Kings Dominion Hours - Closed weekdays in August?

Monday, July 12, 2021 6:59 PM

I live about 3-hours away (with no traffic) from Kings Dominion however I have not been there in at least 10-years. I have passed it plenty of times on my way to Busch Gardens over the years. A few weeks ago, I finally made it back there on a Thursday and Friday and had a great time. The crowds were low and the weather was awesome (Low humidity and mid 70's!).

I rode Dominator, Intimidator 305, and Twisted Timbers many times and they were all awesome as expected. I ended up buying a season pass as I plan to go a few more times this year. I was looking at the Kings Dominion calendar and noticed they were CLOSED most weekdays in August. I was like WHAT?!? That can't be right. The park and Soak City closed on the hottest days of the year before kids go back to school? That makes no sense. I sent Kings Dominion an email and they said "yes the current calendar is correct, however check back in later weeks as the dates may change." Could you imagine Cedar Point closing on weekdays in August? This is crazy.

When I sent that email, they were closed all weekdays in August (according to. the calendar). I check today and they extended it everyday until August 15th. I know that Kings Dominion never opened at all in 2020, while others like Busch Gardens and Six Flags opened in July 2020. I'm wondering if Cedar Fairs doesn't think it makes financial sense to keep it open on these days due to attendance? I don't know. Thoughts?

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Monday, July 12, 2021 7:24 PM
kpjb's avatar

They open when they can get enough people to staff the park. It's not any more complicated than that.


Hi

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Monday, July 12, 2021 7:31 PM
kpjb's avatar

Also, until a couple weeks ago CP was also closed weekdays in August. Schedules this year are fluid. As staffing changes they'll update the calendar.


Hi

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Monday, July 12, 2021 8:13 PM

That makes total sense. Thanks kpjb :) We live in Maryland and Ocean City and the restaurants simply do not have the workers to handle the demand. Thus the long wait times when you go to a restaurant.

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021 8:26 AM

This is what happens when you let schools open before Labor Day.

https://wtop.com/virginia/2019/03/kings-dominion-law-repeal-means-v...t-earlier/

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021 11:12 AM
Vater's avatar

Ugh. I remember every fall when I was in elementary school, it would start either after Labor Day or in late August. I never understood why it never started on the same day year after year until 7th grade (the law passed in 1986 when I was going into Jr. high).

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021 12:19 PM

I feel like even in the before times, most seasonal parks went to Friday-Sunday operations by the third week of August, save for some of the major parks like Cedar Point

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021 12:52 PM
kpjb's avatar

Even back in the 80s/90s, Kennywood had "dark week" the week or so before Labor Day where the park didn't open until 5pm.

Later they just started closing that week.


Hi

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021 2:07 PM

In one of my first coaster trips, before we knew how to plan, we bought plane tickets and then discovered that Kennywood and Idlewild were closed the last Monday in August. So Idlewild got sacrificed and we ended up at Kennywood on a Sunday, which was definitely a lose-lose. On the other hand, I got to visit Fallingwater.

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Saturday, July 17, 2021 8:22 PM

hambone, thanks for the good info and the link to the kids having to head back early to school. That makes sense.

Kings Dominion is located in Doswell, VA. Which is located right off I95, but kind of in the middle of nowhere, an hour from any city. My question is: Where does Kings Dominion get their staff? I suppose from the local kids in the area, however they can't work due to the school opening. My local park, Six Flag America, which is in the Washington -VA area, has hundreds of kids within bus and walking distance that that can hire.

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Saturday, July 17, 2021 9:32 PM
Jeff's avatar

I wouldn't call Richmond "nowhere." I flew there to visit the park.


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

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Saturday, July 17, 2021 9:53 PM

KD is about the same to Richmond as KI is to Cincinnati, about 30 miles. Richmond’s population is 1..2 and Cincinnati’s is 1.7. Maybe in the 70’s there was nothing there but farm land, but now both places are part of a vast northern suburbia with plenty of high schools.

Last edited by RCMAC, Saturday, July 17, 2021 10:22 PM
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Sunday, July 18, 2021 12:44 PM
Vater's avatar

Yeah, it’s 30 minutes north of Richmond and about the same distance south of Fredericksburg. There are a lot of areas it can pull from.

Last edited by Vater, Sunday, July 18, 2021 7:03 PM
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Sunday, July 18, 2021 4:45 PM

Schools have become baby sitters. That’s why they open so early. No other reason to send kids to school in summer.

KD is only open 8 hours a day and no nighttime hours. While nearby Busch has returned to normal hours. I usually go to KD several times a year. It’s a gorgeous park with the best racing coaster. But not this year with the current mismanagement.

The park is in prime location off one of the busiest interstates in the county. Just north of Richmond but definitely serving the DC metro as well. . But they also have to battle with Busch for staff and customers.

KD really is missing its potential from owner neglect. Paramount reeked havoc on the park. CF initially made investments but not so much lately.

Last edited by super7*, Sunday, July 18, 2021 8:15 PM
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Sunday, July 18, 2021 8:48 PM
kpjb's avatar

I don't get the babysitter argument as to why they send kids to school mid-August. They have to go a certain number of days, so how is it babysitting in August but wouldn't be if they started 2 weeks later and ended 2 weeks later?


Hi

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Sunday, July 18, 2021 8:56 PM
OhioStater's avatar

Not only is there a mandated number of school days, but also teacher in-service days, holiday breaks, etc....not to mention whatever quirks are written into teacher contracts.

Here's the reality; you wait until after Labor Day to start school, and the same people who complain on Facebook about it will complain when Christmas break is shorter, when there is school on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, or when school is still in session after Memorial Day (or all of the above).

The earlier a school year starts, the greater flexibility a Board of Education has in crafting the year's schedule.

Our school system starts Mid-August, but we're also out before Memorial Day. Our kids have the day before Thanksgiving off, a decent Christmas break, and a number of 4-day weekends (Friday and Monday off) spread throughout the school year giving the kids a chance to take a small break from everything.

I'll take it.

Last edited by OhioStater, Sunday, July 18, 2021 9:52 PM

Promoter of fog.

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Sunday, July 18, 2021 10:05 PM
Jeff's avatar

Anywhere you expect to take snow days, starting earlier definitely has advantages.


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

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Monday, July 19, 2021 12:36 AM
OhioStater's avatar

Maybe years ago, but those snow days are also becoming a relic.

Since moving here 11 years ago, we have had only one year that we hit the magic number of 5 weather days (and never beyond). But now in Ohio there are "blizzard bag" days that teachers can use to assign daily lessons online. In other words, predictable days off are no longer "snow days"....sorry kids!...., and in our district (and most others) the idea of having more than 5 days off due to weather is no longer a thing.

Thanks, Al Gore!

Last edited by OhioStater, Monday, July 19, 2021 12:42 AM

Promoter of fog.

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Monday, July 19, 2021 12:35 PM

super7* said:

It’s a gorgeous park with the best racing coaster. But not this year with the current mismanagement.

KD really is missing its potential from owner neglect.

I can't think of any park in the Paramount purchase that would have been better off now without Cedar Fair ownership.

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Monday, July 19, 2021 12:53 PM

I don't get the babysitting argument in this context either. 176 days is 176 days whether you start mid-August or after Labor Day. My district has a rather predictable schedule. Our beginning of the year teacher institute day is always one week after the official start of the football season. We have finals before winter break and are done before Memorial Day.

Snow days aren't really a thing in Illinois either. A few years ago that state allowed schools to schedule remote learning days due to emergency situations, i.e. snow days, in lieu of using up an emergency day. In my 19 years of teaching we only used more than two emergency days once. We used four days when the polar vortex crushed record low temperatures back in 2019.

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