Fantasy Island has been permanently closed

Posted | Contributed by ShaneDenmark

Fantasy Island is ceasing operations. The theme park’s director of marketing, Doug Mandell, released a statement on Wednesday afternoon stating the park would be permanently closed. Prior to this, reports stated that the park was selling its rides, but at the time, it was not clear whether or not it was shutting down completely.

Read more from WIVB/Buffalo.

I found this interesting, too... He really rips into equity firms. an eye on Darien Lake. I could see them suffering the same fate. They’ve been owned by two equity firms since Six Flags sold them back in 2007.

But then again, what do I know?

HeyIsntThatRob?'s avatar

Isn’t Darien Lake a Six Flags park again?

We had an opportunity to stop by Fantasy Island last year when doing a trip to Niagara Falls with the family. I’ll be honest, the negative reviews kept me away from the park. Chalk that up to getting older and deciding how to spend money differently. Couple that with my first visits to IB back in the early 2000’s, I’d rather remember how the park was back then, instead of taking my kids.

For me, this is an increasingly alarming problem if parks want to continue to run. People are going to decide to spend their money differently if the experience is going to suck. Conversely, businesses that run these parks on low margins will find it worthwhile to close a park rather than operate it in the first place. It seems the parks that can offer a premium experience at a premium rate are going to be the winners in the end.

My transition from coaster enthusiast to the dark side is complete.

Jeff's avatar

Private equity can be a mixed bag. Usually they invest in something to build it up and flip it. It's violent at first because they install people to do the work, and potentially violent prior to sale to make it sellable.

What I don't understand is why PE would ever go in on amusement parks. They're insanely difficult to grow.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

Rob- Yeah Darien Lake is Six Flags again. But it’s owned by a private equity firm, EPR Properties. Six Flags just runs the park. I’ve been told the only park Six Flags actually owns anymore is SFStL... I don’t know if that’s true or not though.

But then again, what do I know?

I don't have time to research it, but I don't think that's true. DL is managed and I believe SFOT and SFOG are owned by partnership groups, but I've always understood that the rest of the parks are owned by the company.

Jeff's avatar

Six Flags has the value it does because of its tangible assets. They're not just a management company.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Phrazy

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