Holiday World owners exploring possibilities to operate Kentucky Kingdom

Posted Tuesday, January 17, 2012 9:24 AM | Contributed by WildStangAlex

The owners of Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari in Southern Indiana said Monday they may seek rights to operate Kentucky Kingdom, the Kentucky Exposition Center amusement park that has been idle for more than two years. Kentucky Kingdom has remained closed since the former operator, Six Flags, announced two years ago that it was abandoning the park amid a bankruptcy filing.

Read more from The Courier-Journal.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012 10:43 AM

I can see this possibly working if they keep their primary focus on the waterpark. I can imagine them putting too much focus on the amusement park as it would probably detract from the attendance at holiday world. Just my opinion though.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 12:19 PM

Did we go back in a time warp? Seems like this same thing has already been done in the great state of Ohio.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 12:25 PM

I was thinking that, too. While the accident on the free fall ride had something to do with it, I think there were deeper issues to Six Flags pulling out. It seems counterintuitive that a place in a major metro would flail, while one in the middle of nowhere thrives, but again, we've seen that before.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 12:42 PM

Jeff said:
It seems counterintuitive that a place in a major metro would flail

Damn my sense of humor of a 5-year-old, but that made me laugh.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 12:56 PM

Vater said:


Jeff said:
It seems counterintuitive that a place in a major metro would flail

Damn my sense of humor of a 5-year-old, but that made me laugh.

I immediately thought of
http://images.wikia.com/familyguy/images/b/b7/Wackywaving.jpg

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 1:11 PM

And I'm passing on the savings to YOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOU!

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 1:27 PM

I didn't realize Holiday World was so close to Louisville. So yeah it seems like they could hurt their own attendance with this. And how close is Kings Island? Is there any competition from there? Either way it seems like the only sure moneymaker on this site is a water park with maybe a small dry rides side.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 2:39 PM

Kings Island is almost exactly 3 hours from Holiday World. Makes for a nice halfway stopping point when we go to HoliWood Nights. :)

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 3:01 PM

Did buying Geauga Lake hurt Cedar Point's attendance?

Holiday World operating Kentucky Kingdom sounds like a good idea to me. Then there is no competition, because no matter which park people go to, money goes to Holiday World either way.

The Holiday World folks know how to succeed when it comes to operating a park. This might be just what Kentucky Kingdom needs.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 3:10 PM

Kentucky Kingdom was hurting Holiday World Attendance in the 1990s from when the park first open until Six Flags took over. Kings Island and Kentucky Kingdom where competitors in my opinion. Year by year Kentucky Kingdom attendance would climb. Before Ed Hart left Kentucky Kingdom in 1998, attendance was 1.3 million. Kings Island attendance today is about 3.1 million. I believe If Ed Hart never left Kentucky Kingdom in 1998, Kentucky Kingdoms' attendance would probably be about 2.4-2.8 million in my opinion.

I cant imagine the Kochs running Kentucky Kingdom forever, but maybe a year or two until a fixed operator is found.

Last edited by SCCARD01, Tuesday, January 17, 2012 3:12 PM
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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 4:07 PM

Why? That doesn't even make sense. You don't fix up your competition so you can hand it over to someone else and not profit from it.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 4:13 PM

Holiday World operating Kentucky Kingdom sounds like a good idea to me. Then there is no competition, because no matter which park people go to, money goes to Holiday World either way.

You can surely lose money by doing that though. See Geagua Lake.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 4:50 PM

or ask Kent formerly of Wild Adventures if expanding to a nearby park that failed is a good idea.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 4:53 PM

Doesn't the state of ky have to provided the funds since the park is state own. The Kochs Just needs to be to ones to operate the park.

Since working at KK, I found out Holiday World and Kentucky Kingdom are good friends, even before the closing of Kentucky Kingdom. People think they're commpetiors because they're close to each other but that really isn't the case.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:06 PM

Obviously, there is something about Kentucky Kingdom that is really appealing to them, otherwise, why spend the effort and make it public of all things? I just want the park to reopen and stay that way. I know Hart could do it and I know the Koch's can too, but it's the Fair Board I'm worried about.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:11 PM

The land Cypress Gardens was/is on is state owned (or at least protected) I keep my objection When Wild Adventures ( a one park family owned park) tried to expand with Cypress Gardens they ended up losing both parks to the bankers.If Holiday World wants to expand KK and advertise that it is reopened they will have to borrow/spend money if it fails (KK)I would hate to see Holiday World sold. I love that park.

The Kentucky State legislature has twice (2 years running) refused to even vote for funds to reopen this park so do not hold your breath waiting for the state to help.

Last edited by kevin38, Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:12 PM
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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 10:02 PM

Hey, I thought Buescher lost the parks because of the hurricanes?

As far as the comparison with Geauga Lake goes, it's not particularly apt or fair. For one thing, it's guaranteed the Kochs wouldn't put anywhere near the kind of money into this project that Cedar Fair did into the Aurora acquisition. (What was it, $145 million or something like that? Kinzel certainly wasn't very skilled at lowballing a sale...)

For another thing...well, I can't think of another. But that was a pretty good one thing. :)

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012 12:24 AM

Holiday World probably wouldn't even be buying the park. They would just be operating it. That right there shows that they wouldn't have as much to lose as Cedar Fair did with GL.

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012 1:09 AM

I say they should build an arc... Then they could effectively monopolize the Northern Kentucky market.

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