How about wonderland in Amirillo and joyland in Lubbock. Those parks seem to pull in a steady attendance each year, they both have a great selection of classic flats as well as some pretty decent wild mouse coasters, also Joyland will be adding the old Schwarzkoph shuttle loop from SFAW next season.
Also Mgic Springs seems is a nice little amusment park in Arkansas, the Arkansas twister is AMAZING, combine that with a nice water park and a decsent variety of other coasters and flats and you have a very nice place to be for a family
I'm surprised nobody mention Knoebels. It's rare to find anybody--enthusiast or regular public dude who doesn't fall in love with the place after a visit or two. And they add something new all the time.
I wouldn't consider Lakemont on its "last legs". I'm not sure how that place makes it with the $7.95 admission but there seem to be some special cicumstances around it's operation.
I wouldn't call Knoebels a "small" park even though it has much of the atmosphere of a small park. This park is about the same size as Kennywood with similar attendance (approx 1.3 million).
As for Idlewild, this is indeed a very nice park well suited to families. It appears to combine many of the qualities of Knoebels and Holiday World. I believe that this park could use a midsized wooden coaster and a darkride of some kind. Maybe they should look into relocating Zingo if Bells goes under.
I would also like to see Idlewild add a Christmas theme area some day. They already do a Christmas in July event each year and currently the closest Santa Claus park to it is about 500 miles away. What a park that would be! Misterrogers, Fairy tale characters, and Santa all in one park.
I would agree that Knoebel's has the small park feel, but with as many people and cars I saw on my one visit there, I would have thought I was pulling up to Cedar Point! I loved the atmosphere of the place though.
I can't believe no one has mentioned Michigan's Adventure. They've been setting record attendance levels for the past 3 seasons. I'm not sure about this past season though. I don't think those numbers have been officially released yet.
Isn't there some kind of relationship between Lakemont and Blair County-- as far as ownership or operations? I guess their intent is to provide an entertainment complex with the baseball stadium, ice rink, and park all together.
If that is the case, they can get by with smaller crowds-- no shareholders to keep happy, no execs with their benefit packages. (Just taxpayer money, yay). And I think having the Dips there gives them some impetus to keep the place going, at least a little.