Hard Rock Park closing early...

Sunday, August 10, 2008 3:38 PM
matt.'s avatar Haven't been to the park but I've been a big proponent of the concept and overall ride line-up. Still, I agree, the gaps are weird, especially the lack of a major water ride on opening.

I know Slippery When Wet is there but I can't help but think a nice log flume would have been just as doable and a better investment. Or rapids ride or shoot the chutes. *** Edited 8/10/2008 7:45:38 PM UTC by matt.***

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Sunday, August 10, 2008 3:58 PM
The park is advertising hardcore to the people already in Myrtle Beach. I saw billboards all over town, huge ads in all the visitor guides & coupon books, television commercials, and probably the most unique being a seemingly impromptu bikini squad putting on a show at our hotel pool, with free tickets to those few guys willing to have a dance competition with the four gals.

I doubt the park will advertise nationally or even regionally until they grow a bit more.

I think the problem really is that it's an expensive option in a town full of cheaper entertainment options, plus the one glaring issue was the lack of a child's ticket, which they finally changed.

Obviously, it's been an incredibly challenging environment to open a brand new park.

I tried to get to the park during my 6 days there, but we just ran out of time. Plus, I wasn't really looking forward to standing in 100 degree heat to ride a few rides when I could instead enjoy a cold beverage at the hotel pool or on the beach.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008 4:04 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

LostKause said:
Is a B&M Looper, 4 kiddy coasters, a dark ride, and 5 or so flats worth $50? Could THAT be part of the problem?

I said it in my TR and on the podcast and Tina said it in her TR - it's not a ride park.

If you go for the rides, you'll be done in two hours and leave feeling disappointed and ripped off.

I think that's the angle HRP needs to make known. I don't think it's even lackof awareness, but lack of setting expectations.


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Sunday, August 10, 2008 6:01 PM
To whoever said it above... Led Zep is NOT a floorless coaster.
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Sunday, August 10, 2008 9:20 PM
Ok, so now I think of Opryland, which was not a ride park, either. It was more of an entertainment park. We wound up spending the entire day there (it was extremely busy) and not only did we do all the rides twice, but we saw all the shows, too, which were varied and for the most part entertaining.

That is a concept that could potentially have great success in Myrtle. But upon hearing the name Hard Rock, will Mom and Pop take the kids? Will they realize that the park offers all kinds of musical themes and experiences? They might be of the country music persuasion, or enjoy a nostalgic trip back to the British Invasion, but does the Hard Rock Brand automatically telegraph that to potential visitors? Would bikini girls showing up at our hotel pool make me pack up the wife and kids the next day and head over for a day of family fun? I'm not so sure.

It agree with everyone here that says better marketing is the key. And I don't mean advertising, because anyone who's been to Myrtle knows there's no shortage of that! If they aren't delivering the message of the park's focus and identity to the varied crowd they're trying to attract, they can expect failure.

Places like Pigeon Forge, Branson, and Myrtle are known for their own little attractions and shows that the rest of us know nothing about. (How many of your friends and neighbors have heard of Celebration City? Or Hawaiian Rumble?) They rely on using advertising to suck you in once you get there. Perhaps HRP was counting on a lot of that, knowing that Myrtle is a slammin place in the summer, and surely they'd get a great drop-in crowd. With Myrtle being a drive-to destination and the gas/economy thing being what it is, now they're in trouble.

Can anyone here tell me how Myrtle Waves or Broadway at the Beach are faring these days? They were kind of off the beaten path when I was there, isn't HRP around there, too?

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Monday, August 11, 2008 12:26 AM
Yeah, I was the one who said it was a floorless coaster. I even KNEW it wasn't, but I for some reason keep thinking it is floorless. I've been really off lately. :P

"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band

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Monday, August 11, 2008 7:52 AM
You have to fit the park to what the area is by themeing and not trying to change it. When I heard about the HRP at Myrtle Beach, I thought it was great but when it came to realization. IT didn't fit into the Myrtle Beach's way of life. The Pavilion fit into that way of life to a tie since it complimented it's surroundings. HRP is overpriced for the region and was a bad idea for that area. Myrtle Beach is low key and pleasant why KRP is harsh and brass to where it will turn off most people who live in Myrtle Beach. What people go to MB is the beach and to enjoy themselves.

Gonch, I am glad you have fun there but you have to realize the native Myrtle beach person isn't going to pay $50 to ride a few rides. Like someone said, they have 4 kiddie coasters and nothing much after that. If I wanted that, I could go to Lake Winnie.

Again, have a park that fits the surroundings and character of an area. Don't have a park that goes against the grain of the area. *** Edited 8/11/2008 11:52:52 AM UTC by Majorcut***

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Monday, August 11, 2008 11:27 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Majorcut said:
Gonch, I am glad you have fun there but you have to realize the native Myrtle beach person isn't going to pay $50 to ride a few rides. Like someone said, they have 4 kiddie coasters and nothing much after that.

And I think people have to realize that if you think that way, then the park isn't for you.

I paid to ride a few rides, see some really good shows, explore a couple attractions, do some shopping and spend the day surrounded by that "Hard Rock" vibe and people who were doing a great job embodying the spirit in truly excellent, well done surroundings.

A combination I haven't seen pulled off very well and with so much attention to detail at any park outside of central Florida.

Like I said before, I'm not sure the park does a good enough job at getting across what they are. And even if they did, I'm not sure there's enough people who'd dig that sort of thing to sustain business on a level they anticipated...in MB or anywhere.

Speaking of MB in general...


HRP is overpriced for the region and was a bad idea for that area. Myrtle Beach is low key and pleasant why KRP is harsh and brass to where it will turn off most people who live in Myrtle Beach. What people go to MB is the beach and to enjoy themselves.

I must've visited the wrong Myrtle Beach. :) ;)


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Monday, August 11, 2008 12:07 PM
Gonch, The fact is the majority of the people who do go to Myrtle Beach are not interested in so over the top park such as HRP. Yes, HRP is overpriced for that area. They want something that resembles the beach scene and the Pavillion was just that.

Would you not agree that the park should fit the area in order to compliment it? Parks like Six Flags Over Texas and Dollywood fits into the surroundings without over powering it.

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Monday, August 11, 2008 12:45 PM
Mamoosh's avatar The problem isn't the park, its the economy.

With gas at $4 a gallon people are staying closer to home. Not only does that mean fewer tourists to Myrtle Beach but that it's more difficult for HRP to attract guests from greater distances.

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Monday, August 11, 2008 12:48 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar Keep in mind, I speak as a first time visitor to the area, but I felt like HRP was out of the way of MB. If felt like we were leaving the MB area to go to the park.

I'm not one to be discussing the MB area. Barely saw much of it and what I did see I didn't care for. We stuck with the big overpriced, over the top touristy stuff and had a better time than we did the night we spent in the area around Family Kingdom.

I'm not making any claims about MB (aside from snide remarks). I'm just saying that HRP isn't a ride park and that not many people get that or want to experience that. That's HRP's issue. I don't think it's the area or the people and don't even understand how turning it into a Pavillion bitch session is meaningful.

If one understands what they're getting into and enjoys that sort of thing, HRP is one of the best ways to spend a day out there.

I don't know if it fits into the area or is overpriced or if it even matters. None of those things are the issue if you ask me. If they mattered then the folks behind HRP should've just built an overlit building where you enter through the mouth of a shark and get a free hermit crab with every T-shirt purchase of $10. Perhaps with a skeezy mini golf place in back?

MB certainly had it's share of those places that seemed to be doing just fine.


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Monday, August 11, 2008 3:18 PM

john13601 said:

Here's a few free (from me anyhow although they may have to pay the bands) ideas for new rides and theming

Heavy Metal - steel coaster

REO Speedwagon- launched steel coaster

Journey Wheel in the Sky- Frisbee

Styx- water ride

Jefferson Airplane/Starship- inverted coaster

Ring of Fire - Disk o...


How about Milli Vanilli: a ride simulator? ;)


My author website: mgrantroberts.com

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Monday, August 11, 2008 3:43 PM
rollergator's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:I don't think it's the area or the people and don't even understand how turning it into a Pavillion bitch session is meaningful.

Not bitching, and probably not meaningful, just a thought...forced to wonder how this place might do under another scenario: Let's say they were "on the beach", a la Pavilion. Then let's say they had a reasonable gate fee, some live bands, and ride tickets instead of a POP.

Myrtle by all accounts isn't exactly *booming* right now...but is the scenario above even reasonable? Not talking about anytrhing that COULD happen, the park is where it is....but is that something that MIGHT have worked?

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Monday, August 11, 2008 5:37 PM
Jeff's avatar

Majorcut said:
Gonch, The fact is the majority of the people who do go to Myrtle Beach are not interested in so over the top park such as HRP. Yes, HRP is overpriced for that area. They want something that resembles the beach scene and the Pavillion was just that.
Is that based on your extensive surveying of visitors to the area or just your own "fact?" Declaring what people want (and especially Pavilion, which I had never heard of until being into coasters for several years) is a pretty bold claim.

I've never even been there and my perception of Myrtle Beach is "tourist trap." The park can be anywhere a lot of people go, and I think the location is fine. I think they're doing a crappy job of getting the word out to people.

I think Mamoosh has a solid point too that these are not exactly ideal times to be launching a new leisure business.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 7:01 AM
Okay, I'm gonna play Devil's advacte for a sec here...

Would the park be doing better if it were in a different location serving a different market, say Menphis?


Coaster Junkie from NH
I drive in & out of Boston, so I ride coasters to relax!

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 8:42 AM
I would have to agree hop. Memphis would be a better place since it's more of a music city than Myrtle Beach. Gonch, HRP might work for the first time visitor but chances are it will not over the long run.

Unless Hard Rock invests in some other kind of rides and theme it in a way that related to Rock then the park is a one shot wonder.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 10:31 AM
Jeff's avatar Menphis? Isn't that Moosh's Shangri-La?

The location is fine. Marketing and economy, not fine.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 10:49 AM
Does anyone think another company could be brought in to operate the park? I could see CF being interested in a managment contract. If CF did become involved they could offer two park Gold season passes between HRP and Carowinds as a way to boost attendence. They could also offer a better marketing strategy.

Prowler. Opens May,2 2009.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 12:48 PM
coasterqueenTRN's avatar I guess Gonch and I need to buy the park. ;)

It's really sad that it's not as popular as it *should* be (in my mind anyway) but I felt like I got my money's worth and had a complete blast! I would gladly drop down another $50.

I know one thing. The next time I go to MB I am avoiding Family Kingdom and Strand altogether. It just did nothing for me like it did 20 years ago when I visited back in July. Like I said I should of stayed at HRP all evening instead of leaving so early. :)

When I was a kid and teenager the Strand was "happening" but I guess I am just too old now to enjoy it like I used to. ;) Being that the Pavilion isn't there anymore made me more unimpressed this time around.

I wish the HRP the BEST of luck. It's HIGHLY underrated but like Gonch and I mentioned before, you have to love rock music to fully appreciate it. :)

-Tina

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008 12:57 PM
Mamoosh's avatar Menphis? Isn't that Moosh's Shangri-La?

Nope. That would be North Dickotah. Or maybe TallahASSee :)

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