Six Flags America under a microscope as local park to Snyder

Posted Monday, April 10, 2006 9:22 AM | Contributed by coasterguts

Details concerning parades and guest service changes have taken on added import this year for Six Flags America for its seven-month season. Not far away, the chief individual stockholder and board chairman of Six Flags Inc., Redskins owner Daniel Snyder, will be watching the progress closely. Over the past 32 years, the 133-acre spot along Route 214 has been a wildlife preserve and a water park. Now part of a larger play by Snyder to build a family entertainment business, park employees -- from janitors to Bugs Bunny and Batman and the hundreds of workers brought in for the summer -- are on notice that the customer will be entertained.

Read more from The Washington Post.

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Monday, April 10, 2006 1:34 PM
As stated in my trip report, I definitely experienced some of the mandatory "streetmosphere duty" yesterday as an attractive young woman in western costume asked me who I thought was winning a game of air hockey that my friends were playing. She stayed there for a few minutes until the game concluded. It was totally unexpected.
Monday, April 10, 2006 2:12 PM
Nothing like what I saw... I saw Foghorn having a dance off against a teenager. The teen walked away. He couldn't compete with Foghorn. I saw Daffy in the gift shop, he was a little perplexed by the spinning Superman that was dangling from the ceiling. I would like to see the Super Heros do more Super Hero stuff instead of just standing in front of the Batman Stunt Show. Perhaps stop in the middle of the path and strike a pose or something whenever they see a strange looking creature walk by.
Monday, April 10, 2006 4:50 PM
"Corporate people will be here" on Saturday, Haenn said in one of his final pep talks, but "you want to impress the guests, not the corporate people.

That's exactily the kind thing to say to help change the employee's attitude and morale. If your boss want's you to put the guests over the visiting upper management, that's got to tell you what they find to be important.

Ummm...This is todays positive comment from me about SF.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006 12:57 AM
The uppers at the park really care about it. I talk to one of them almost every time at the park and he's always asking what I think about the park on the given day or making sure I've noticed some changes that have been made... and it's not just small talk, he's really interested. Another that I talked to recently just talked so passionatly about the park... they really do care.. and they ARE aware of the problems (employee's loosing their "perk" by mid season for example). They know the risk and they are trying everything to prevent it.

If SFA can turn it around this year, they have a HUGE population base they can tap into and could become a major competitor in the local market... but it all depends on how well they run the park THROUGHOUT the season... not just for the first few weekends.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006 6:53 PM
Enjoy the park this year, because the land will be sold by December and SFA will not see a 2007 season...
Tuesday, April 11, 2006 10:17 PM
I concur. Its Wabbit season.
Tuesday, April 11, 2006 11:09 PM
If they fail to take RoS to another park, I'm chaining myself to the sucker...the first steel coaster I fell in LOVE with....this wasn't just coasterlust, this was the REAL thing, baby...

*** This post was edited by rollergator 4/12/2006 10:47:10 AM ***

Wednesday, April 12, 2006 10:47 AM
And apparently SROS is unlikely to be relocated because a coaster on that scale has never been relocated. ;)

It would be a shame to lose SFA. I honestly did not enjoy the park all that much when I visited about 5 years ago. Actually I found my capacity crowd visit to AstroWorld last fall to be much more enjoyable, but a park is a park. And there are some nice rides there.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006 12:49 PM
I cling to the words of Terry Praether who said in one of the news articles that he didn't relocate himself and his family to close the park.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006 1:53 PM
I think before SF closes the park, they'll sell of all or part of the "excess" land around it. That of course will be developed to the bursting point, and the people who live/work/shop there will turn around and blame the park for the traffic, noise, and congestion they have to deal with everyday.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006 1:55 PM
That would be the Washington D.C. way.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006 2:21 PM
I don't wanna see SFA close either. Selling off excess land at SFA could be ok, so long as it doesn't landlock the park for future expansion.

Wasn't there supposed to be some kind of study ready by the end of March as to the value of each SF property in terms of land? I'm curious to see what the estimated value of the land at SFA is given the insane prices real estate goes for in the Baltimore-Washington area.*** This post was edited by Rescue131 4/12/2006 2:23:52 PM ****** This post was edited by Rescue131 4/12/2006 9:39:20 PM ***

Wednesday, April 12, 2006 2:53 PM
One estimate, before the study, was $150 million and I believe that was before improvements.

Found the interview that Terry gave a local paper.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006 9:43 PM
I had a chance to talk with Terry Praether tonight. I must say that this guy is the real deal. If anyone can turn things atound for SFA, I think he can. He was out in the park at various locations the entire time I was at the park, from about 4 till closing and then he was at the gate asking guest if the had a good time and thanking them for coming. I really have a good feeling about the new skipper of SFA.
Thursday, April 13, 2006 2:00 PM
Never say never, of course, but wasn't the rumor/statement that SFA would close after this season posted on 4/1/06?

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