Fed Up (SFA - 7/26)

Associated parks:
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Monday, July 28, 2003 9:51 AM
This could be a follow-up to the trip report I posted a few weeks ago, although this will focus specifically on the lousy operations and clientele of the park. I'd like to add that this trip report (and I use that term loosely) was inspired by Jeffrey R. Smith's thread here.

My fiancee and I were at SFA for 2½ hours Saturday night, and other than our single rides on Wild One and S:RoS, we had a exceptionally miserable time. Aside from the now expected slow loading times and blobs of molasses that some like to call ride ops, we experienced not one, not two, but approximately 10 individuals (none of them were together) who kept line jumping during our hour-long wait for S:RoS, moving further and further up in front of everyone until they were in the station. Where was security?

On top of that, two folks behind us while we were in line for the front seat wanted to ride with their friends (who were next up to ride in the second row), but instead of their friends asking people behind them to go in front, the people behind us asked the couple in front of us if they could cut ahead of them (which of course would put them in front of us as well). The couple in front of us didn't seem to mind, but they were nice enough to ask us if we minded. Not wanting to look like a complete ass, I reluctantly obliged, and the couple behind us moved forward, graciously thanking the couple in front of us, but ignoring us entirely.

Now, I realize that I can't blame SFA for the fact that many (most?) of its patrons are rude, thoughtless, and obnoxious. That is, in my opinion, the result of the lousy area in which the park is located. However, with proper management, behavior such as what I've described can (and should) be dealt with accordingly.

And for the record, for those that keep insisting that SFA is a cleaner park than in years past, there were several overflowing trash cans all over the place. Seriously, what is so different about this year than any other year since '99?

We were in such a sour mood by the time we left that Liz vowed she would never come back. This is our homepark, and is only a half-hour drive from my house. I might return to the park if I have nothing else to do, but I'll think twice about buying a Six Flags season pass next year.

When will Six Flags start focusing on customer service?

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-Mike B.
Son of Hulk
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Monday, July 28, 2003 10:00 AM
Wow. I had a visit back in 2001 where there wasn't trash all over the bathrooms and the counter tops... and I actually saw employees picking up trash. Maybe they aren't doing this anymore. What a shame. Write the park a letter, please. Make it clear how this has affected you and your patronage of the park if not the entire chain. I can't imagine anything's going to change unless the tangible complaints start coming in. Speaking your mind to an employee is one thing; a manager with a physical letter requiring time to write is much more.

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"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." e.e.cummings

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Monday, July 28, 2003 10:41 AM
I just love how more and more people these days who are trying to line up with friends have the nerve to ask to go in front of you instead of asking people to go in front of the ones who are closer up in their row. That's exactly what I suggest to them and never let anyone in front of me.

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Sue Barry
CoasterSue@aol.com

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Monday, July 28, 2003 11:17 AM
that IS bizzare sue. i always ask people if they want to move up in line so i can ride with friends who are behind me in line.

and god forbid you actually suggest for them to move back in line, attitude.

i dont get that mentality.

i think i am hitting sfa to ride the good coasters on my way home from my 8 day trip. i hope its better than what people say it is,

/ --------------------------------------
http://www.eightdotthree.net
*** This post was edited by eightdotthree 7/28/2003 3:19:05 PM ***

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Monday, July 28, 2003 11:28 AM
eightdotthree, if you can, I'd highly recommend that you avoid visiting on a weekend. You should enjoy the rides, as SFA has a pretty darn good selection of coasters. Go with an open mind, and remember that I have been visiting this park a few times a year since the Six Flags changeover in '99, and am a bit jaded...

Or, more accurately, fed up.

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-Mike B.
Son of Hulk
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Monday, July 28, 2003 1:58 PM
Vater,

I'm with you on this one. I was at the park on Saturday between 10 and 4. I rode coasters between 10 and 12. It's like the crews didn't have control of their stations. I noticed the group you spoke about on Joker's Jinx. They all looked like they could have been football players for the University of Maryland. They walked on Joker's Jinx behind me, then went under/over each of the rails to the front of the line and practically walked onto the coaster. The ride ops turned a blind eye to the whole problem. I looked for a park manager for about two hours to report the problem and couldn't find one. A good operating procedure for any amusement park should be, once a queue line ends up spilling into the oveflow queue, a security guard is placed at the ride to monitor the queue for line jumping. I don't see line jumping to frequently at SFA but this particular case really P***** me off. Actually it was kind of funny, after all their effor at butting to the front of the line, a few of them were to big to ride JJ and had to get off. This made the line even worst because the crew had to wait for them to get off the train and they were taking their time doing it.


I do have some kudos to give out to the Superman crew on Saturday morning though. Before the blue train had to be taken off the track, they were dispatching the trains pretty quickly and there was practically no wait.
*** This post was edited by coasterguts 7/28/2003 6:04:08 PM ***

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Monday, July 28, 2003 2:29 PM
Ignorant patrons can be found everywhere from the Amusement Park to the grocery store, which is why I try to only leave my house twice a week. Last time I was at Conneaut Lake Park, there was actually a line for the Blue Streak, now by no means was it a long line for other parks but for CLP it was, when this black guy just started walking around everyone in line saying excuse me, and he tapped me on my shoulder and said do you mind, I said yes I do mind, and he said thanx, I'm said no you don't under stand I do mind, he's said I'm going up to ride w/ my cousin, I said then well next time maybe you should wait in line with your cousin, fortunatly one of the ops told him to get to the end of the line, the guy called me a dumb white boy. The way I see it is if your gonna ride then wait in line, if that was the case wouldn't people take turns waiting in line then when there friends were close theyd just jump in front of everyone. The same thing kind of happened at CP the day before we were in a 20 min queue for WT and this lady just cut halfway up, then her friends followed her, once again the ride op told them to get to the back of the line and the same day while waiting through breakdowns on TTD this guy weasled his way almost all the way up to the front, but the SOB didn't get by me he got an elbow in the gut. I can't believe the nerve of some people. I prefer to stand in line with enthusiets, and regulars, you can strick up a conversation compare rides and not worry about the ignorat moron bus trips. Basically what I'm saying is you can't blame the park for the patrons to a point, if thepark employees are aware and don't act then you can place the blame.

As far as lining up with friends I try to only go to a park bymyself or just with one other person, to avoid the nonexistant problems people create, But I look forward to those that let us go in front of them so they can ride with their friends. But like its a big deal anyway, some people are conjoined at the hips.

As for Six Flags parks, I honestly refuse to go to them unless tix are free, even then I'm reluctant, from my experience atleast with WOA and MM they don't have to great of a preventative maint team or a reliabel maint crew in general, I swear I remember seeing duct tape on some of the rides. I don't care if they have the best coasters, I still don't look forward to SF parks period. And WOA is about 20 min from me, and could be convieniant, just ot roll out there for a few hours on weekdays, but screw that I rather wait until fri and sat and drive the hour west to CP and the hour east to CLP. And as far as writing SF a letter they don't care their a huge corporation, CF and Paramout are a diff story they answer there letters and atleast for me CF was so sickening nice it wasn't even funny.

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Ride the Conneaut Lake Blue Streak!

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Monday, July 28, 2003 6:19 PM
If you have a problem with line-jumping, tell the main ride-op, or an attendant. They can call out security. Just remember that they should be able to keep people locked in their seats until security arrives:;

In defense of the patrons, I wouldn't say that all are rude, arrogant, and obnoxious. I've met some really nice people at the two attractions I work, Skycoaster and Sonora Speedway.


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If you have a problem with clones, the solution is real simple—Stop traveling.

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Monday, July 28, 2003 6:26 PM
I hate that too. At SFNE, this girl got in line for Thunderbolt behind me and she was at a day camp. So then like twenty of her friends skipped twenty or so people and got with her. They didn't get yelled at them, but then they chose to cut the line at the corner before the station ramp. This guy started going off and my mom, who was at there at the time got mad too. The girl was like "that white woman ain't gonna do nothin'" to this lady and her husband was like "oh yeah lets watch and see and some other junk." The kids then acted like the other patrons were wrong and called us all "stupid" and stuff. In this case though the ride ops were too oblivious to notice the people screaming at them to kick the kids out.
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Monday, July 28, 2003 7:02 PM
A few of you have mentioned that all parks have line jumpers and I agree with you to a point. Parks can do something about the problem. SFGAm has improved a lot in this regard in the past few years. They have had security guards watching the lines from fairly hidden positions to catch line jumpers and smokers. They are also really good about hearing out guest complaints about line jumpers and people who are ruining other guests experiences in the park.

Contrast that with parks like Six Flags Line Jumping Kingdom, I mean Kentucky Kingdom, where they ignore the problem completely. I held my ground a few times there but there were some scary red necks there that were jumping the line so I would end up backing down against some of those people.

Mike, it really sounds like your park is going the way of Kentucky Kingdom and that is a real shame. Some of the parks in the chain have been improving every year (SFGAm, SFWOA) and some continue to go further downhill every year. Lets hope they realize there is a problem before it is too late.
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Bob Hansen
Resident Airtime Whore

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 9:27 AM
I-fan,I've tried using your recommended tactic before & needless to say it didn't work.

A couple of seasons ago we were in line for Wild one & we had a couple of line jumpers who really ticked us off,we kept track of which row they were in & even pointed them out to the security officer that was patroling the station & he did absolutely nothing about it whatsoever.

Of course in addition to the rude patrons you may encounter I've had plenty of encounters with some of the more mild mannered park guests on an average visit & there's nothing like striking up a friendly conversation while in a long queue line to make the wait time just fly by.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 10:43 AM
Is Fastlane the same as line jumping?

Hand me $15.00 and you can go in front of me

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 1:45 PM
Funny you should bring that up, Prodjbp. We were halfway through S:RoS's queue when Line Jumper #7 or #8 came through, and we struck up a conversation with the couple behind us who noticed that we were as annoyed as they were. I can't take their story as fact, but they mentioned that while they stood in line for Batwing earlier in the day, a period of about one hour passed and they hadn't moved a foot. The ride was running fine, but they claimed that the ride ops kept filling trains with FastLane holders, causing the regular line to freeze. Sounds fishy, but considering the lack of care SFA constantly shows towards its guests, I wouldn't be entirely surprised if it were true.

coasterguts - I guarantee the people who were line jumping in front of you on Joker's Jinx were not the same as the ones I encountered. As I said, there was not one single group, but many different (unrelated) individuals who came through every few minutes. None of them looked like they could be college football players, either.

One clever scheme I forgot to mention, however, was pulled off by two young girls. One would travel up the queue, calmly saying 'excuse me' to every person in front of her. A few minutes later, the other would do the same until she met up with the first one, as if she had just gotten out of line briefly (to hit the bathroom or something), and was trying to meet up with her friend again. They kept trading off until they made their way all the way inside the station.

Bob - No telling what SFKK was like before this year, since my first visit was in June, but SFA I think is pretty hit or miss. I've had so-so days there, as well as downright lousy ones (i.e. this thread), and it varies. I honestly don't think it's gotten worse over the years, however. I keep hearing about how much better the park is getting, but I feel it's been the same since day one. It sometimes seems worse, because, as I said before, I've just been jaded due to my many visits over the past few years.

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-Mike B.
Son of Hulk
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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 2:11 PM
Vater I've had that same thing happen at least twice on S:ROS,the ride ops were loading the entire train with fastlaners much to the discontent of those of us in line who had been waiting patiently to ride for at least an hour.

Fastlane is nothing but trouble for a park like SFA,they just need to get rid of it & try to improve overall capacity by running more trains when available (which means the mechanics better try their best to get at least 2 trains going on Batwing).

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 4:07 PM
I would like to see the Fastlane that is offered at Great Adventure, in other words, Lo-Q and Q-bot. This actually holds your place in line while you're riding other attractions, seeing a show, or eating (it does cost extra of course, but with a season pass it's worthwhile). We were supposed to get it along with Magic Mountain last year, but no go. Sometimes they were loading whole trains with us Q-bot holders, but the ride-op would always apologize to the people in line and tell them that they would be on the next train out. One ride-op even went so far to remind people that we waited just as long as they did, just not in line. I look at Fastlane as one of the many ways to part with your money once you enter the gates. It's your decision whether to play games, buy food, ride upcharge attractions, or buy Fastlane.
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If you have a problem with clones, the solution is real simple—Stop traveling.
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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 4:58 PM
Actually I remember last summer when I visited the park and it was pretty empty, that the ride ops would actually call people out for climbing over the queue rails and make them go back around, not the same as line jumping but something.

When it is 95 degrees and the park is empty, you tend to overlook some things for the sake of saving energy, but I can unserstand some of your frustrations with this park.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2003 11:52 PM

Vater said:


We were in such a sour mood by the time we left that Liz vowed she would never come back. This is our homepark, and is only a half-hour drive from my house. I might return to the park if I have nothing else to do, but I'll think twice about buying a Six Flags season pass next year.

When will Six Flags start focusing on customer service?

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-Mike B.
Son of Hulk
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We also live only 1/2 hour away from this park, but we have never been there because of all the negative stories we have heard about the place. Would much rather make the 90 minute drive to Hersheypark.

It's a fact of life that standing up for your rights could get you killed these days...

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"How was your ride?"

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Wednesday, July 30, 2003 3:44 AM
red shirts, are the area supervisors, they can make sure you're taken care of most times. Also, remember that everyone isn't brought up to respect others like you have.

As far as the neighborhood that SFA is in, have you really LOOKED at the houses around the park? they are Upper Middle Class.

The park does what it can to try to keep the "thug" element out, but there's only so far they can go with that. If you see a guard, and you are within sight of the trouble makers, point them out to the guard. (don't sit around and wait to see if the guard does something, just make the report)

Above all, don't take matters into your own hands, remember, these people aren't cutting YOU, they're just cutting. (its not anything personal to them till you make it so)

I've seen line cutting by more parents than kids this year

SAM
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never met a coaster I didn't ride (except Junior Geminii) :(

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Wednesday, July 30, 2003 10:44 AM

micrip said:


We also live only 1/2 hour away from this park, but we have never been there because of all the negative stories we have heard about the place. Would much rather make the 90 minute drive to Hersheypark.


While I would not even *think* about 'never' going to a park 30min from my house, I will FREELY admit that a 90min trip to HersheyPark is indeed a better day than a 30min drive to SFA. Though I encourage you to check out SFA one day. I've never found it to be *quite* as bad as people make it seem. But it is by NO means "HersheyPark Happy"
lata, jeremy

--Resident SF Brat and HersheyPark Hoe

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Wednesday, July 30, 2003 10:57 AM
So which is more respectable Jeremy?

A "Brat" or a "Hoe? :)

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Arena football has arrived in the Windy City. Go "Chicago Rush"

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