Corporate Strategies

Friday, June 14, 2002 10:19 AM

People seem to have all kinds of ideas/opinions about why one chain is better (usually why CF is better than SF) and I've been developing a theory about the different strategies that CF, Kennywood, Busch (henceforth, CF) use vs. those that SF, Paramount (henceforth SF) use to deal with problems in their parks.

I would like to preface by saying: A) Both chains are out for your $. The bottom line is that they are businesses and need $ to survive. They just try to get your $ different ways. B) I'm not judging the strategies. I like both types of parks a lot.

Problem: The ride collection is getting old. CF: Put in a new ride. SF: Put in a new ride.

Problem: The staff is rude. CF: Get better staff SF: Put in a new ride.

Problem: The park is dirty. CF: Clean the park SF: Put in a new ride.

etc. etc. etc.

I would guess as a result, SF gets a LOT more one time visitors and LOT less multiple visitors.

Any feedback on this theory? Just based on my personal observations.

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AC?, RB?, MF?, DD?, PR? Who can keep track of it all?

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Friday, June 14, 2002 10:23 AM
Good theory, but alot of people will go back to a park if its dirty. I take objection to the Paramount and Six Flags thing. Paramount workers are usually pretty friendly and if they have a trash problem (Tomb Raider) they clean it up. I saw Tomb Raider's line TRASHED and I mean filthy. There was garbage inside on the rocks and stuff they cleaned it up. Six Flags doesn't even usually add new rides every year. Thats the problem with a big chain compared to a smaller one.

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Can we change the name of Top Gun to your mom so no one wants to ride your mom?

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Friday, June 14, 2002 10:30 AM
Well, I went to PGA a while ago and it was kinda dirty, but I was young so I didn't really notice. I've been to PKD twice in the last two years, and both time rides were down for extended periods during the day (Volanco mostly) and I didn't find the staff particularly friendly or the park particularly clean, the food particularly good, etc. etc. (compared to a Busch, CF, or Universal park).

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AC?, RB?, MF?, DD?, PR? Who can keep track of it all?

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Friday, June 14, 2002 12:35 PM
I love park cleanliness talk. I have an idea (and yes...I know this would never happen) Could park patrons clean up after themselves? I have yet to be to a park that does not have a trash can every few feet. I am not talking patios, or bathrooms. I am talking midways and ques. I see people just throwing their waste on the ground when there is a can 2 feet away. It just makes me angry that they have so little respect for the park.
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Friday, June 14, 2002 12:42 PM
Usually roller coaster fans dont come to the park to see how clean a park is, they come for the rides, same thing w/just about any age group.
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Friday, June 14, 2002 12:59 PM
I agree with this. Another Six Flags strategy is to build a coaster, put it in many parks *cough*Goliath*cough*, and as soon as it's not popular, then stop building it and build a new kind of ride. Cedar Fair adds a ride at Cedar Point or Knott's Berry Farm to see if it's popular, then if it is, give it to Dorney Park and the other park (CP if they get it from KBF, and vice versa). Six Flags just gets the people in the gates, while Cedar Fair tries to make an experience for every guest, which is probably why CF's parks are rated top-stuff, and only SFMagic Mountain is in the SF chain. Notice, when Deja Vu came out at three parks, they all went popular. They put the same ride in at another SF park, and popularity decreases, because people have already ridden it. Cedar Fair's parks have a looping coaster, a hypercoaster, and a "world-class" coaster. (CP: Millenium Force; DP: Talon; MiA: Shivering Timbers; WoF: Orient Express; VF: Excalibur; and KBF: Xcelerator) Many people will tell you about their trip to a CF park, while if they go to a SF park, they say, "oh yeah, i've been to six flags." This is my opinion.

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Friday, June 14, 2002 1:06 PM

MrFreeze_freak said:
Usually roller coaster fans dont come to the park to see how clean a park is, they come for the rides, same thing w/just about any age group.

I disagree entirely. Sure they come to ride, but general park atmosphere means as much as anything and cleanliness is a big issue. I had a bad experience at SFWOA last year (we're still giving them a second chance this year) and much of it was due to the fact that the park was so unkept. There was litter everywhere and when people did seem to use the garbage cans, the employees just replaced the bag and placed the full one next to the can. There were piles of full garbage bags everywhere.

If cleanliness didn't matter then these corporations could save land money and build parks on top of garbage dumps - who cares about the smell and the garbage we're walking on, we just want to ride - that makes no sense. Cleanliness is a BIG issue.

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www.coasterimage.com
Dorney Park visits in 2002: 10

*** This post was edited by Lord Gonchar on 6/14/2002. ***

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Friday, June 14, 2002 2:39 PM

Having recently been to three SF parks (SFNE, SFGA and SFA) as well as Busch Gardens, PKI, PKD and Cedar Point, I can tell you that I enjoyed all of the non-SF parks so much more than the SF parks. There were a few reasons for this, but the main reasons were the condition of the parks and the guests.

Take SFA in Maryland. I went there for the first time a week ago Saturday and was excited to ride the great coasters there. Not only was the park dirty (grafitti everywhere) and the employees rude, but the guests were all loud, wild, disrespectful and...they loved to cut the line. I was in line for SROS and there about 50 people behind us. One by one, two by two, etc. they all came up with schemes to cut the line, and no one said a word. There were no park operators around, so they got away with it. By the time it was my turn to ride, there were only about 10 people left behind me.

My experience at SFGA wasn't much better. Every line I waited in I saw guests blatantly cutting. One tactic they use is to briefly step out of line to talk on their "cell" and then jump back in line at a different spot. This happened most often in the Nitro line. Again, there were zero ride operators around, so each and every guest got away with it. In Skull Mountain, a bunch of kids decided to throw a piece of gum towards the front of the line and it got stuck in another guest's hair. When the guest who got hit turned around, all of the kids denied it, and then one girl said, "It was me, what are you going to do about it *itch?". The response was "Nothing, you're too young and stupid to know any better anyway." Again, no park employees were supervising or anywhere in sight. I know that it is hard for these supervisors to necessarily catch all of this, but having "some" employees near the lines would certainly reduce some of this. SFNE was better, but the guests there love to smoke in line, which irks me to no end.

I didn't run into these situations at any of the other parks. Cedar Point does a great job with crowd control and catching line jumpers, and Busch Gardens just attracts so many tourists from out of town that they have a good mix of guests that seem to treat the park and other guests with respect.

I love the coasters they have at Six Flags (and am obviously a huge coaster fan), but the conditions I described at these parks has me extremely down on them and I am reluctant to visit them again since I have to deal with all of the rude and disrespectful guests. When are they going to clean up their act? Do they know they have an issue or are they oblivious? I would give up the better rides to go to a smaller park that is cleaner and where other guests won't so blatantly cut me in line and treat the property with respect.

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Friday, June 14, 2002 3:26 PM

Well after visiting 4 Six Flags Parks (SFGAm, SFSTL , SFKK, and SFWOA) and 4 Cedar Fair Parks (CP, MIA, VF, and WOF) in the last two weeks, I'd take Six Flags ANY day.

Excluding CP, all the SF park had better landscaping, theming, and coasters. The only thing better at the CF parks were the staff. All the parks were clean.

Most CF coasters are over braked and have stupid seatbelts on every ride i.e. Valleyfair!

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Coaster Grotto - Save your Top 20 Coasters and Track Record Online!

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Friday, June 14, 2002 3:41 PM
Yea I will agree it is people who throw their garbage on the ground that make the parks dirty. I will admit PKI has some stuff grafitized usually just scratched off paint on rails and such, but still they can't stop people from doing that. I have never seen that much trash at PKI, sometimes theres some as there is at every park. I don't usually care about trash just makes the experience a little more friendly

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Can we change the name of Top Gun to your mom so no one wants to ride your mom?

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Friday, June 14, 2002 4:32 PM

Hey Jazzergirl were you at SFA on saturday june 8th? I was there on the 8th and there was line jumping big time on S:ROS not to mention mind eraser as well,the classic excuse line jumpers use is that they are with thier friends who are further up in line.

I'm just as fed up with the line jumping as you and everyone else on this board and hope that the parks really would do something about it,maybe adding video surveilance to the ride ques is a good place to start.

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Friday, June 14, 2002 7:31 PM

Batwing,

I was at SFA on Saturday, June 1. The line jumping on S:ROS was the worse I've ever seen on any ride. Many of the line jumpers didn't even give excuses. They just made their way through the crowd until they couldn't be seen any longer. Once we got into the station they did the classic "duck under the bars", right in front of the operators, who didn't do anything.

The parks really do need to crack down on this. They should be removing more of these violators from the park to start setting examples.

We should all get together and start petitioning the parks to address this. Does anybody have any other ideas on how to get the parks to take action? Should we bombard their suggestion boxes and other feedback channels?????

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Friday, June 14, 2002 8:17 PM

Grant said:

Most CF coasters are over braked and have stupid seatbelts on every ride i.e. Valleyfair!



Yeah, damn them for safety concerns!

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www.coasterimage.com
Dorney Park visits in 2002: 10

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Friday, June 14, 2002 8:17 PM

yeah i know. lol

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Raptor rules the sky!!!!

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Friday, June 21, 2002 11:25 PM

Problem: The ride collection is getting old. CF: Put in a new ride. SF: Put in a new ride.

This has NEVER been SF policy for SFAW, and I seriously doubt that it EVER will be!

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Gay Roller Ride
http://www.gayrollerride.com
If you build it, they will come!

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Saturday, June 22, 2002 10:04 AM
I found If you SHOUT at the line jumpers about cutting then others in the line will voice along with you. ( But then I'm 5'11" 250Lbs , and a loud mouth S.O.B to begin with )

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You really need to get some more BRAN in your diet

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Saturday, June 22, 2002 4:32 PM

I wouldn't say that CF replaces bad staff all the time. Sure you'll see it at Cedar Point, but at their smaller parks it can be a different story. Knott's Berry Farm has mutiple staff members that are rude and disrespectful to African Americans and Mexicans. I haven't been more discriminated against at any other park than Knott's Berry Farm. I also see in the staffing that Six Flags and Paramount hire a larger and more balanced variety of staff from many different cultures, but the staff is only moderate.

I really get disgusted with Paramount way of "taming the terror" when a ride gets old instead of just fixing, improving, or tearing down the ride.

The atmosphere at all of the Kennywood Entertainment parks are top quality. Each one is known for good staffing as well.

With the park is dirty joke, I can't say that every Six Flags park is clean, but whenever there has been paint chippin', ride rusting, theme fading, paths to be pathed, or midways to be cleaned at Six Flags Marine World, Six Flags Mexico, Six Flags New England(except for pathing in Rockaville), or Six Flags Fiesta Texas Six Flags has done it. On the other hand, I had dozens of visits to Paramount Great America where the park was filthy, inside and out(Get some security if you're gonna' charge that much for parking, there are people going to the bathroom on other people's cars.)

Maintaining rids, Paramount and Six Flags are getting pathetic. On 4 of my last visits to SFNE, at least 9 rides were down. Astroworld, do you know that you can do more than one train operation on roller coasters? Seeing every coaster either on one train operation or broken down is rediculous.

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Lake Compounce-So Fresh and So Clean Clean

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