The end of Paddlewheel at Cedar Point

Monday, August 15, 2011 12:28 PM
delan's avatar

Ensign Smith said:

kRaXLeRidAh said:
If you're really distressed about something like that, you probably don't have any real adult problems to deal with. Pray tell me, what is that like? Would love to know.

Oh, please. Like it's impossible to have a normal, average life full of normal, average problems and still really care about the existence of something like a paddleboat ride.

Your reaction struck me as exceptionally crass.

Yikes.....I have never seen (Or read, rather) Ensign mad

Monday, August 15, 2011 12:39 PM

But what happens when your kids are older than 12 and have a cast iron stomach? Do you keep going back to Legoland or do you then go to parks that are geared for the older set?

I have mixed emotions for losing PWE if it is done. Yes anyone can ride it, but my 6 and 12 year old sons do not want to ride it because it is boring. That is what I struggle with in terms of family rides. They are great for families with little kids. Heck I loved going to Disney a few years back. It was a blast because we could do things that they liked together as a family. However, a few years later and the Disney'esque rides are not fun for them. They have moved on to bigger and better things. At least in my family it was a pretty narrow window for the family style rides. So do I care if PWE goes away? A little bit of me is sad because I remember riding it and enjoying all of the jokes, but since my family is not interested in riding it I won't be that upset if it goes away.

And as far as calling the loss of the lagoons tragic - that seems a bit far to me. In today's world I really don't think many people going to the park care about them.

Monday, August 15, 2011 12:46 PM

I will be stunned if the lagoons go away completely. I think the environmental folks will have something to say about that.

When my kids do have the cast iron stomach there are about...what...60 or so other rides they can enjoy at Cedar Point. (And, when they are more into thrill rides down here in Florida then we have a few small parks to choose from as well.)

If they build some more interesting/engaging "family rides" then perhaps, as I said, I would be less inclined to worry over PWE. But, in the meantime...keep it because there really are a limited number of rides right now that fit the bill.

I'd be willing to say that PWE is a more interesting ride than the Mark Twain boat at Disney (though not up to par with the Jungle Cruise). I say those rides still have a place.

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:03 PM

Shades said:
...since my family is not interested in riding it I won't be that upset if it goes away.

Are you assuming your kin won't have their own families someday?

Brandon | Facebook

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:09 PM
Raven-Phile's avatar

wahoo skipper said:

I'd be willing to say that PWE is a more interesting ride than the Mark Twain boat at Disney (though not up to par with the Jungle Cruise). I say those rides still have a place.

Nothing touches Jungle Cruise. Nothing.

R.I.P LeRoi Moore 9/7/61 - 8/19/2008
Monday, August 15, 2011 1:16 PM

In 10+ years I cannot imagine that there will be any interest at all with their kids in riding PWE. If the parent (my kid) has never had any interest in riding it I don't see their children wanting to ride it. And even if Grandpa (me) wants to take them on it and it is gone it is not worth me getting worked up over it. The ride has no value to a little kid except for being on the water. The jokes mean nothing to a 2-4 year old. The horrible animatronics mean nothing to a 2-4 year old.

I guess the problem with PWE is that it has been gutted and they either restore it to what it used to be (which won't happen) or get rid of it and replace it with something better. Not saying the dinosaur thing is any better or worse but keeping a horrible PWE around just for sentimental value does not make sense to me.

Damn - I am a cold hearted son of a gun.

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:22 PM

Perhaps if you found (even faking it a tad) more wonder & excitement in PWE, your kids might have as well.

Though I agree that it's a neutered version of its old self, which wasn't exactly Disney-level to begin with.

Brandon | Facebook

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:32 PM

It isn't just about the ride...or the half hearted animatronics for that matter. Nor is it even about the jokes. It is about an attraction in the park I don't have to think about as a parent. I don't have to worry about baby/kid swap and I don't have to pick my kid up and load them in and out of little cars, rockets, boats...whatever. I can take on a diaper bag or backpack and not worry about that stuff either.

No, a 2 year old isn't going to get the jokes but they can enjoy the surroundings. My four year old understood a number of the jokes and found them funnier than I did.

Let's be honest...Small World at Disney isn't exactly the most advanced ride in the world but people continue to ride it year after year as much for nostalgia as for anything else.

If nothing else, maybe they should figure out a place to put a small station up around the Iron Dragon (that ride could sacrifice some queue line..if nothing else) and keep the boats as a means of transportation between the front and back of the park.

I don't expect people on a coaster fan site to be all that worked up about the removal of a boat ride because maybe that means you can get your 500 foot B & M Dozen looping rollercoaster. But, at this point I think even Kinzel must realize that coasters aren't necessarily the answer least for Cedar Point that is filthy with them.

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:49 PM
Jeff's avatar

Everything he said. I honestly don't care if my kid is into it or not... it's totally for my benefit.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:50 PM

Is anyone going to stop going to the park because PWE is gone? Probably very few if any.

Is it possible that a dinosaur exhibit might draw more people than the removal of PWE looses? I'd guess that with the up-charge thrown in this is a no-brainer from a business stand point. You attract more people and you make more money off of their visit.

Monday, August 15, 2011 1:56 PM

jive2 said:
Is anyone going to stop going to the park because PWE is gone? Probably very few if any.

The same could be said for a lot of former attractions at CP. If they keep removing one category of ride and replacing it with another category, it becomes a problem.

You attract more people and you make more money off of their visit.

You're making some pretty wild assumptions there. This dinosaur attraction isn't remotely unique. There are 3 such attractions in the Detroit area alone. By the time CP jumps on the dinosaur fad bandwagon, it'll already have completed several laps.

Brandon | Facebook

Monday, August 15, 2011 2:14 PM
rollergator's avatar

PWE is about "rounding out" the attraction mix. Provides an alternative to rides, and something "children of all ages" are going to find enjoyable. There's simply not enough around for grandma and grandpa to do at most mega-parks. One of the main reasons I hyped the interactives so hard about 12-15 years ago.

Nothing else can or could take the place of that kind of attraction. It's a mistake to take it out.

Last edited by rollergator, Monday, August 15, 2011 2:14 PM
Monday, August 15, 2011 2:35 PM

delan said: Yikes.....I have never seen (Or read, rather) Ensign mad

That got an lol out of me.

I can get my panties in a bunch, the same as the next fellow...


My author website:

Monday, August 15, 2011 2:42 PM

Not sure if Jeff was being sarcastic about my post or not. But, another thing a ride like PWE does is add to the "value proposition". Maybe it isn't filling up the queue line but when I can nearly walk onto that ride and get a good 10 minutes or so out of it without having to wait then it also does something, subconsciously anyway. When I look back on my day of waiting in lines I think...well...I did get on to WWE with the family and enjoy it.

Which reminds about "not much to an attraction". The "Peoplemover" (Tomorrowland Transit Authority) is really not much of a ride at all, if you think about it. There is some narration but the ride is primarily about showing off Tomorrowland. I'm not sure if I have EVER been to the Magic Kingdom and not ridden that ride. And, most of those times is has been as close to a walk on as you are going to get at WDW. But, you know what? We always feel good about the fact that we didn't have a long wait. We always enjoy seeing the sights. And, we are always glad we had a little time to get off our feet.

Can you market something like that? No, of course not. But, Tomorrowland would have a void, in my opinion, if that ride wasn't there. In fact, Tomorrowland in California DOES have a void since their reincarnation of that ride was a disaster.

If the Dinosaurs really do attact people to Cedar Point then what kind of value are those folks going to think they got out of it? You plunk down $100+ bucks to get into the park and then you plunk down another $20 (family) to WALK through that attraction. I know KI is reporting that they were pleased with the response. But before Cedar Point invests in dinos maybe they should wait and see how KI does with it next year. I'd be interested to know how many people will repeat the experience...for another $20.

Monday, August 15, 2011 3:40 PM

Paramount did the same thing at Carowinds. When they took out the Sternwheeler paddleboat, to me it was like ripping the heart out of the park. I've never forgiven Paramount for that. In fact, they took out 90% of the lagoons and ponds and paved over them. Pirate Island is only a distant memory for many folks.

Monday, August 15, 2011 4:07 PM

Gator got it. So did Swamp Foxer. Alternatives and uniqueness are rare. I can go a mile from the house and ride a big coaster. I gotta go to Cedar Point to ride PWE and real coal fired steam engines.

Monday, August 15, 2011 4:25 PM

Is the new for Halloween 2011 "Blood on the Bayou" on the island or do you think this is some type of scary boat ride?

The boat ride is one of those attractions that I have ridden A LOT this year, because of my kids. It's true A LOT of the props that use to be there, are gone, but it's still fun, it's a good family attraction, it's unique, etc.

I see Cedar Point adding Dinosaurs on the island...if they do it right, they can still keep the boats, and have even more props to make fun of when going around the island.

I like that they make fun of the stuff going on around them. Last year when the Shoot The Rapids was not open, they had 100's of jokes about it!

I think they have MANY ways of still keeping the boats.

I do see the entrance to Dinosaurs being over there, since that is right next to/in one of the biggest family/kid's area in the park.


Monday, August 15, 2011 4:50 PM
Jeff's avatar

I wasn't being sarcastic... My kid is all of 17 months old, and when I do stuff with him, it's for me. He won't remember much anyway, but I want to have those times with him.

That's at the meat of every one of these discussions about the diversity of rides, whether it's at Cedar Point or somewhere else. I want to do stuff with my little guy. If a park becomes primarily about coasters and big rides, what does that leave? You can't ignore that fact that Disney has always been the opposite, focusing more on family attractions and less on super rides, and that's part of the reason that people will drop major coin and spend a week there.

And don't give me that "apples and oranges" nonsense. Families have been funding big roller coasters for years, even if they aren't the people riding them. They're the groups with 2.2 kids buying more tickets and hotel rooms.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

Monday, August 15, 2011 5:42 PM

Chief, I dont think anyone can express my thoughts better than what you did. You hit the nail on the head. Also, I hope you didn't think I meant they would fill in the lagoons. To clarify, I just meant that they wouldn't be put into any noticeable use. In my opinion, that would be such a shame to have that great resource available just to use it not even remotely to its potential.

I haven't been inside Dinosaurs Alive and I don't know who here has but just from the few dinosaurs they have around the park to promote it, they don't look impressive. I suspect that the success the park says they have is from people willing to try it once but then won't want to pay again. This doesn't sound like something you want to remove an existing family ride for.

Last edited by RideOn, Monday, August 15, 2011 5:43 PM
Monday, August 15, 2011 8:27 PM

...and that was one of the great things about the way they did it at Kings Island. The entire attraction takes up what was nothing more than wooded space and largely abandoned pieces of old attractions.

Jeff, you remind me of a situation that came up in our family a few years ago. My whole family converged for a week in the Los Angeles area, and we wanted to spend a day in a major amusement park. Sister-In-Law had a distinctly negative opinion of the Disney colossus, and so was initially lobbying for Knott's Berry Farm. I thought that rather odd, considering the ages of her children (I forget the numbers, but at the time, $KID_1 was around 50" tall while $KID_2 was still non-ambulatory and largely non-communicative.

Then I pointed out that at Knott's, there is a handful of rides that $KID_1 could ride, nothing at all that $KID_2 could ride, and pretty much nothing that all of us could ride. Over at Disneyland there is one ride in the entire park that $KID_1 could *not* ride, and that about half the rides could actually accommodate $KID_2.

It's not that it's appropriate for Cedar Point to have the kind of ride mix that Disneyland does, but it is important to recognize that there is more to "accommodating families" than simply throwing a bunch of undersized Hampton and Zamperla rides into a kiddie ghetto and calling it good. I think it's even more than doing what you see at Hersheypark and MarineLand, where they have kiddie rides that can accommodate adults. What really works much better is to have rides that can actually appeal (perhaps for different reasons) to a broad range of people. The amusement ride equivalent of "The Muppet Show", if you will.

I'd rather see Paddlewheel get a rehab. Maybe even bring back the hostile Indians. (that unintelligible recording wasn't always about fur!). Simply removing the ride would be about as bad an idea as removing Ocean Motion would have been.

Hmmm...maybe that should be the model for "fixing" Paddlewheel...

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

    /X\        _      *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
/XXX\ /X\ /X\_ _ /X\__ _ _ _____


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