O.K. now the B.S. starts to show up. GL's closing.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:08 AM

villiageidiot said:
Do you really think they really just decided this last week. Cedar Fair has already said they had a consultant hired and in that WKYC video, Richard Munch states that some of the rides will be relocated for the 2008 season! Do you really think they could have planned that in mere days? That means in about 6 months, some rides will be dismantled, transported and reassembled elsewhere. It takes time for the other parks to plan for these new attractions, surveys and the like. I think that is total bull****! This has been in the works for some time and people just don't want to admit it!


I agree,remember survey markers didn't start showing up at KD until recently but the rumors of relocation started at least a month in advance.I believe this is simply an attempt by disgruntled fans to try & accuse the CEO of a criminal action just to prevent the inevitable.

Should we now go after Burke for "insider trading" (ala Martha Stwewart) for closing down SFAW,redistributing assets & selling the land to developers? This is really getting out of hand here.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:12 AM
The stock didn't go anywhere, but it could have. The cutting of costs very often sends the value of a stock upwards and Kinzel put himself in a position to reap the rewards if they happened to come to fruition.

I see things the other way around. Instead of people letting go of some conspiracy theory that is getting supported by more and more evidence, others need to let go of this crazy illusion that Cedar Fair is perfect and deceit never comes into play. For all the armchair CEOs around here, it's amazing how the idea of dishonesty in the corporate world is denied.

^ Getting out of hand, like your years of ranting how SFA needed another coaster?

*** Edited 9/25/2007 2:13:04 PM UTC by Rob Ascough***

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:14 AM
Jeff's avatar Evidence? Evidence? A lot of hurt feelings aren't evidence.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:17 AM
For someone I've always considered to be open-minded, I'm surprised that you're so willing to dismiss an entire side of this debate.
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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:19 AM
In many ways, this reminds me of Modell moving The Browns. There might have been perfectly reasonable financial incentives for “the move”…but the emotional component was miscalculated. The difference is that The Browns captivated an entire city, including the political powers that be. The emotional component to Geauga Lake is every bit as strong for those who love this park, but there simply are not enough of you (us) to affect the type of mass outrage you so badly want.

At the time of The Brown’s move, nary a Modell supporter could be identified as they certainly could not speak freely in such a hostel political environment. The fact is that amusement park nostalgia is a niche emotion. Geagua Lake will disappear without much political outrage. Some enthusiasts will continue this debate in the years to come, but it will take place on obscure websites virtually unknown to the masses.

I do not discourage perfectly reasonable emotional response. Everybody mourns that which they love, even when others around them are unmoved. I myself am deeply saddened at the loss of the source for many a fun childhood memory. I also realize that Geagua Lake is not the Cleveland Browns in terms of mass appeal.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:24 AM
I've worked for many companies that shut down operations or moved them altogether. Most gave notice and bonuses for staying til the end.

In most cases, there was this tone: If you do not arrive the last day, you will not get the bonus and will not get unemployment because you no showed and were therefore terminated.


Great Lakes Brewery Patron...

-Mark

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:26 AM
Did anyone show up for the last day of work at Myrtle Beach? As far as I remember, the closing of that park was pretty upbeat and everyone enjoyed a last hurrah.
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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:29 AM
Same with Astroworld. And that's just amusement parks.

I've seen tons of businesses close up shop after making the announcement months earlier. Employees still showed up for work and didn't spend the day cursing out customers and vandalizing the property. I don't buy that an announcement was held back out of fear of employee backlash... not one bit. There is very little to support anything like that would have happened. In fact, I think it was worse that employees were forced to spend most of the last few months working under the dark cloud of uncertainty.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:40 AM
I don't feel as bad for the seasonals because they knew their job was over for the most part anyways. So, they should have had something else lined up. But, they let go a LOT of full timers that could have been looking elsewhere. In one of the news articles, someone from Cedar Fair said the employees that were let go were "welcome to apply for jobs at other CF properties."

I worked for a really large company once and there were lots of layoffs after a merger. The first round was reallocating people to other divisions within the company - they didn't have to "apply" for a new job. The second round was laying people off with notice. They didn't just leave that day.

I'm just hoping CF at least gave their employees some type of severance package.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:07 AM
Here is my guess at how this all went down. Sometime prior to the beginning of the year Cedar Fair had:

Plan A - Geauga Lake does gangbuster business and the question of the future of the park is not in doubt. (At that time they may have already been planning on the relocation of one or two more coasters as part of the master plan to downsize the dry side.)

Plan B - Geauga Lake shows marked improvement which gives the powers-that-be pause and consider give it at least one more season, eliminate some more rides, find other cost saving measures, etc.

Plan C - Geauga Lake sees no change, the writing is on the wall, serious staff layoffs and closure of the ride side.

But, and this is important, all of the above was intertwined and reliant on the phase-in of the Paramount Parks. Of course, it is all related and one affects the other no matter how much they try to operate the parks on an individual basis.

As the season winds down and the "actuals" become clear throughout the company I think they realize Geauga Lake is holding the rest of the company back and the difficult decision (I'm sure there was NO joy in this decision...particuarly as I hear stories of executives crying on the last day) is made to close up shop.

Now, what good...and I mean this seriously...what good would it do the company to reveal any of the above when they have no idea what is going to be the end performance of the entire company?

Jeff is right. If you tell a bunch of employees they may or may not have a job next week....let alone 2-4-6 months from now...you are going to have real problems on your hands. Is that fair to those employees? No. But, that is the way business works and I think we all know that.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:11 AM
That's the way some businesses work, not all of them. A lot of people were hearing hasty rumors and their employer did nothing to comment on those rumors. People could have been looking for new jobs in their free time but I'm sure a lot of them didn't because nothing was definite. That's not illegal but it makes Cedar Fair a lousy employer.
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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:15 AM
I've worked for Cedar Fair. They are not a lousy employer.

If those rumors really were out there why would Cedar Fair need to say anything? I've been in that type of situation before. I don't need an HR person to sit down with me and tell me I should be keeping my options open.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:31 AM
eightdotthree's avatar I am sure that the full time employees got a very nice severance package.
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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:45 AM
I would hope so, especially the ones that were there throughout all the ownership changes.
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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 12:08 PM
OhioStater's avatar Where were all the droves of people who care so much about Geagua Lake as it was fading?

At Cedar Point!

No.

One.

Went.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 12:38 PM
Why.

Do.

You.

Have to Keep.

Doing that?

It's.

Obnoxious.


My author website: mgrantroberts.com

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 12:47 PM
OhioStater's avatar I guess it's frustration :) I think Im officially stepping out of this discussion.

I understand the need for those who are upset to vent, and maybe thats all this really is.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 12:55 PM
Sorry, didn't mean to be so snappy. There's a lot of sniping going around this week.

My author website: mgrantroberts.com

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 1:22 PM
What the CRAP? What is wrong with you?

Don't you know apologizing--much less using that 'S' word--is against the TOS?

I demand his user account and all his posts be removed!

-CO :)


NOTE: Severe fecal impaction may render the above words highly debatable.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007 1:39 PM

wahoo skipper said:
I've worked for Cedar Fair. They are not a lousy employer.

Ymmv, Skipper. I've worked for CF too, at the same exact park you worked (and I think at the same exact ride), and I tell people the exact opposite. I take pride in my work, but I do not like to feel like my employer owns me and can control 95% of my lifestyle...but that's a side note to this whole discussion. The point as it relates to this topic is that CF didn't show me that they cared about their employees...not one bit.

---

Like the death of any amusement park, it's sad to see GL go, but I never really liked the park as much as I liked other parks. I've never understood the love for Big Dipper, but if it gets rescued by another park (along with all of the other coasters including villain and the lame Wolf Kabobs), I won't be as upset by the parks closure. Memories were made there, and that's what makes it sad for me.

On the bright side, the waterpark is awesome! It can only get better if it can keep good attendance. I wish it great success, but what if attendance plummits without the ride side? What if people stop going to the waterpark because they miss the coasters? What if 3 or 4 years form now their is a PR from CF stating that Geagua Lake's Wildwater Kingdom is closing because they misunderstood the importance of the rides?

---

Now on to the conspiracy stuff. My opinion isn't being swayed one way of the other, but I will say that it is very possible that it was the plan all along to close the ride side. It sure seems that they knew at least a few month ago that this was going to happen.

I acknowledge that CF lied to the public at least about when they knew the park was closing. The reasoning that they postponed the announcement in order to keep employees from offering crappy service or simply not showing up sounds like bs to me. As stated before, most employees where seasonal anyways and they knew that they were out of a job after the park closed. I am sure that the Full Time staff are being taken care of the best the law requires as well.

Yes, CF is a business. It's not hard for me to believe that sometimes businesses are capable of being dishonest in order to make a profit.

And it sure looks like DK acted dishonestly with his recent stock purchase. Even if a positive effect on the stock price from the announcement is not immediate, he will eventually benefit from buying them. I am not sure he did anything illegal. It isn't up to me to decide that. I just hope that it gets investigated as far as it needs to before coming up with whatever outcome.

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