Cypress Gardens huge success with water park

Posted Thursday, July 27, 2006 9:14 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Cypress Gardens Adventure Park in Polk County says it seeing a major jump in attendance, and the park believes a water park it opened late last summer is the reason. Cypress Gardens has made it past the initial enthusiasm of its reopening about 18 months ago, and park attendance is up by 20 percent over the same time last year.

Read more from Bay News 9.

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Thursday, July 27, 2006 9:18 AM
I was there a few weeks ago and was very impressed. I did not think the waterpark was nearly big enough though....
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Thursday, July 27, 2006 10:30 AM
I wish them all the best, but I have to admit when I visited there as part of the ACE convention a few weeks ago I was somewhat disappointed. I had visited one-year prior when they first opened and was very impressed. On this last visit I didn't think the gardens were as well maintained, they obviously cut down on some plantings, and some of the new rides were already broken down. The waterpark is a nice start, but I also feel they will need to expand it soon.

I would imagine they concentrated their efforts on getting the waterpark open and the animal section completed. I am hopeful that once their expansion slows down they will be able to spend more time and money to take care of what they already have.

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Thursday, July 27, 2006 11:17 AM
Sounds like they have the public's interest. Let's hope they don't blow it.

*** This post was edited by janfrederick 7/27/2006 11:18:07 AM ***

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Thursday, July 27, 2006 3:32 PM
If there doing so well with attendance, why don't they spend some money on repairs. Like arcade games, the waterfall in the gardens, the Disco, the river in natures way among other things.
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Thursday, July 27, 2006 4:15 PM
I am glad the park has been dong well I havent been since it was the orignal Cypress Gardens. I am happy that people are attending the park I remember how worried everyone was when it was going to reopne as a park with rides and things because of its closeness to Orlando. Well it looks like it is doing okay and I can't wait until next year when they reopen Starliner that was at Miracle Strip at the Cypress, should be a really good addition, to have another open wooden coaster in Florida. I am sure they are going to repair their rides and things especially since attendance is going up.
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Thursday, July 27, 2006 8:13 PM
Hopefully, Cypress will continue to draw more guests and upgrade their aesthetic appearance, (although not bad, but definitely could use more work). The addition of the Starliner will be a welcome one, though I feel that they need to add a few more 'signature' rides to the park. Something that will make the park stand out, possibly more for the locals than the tourists to want to return to ride again and again (Small to mid-size Morgan hyper coaster anyone?). They also could use more water rides like a log flume, river rapids, and shoot-the-chute. An air conditioned traditional style dark ride would work well here, also.

I know that they are in the most extremely competitive theme park market on Earth, a dwarf in the land of GIANTS. But, if they play their cards right, promote local corporate and community picnics (ala Kennywood), and target their market more on the local audience, I think this park will do very well in the long term.

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Thursday, July 27, 2006 10:15 PM
Don't count on the Starliner for next year. The maintance crew has not heard a word about even starting to move the kiddieland to prepare the ridesite.
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Friday, July 28, 2006 12:27 AM
I too felt that the garden section(s) and animal sections were rather weak. As a first-timer (at least since I was 4 years old in the 70's) the older sections appeared very ignored. However, with a little tender care...this place could be unreal.

As a father of a 36 inch 2-year-old I can make an argument that this park is the best for this size child. He got to do all the coasters (including his first woodie) sans the spinning mouse. They let him on the Tilt-A-Whirl, Eagles, and his favorite...the Pirate Ship. No other park or fair I have been to has allowed my son to ride so many of the "adult" rides. In fact Scandia (CA) and The Orange County Fair were calling for a 48 inch minimum(?) last weekend for these same rides. ...must be that stronger gravity on the West Coast...? My boy loves the fast stuff. I can only tell you parents of little ones who are also thrill seekers...Cypress Gardens has a lot to offer.

I'm afraid that the only way they will get traffic to the older garden areas is to start putting some rides there. I'm sure this is wrong in a traditionalist sense...but there was NOBODY frequenting these areas on my day in the park. A nice flume and/or rapids ride (as mentioned above) are needed. They have the potential setting to make this a unique American Park with a European feel.

I certainly hope they do not go all thrifty/generic on us and make the park look like every other. While the new ride and water park areas are nice...they certainly are not landscaped to the standards of the older sections.

P.S. I do not care how they want to justify it...but no park that rotates ride operations (ie one operator runs two or more rides) will EVER be seen as "big-boy" amusement park. Save this cheap move for the Boonville County Fair!

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Sunday, July 30, 2006 9:07 AM
Unfortunately or fortunately....depending on how you feel about it....but the gardens section, I think is actually owned by the state now and actually a conservation area. No rides will ever be going into that area if I remember that correctly.
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Sunday, July 30, 2006 10:49 AM
Beast is right , that part of the gardens is leased from the state. The contract prohibits rides in that area. If you go to the park during the late fall, winter and early spring, that section is where the snowbirds hang out.
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Monday, July 31, 2006 12:41 PM
I too felt that the garden section(s) and animal sections were rather weak. As a first-timer (at least since I was 4 years old in the 70's) the older sections appeared very ignored. However, with a little tender care...this place could be unreal.

^^^ Eerie I tell ya. Before the take-over, my last visit to CG was, in the early 70s, when I was about 4, maybe 5. Now, when I went back, I thought my back yard had better "gardens". But not better rides... ;)

Keeping one eye on Elysburg, I guess '08 is the earliest we'll likely see Starliner...until then, increasing the capacity of the waterpark is CRITICAL.

As a father of a 36 inch 2-year-old I can make an argument that this park is the best for this size child.

My initial thoughts on the park were EXACTLY that....while Disney is going more high-tech, hi-thrill (presumably in competition with Universal), this park is going in the opposite direction...where there IS a market niche available...

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