Cedar Fair FUNforward Presentation

Sunday, January 29, 2012 11:00 AM
OhioStater's avatar

Sounds like someone is ready to "occupy Cedar Fair".

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Sunday, January 29, 2012 2:12 PM

While they push the lady with the walker out of the way, so you can get the gate first.

Is this hypothetical "lady with the walker" conservative or liberal? It would affect how much I'd be willing to pay! :)

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Monday, January 30, 2012 4:17 AM

You guys are far too kind. At King's Island next year, I'm hoping all the normal peasants are herded to Son of Beast, where they are each to take turns using a single brown potato sack to ride. Meanwhile, the upcharge wealthy will have access to the rest of the park and be treated to fine wines and complimentary massages. This luxury bliss will be broadcasted on large screens in the Son of Beast peasant area.

In all seriousness, the new advertisement looks promising. It felt refreshing seeing CP ads that didn't make me feel embarrassed for obsessing over the place. I was most happy with seeing "dynamic pricing" though. Let's hope that doesn't only apply to admission, but to food, drinks, resorts, and other entertainment as well.

Also, I hope to see more in-park promotions and value options. I'd think specials at certain stands like "Hamburger, fries, and a soda: $7" would do wonders in spurring food sales. I went to Kennywood Potato Patch with the intention of only buying fries over the summer. I left with a basket of fries and chicken strips, as it was only a bit more. My friend, trying to hold off eating until after park close, saw value and caved as well.

Last edited by Jeph, Monday, January 30, 2012 4:48 AM
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Monday, January 30, 2012 4:57 AM

Brian Noble said:
It's called "Discovery Cove." About $300 per person in season for a day.

Or less than $30 more than what that Sea World ticket alone would cost you if you catch it at the right time of year. :)

In all seriousness, I am very interested in how the "premium" options go over at CP. A majority of the non-enthusiasts I know already launch into an exaggerated bitch and moan session about how much they gouge for everything at even a mere mention of the park. Many have cut back or eliminated trips because of it. Maybe the people I speak to are just particularly cranky, but I believe it's more indicative of the region as a whole. I suppose time will tell.


And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun

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Monday, January 30, 2012 9:03 AM
birdhombre's avatar

Jeph said:
It felt refreshing seeing CP ads that didn't make me feel embarrassed for obsessing over the place.

That's an excellent way of putting it!

And as to 'perceived value' and whatnot, I'm not quite sure how to explain this, but I'm interested to see if the parks can get me to open my wallet. Not that I have buckets o' money to spend, but I'm that dreaded leeching single season passholder with no children who prides himself on how little he can spend at the park. Free cups of water abound. But that's because the perception is that the food is crap and a ripoff.

Compare this to Holiday World, where I don't care how much the green beans cost because I *want* to eat them, and the soft drinks being included with the ticket price makes me "feel" like I can spend more on food. At Cedar Point it's always some game between what I feel like eating and how dirty I'll feel for having paid for it.

Except the cheese curds and funnel cake fries. Those are awesome. They just need 2 people working the booth so it doesn't take 5 minutes per order.

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012 12:51 AM
Timber-Rider's avatar

LostKause said:
Bird, are you talking about Timber-Rider's "pushing old ladies with walkers out of the way" post above? It IS hilarious.

I just hope they someday price the poor, stinky people out of being able to even visit their parks. I can't stand having them in my way all of the time. lol

I'm glad you found my post about the old lady entertaining. But, I think you know where I was going with it. Cedar Fair is going to attempt to use this advertising campaign to make themselves look good, while jacking up their prices, and probably charging you premium folks even more to see just how much your willing to pay. And, if a few old ladies with walkers get pushed out of the way in the process, they could care less, as long as the customer who is paying more spends his money.

I worked for a major supermarket chain, and their goal was to try to get almost every customer who walked through their door to spend on average $100.00 by making them think they are getting deals on items, when in reality they would be spending less by not buying those items at all. It's all PR. And who knows, just because they say they are going to change their burgers to beef doesn't really mean they are going to do it at every park, or roll out these ideas to every park. How would the paying customer even know the difference?

Like the bottled water company in Michigan getting fined by the state by selling millions of bottles of tap water. Who is going to check?

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012 1:49 AM
LostKause's avatar

LOL. My ranting has worked. I am now considered a member of the "premium folks"! Awesome!

Please don't take everything I say on CoasterBuzz seriously. Even I sometimes don't know what I'm saying. :)


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Tuesday, January 31, 2012 12:37 PM

Timber-Rider said:
I didn't find anything in that article that was fun forward. Only proves that they are more interested in bringing in more pay per play attractions to boost their income, instead of offering exciting attractions that everyone can enjoy with their regular admission. And, most will probably be the lamest attractions they can find, that people will be willing to pay for..with the lowest cost.

And, you can bet that the whole "we're not using frozen beef" will see menu prices jump a couple bucks just to pay for the advertising. It doesn't mean that the food will be any better. It just means that you will be paying more for the non beef products that probably won't change, suchs as drinks. Like the $9.95 smoothies at Michigan's Adventure.

I also find you fast lane supporters very insulting. I hope that they start charging $100.00 each for you idiots to cut in line. maybe $500.00 so you can park right in front of the gate, where you get the red carpet treatment to the door, where they charge you $50.00 for the photo of you walking across the carpet with people dressed as fairys sprinkling fairy dust at your feet as you walk by. While they push the lady with the walker out of the way, so you can get the gate first. And, the point of all that is, is the parks are listening to what you are saying about what you think is your given right to afford these things, and are going to find new ways to get every cent they can from you. While they continue to care less and less about what their guests want as a whole.

Eventually all this greed will lead to people not being able to afford to go to their parks. Which will generate less income, and less effort to add major attractions that you will still be willing to pay to cut in line for. I know one thing. I don't think they will ever add fast lane to Michigan's Adventure, they said all parks. I don't see it working there.

I didn't find anything in that article to get excited about at all.

I love your posts Timber-Rider....I'm not sure if you completely understand the business aspect of Amusement Parks. You do know that's what they are right?

I promise I'm not trying to be rude here or anything, but this presentation should excite not only investors, but any body to spends money at the parks.

-First off you said "Pay-per-play" attractions. Where does this come from? They're offering "Premium Experiences", stuff that most other SUCCESSFUL chains already offer. These aren't "rides or attractions" but ways that they can get more profit in addition to what people pay to get in. Matt Ouimet has also stated that "Fast Lane" is being designed & initiated not to interfere with a park-goer who didn't purchase the pass's day.

-As for the food....the quality is a big step. You are aware that Ouimet is trying to make it cheaper for everyone right? Sure he raised ticket prices, but if you buy them online, they're cheaper than they were before the raise. This is a plan with all the parks. Maybe we'll see a change in food prices too...for the better. May I just point out also that every park in the chain will see the food changes. You said they might not, but it is blatantly in the presentations.

-As for "Fast Lane" not being added to Michigan's Adventure...where have you been? It was stated in the slides that ALL ELEVEN amusement parks in the chain would be getting them. In addition, it was already stated on Michigan's Adventure's website that they would be getting it. You may find this surprising, but people will pay it to experience it, even at a park that size.

You're always whining about more attractions....the chain is in debt and trying to figure things out, but you want more attractions. Do you realize that these "Premium Experiences" will help out the "new attractions" aspect in the long run?

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012 4:23 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

Timber-Rider said:

Eventually all this greed will lead to people not being able to afford to go to their parks. Which will generate less income, and less effort to add major attractions that you will still be willing to pay to cut in line for. I know one thing. I don't think they will ever add fast lane to Michigan's Adventure, they said all parks. I don't see it working there.

Every time (and I do really mean EVERY) a park increases prices or adds a premium service, this argument is made. I'm not even kidding. People have been predicting the downfall of Disney, Six Flags, Discovery Cove and a million other parks for decades and yet, we still don't see it.

The sad fact for you (and for me since I've never paid for a q-bot and rarely pay for food or parking) is that CF doesn't want you (or me) at their park. Seriously, I probably spent a total of $250 on Six Flags last year for probably 20-25 visits (family of 3 x 6 or 7 visits plus a couple of others). That's a terrible return for the park and they'd probably sooner NOT have me there and make way for people willing to pay more at the gate and inside the gate.

Can't say I blame them.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012 10:34 PM

I heard an interesting statistic yesterday. I don't know the source of these numbers (they were given without attribution by an instructor in a class I was taking).

But the per-cap spending for a family was around $90 (that's $360 for a family of 4). For a solo teenager, it was $7.

Guess what market the park wants to go after...

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

Last edited by RideMan, Tuesday, January 31, 2012 10:36 PM

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/XXX\ /X\ /X\_ _ /X\__ _ _ _____
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Wednesday, February 1, 2012 7:40 AM

Those numbers seem really high. They must not include tickets or else the teenager amount would be higher. We are a family of 4 and we do not come close to $360,. even with all of us eating at Midway Market for lunch.

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012 10:40 AM

I don't think they pass the sniff test either.

That said, I do think the general premise is correct. Families almost certainly generate better per-cap than teens/young adults.


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Friday, February 3, 2012 12:36 AM
Timber-Rider's avatar

Hey Coasterkid20. It would be an interesting experiment to see just how much money these parks are making on these Premium Experiences as you put it, Vs the general public.

It's just a hunch, but, you can probably bet that the money made from premium attractions, will just lead to more of the same. And, not attractions for everyone. That's my point.

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Friday, February 3, 2012 12:53 AM
Timber-Rider's avatar

ApolloAndy said:

Timber-Rider said:

Eventually all this greed will lead to people not being able to afford to go to their parks. Which will generate less income, and less effort to add major attractions that you will still be willing to pay to cut in line for. I know one thing. I don't think they will ever add fast lane to Michigan's Adventure, they said all parks. I don't see it working there.

Every time (and I do really mean EVERY) a park increases prices or adds a premium service, this argument is made. I'm not even kidding. People have been predicting the downfall of Disney, Six Flags, Discovery Cove and a million other parks for decades and yet, we still don't see it.

The sad fact for you (and for me since I've never paid for a q-bot and rarely pay for food or parking) is that CF doesn't want you (or me) at their park. Seriously, I probably spent a total of $250 on Six Flags last year for probably 20-25 visits (family of 3 x 6 or 7 visits plus a couple of others). That's a terrible return for the park and they'd probably sooner NOT have me there and make way for people willing to pay more at the gate and inside the gate.

Can't say I blame them.

I never said anything about the downfall of a park. What I said was that they will not use all of this money made from these premium services to make their parks better for all their guests. And, like you said, it proves that they don't care about the average park goer, they want that person who is going to come into their parks and spend money on anything and everything, and will charge them as much as they think they can get away with, for as long as they can get away with it.

Some people on this board think these things will lead to better rides and attractions. So? where are they? Cedar Fair claims they had a record year, yet if you look at what is new for 2012, you certainly couldn't tell. My home park Michigan's Adventure hasn't had a decent knew attraction since Thunderhawk. And, has only added 3 major attractions to the park in 11 years.

So. I don't think there is going to be a downfall, more of a lining of the companies and shareholders pockets. Which, I know people will argue is good business. I keep going back to the downfall of the golden age of amusement parks, where the owners of a lot of parks started getting greedy and they started dropping like flies. Like Ramona park in Grand Rapids, they saw more money in the real estate under the park, and sold out. Now, where an amusement park once stood, is senior apartments and houses that were once owned by the rich. Everything that was ramona is gone...most recent amusement park tragedy is Geauga Lake, and Gee..I wonder who owned and dismantled that?

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Friday, February 3, 2012 9:13 AM
Jeff's avatar

Timber-Rider said:
Some people on this board think these things will lead to better rides and attractions. So? where are they? Cedar Fair claims they had a record year, yet if you look at what is new for 2012, you certainly couldn't tell. My home park Michigan's Adventure hasn't had a decent knew attraction since Thunderhawk. And, has only added 3 major attractions to the park in 11 years.

If you were playing along at home, you'd know that the plans for any given year are finalized well in advance of the end of the previous year, sometimes even sooner than that.

Furthermore, as we've said many times, the parks aren't children at the playground, all getting their turn on the slide. Michigan's Adventure doesn't get new rides because there is no return on investment. In my opinion, the park is already way over-built for its attendance. It's a solid water park that has some other rides.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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Friday, February 3, 2012 10:15 AM
Vater's avatar

I know it's been brought up many times before, but I think it's such a critical point to bring up again. It seems some people believe that, ever since parks moved from single ride tickets to a POP scenario (probably even before), everyone is entitled to the same exact experience before the park ticket is even purchased. We all know it isn't true--even the gate price is different for just about everyone.

But some think everything must be 'fair.' I hate that word and its overuse (and especially so after becoming a parent). It's not. It wasn't before, it isn't now, and it never will be fair.

Last edited by Vater, Friday, February 3, 2012 10:16 AM
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Friday, February 3, 2012 10:36 AM

I'd go even farther. The question is not (and has never been) "If I support the park now, will it reward my loyalty by getting better later?" The question is: "Is the admission price worth paying for a day in this park today."

And, most people know this. The only ones who don't---the ones who think this is a loyalty game---are the fanboys.


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Friday, February 3, 2012 11:21 AM
ApolloAndy's avatar

Timber-Rider said:
What I said was that they will not use all of this money made from these premium services to make their parks better for all their guests.

How is this in any way, shape, or form a goal of the company? If they can make more money extorting huge sums of money from rich people while providing a crappy experience for everyone else, more power to 'em.

And from what I hear, Discovery Cove, which offers a pretty crappy experience for people unwilling to shell out big bucks (i.e. you're not even allowed in) is a very beautiful and nice park.

Timber-Rider said:
Some people on this board think these things will lead to better rides and attractions.

Maybe one or two people, but most of the conversation is whether this will create profit for the company which is all the company cares about.

Last edited by ApolloAndy, Friday, February 3, 2012 11:26 AM

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Friday, February 3, 2012 12:03 PM
rollergator's avatar

RideMan said:
I heard an interesting statistic yesterday. I don't know the source of these numbers (they were given without attribution by an instructor in a class I was taking).

But the per-cap spending for a family was around $90 (that's $360 for a family of 4). For a solo teenager, it was $7.

Seems to me the miscalculation is thinking that the $90 was a per-person figure. At $90 for the family of four, sounds about right (couple games, a meal, a few drinks, and maybe a souvenir or two).

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Friday, February 3, 2012 12:19 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

rollergator said:
Seems to me the miscalculation is thinking that the $90 was a per-person figure. At $90 for the family of four, sounds about right (couple games, a meal, a few drinks, and maybe a souvenir or two).

The only way that works, is if they're not including ticket prices in the per-caps - and that isn't right.

I dunno. I suspect this might be closer to the truth than anyone is willing to believe. We know CF and SF report per cap numbers of around $40 each year.

That's an average.

If some kid is using his pass for the umpteenth time and asking for cups of water all day netting the park $5, then someone else is spending over $75.

And why doesn't $360 for a day at the park sound completely ridiculous to me for a family of four? $40 for entry, $12 each for two meals, $10 for souvenir cups, $2 for refills, $4 for regular drinks, $5 games.

A ticket, two meals, two games and a souvenir cup with 3 refills would be $90.

Somehow I suspect those numbers aren't that far off.


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