What is Cedar Fair going to do with Geauga Lake?
Written by Pete Brecht
I was just looking at the press release that Cedar Fair put out last month when they announced the purchase of the Paramount Parks (PDF), and one thing in particular really jumped out at me: Geauga Lake's anemic attendance figures. Last year they only had 700,000 visitors! Compare that to the numbers for Cedar Point and Kings Island (both in the 3-million range), and it got me to wondering if Cedar Fair is planning on hanging onto Geauga Lake in the long term.Tweet
[Editor's note: Cedar Fair also announced today that it will raise up to $250 million through public offering of its limited partnership interests, in an effort to help pay off part of the Paramount Parks acquisition costs.]
Geauga Lake's completely redundant in terms of market coverage, and it's by far the largest physical property in the whole chain at more than a square mile. It's nearly twice the size of Cedar Point, their flagship property! I have no idea what real estate goes for in that part of the country, but a square mile of property anywhere near a major city is usually worth a pretty good chunk of change.
Geauga Lake has some really good rides (in addition to a couple of clunkers), so why not sell the land and relocate all of the good rides to other parks in the chain? Carowinds and Great America could use some help in the ride department, that's for sure. They could even leave the water park open since water parks tend to draw more of a local crowd anyway. The bottom line is that the vast majority of people who go to Geauga Lake would just switch to Cedar Point or Kings Island if Geauga Lake were closed. Where else are they going to go? Kennywood near Pittsburgh is about an hour and half from there, but so is Cedar Point. Which park would you rather go to?
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