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Mike Shirley Jr

Cedar Fair Chief Exec. discusses future of Cedar Fair Parks

Published: May 12, 2008 at 9:28 AM

The following are excerpts from an article featured in the Dayton Daily News on May 12, 2008 in which CEO Richard Kinzel discussed future plans for coasters, water parks and expansion with the Associated Press, as reported by John Seewer. [Here's a link to the full interview, from Ohio.com.]

I found some of these quotes intriguing, including:

"Our goal is to have the Hotel Breakers and Camper Village at Cedar Point cashless by 2010"

"If we had the money on the balance sheet, we have hotel opportunities at Kings Dominion and Carowinds and in Canada. We have plenty of land around all of those parks to make it into a resort community like Cedar Point."

Regarding the removal of rides from the Geauga Lake park near Cleveland, Kinzel insists it was the right decision b/c the park was losing money, but does plan on making it, "the largest water park in the state of Ohio"

The most intriguing response came to questions regarding the building of coasters over 400 feet tall. Despite the fact that the technology exists, does it make sense?

"Financially, no. The price of steel is unbelievable....you can go as high as you want, but from a financial standpoint, it's hard to justify."

Despite the coaster wars we have seen in the last 10 years, it's possible that the race for the tallest and fastest might soon be at an end.

Replies (4)

Brandon Mendoza

Published: May 12, 2008 at 9:49 AM

From an entertainment standpoint, I could care less if a ride is the tallest or fastest as it's just like everything else. Someone will always make something better, faster, or taller in the future.

What it comes down to is if a ride is fun regardless if it's tall or fast. Think Space Mountain or Spider-Man.

But I understand that each park wants some sort of visibility on the map by having the fastest or tallest of whatever type of ride. I just think Fun factor is more long-term oriented, while height and speed are just thinking about "now".

Joshua Counsil

Published: May 12, 2008 at 1:31 PM

I always thought the only thing taller and faster brings to a park is bragging rights. I enjoy Magnum XL-200 far more than Millennium Force or Top Thrill Dragster.
Tim Biltcliff

Published: May 12, 2008 at 4:38 PM

With the economy the way it is, the Coaster Wars were bound to end. Sending a coaster straight up, coming back down, then the ride is over, it's just not my idea of a coaster.

Parks will still build them, just smaller, more economical for each park. Though they are running out of space, Hersheypark is up to eleven, and does not build monster coasters, but people still come

Marc Ricketts

Published: May 12, 2008 at 7:05 PM

"Q: What's the plan for the Paramount parks?

A: In all of the Paramount parks, the emphasis was on wooden coasters, and they put in some great wooden coasters."

Well, this sure isn't the case in Santa Clara, where the one woodie was an awful coaster from the beginning. I worked there the year it opened, and was able to ride before the public. Inexcusable with one of the best just over the hill in Santa Cruz. But if he wants to turn Gt America into a great coaster park, no objection from me. If they're good, they can be big or small. It's the closest to home, but not worth going more than once a year when we get in free with the wife's company at this point. Realistically, though, I don't see anything major happening here until the thing with the 49ers plays out. Cedar Fair is hinting they'd be willing to sell to the team, city says they can build a stadium without CF's approval if they replace the parking spots elsewhere, so right now it's a bunch of peacocks preening and strutting.

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