Meal time At SFMM !!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 1:34 AM

LostKause said:
Don't parks look for someone qualified in the food industry when hiring a foods manager? Each department, such as rides, foods, games, entertainment, ect. has someone overseeing that department who should be competent at their job.

I'm sure they do. Seems to me that F&B would be the one place that's easiest to make cuts and demand more.

Even the best leaders will fail with their hands tied.

With CF the problem seems so widespread and consistently bad that I gotta believe it's coming from somewhere above the park level.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 1:51 AM

"Thank you for admitting you have a pro-SFMM bias."

Yes, I do. My bias comes from the 25 years of good experiences I have had there. Just like your anti-SFMM bias comes from the years of bad experiences you have had there. No matter how many negative comments I read about the park, as long as I still enjoy it, I will continue to go there.

"I value my money, which is why I spend it where I feel I get the most value for it."

So do I. That is why I go to SFMM so much. I get a lot of entertainment there for not very much money.

As far as park food, I think the majority of what I've seen is a ripoff. I said most of what I think about this in my KBF, 3/19/09 trip report. But to summarize, I think the parks I go to have started to cross the line from just having high prices, to blatant gouging. The 25% discount I get at SFMM helps, but the prices are still way too high. I have always received good service at KBF though.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 2:03 AM

I've been to SFMM 3 times, over 3 different years. Took me that much time to ride every coaster there, as they were all closed for an entire visit at one time or another.

IMO, the place just doesn't do it for me. I guess if I went back now, with a different outlook on spending the day somewhere, and not just trying to get in, ride, and leave (happens when you're pressed for time on vacation...), I might think differently. I don't know though, I mean, I like flat rides and SFMM pretty much has none.

I'm really with Moosh on this - I wouldn't feel I was getting any sort of value. I used to visit every year when I had a Six Flags a half hour away (SFO/SFWoA) and could get a season pass for $50, but even then I felt ripped off. :-|

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 2:40 AM

Jeff said:
Well that must mean it never happens!

Jeff, why even say that? This whole thread is subjective and based on personal experience. There is no definitive answer. Why put words in my mouth?

Last edited by SFMMAddict, Tuesday, March 24, 2009 2:42 AM
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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 6:14 AM

My worst dining experience at SFMM was a $11 burger about the size of a hockey puck and cold fries. Even my Coke felt watered down. I felt ripped off. I don't remember liking anything at a Six Flags park with the exception of some stuff at SFOG.

Now I don't mind spending around $8 or $9 on a huge, yummy Thanksgiving meal at Holiday World with all the free soda you can drink. You get your money's worth, plus you generally get MUCH better service. :) I don't mind waiting (within reason) and paying a little more for food that I KNOW is going to be worth it. :) Then again lines bother me if they are not moving, especially at a walk-up window.

Speedy, courteous service, and quality food go hand-in-hand with me. If you get both then you know the park is doing something right. :)

-Tina

Last edited by coasterqueenTRN, Tuesday, March 24, 2009 6:17 AM
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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 6:47 AM

Lord Gonchar said:
This one hits home with me. Jacked up prices and crap quality don't bug me nearly as much as the incompetent and inefficient service does. While parks have not lost much (any?) money from me due to pricing or quality, they have missed a few bucks because I just don't have the patience.

Full agreement, I don't mind paying too much for overpriced crap if I can get it quickly and get back to task at the park. We have walked away from glacial lines and waited until after we were done at the park to eat. This probably isn't the norm for the average park goer or even an option if you're there with kids. But I have seen people storm out of slow food lines in anger.

The food issue has been pretty consistantly bad with CF parks but since we're picking on SF parks via SFMM they've always been a mixed bag for me. SFOT in particular used to have decent food service ops Back when I worked there in '99 they allowed employees on shift to eat at the food locations in the park. If you worked in the back of the park near Shockwave it was easier than going all the way to the cafeteria, and they gave us a 40% discount on the food. The only time this was a problem was on a Saturday if you took lunch around noon or 1. We mainly would eat at Gator's which was about a 12 minute walk from my ride, could eat and get back in time without a rush. It was pretty good too, I still get cravings for those buffalo chicken tenders there occasionally.

Anyway the point of that whole thing is that efficient food service in a park IS possible! Not sure if it's still the case but they were still doing fine when I visited about 6 years ago. I've heard some complaints about ride ops at SFOT, but any recent input of the food service?

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:39 AM

I had a meal at Six Flags America last spring and it was consistent with what others are reporting from other parks, except I thought the quantity and quality of the food itself was pretty good.

I had a cheesesteak sandwich, fries and a drink and the cheesesteak took a long time to make. Fortunately I was the only one in line and the guy making the sandwich talked to me the entire time, so it was a pleasant wait. But had I been 3 deep in a line, I likely wouldn't have been too happy.

I was surprised by the cost at around $13 total, but I really couldn't complain about the size of the portions and the taste. I enjoyed the meal.

I guess for me, I don't mind waiting a while if the food is good, particularly if I am paying a lot for it. But that may only apply when I am the only one in line... I still really hate waiting in lines. :)

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 10:25 AM

I'm a Graphic Designer and the motto is "Cheap, fast, good. Pick two." SF & CF food services give you none.

Gonch is dead red on all points. The fact that we are NOT getting value, and are willing to give that up, we are NOT getting quality, and are OK with that, then we better damn well get fast and friendly service, and we're not. It's a 3-way fail, and I won't be subjected to it. Not at 6 Flags, Cedar Fair or anywhere else. I do remember the BBQ place at Hershey being good.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 10:52 AM

LostKause said:
Don't parks look for someone qualified in the food industry when hiring a foods manager?

Cedar Fair has a long history of hiring from within, which frequently means that the ranking managers aren't anywhere even remotely best at what they do. I mean, the CEO's entire professional life is wrapped in that company, which explains why he's in over his head.

Cedar Point hired in some really good people to run the franchise locations. One was the corporate level guy in charge of training for Cheesecake Factory, which is probably the best service I've seen in any chain. Under his watch, Famous Dave's and Friday's really stepped up. Unfortunately they couldn't retain him, and Friday's at least has gone back the way of sucking (Dave's seemed OK).

The guy who runs the rest of the food operations at CP is a lifer. He expressed to me once in an e-mail that they were going to experiment with using runners in various counter service locations, as if to imply it was a revolutionary idea (that fast food has been doing for decades). I think he was responsible for there not being burgers as a catering option until recently as well.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 8:12 PM

If this CP foods lifer is the same guy who was in the position in 2006, he doesn't give a crap about the people he serves. I had a very large problem with him when I worked there. I encountered his bad attitude when I went in to tell him about a health code violation that I had noticed (which really grossed me out), and instead of him showing interest in fixing the problem like he should have, he threatined my job at the park and tried to phisically intimidat me. He was not successful.

As always when I offer a complaint or suggestion to someone who is serving me, I was very polite and careful with my words. He was irate and very angry after two minutes into the conversation. I found it disturbing on the inside, and funny on the outside.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 8:26 PM

SFMMAddict asked Jeff: Why put words in my mouth?

Could be worse: we could put Six Flags food in your mouth! (Well I couldn't...I'm not visiting any of their parks this year)

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:06 PM

Me neither, Moosh.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:14 PM

We're like two peas in a pod, my man!

(I mean that in a non-sexual way, of course)

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:32 PM

Well, you are a little more eloquent than I.

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