there'd only be Sunsplash in Roseville nearby to serve Sacarmento's need for water thrills. I bet Cal Expo knows this anyways, so they'll keep the park. . . hopefully. Waterworld wasn't all that clean, but it had lots of room to move around and rides spread out. Sunsplash has three Proslide bowl rides (in succession :1 man, 2 man, 4 man) and a cramped space. But they also have a Master Blaster; one of those would make Waterworld great as well. *** Edited 4/13/2006 2:39:47 AM UTC by sr548***
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Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:42 PM
I found these paragraphs more interesting...


"In other company news, Six Flags has agreed to pay Daniel Snyder $10.4 million to reimburse him for expenses he incurred in his bid to gain control of the company last fall, including a $5 million signing bonus for CEO Mark Shapiro, the Washington Post reports.

Red Zone Llc., the investment vehicle for Snyder's 11.7% stake in Six Flags, spent $11.6 million to persuade shareholders to turn the theme park operator over to Snyder and his team, according to an SEC filing. Snyder, now chairman, had asked to be reimbursed for $11.4 million."


At least you can all take comfort in knowing your $15 parking fees are going to a good cause. Be sure and rent your Q-bots too-- or else Danny Boy will soon be standing in line for government surplus cheese.

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006 11:42 PM
Pssh. . and?
I am pretty content knowing that the extra $5 I spend for parking and getting my Q-bot will go to a CEO's bonus. Why? Parks are reporting such dramatic turnarounds not even Cedar Fair could do with Geauga Lake.

*** Edited 4/13/2006 4:35:18 AM UTC by Antuan***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 12:32 AM
I personally believe that most CEO's and the like are paid WAY too much.

Meanwhile those poor "front line" employees are making jack, and they are the ones who interact with the guests who are spending the money. But, that just the way the world is I suppose.

Oh and, I never heard of Six Flags Waterworld Sacramento.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 12:51 AM
I'm surprised he only wants 11.4 back.

I'd have demanded the other .2 as well. :)

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 1:32 AM
^ ...and if the Board was in YOUR hip-pocket, I'd be willing to bet you'd get the other .2M as well, Daniel Gonchar...LOL!


In other news....What I find virtually inarguable in dex's post: those people dealing with the guests DIRECTLY, you need to pay them....really. Like you would someone who teaches your children.....wait, bad expmple... ;)

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 2:25 AM
Didn't they tell their employees not to expect raises because SF was too far in debt? Incredibly ironic that Shapiro got a 5 million bonus and then tells the rank and file at SFKK there is no money for raises. Looks like SF was taken over by the typical board using SF corporate as a personal piggy bank, not suprising I suppose.

In regards to Waterworld, hopefully another operator can come in and buy the property, like Cedar Fair extending their Soak City franchise in the state.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 6:25 AM
As far as I can tell, Shapiro earns his money. Guys like him work 24 hours a day. *** Edited 4/13/2006 10:25:51 AM UTC by MrX***
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Thursday, April 13, 2006 8:22 AM
Bottom line is that *nobody* is worth that much to do *any* job. The world is full of overpaid administrators and someone or something as successfully convinced society that this is what you have to pay to get a competent employee. It's a bunch of B.S. whether it is Six Flags price gouging or a hospital cutting back on needed services to support the inflated salary of the director.
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Thursday, April 13, 2006 8:24 AM

DBJ said:
Incredibly ironic that Shapiro got a 5 million bonus and then tells the rank and file at SFKK there is no money for raises.

I'm not doubting you here, but I wouldn't mind a direct quote from you or someone else.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 8:31 AM

millrace said:
It's a bunch of B.S. whether it is Six Flags price gouging or a hospital cutting back on needed services to support the inflated salary of the director.

Luckily, as consumers, we have a choice (in general) as to which hospitals we go to and which amusement parks we go to.

In another point, the phrase "price gouging" is a pretty loaded piece of terminology. One simple definition I've found is

"pricing above the market when no alternative retailer is available"

so if you'd like to subscribe to this pretty simple definition, I'd like to know how Six Flags is engaging in price gouging, because I don't see it. *** Edited 4/13/2006 12:31:22 PM UTC by matt.***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 9:35 AM
Perhaps it boils down to a moral issue. It affects my conscience to know that somebody is getting huge sums of money while the average employee is getting paid a pittance and people are charged prices that are unnecessarily high.

There are various statistics about CEO pay vs the pay of average workers. For example in 1982, The average wage of a CEO was 42 times that of the average worker. In 2002, the CEO's pay was 282 times higher. Not illegal, nor should it be, but is it right? Some companies don't think so. The ever popular Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap company has a policy where the top executives salaries are capped at 5 times that of their lowest paid worker.

I don't mind paying a high price when I know the money goes to a fair, equitable, and moral company. But I balk at giving my money to an organization that continues to inflate the salaries of the few at the top (who are not worth it, I don't care how "great" they are supposed to be". I need that $15 parking fee more than Synder needs a $5 million bonus.
*** Edited 4/13/2006 1:58:48 PM UTC by millrace***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 10:06 AM
I can't believe anyone who can't see price gouging at the parks either a.) doesn't actually eat or shop there, or b.) is a viral marketer working for Six Flags trying to apply spin.

That's not to say that Six Flags is unique in price gouging on food - almost all of the parks do it, but that doesn't excuse the fact that it is happening and there are negatives and positves that come with that policy.

There is now word that SF will use park wide pricing on food, so every park will have the same prices! Ouch. That seems like a poor decision.

As far as the new board being worth their salaries, the jury is pretty much still out. A lot of the improvements made so far actually could have been planned by any enthusiast. I'm not seeing any creative vision for the chain. In fact, the shelving of the hotel deal at GA points to a lack of long term vision.

However, I will remain slightly optmisitic that perhaps SF is seeking better financial terms for any kind of hotel properties in the future and that their desire to sell "excess land" around some of the parks doesn't severly limit growth potential.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 10:34 AM

Perhaps it boils down to a moral issue. It affects my conscience to know that somebody is getting huge sums of money while the average employee is getting paid a pittance and people are charged prices that are unnecessarily high.

If you really want to follow through with this thinking, then you have to start voting with your dollars. You also have to recognize that this means you'll be paying more for your stuff.

For example, we no longer shop at Sam's Club, and now shop at Costco instead. Costco is farther, their annual membership fees are more expensive, and their prices are generally higher than Sam's when the two carry identical merchandise. Costco also tends to carry slightly higher quality...and hence more expensive...merchandise when their offerings are not identical.

Why did we switch? Costco treats its rank-and-file much MUCH better than Sam's. Better pay. No union-busting. No cheating on overtime/lunch/etc. pay. Health benefits.

Of course, it turns out that all those nice things cost money, and that's why Costco is more expensive than Sam's. We are happy to pay it though, for many of the same reasons you suggest above.

Even if a CEO is paid 242 times the average, in a company of 10,000 employees, cutting the CEO's pay in half only gives each employee, a bit less than a 5% raise. So, if you want employees to be treated fairly, it's gonna cost you at the checkout line---even if the CEO isn't a rapacious bastard.

[That is, if my math is correct: one CEO "unit" equals 242 employee "units". Cutting the CEO by half could double the salary for those 242 employees. But, there are 10,000 employees, and 2*242/10000 is about 5%.]

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 10:37 AM

I can't believe anyone who can't see price gouging at the parks

You are assuming people have no choice but to go to amusement parks. As matt pointed out, it only applies when no alternative is available. There are plenty of alternatives to a day at an amusement park.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 10:48 AM
And I'm not even sure what we're referring to as far as price gouging at parks.

Ticket price? Don't go at all, or go to a cheaper park (they're out there.)

Parking price? Park somewhere else and walk. Take public transportation. Carpool with another family. Go to a park with lower parking. Some parks have free parking. (Ok, no parks really have free parking just like no parks really have free soda but that's another conversation.)

Food price? Bring your own food. Leave the park and eat somewhere else and come back. If you can't do that go to a park that will let you do that.

SF is going to charge what people are willing to pay. This is in no way related to gas station owners say, hiking up prices after a natural disaster to take advantage of people. Every single dollar you give to SF is 100% choice as far as I can see.

And I also go to Costco, Brian, and really happy to do it. Free samples baby! *** Edited 4/13/2006 2:49:59 PM UTC by matt.*** *** Edited 4/13/2006 2:51:25 PM UTC by matt.*** *** Edited 4/13/2006 2:54:44 PM UTC by matt.***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 11:39 AM

matt. said:
Ticket price? Don't go at all, or go to a cheaper park (they're out there.)

I suppose that would work if you lived in an area of the country where you actually had choices. What am I supposed to do in North Texas if I don't like SF price gouging? Drive to San Antonio? SF is there too. Drive to Oklahoma City? Same ownership.

Amarillo and Lubbock are about 6 hours away, and although I like the two parks there, they aren't going to give me the coaster fix I need.

Not everyone has the choices you apparently have.

*** Edited 4/13/2006 3:39:41 PM UTC by Jeffrey Seifert***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 12:45 PM
You don't "need" a coaster fix. You "want" a coaster fix.

This is not price gouging. The word is thrown around much too casually. This is actually a beautiful illustration of supply vs. demand. You want coasters, and unfortunately for you and other people near you, the major supplier in your area is Six Flags.

This isn't gouging, this is charging what people are (in theory) willing to pay. And as long as you're not getting your coaster thrills from the competition, or not going to any amusement parks at all, this is what Six Flags is going to do.

Its a business people, not a charity. If you want what SF has to offer, you gotta pay for it.
*** Edited 4/13/2006 4:51:00 PM UTC by matt.***

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Thursday, April 13, 2006 1:29 PM

matt. said:
Its a business people, not a charity. If you want what SF has to offer, you gotta pay for it.

A $10.4 million reimbursement is nothing more than corporate greed. I don't expect them to give away their product, but I certainly have a right as both a consumer and a stockholder to complain about handing $10.4 million over to Snyder.

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