Williams Grove for sale

Posted Thursday, August 11, 2005 9:30 AM | Contributed by jimvid

Williams Grove owner Morgan Hughes said he hopes to sell the 155-year-old fun park to a larger amusement park operator. He said he would sell the park to the highest bidder, provided the new owner kept it as an amusement park. He says that Hershey Entertainment and Cedar Fair are the kinds of companies he hopes will be interested.

Read more from The Patroit-News.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 9:40 AM
Unfortunately, I doubt a company like Cedar Fair would buy a park like that. I hope he does find a seller, and maybe lowers his expectations a tad?
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 9:47 AM
I can see Hershey buying if they wanted to acquire the small number of patrons that frequent Williams Grove and not Hersheypark each year but definitely not Cedar Fair. Besides, I wouldn't want Williams Grove to be turned into a Cedar Fair park... that would mean the end of everything at the park, except maybe the Wildcat.
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 9:48 AM
john peck's avatar There may be a few interested, but it depends on how many see a profit with the park.
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 10:36 AM
Kennywood! Paging Kennywood! Your assistance is needed at Williams Grove...
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 11:13 AM
That park is quite profitable. They will have a buyer within 60 days.
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 11:32 AM
Is that the reason why the park looks the way it does? ;)
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 11:55 AM
I'd like to see Herco or Kennywood jump in and grab the park. I think that either would do a good job with it. Maybe spruce it up a bit. Not too much though.;)
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 12:01 PM
rollergator's avatar Hershey could "pull a Cedar Fair" and dominate the Central PA market the way CF has done with Northern Ohio...;)

The place DOES need considerable "sprucing"... ;)

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 12:50 PM
Profitable?

I was always under the impression that the revenue from speedway was what kept the property going, and if the park was left to fend for itself on the money it brings in it would have closed up shop years ago.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 12:59 PM
coasterqueenTRN's avatar I can't see Cedar Fair buying it. Hershey? Maybe. Kennywood? Maybe. :-) I just hope someone buys it.

-Tina

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 2:29 PM
I can see Hershey buying the place, they bought Dutch Wonderland... Why not just make Hershey World?

It worked for Disney, right? ;)

^Steve, who knows the parks are too far apart for a monorail to be installed.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 3:20 PM
I'm sure the Speedway is highly profitable, since Mr. Hughes wants to hang on to that business. Perhaps the park will survive under different ownership provided the Speedway stays put?
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 4:01 PM
Morgan, yes, I cal him by his first name, never had debt. He put what he had to into the park. They have great revenue from corporate picnics, and the track to this day is the #2 dirt track in the US. You would never think it, but that park will be a asset to someone.

Six Flags did not get Dutch Wonderland, as the Clarks were more inclined to sell to HERCO. Do not be surprised if Six Flags actually does a bid. That park is 'marketable' to the DC area, and for once Six Flags may be on defense.

If HERCO buys it, it will be out of defensive measures only. Kennywood has their eyes on bigger fish, but Knobels may be a suprise bidder. This could be interesting, as about 6 companies can benefit.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 4:29 PM
I was actually thinking Six Flags too. It's not too small for them (see Wyandot Lake). "Spruce up" the rides and "expand" the fledgling water park ("expand?" I should have said REBUILD) and it could be a park in teh Wyandot Lake vein.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 6:23 PM
If it is bought by a larger company it would be interesting to see what happens to the Cyclone. By the looks and feel of it last year and all my outher visits I just wonder if someone would spend the money to rebuild it or just build somthing new.

I think if someone bought it and turned it into a mid sized waterpark it could be a gold mine. Where are the nearest waterparks in the Harrisburg area? Dorney, Camelbeach and SFA?

It could be one thing they have on Hershey.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 8:04 PM
Knoebels! Cyclone is amazing now and I can only imagine what a totally insane ride it would be under the care of the big K (and I don't mean Kennywood although that would be cool too).

Let's form a protest if SFI even considers.

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Thursday, August 11, 2005 10:11 PM
I have to show my inexperience and say, I never even knew about Williams Grove until last the articles started showing up here on CB over the past week. From the pictures on their site it looks like a great little park. Reminds me personally of Americana / Lesourdsville Lake, (It's looks to be very beautiful with it's wooded, grassy areas...which is rare in many of todays parks!). Please, somebody buy this park, I'd love to visit it someday soon.
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Thursday, August 11, 2005 11:16 PM
I'm going for the first time this Tuesday, if my plans go well.

I saw a program on PA Cable Network a few years ago about the park. Mr. Hughes was very intriguing. Ever since then, I have wanted to visit WG.

I just hope that SOMEONE buys the park so that it won't have to close. I wouldn't even mind if SF bought it, even though they probably won't considering their financial situation.

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Friday, August 12, 2005 12:02 AM
Morgan was really the first guy who figured out the 'import laws', and how speed up any process of a ride sale and delivery. When a park ordered a ride from say, West Germany, Morgan started the process of paperwork that included shipping and customs procedures. When the ride was manufactured and ready, so was Morgan.

So much that he often took the unsold rides from the Oktoberfest in West Germany and set them up at Palisades Park. When that park was sold, and in my opinion was a BS call on New Jersey's part, he bought Williams Grove for a song and a dance, and his import business was alive and well.

WG services 2 major markets, Harrisburg and Baltimore, and 2 outer markets, Philly and DC. Someone will step up with the check book.

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