Bells....out of time

Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:02 PM
The deadline for Bell's amusement park to vacate the fair grounds has now ended. The park had to leave behind 5 million in various park items.

Read the story and watch the video here.....

http://www.kotv.com/news/topstory/?id=130161

Very sad. At least the park has plans to reopen the park at another location.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:21 PM
What was left behind? The story wasn't clear.

The video showed what looked like pieces of Zingo. And the great sign appeared to have been toppled.

Terrible situation. If I had any plans to visit the fair, I would cancel them. *** Edited 6/26/2007 6:22:59 PM UTC by millrace***

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:37 PM
Bell's got screwed, and the people of Tulsa were taken for a ride. The Fair Board, the entire bunch of 'em, ought to end up in the cell vacated by Paris...
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:43 PM
It looked like a water slide in one of the pictures. I never knew that bells had water slides.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:46 PM
It's a bit surprising that Bell's wasn't able to get everything out by the deadline, but I'm wondering if it was stuff they didn't really want and will probably claim as a loss. I wish the article had specified what had to be left behind. I'm hoping that sign was saved- that would be a terrible loss.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:50 PM
The web site is still up and running as well...

http://www.teamled.com/bells/index.htm

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 3:51 PM
I know I've said it before, but I just don't understand why a single lawsuit was not filed in this entire situation.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 4:26 PM
That baffles my mind. If I was Robby Bell, I would have filed a lawsuit long before it was time to pack up and leave. It's not like things seem a little shady- this sounds like a downright sour deal made behind closed doors and motivated by a lot of money and politics. I can't imagine letting that go without some kind of response.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 4:29 PM
^I've said the exact same thing from the outset, Jeff. The "Fair" offer of a few thousand dollars ($10K, IIRC), at the LAST minute, to try and get Bell's off their site, reeked of the Board trying to suggest that they were "helping" the Bells to vacate their precious space...as if to mitigate the award in the *eventual* settlement.

If no lawsuit is filed before the appropriate deadline passes, I will be *shocked*...and frankly, disappointed.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 4:57 PM
^What would they file a lawsuit for? They leased land from the fair, and the fair decided they wanted it back. There's nothing illegal about it at all, but mind you everything behind the situation went beyond unethical.

Everything completely important made it out (I.E. - the log flume and Zingo) but I'll miss the Chili Peppers, Phantasmagoria, and the old car ride. Was the sign really toppled though? They said before that they wanted to set it up at the new park.

However tragic this situation is, you must admit that Bell's is set to win out, if they can get investors, and the fair will lose all around. The fair will get a huge drop in attendance, plus a load of bickering for years to come, not to mention a huge loss in lease money and everything else Bell's brought.
Bell's on the other hand, will probably be able to start a whole new park, and Robbie will be allowed to set it up just the way he wants, with all his old classic rides and a mess of new ones as well. So I guess it'll all turn out - eventually.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 5:54 PM
It was the implied relationship between someone on the fair board (or maybe the executive, I don't remember) and possible alternate concessionaires that I found suspicious. How could everyone be OK with that?
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 6:09 PM
^Ah yes, you mean things like the $5,000 'campaign grant' given by the Murphy Bros. (owners of Big Splash and almost all the fair rides) to county commissioner Miller. That same Miller happened to be not only the one who started the idea of kicking Bell's out, but also the one the granted the Murphy Bros. unprecedented free reign over the Tulsa State Fair with a ten-year, no-bid contract to be the main midway operator. They also get to use most of Bell's old land. Coincidence? Well, they don't exactly have much to go on for a lawsuit. Don't get me started on the Expo manager...

Still, when the fair gets screwed over in the coming couple of years, maybe the records will be reviewed and justice will be served.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 9:25 PM
This video is different from the one linked above and it shows the Bells sign laying on the ground.

http://www.kotv.com/e-clips/?id=6905 *** Edited 6/27/2007 1:25:22 AM UTC by millrace***

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 10:43 PM
The whole thing reeks of b.s. The park was negotiating to extend the lease, and all of a sudden the park is ordered to vacate the premises? For the fair board to do a complete 180 clearly implies that something had gone awry.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2007 11:39 PM
Remember the Wildcat accident in 1997? The lawyer who represented the families against Bells was Mr. Clark Brewster.

This is the same Clark Brewster that sits on the fair board.

I have personally heard Clark's partner DeAngelis say very negative things about the Bell family. I have never met or spoke with Clark, but if her opinion is a reflection of Clark's, then I wouldn't doubt he wasn't out to "get" the Bell family.

Lawsuits cost money...something the Bell family just doesn't have. They could have borrowed money for new rides (new coaster, etc.) while they had a viable business, but now there isn't a "source" of revenue.

Also, I don't think $5 Million was left behind...it was mentioned elsewhere that it would take about 5 Million to get things back up and running the way they would like.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007 12:10 AM
^^^ Damn, so there it was, but maybe they got it moved off at the last minute. They did say they wanted to take the sign with them, but if they couldn't save it I'm sure we'll see a new one that will resemble it.

^ I think you have it switched around, it would take much more than $5 million to get things back up and running, like say, $30-$40 million. $5 million hardly covers the water slides, log flume facade, buildings, arcade, and equipment that was stolen from Bell's.

I hope they just leave big piles of crap all over the site for the fair to have to clean up.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007 9:06 AM
Maybe Bell had to make a decision- spend time and money on a lawsuit, or spend time and money getting the park rebuilt. I'm sure I would pick the latter, as a lawsuit is never a guarantee. Just trying to think of reasons why a lawsuit was never filed when one should have been.
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Wednesday, June 27, 2007 10:13 PM
Maybe after the dust settles, a lawsuite will come about.
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Wednesday, June 27, 2007 11:32 PM
^I'm telling you guys, there's absolutely nothing to sue over. Now, the taxpayers should definitely start something against the fair, but there's nothing Bell's can do.

Bell's leased their land, and the land owners decided they didn't want to lease anymore, it's that simple. It might have been 'wrong' but it wasn't illegal.

Still though, the tax payers will pay well over half a million just to clear out Bell's and build the parking lot. From there, there will be a loss of over $150,000 a year from the fair's income, a massive loss in tourism and interest in the area, and the drop in fair attendance. Thus, there should be some kind of protest, just for the sake of the poor taxpayers.

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Thursday, June 28, 2007 9:17 AM
If there's no grounds for a lawsuit, then there are at least grounds for some kind of investigation.
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