Close Magic Mountain? Residents Aren't Thrilled

Tuesday, July 4, 2006 9:22 PM
Why does Cedar Fair consistently come up as the preferable buyer knowing full well that they now have five parks to work with as well as the ongoing transition of Geauga Lake? If CF wanted Magic Mountain they would have bought the whole chain when it was for sale. Obviously they didn't want the headaches.

So what if Tatsu was just built. It wasn't a Snyder/Shapiro decision.

X Factor

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Tuesday, July 4, 2006 9:27 PM
matt.'s avatar "If they were considering closing it, Tatsu would not have been built."

The contract for Tatsu was signed long before Shapiro and company took over. It was a done deal.

"The park does give the community plenty of jobs for people. Think of how many people will be out of work if the park closes down."

Not a consideration. SF isn't going to keep a dying park open for the charity of those who work there. In reality there are very, very few good paying, full time jobs at a park like SFMM and while I agree that it will still be quite a loss to many folks, its just not going to be an issue. I mean, what about other companies that have laid off thousands of ( sometimes union paid) workers in one fell swoop? The loss of jobs at SFMM would be nothing compared to say, the loss of jobs that some of the American auto-makers have done. Not saying that's good or bad, its just the way it is.

"The park can't close. It can be sold, preferably to Cedar Fair, but not closed."

LOL. Who here would have said the same thing about Astroworld this time last year? I mean many folks lost their jobs there, too....

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 12:31 AM

Vincent Greene said:
Why is everyone so convinced that Shapiro wants what's best for Six Flags?

Because that's how business works. When you're in charge of a publically-traded company, you do what's best for the company or you lose your job. Who else do you think he's really trying to benefit here? It's not like he gets a cut of the check from selling SFMM.


rc-madness said:
When was the last time this happened, oh ya, it was AstroWorld just weeks after Shapiro took over.

Astroworld was put up for sale BEFORE the new management took over, not after.


Maybe people would take this more seriously if it was Cedar Fair announced that they were scrapping Cedar Point to build condos for the purposes of improving the rest of their parks.

Cedar Point is a well-operated, very profitable park. SFMM is not. It's as simple as that.


Some are still assuming Shapiro is actually interested in improving these parks, like he’s some sort of savior for Six Flag’s mismanagement.

Um...maybe because he is. His job is to drive up the company's stock. He does that by improving the parks. Why is this so difficult for people to comprehend?


You cannot be an advocate for amusement parks while simultaneously supporting their destruction.

I advocate doing what's necessary in order to keep the company afloat. Therefore I'm an amusement park enthusiast AND I support the decision to sell SFMM. As far as I know, the universe has not imploded yet.

-Nate

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 12:39 AM
And where do you live Matt, Nate? Comfortable with the hard business realities of liquidating parks as long as it’s not a park in your back yard? I sure hope somewhere in your cold analysis of Shapiro doing what's best; that the residents of California find your condolences. *** Edited 7/5/2006 4:41:05 AM UTC by rc-madness***
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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 12:40 AM
I doubt the residents of California really care that much, since it's obvious they're not going to the park anyway.

-Nate

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 12:59 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

I advocate doing what's necessary in order to keep the company afloat. Therefore I'm an amusement park enthusiast AND I support the decision to sell SFMM.

:)

I still think someone who truly supports the continued success of the industry sees why this helps more than it hurts. Otherwise...well, you're just being bitter that your local park is on the chopping block.

Because the other 27 parks in the state of California just aren't good enough. ;)


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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 1:27 AM
I hope Busch Gardens buys SFMM and makes it into Busch Gardens Asia. That would be neat if they give Southern Califorina anther chance. (I know, Sea World, but I mean a Busch Gardens park.)

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 1:32 AM
It's ironic that the coaster wars waged by Six Flags, which benefitted coaster enthusiasts a tremendous deal and contributed more to the success of the coaster industry than any other single company, is now viewed in retrospect negatively. Given the amount of money B&M, Vekoma, and Intamin AG have received over the years from the chain, I'm pretty sure they were for a time quite happy. With the new family focus, fans of those companies work should be concerned with how they are affected. T

Hopefully Cedar Fair will be able to fill that business void for those companies now that they have the Paramount Parks to expand.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 7:34 AM
matt.'s avatar

rc-madness said:
Comfortable with the hard business realities of liquidating parks as long as it’s not a park in your back yard?

I'm comfortable with discussing business realities because that's what SFMM is:

a business.

Your insinuation that where I live makes any difference in my views on the topic at hand is completely off base, and as pretentious as anything I've read here.

If you re-read my post you'll notice that all I did was note that Tatsu was finalized before the sale of SFMM was considered. Then I said what anyone with any common sense would know: if we're already at this point, clearly the jobs lost in the sale are not a consideration. Like I said, the park ain't a charity for the people who work there, its a business.

If you have some sort of problem with what I actually said I'd be more than happy to have a discussion with you, but for now I feel like you're doing little more than trolling me.

I'm not here to whine and moan about something I have no power over, I'm here for discussion. *** Edited 7/5/2006 11:42:43 AM UTC by matt.***

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 11:50 AM
Bringing up the fact that Tatsu was just built is about as relevant as bringing up what you had for dinner yesterday.

Shapiro didn't want it built but had no control over it either. Now, i'm sure if we were still under the old management, SFMM would NOT be on the chopping block, they really had high hopes for that park, or at least they needed it to keep up with Cedar Point, which seemed to be Burke's ultimate goal with SFMM.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 12:03 PM
If SFMM weren't one of the parks on the chopping block then we probably wouldn't be having this discussion & most of the folks who treat it as though their world is going to end would be saying "ohh SFDL should go,let's fire up the bulldozers ASAP" or something along those lines if not for SFMM currently being on that list.

SF is a business that's currently in trouble & like any business that's in trouble they're looking at their options & considering what's best for the company to keep it afloat & sometimes that means letting go of a few of their less profitable assets & supporting those that are turning a profit in the hopes of bailing the company out of the mess made by the previous management.

SFMM could've been a profitable park that catered to families as well as thrillseekers but the previous management ran it into the ground by focusing on just adding coaster after coaster to win a contest for bragging rights & a guest spot on discovery channel every memorial day,it takes more than just coasters to make a good park & right now SFMM is so far off balance that it will take far more capital to fix up than it's worth.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 3:40 PM
rollergator's avatar I think "StoryBurke Land" was as insane as anyone....but I'd bet that CP came up in conversation, ummmm, almost never. They weren't competing with CP, they were competing with Knott's and DL/DCA.

Honestly, I think they COULD have succeeded at SFMM with their strategy of "more, bigger, faster"...but not when those things came at the price of operations and charm...it's THE park in the chain where "family-focused" wasn't necessarily the best business model. And so it goes...(apologies to Linda Ellerbee)... ;)

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 3:54 PM
matt.'s avatar More, Bigger, Faster ended up referring to the amount of closed rides, the lines for the rides that *were* open, and the speed at which most guests ended up fleeing the park, respectively. ;)
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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 3:55 PM
janfrederick's avatar I am under the impresion that the park could become profitable. But whatever. I haven't been there in a few years so what do I know. ;)

Here's a question. If the land is so valuable there, why not replace all the local restaurants with condos?

Oh right...zoning issues. I wonder how easy it is to get a city council to change zoning for land. I guess it depends on how much extra tax they'd be collecting.

It is certainly a weird balance with the need for homes versus things that make people want to live in the area like entertainment or abundance of green space.

Just rambling as usual.


"I go out at 3 o' clock for a quart of milk and come home to my son treating his body like an amusement park!" - Estelle Costanza
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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 4:09 PM
Ellerbee...funny reference there.

I never subscribed to the SFMM vs Cedar Point debate. Having grown up in Southern California and frequently visited MM I NEVER heard of Cedar Point until I moved to Ohio. Had I grown up in Ohio I'm sure I could say the same about Magic Mountain.

Having worked full time for Cedar Point I can tell you I was never in one meeting in four years where Magic Mountain came up. There might have been brief discussions about King's Island or Sea World/Geauga Lake but there was no interest in what Magic Mountain was up to.

That was a sexy discussion to have on the internet but the reality is that neither park cared what the other did. Now, I will say that Cedar Fair is probably following what SF is going to do with Magic Mountain...but that is because they ARE in the same demographical area as a little gem called Knott's.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 6:10 PM

coasterdude318 said:

Vincent Greene said:
Why is everyone so convinced that Shapiro wants what's best for Six Flags?

Because that's how business works. When you're in charge of a publically-traded company, you do what's best for the company or you lose your job. Who else do you think he's really trying to benefit here? It's not like he gets a cut of the check from selling SFMM.


Way to take what I said out of context! Have you ever heard of corporate raiding? They takeover a troubled company, run it the rest of the way down, and then sell the parts at a profit. Surely, with a pitbull like Snyder at the helm, that is a possibility.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 7:08 PM
I'm a little tired of people who live on the other side of the country claiming Magic Mountain will not be missed. If you are a local resident of this park, go ahead and make that claim. If not then why the hell should we care if nonresidents aren't going to miss it? Please keep your uncaring comments to yourself.

As a former resident of Oregon I can say that most people in the Northwest have never seen an inverted roller coaster, or a hyper coaster, or a flying coaster, or a stand-up, let alone whatever an X is. Most don't know the parks on the east coast, and wouldn't know a Cedar Point if it bit them in the ass. But they do know California, and Magic Mountain has been a mainstay thrill-park blowing people away with their coasters for decades.

Whatever you have against the mismanagement of the park, save that frustration for the people making the decisions for the last 10 to 15 years. It's idiotic to say the park is unfixable. That's what Shapiro wants you to believe.

Even if you are a Shapiro crony, or a big business fan, speaking as a fan of amusement parks it must be a little disappointing to see that management of the largest amusement park chain in the world now looking at liquidating parks instead of fixing them; or selling them off to parties more interested in improving what they've messed up.

We had hoped Shapiro was going to do that. Right now he's got a death warrant on his desk for the park with the most roller coasters in the world. If he signs it he will forever be know as he man who killed Magic Mountain. And who knows how many more contracts he's got on his desk. The guy was brought on to improve Six Flags. Destroy parks as a means to improve the rest is not only sick logic, it’s a lie.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 7:15 PM
Random but Seth Green mentioned going to MM last night on Carson and said it was fun because it was so empty there, while his friends were at Disneyland and it was packed. They talked a bit about it a little and Carson said how when he was growing up his parents never really took him there or let him go because it was where the "shady crowd" went. I just found that kind of funny. Seth green is awesome lol. Just curious if anyone else saw that.
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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 7:15 PM
I still think that closing SFMM is just a stunt to get people to vist. I think that it was never going to close, it just wanted people to vist the park before it "closes".

If that is the case then Shapiro is a guenis for pulling off a pubicity stunt that big.

Or I could be wrong.

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Wednesday, July 5, 2006 7:16 PM
matt.'s avatar

rc-madness said:
I'm a little tired of people who live on the other side of the country claiming Magic Mountain will not be missed.

Let's see a quote.

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