If you bought SFDL, how would you Improve it?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:29 AM
Six Flags Darien Lake is an awful park. If you were the new owner, how would you clean up the park?

Some of my clean-up plans

- Remove Predator

-Remove Mind Eraser, and put a Batman clone in that spot.

-3 train operation on The Viper. Give it a new coat of paint.

-Remove max. height requirement from Superman. And always run 2 trains.

-Add a B&M stand-up and a floorless

-Add an S&S Drop Tower (like Sky Screamer)

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:43 AM
I'd close it, move the rides, sell the land, and be that much further out of debt.
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:03 AM
I'd tear down The Viper. ;)
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:21 AM
I'd move RoS to my front yard (again, it would kinda fit...).
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:49 AM
OK, I don't think that Darien Lake is an awful park, though admittedly its not my favorite.

Of interest to me is that you didn't mention any improvements to the waterpark, which was the busiest part of the park whenever I have visited the park. I think Cuda Falls should be replaced since it had no line while I was there (probably due to the location). Don't forget that a lot of people who go to that park are familes that utilize the campground and hit the waterpark. I think more waterpark expansion/upgrades and general park improvements would do great at this time :)

.. which leads me to the idea that the park is fine coaster-wise right now. I know Superman in 99 was the last coaster, but it still has good ridership as do all of the coasters.

Take out a coaster thats only about 10 years old and often has the longest line in the park for one that wouldn't even fit on the plot of land and is a bit more expensive? Nah, bad move if you ask me. Get rid of the height maximum? How many more ejections do you want to risk? Three trains on Viper? They stacked two trains on occasion, I don't think they could handle three. $20 million more to B&M? OK now its sounding more like a wish list than honest suggestions.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:05 AM
Oh, silly me. You're right, Jophish. The space opened up by removing Viper would be used to build a wave pool.
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:23 AM
Just close the place down, and build a large waterpark. That will solve all the problems!
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:48 AM
I'm sorry for suggesting that the park should run with the success that they have had. Then again, I'm on a site about roller coasters so I should have known something that doesn't involve a massive Intamin or B&M or Gravity Group contraption wouldn't go over well. meh.
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:55 AM
Um, I wasn't directing that at you. I was joking with Michael Darling ;). And he was making an inside joke trying to get me to comment...

Basically, you were giving your opinion of what you'd do, and thats fine. We're just being silly because, well, we were just being silly. Don't mind us :).

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 7:04 AM
First, hire a manager who can run the park properly. That's most important. Then I'd paint, retrack, and basically rebuild all the rides that are already there. A good waterpark never could hurt also, but that's just my opinion.

X, also known as the death of Arrow Dynamics.
Intamin AG, slightly ahead of our modernized times.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 8:55 AM
Yeah. What Tek' said. Sorry, Jophish. I have CO poisoning.
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 9:43 AM
DawgByte II's avatar My own reality of what COULD be done to the park.

They have a lot of land there... a ton of it unused. One thing that they have talked about in the past (they, being upper levels of management at SFDL) was to put in a golf course. So one thing I would do is to turn the park into a resort destination by doing as they suggested & putting in a full sized 18-hole golf-course. They have all the land across the street that they own which could be used for that.

Along with that, they may need more accomidations.

As for the park itslef... I can't even begin to fathom what I'd do. The layout is retarded with the horshoe style they have. The carousel isn't showcased like most themeparks, the asphalt is sloppy, and some parts of the midways bottleneck because of a not-so-well-thoughtout-layout.

I would fix the Giant Wheel's lighting fixture, however... it's a sign of the times when the park was in its glory days & looked sweet at night.
I'd also bring back the stunt ski show in Fun Lake (they still have the high-dive pole in the middle of the lake).

This would be all marketed heavily with an emphasis on the old Darien Lake nameplate that everyone remembers.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 12:02 PM
Six Flags has alot of potential with this park. My last visit was in 2003 (moved from Rochester that year, haven't been back since). Here I go

Superman needs some new paint.

Predator needs to be retracked (it's a great ride, my first coaster).

Mind Eraser needs to be removed, and replaced by a 300 foot rocket, with elements like storm runner after the tophat.

Viper needs to be repainted.

Put an Intamin woodie back by Twister (If its campgrounds, still put it there. Who goes camping at an amuesment park?). This would attract more people to that side of the park.

install S&S quad tower on the midway.

Years after all these, install a gigantic 400 footer around Darien Lake (the lake, not the park).

SFDL is a nice park, operated by horrible people. This park has more acres than Cedar Point or SFMM, so why aren't there more rides? What needs to happen is like what's happening @ SFGav: Slowly add onto the park with areas such as the Golden Kingdom and Bugs Bunny Land. SFDL needs to bring the park out to the lake it's named after, and get rid of those campgrounds, they are useless. It seems the park has been going downhill since SF took over in 1999 (Superman was already in the making prior to the takeover). Under previous ownership, the park put in 3 roller cosaters (Predator, Mind Eraser, boomerang) in 8 years. Even if 2 of those were clones, they are still coasters. Now, it'll be the year 2006, 7 years since the instalation of Superman, and still, no coaster. 2007, 8 years since Superman, better have something in store. If not, I just might file for a loan and buy the park myself. Then, I'll show SF what kind of potential this park had.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:04 PM
I'd see for SFDL...

A new slide tower for the water park, with 4 body slides and 2 family raft rides, from Proslide. (If a small water park near Montreal could afford that... I'm sure its not that expensive!). That would add capacity as well as give a shot in the arm of the water park.

Flat rides? A Zamperla rockin tug, 2-3 "modern" flat rides.

Coasters? A family coaster of some kind and new trains for Predator. If that doesn't work, remove Predator and built a new woodie instead.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:21 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar Based on my visit in 2004, I wouldn't change much. Just little things.

I still don't think you guys give enough credit to the cute little park you have up there.


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Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:51 PM
rollergator's avatar Based on discussions I had with the *employees* who worked there (not naming anyone in specific, just in case), that park has some pretty poor upper-management personnel. I had a REALLY off-day there, and I *might* have chalked it up to it being early in the season...until talking to a couple people who were more familiar with the place (due to being employed there).

I throw it in the same kettle as Frontier City and the former SFAW: really good rides, LOUSY management...makes for employees who are oftentimes less-than-friendly to the guests (myself excluded of course, LOL), NOT happy to be there, and under-motivated...

I have to feel sorry for the people who work at those parks, and the locals who have little/no options as to what park(s) to go to...

Predator CLEARLY needs new trains. Supes needs to run at ALL times. Staff needs to feel like part of a "team", a successful team...

Finally, note that I've been to SFDL *once*. That should clue you all in to the fact that I am *not* the best person to judge...but my experience there means that next time I'm in the area, I'm planning on going in for: multiple rides on Supes, a credit lap on Viper (since NEITHER of those two were running), and I'm getting the HECK out of there ASAP after that. Martin's and Seabreeze are much more likely contenders for my time, and I *need* to get back to PCW again - that place was *fabulous*.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:04 PM
I've actually had four pretty good days at that park. Not the greatest (tons of room for improvement) but still a nice little park. But Martin's? Aside from the little corner of the park with Silver Comet and Nitro, I could care less about that park.


italianstallion said:
install S&S quad tower on the midway.

I don't mind the S&S tower idea but 4 towers is way too much for the park. They'd do fine with a 2-tower combo ride. As much as I hate saying this (I'm not a huge fan of Intamin), I'd almost want to go with one of their drop towers, especially with one of the largest S&S towers in the world less than an hour away.


This park has more acres than Cedar Point or SFMM, so why aren't there more rides?

A lot of the land is eaten up by the campground /hotel area.

-- sorry to not pick up on jokes, definately no hard feelings over here --

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:30 PM
Another SFDL whine thread ...

Re-track/re-train Predator. Try to increase the number of concerts that are booked, keep that summer schedule as full as possible. That's about it.

If you're really looking for huge capital improvements, first thing would be to cluster the waterpark a little better and add some more high-capacity slides. Maybe add a giant-sized flat with some people-eater capacity to ensure that people aren't TOO bored in the park pre-concert, although it's not really required on non-concert days.

As Gonch said, it's a great little park ... key word = "little"


Brett, Resident Launch Whore Anti-Enthusiast (the undiplomatic one)
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Sunday, October 23, 2005 8:10 PM
DawgByte II's avatar ...strange... not that many say "Another Astroworld Thread"... or "Another Dollywood thread"... but anytime SFDL is brought up... it's always downplayed.

I've had uber-good visits to the park, so I can pick apart the good & the bad... but the last year ('04) I went to the park, I found it to be a lot more disappointing than anything else. I TRIED & did make the best of it, but I found it virtually impossible to spend the entire day from opening to closing there without getting... well... bored. I don't know if it was the lack of lines that made the re-rides get a little tiring, or if it was the same-old, same-old... but I remember a lot of times going... getting there about 20 minutes before the gates opened for the parking lot all the way until after the laser show at 10:10pm.

What lost the lustre? I seriously think it's partial customer service, partial lack-of crowds to help eat up time, and partial "same old-same old flavor".

The park hasn't kept up with the times of other parks of equal or greater size... it's like a time-warp back in the 80's. I can see the mullets walking all over the midways.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005 8:23 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

DawgByte II said:
...strange... not that many say "Another Astroworld Thread"... or "Another Dollywood thread"... but anytime SFDL is brought up... it's always downplayed.

Because without fail, it's always the same 2 or 3 culprits rehashing the same old, same old.

And also, seemingly without fail, it's always odd complaints or silly wishlists. I mean look at the original post suggestions. Let me sum them up:

- Rip down the two coasters I don't like. Add 3 B&M's.
- Ignore suggested safety requirements on S:ROS
- Add an S&S Tower
- Paint Viper and run the third train

Come on! Do I even need to dig any deeper than that?

This threads are brushed off because:

- The same handful of people start them and reply to them
- The ideas contained are ridiculous
- The park isn't nearly as bad as a few of you guys think it is

The only thing wrong with the park is the same thing that plagues the rest of the chain. Management and customer service.

For a park of it's size in the area that it's in, SFDL is exactly what it needs to be.

Sorry you local guys are bored or whatever, but the more these things get posted the less interested others are and the less seriously you guys are taken.

It's getting dangerously close to BatwingSFA territory.

*** Edited 10/24/2005 12:39:41 AM UTC by Lord Gonchar***


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